Issued by the Catholic Center for Studies and Media - Jordan. Editor-in-chief Fr. Rif'at Bader - موقع أبونا

Media for humanity through the culture of encounter
Published on Sunday, 22 November 2020

Is famine next door?

By Munir Bayouk/ :

There have been reports by various sources stating that some countries in the world are drifting towards hunger. This situation raises eyebrows and causes eyes to be welling with tears.


With hunger in the offing, the world will definitely be shoved into an arena of instability leading to further violence, wars, crimes and insecurity.


Marking the World Day of the Poor on November 15, 2020, His Holiness Pope Francis said, "We must do good, to come to ourselves and look, look at those who have more need. There is so much hunger, even in the heart of our cities. Many times, we enter into that logic of indifference: the poor is there, and we look the other way."


With Pope Francis stressing "that there is so much hunger, even in the heart of our cities", this means that the situation is becoming gradually grave and intolerable, as hunger is associated with unemployment which snowballs into poverty.


In his Encyclical Laudato Si, Pope Francis makes a worldwide wake up call to help humanity understand the destruction that man is rendering to the environment and his fellow man. While addressing the environment directly, the document looks at not only man’s effect on the environment, but also the many philosophical, theological, and cultural causes that threaten the relationships of man to nature and man to each other in various circumstances.


The damage inflicted by man through various acts, such as deforestation and industrial activities that emit dangerous gases among others, is sometimes irreversible. This leads to climate change thus wreaking havoc in our universe, the home of humans for thousands of years.


With the Pope's warning on this impending danger, governments still turn a deaf ear and a blind eye showing indifference. When will the world leaders heed the Pope's warning?


The destructive impacts of climate change, like droughts, floods and severe storms, are the primary culprits behind decreased farming output and rising hunger worldwide.




COVID-19 poses considerable risks to already vulnerable populations living in countries with severe development deficits, limited government capacity and, importantly, poor healthcare infrastructure.


With safety-net systems cannot help stem the negative economic and nutritional impacts of COVID-19, this pandemic may cause the global economy to slow or fall into recession, exacerbating extreme poverty and hunger.


In light of this, it is time to heed Pope Francis' remarks on hunger and view food security with perspicacity so as to forestall the danger of this catastrophe lurking next door.