July 14

Reflection

The image of the Good Samaritan is so familiar that it has become a common idiom in our ordinary speech. Yet, it causes us to reflect on many aspects of our beliefs: the dignity of the human person, the compassion for those in need and the connection between love of God and neighbor. All persons, even those on the margins of society, have basic human rights. It is easy to leave others by the side of the road and move on as if they are not our concern. It is easy to regard certain others as victims of their own poor choices or of a desire to be where they don’t belong. Exclusion has become a blot on our national character.  Like the Good Samaritan, we need the courage and the compassion to respect the situations and rights of all, to embrace them, to recognize injustice and try to meet the needs of another with compassion based in love rather than exclusion based in fear.

Prayer

Forget not to show love unto strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.
Hebrews 13:2

Action

Who are those we are willing to leave by the side of the road?  Why?  Where do you stand? What can you do?

Suggested Reading

The goal of economics and politics is to serve humanity, beginning with the poorest and most vulnerable wherever they may be.
Pope Francis

The Old Testament prophets emphasize that worship and prayer are not pleasing to God unless they are accompanied by practical works of justice and charity. … we must acknowledge the call to commit ourselves ever more generously to working for justice and the liberation of the oppressed.
Pope John Paul II

The first question which the priest and the Levite asked on the Jericho Road was: ‘If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?’ But…the good Samaritan reversed the question: ‘If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?
Martin Luther King, Jr

Wherever a man turns he can find someone who needs him.
Albert Schweitzer

The world will not be destroyed by those who do evil, but by those who watch them without doing anything.
Albert Einstein

It is the obligation of every person born in a safer room to open the door when someone in danger knocks.
Dina Nayeri

Love one another and help others to rise to the higher levels, simply by pouring out love. Love is infectious and the greatest healing energy.
Sai Baba

When you’re drowning, you don’t say ‘I would be incredibly pleased if someone would have the foresight to notice me drowning and come and help me,’ you just scream.
John Lennon

In a land of immigrants, one was not an alien but simply the latest arrival.
Rudolf Arnheim

Remember, remember always, that all of us are descended from immigrants and revolutionists.
Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

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