Author Topic: Religious requirement to help lying panhandlers  (Read 10372 times)

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Offline genesisone

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Re: Religious requirement to help lying panhandlers
« Reply #135 on: July 30, 2013, 02:06:05 PM »
Luke 6:30
God commanded us to "Give to anyone who asks of us".

So yes, if they are asking, give.  It is not your fault what they do with it.

Whether an Orthodox Christian is required to do this is beyond me at this point.  It would depend of if an Orthodox Christian takes the bible literally, obeys the commands of God, and doesn't have a canon or some church understanding that allows them to not follow this command.
But what is it that we are expected to give? Read Acts 3. A man was asking for alms, but that's not what Peter and John gave him. What they gave him was what he needed.

I disagree (at least at times) with the statement that "it is not your fault". If you give someone something knowing that it will bring him harm, you have done a disservice and ought to be held accountable.

I do agree that we should give requests for assistance their due consideration. However, some wisdom is required as well. Not an easy task.



Also what katherine said above -

We do not know what they'll do with the money.  For all we know they could be angels. (unawares).
We all need money for various things.  To assume somebody just wants to go buy heroine is judging others.
To assume that I assume that panhandlers just want to go buy heroine is..... what?

Quote
They ask for spare change:
It's simple. A quarter, a nickel, and two pennies - floating in your pocket - very simple.  Just give.
Yep. Just a toss over a few loose coins. Conscience clear. All is good.

Sometimes a kind word can go a long way, too. Yes, I often give to panhandlers. I will often say something like, "Things are a little tough now?" or "This isn't much, but will it help?" I'm neither Peter nor John so I don't feel qualified to offer everything that might be truly needed, but I try to put a bit of personal touch on it. I usually get a smile in return.

I also frequently contribute to musicians, etc. in public places who have some kind of container for donations. I've even struck up lengthy conversations with some.

People are looking for kindness. It may be money, but not necessarily.

Offline Marc1152

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Re: Religious requirement to help lying panhandlers
« Reply #136 on: July 30, 2013, 02:36:25 PM »

That's actually a great idea!!!

But they may need pants.  Hard to make them out of junk food wrappers....

I don't think it is up to use to judge how it will be used.  People have many needs, and to assume it only goes for drugs (etc) is not up to decide.
But we can give entire pants directly to people, no need to give them money to buy drugs.

*checks pockets*

Nope, I don't typically carry spare pairs of pants around with me.

There was a young hippie-ish couple begging near where I work. I had left over Chinese food in a bag next to me. I asked them if they wanted it and they enthusiastically said they did.. Cold bottles of water on a hot day are also appreciated...
Your idea has been debunked 1000 times already.. Maybe 1001 will be the charm

Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: Religious requirement to help lying panhandlers
« Reply #137 on: August 05, 2013, 12:47:07 PM »

Conquer evil men by your gentle kindness, and make zealous men wonder at your goodness. Put the lover of legality to shame by your compassion. With the afflicted be afflicted in mind. Love all men, but keep distant from all men.
—St. Isaac of Syria

Offline Gebre Menfes Kidus

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Offline William

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Re: Religious requirement to help lying panhandlers
« Reply #139 on: August 05, 2013, 09:21:27 PM »
One time I saw a guy in Chi Town next to a sign that said "I just want some booze."
Apart from moral conduct, all that man thinks himself able to do in order to become acceptable to God is mere superstition and religious folly. - Immanuel Kant

Offline TheTrisagion

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Re: Religious requirement to help lying panhandlers
« Reply #140 on: August 06, 2013, 10:16:28 AM »
One time I saw a guy in Chi Town next to a sign that said "I just want some booze."
:D at least he is honest!  Drop him a buck.
Guys! They're not intercoursing. It's just an unfortunate angle.

Offline William

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Re: Religious requirement to help lying panhandlers
« Reply #141 on: August 06, 2013, 12:18:27 PM »
One time I saw a guy in Chi Town next to a sign that said "I just want some booze."
:D at least he is honest!  Drop him a buck.

Well the point of the anecdote was to show that you don't always have to be presumptuous or judgmental to know where charity is gonna go.

There's a reason why charitable organizations don't just give out cash to homeless people.
Apart from moral conduct, all that man thinks himself able to do in order to become acceptable to God is mere superstition and religious folly. - Immanuel Kant

Offline SolEX01

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Re: Religious requirement to help lying panhandlers
« Reply #142 on: August 10, 2013, 06:32:42 PM »
Someone inside a Staples solicited me for a quarter; I literally ran out of the store and left the premises.

