Sophie Janssens (Community of Sant’Egidio in Rome) presents a case study exploring new ways to utilize Church property in Rome – Repurposing Urban Spaces to Serve.
Catholics have an obligation to be good stewards of the assets of the Church, following Jesus’ calling to love one another as He loved us. Within this context, Sophie Janssens, a volunteer at the Community of Sant’Egidio in Rome, explores the community’s diverse and innovative approach to urban Church property, walking us through many examples of repurposing Church properties in urban spaces to meet the needs of the poor and marginalized.
The community of Sant’Egidio, lovingly called the community of the 3 Ps (prayer, poor, peace) by His Holiness Pope Francis, is a wonderful example of a community faithfully responding to the Church’s call to serve all of God’s children through new and ingenious projects that reimagine our call to the new evangelization.
From the community’s response to the challenges that stemmed from the many measures imposed during the COVID pandemic (e.g. opening the St. Egidio Community’s Migliori Palace by repurposing an old papal palace so that homeless people could find a safe and caring environment where they were treated as children of God; and spearheading an initiative to keep hotels and inns in Rome running while offering their services to the homeless) to the community’s work with the impoverished youth in the slums of Rome (where the Community’s work began in 1968), without forgetting their famous Trattoria Degli Amici (a popular restaurant in Rome that employs and helps form professionally disabled people), Sophie Janssens gives us an encouraging look at ways Church properties can be repurposed for the greater good.
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