Times of crisis reveal our real moral character. When life is going smoothly, we can float through not having to make decisions that are revealing. But when events force us to make choices based in our basic beliefs, we are exposed for all to see. In this present crisis we have come to understand who those are whose service is really necessary to the functioning of society. Each day, despite personal risk, they give generously of their skill and presence in service to others. They contrast starkly with some who glibly sacrifice others for their own economic priorities, or have to satisfy their own needs and thus endanger others in the process. We are experiencing a common crisis that has enmeshed all of us unexpectedly. It has brought a common deprivation which has the potential to spread more widely. We have shared grief and loss. To endure and to solve our problems we will need one another. It is a time to seek the common good, and support decisions for the good of the whole. Selfishness, insensitivity to the vulnerable, and petty divisions have no place here. As we face an unpredictable future it will matter whose qualities prevail.
May we join together for the good of all.
What are the insights you are taking away from this experience? In what ways can our common lifestyle improve for the good of all? What will this require of us? Are you willing to join others to achieve positive goals?
To each person has been given the ability to manifest the Spirit for the common good.
1 Corinthians 12:7
Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.
1 John 4:11
Politics, according to the Social Doctrine of the Church, is one of the highest forms of charity, because it serves the common good. I cannot wash my hands. We all have to give something.
Authority is mainly a moral power; therefore, it must first call upon the conscience, that is, upon the duty that each person has to contribute willingly to the common good.
Pope John XXIII
Patriotism is love of country. But you can’t love your country without loving your countrymen and countrywomen. We don’t always have to agree, but we must empower each other, we must find the common ground, we must build bridges across our differences to pursue the common good.
Political civility is not about being polite to each other. It’s about reclaiming the power of ‘We the People’ to come together, debate the common good and call American democracy back to its highest values amid our differences.
This is an unprecedented opportunity to rethink how our beliefs, values, and institutions shape our relationships. We can create a world that works for everyone or face a future that no longer works for anyone.
Our humanity makes us each a part of something greater than ourselves.
You will not always be able to solve all of the world’s problems at once but don’t ever underestimate the importance you can have because history has shown us that courage can be contagious and hope can take on a life of its own.
Doing the right thing, surrendering our short-term self-interest to serve the needs of the whole, has never been easy for humankind, but now, more than ever, that is exactly what we must do. Future generations are counting on us.
Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.
There is no higher religion than human service. To work for the common good is the greatest creed.