I had an "encounter" with a "panhandler" outside a bookstore a few years ago.

He was soliciting for spare change and I told him to leave me alone.  Enraged, he went to his newer model (circa 2009 or 2010) BMW and reached for something in his glovebox as I drove off, concerned that this man would follow me, towards the nearest police station.  Fortunately, nothing happened.

I had another "encounter" at a nearby outlet mall with a woman.  She said her car was broken down in the mall parking lot; I told her to either get lost or contact mall security as I kept on walking towards the Best Buy where I know off-duty MD State Troopers work as security.

To me, people who solicit money have something planned out; whether it's the next drink, the next high or the next crime.  Call it discernment; call it judgment; call it whatever.

Ruses to deceive the elderly are becoming more complex as evident by the news article below:

Quote
Montgomery County Police are looking into two incidents at the Montrose Crossing Shopping Center in North Bethesda in which people were tricked into giving strangers large amounts of money.

In the most recent case, on Tuesday, a 77-year-old man handed over $10,000 to two men who convinced him to withdraw the money from a SunTrust Bank in Bethesda,

http://www.gazette.net/article/20130808/NEWS/130809277/1022/victims-conned-into-withdrawing-money-giving-it-to-strangers-at&template=gazette
« Last Edit: August 10, 2013, 06:39:08 PM by SolEX01 »

Offline TheTrisagion

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Re: Religious requirement to help lying panhandlers
« Reply #143 on: August 19, 2013, 10:05:42 AM »
There is a big difference between someone bumming a quarter off you and someone bilking you out of 10k. BIG difference.
Guys! They're not intercoursing. It's just an unfortunate angle.

Offline Gebre Menfes Kidus

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Re: Religious requirement to help lying panhandlers
« Reply #144 on: August 27, 2013, 03:23:52 AM »
It takes great humility to beg. Many people have died from pride.


Selam
""Love is a dangerous thing. It will crush you if you trust it. But without it you can never be whole. Love crucifies, but love saves. We will either be saved together with love, or damned alone without it."    Selam, +GMK+

Offline Quinault

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Re: Religious requirement to help lying panhandlers
« Reply #145 on: August 27, 2013, 07:18:30 AM »
I received the CBD catalogue today. This catalogue used to be something I would peruse with great interest, circling the books I wanted and dog-earring the pages. It was interesting that there were numerous books on how you "hurt" the homeless by giving them money instead of helping them learn a skill. In light of the recent news story below of the homeless man learning code, instead of taking the $100, I found that rather interesting.

http://www.slate.com/blogs/future_tense/2013/08/22/patrick_mcconlogue_s_homeless_hacker_friend_picks_computer_coding_lessons.html

Offline William

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Re: Religious requirement to help lying panhandlers
« Reply #146 on: September 19, 2014, 05:05:43 PM »
"For [the godly bishop of Caesarea] said that experience was needed in order to distinguish between cases of genuine need and of mere greedy begging. For whoever gives to the afflicted gives to the Lord, and from the Lord shall have his reward; but he who gives to every vagabond casts to a dog, a nuisance indeed from his importunity, but deserving no pity on the ground of want." - Basil the Great, Letter CL
Apart from moral conduct, all that man thinks himself able to do in order to become acceptable to God is mere superstition and religious folly. - Immanuel Kant

Offline dzheremi

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Re: Religious requirement to help lying panhandlers
« Reply #147 on: September 19, 2014, 06:36:49 PM »
Get a bunch of gift cards from a fast food place that can be found just about anywhere.  There doesn't have to be much on the cards:  just a few bucks on each card, or whatever will buy a basic meal at the place.  When you see a homeless person, give them a card.  It's not hard, and you don't have to worry about how the money will be spent.

This is what my family has been doing for the past few years, after narrowly escaping being scammed to the tune of about $800 by professional scammers posing as a destitute family broken down on the side of the road. Back when he was still working in the music business and making quite a bit of money, my father would set aside some money each year to do one big charitable act for some local person or people. One year he bought plane tickets for a woman and her husband to attend her father's funeral back East, for instance.

