What are my motives for serving the needy? Those good feelings that come from giving? A reward for me in the next life? The power difference between me and the receiver? All of these could diminish, rather than build up, the self-esteem of the one served! No, for charity to be healing, only one motive is needed: genuine love and respect for the person receiving it. The one being served will instinctively recognize a person who is being fake or condescending. St. Vincent’s special knack was to honor the ones he helped, in the very act of helping them. More on this can be found in the presentation Real, Simple: St. Vincent de Paul.