My colleague, Stella, and I are currently at the early stages of setting up a Poverty Truth Commission for the South Lakes.

It’s about making sure that the stories of people living in poverty are heard by the people who deliver support and services locally and starting thoughtful conversations that will change things for the better. It’s also about raising awareness of the challenges that many people are facing right across our own apparently ‘affluent’ area.

It's not hard for me as a Christian to see this as God’s work.

The Old Testament prophets rail at Israel’s leaders for neglecting and even exploiting the poor. Jesus said that whenever we feed the hungry or clothe the naked we feed and clothe Him.

As a follower of Jesus, I am called to love all my neighbours, rich and poor, but above all to meet the needs of the vulnerable and the marginalised – those left behind by a society in dire need of ‘levelling up’.

I am also called not to pass judgment on others. I have no right to criticise my neighbour’s life choices, money management or spending priorities.

If I see a speck of sawdust in their eye, I know that I have a plank in my own stopping me from seeing straight. God alone is our judge.

My prayer is that our new Commission will enable us to listen to each other with generosity and without judgment. For nothing is impossible with God.

  • If you live in the South Lakes and would like to share something about how faith informs your daily life please email Lois on