Not only did we almost get scammed one subsequent year, but since my father no longer works in that industry, the amount of money that is available to allocate to charity is much more modest. So now for the past half-decade or so its been a small number of pre-paid Denny's cards good for the equivalent of one meal, passed out around the local mission in the town next to his. I think this is a good way to go, if you are concerned about the truthfulness of a beggar or ultimate end of your donation. Last time I checked, you couldn't buy drugs, hard liquor, or strippers at Denny's.

For me, it is difficult because the area I live in has a lot of homeless people. Like to the point where if you go out after dark to throw out some trash in the dumpster next to this apartment complex, you're likely to interrupt homeless people searching through that same dumpster for recycleables and/or food. It's really discouraging. So I always try to give, even though I do not have much myself. It has happened many times that I will be out and about and someone will ask me for change not five minutes after the last person, just a little ways further down the street, asked for some, and I'll have to explain that I've already given what I have for the day. Usually people are okay with that. I have never had any bad incidents here, unlike some other cities I have lived in (unless you count the time when the guy wanted to thumb wrestle for a quarter; just take the quarter, you weirdo), but that is because I have learned from past experience to trust my instincts regarding when a situation feels unsafe. Hence I never let the person see me open my wallet (I keep change loose in my pocket), never give at night or any other time where something could happen due to those kinds of circumstances (e.g., if me and the homeless guy are the only people on the street at that time...nope!), and never give when it's someone plus one or more of their friends (I don't need four people crowded around me so that one guy can get change; if he wants to share it with the rest of you, fine, but back off...I'm not in the mood to potentially get robbed). This is better than to judge individual motivations, because I figure someone who truly just wants help will not purposefully make you feel uncomfortable like that, and will understand if you do feel uncomfortable and not harass or pressure you. It's kind of odd how much better it is here, where there is so much more need, than it was in the last place I lived, which was wealthier and where most of the "beggars" if you could call them that were teenagers or trust-fund babies. When I lived in Oregon, I can remember exiting a pizza place late at night with a friend of mine after long hours of studying and being accosted by a young man who was definitely not older than us who demanded, did not ask, "Hey, give me $5". And when we quite reasonably said no, he tried to get into the car as my friend started it up to drive us away from the situation. What the heck...?!

So there are definitely scumbags and scammers out there, but I still try not to judge anybody. There is a man here in ABQ who resells the local free weeklies for whatever donation you'll give him. I can appreciate that, so I'll try to give to him if I see him, even though I have no use for the papers themselves. Gotta let a man have his dignity, you know. Homeless people are people who are homeless, not some different species. I could be homeless, or you could be homeless, or any of us could be homeless. I don't want to be like the young acolytes in the time of St. Bishoy who would not carry the old man who appeared before them, because they were worried that he would slow them on their journey to meet the Lord Christ in the desert (as he had appeared to their master, St. Bishoy, many times). But St. Bishoy stopped to carry the old man, and in doing so it was revealed to him that the old man was Christ appearing before all. The acolytes just hadn't taken the time to help Him. It makes me wonder how many Christs I pass by in a day.

« Last Edit: September 19, 2014, 06:40:33 PM by dzheremi »

Offline Justin Kissel

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Re: Religious requirement to help lying panhandlers
« Reply #148 on: September 19, 2014, 06:52:35 PM »
"For [the godly bishop of Caesarea] said that experience was needed in order to distinguish between cases of genuine need and of mere greedy begging. For whoever gives to the afflicted gives to the Lord, and from the Lord shall have his reward; but he who gives to every vagabond casts to a dog, a nuisance indeed from his importunity, but deserving no pity on the ground of want." - Basil the Great, Letter CL

Saint Basil always was the least cool among the Cappadocians, there's no doubt about that.  8)

Offline Marc1152

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Re: Religious requirement to help lying panhandlers
« Reply #149 on: September 22, 2014, 03:07:23 PM »
It takes great humility to beg. Many people have died from pride.


Selam

+1

When my kids were little we would break thirty or forty dollars into ones and then drive around and look for beggars. 
Your idea has been debunked 1000 times already.. Maybe 1001 will be the charm

Offline biro

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Re: Religious requirement to help lying panhandlers
« Reply #150 on: September 22, 2014, 05:23:31 PM »
It takes great humility to beg. Many people have died from pride.


Selam

+1

When my kids were little we would break thirty or forty dollars into ones and then drive around and look for beggars. 

Good for you.