September 24

Reflection

Your kindness should be known to all.
Philippians4:4-7

If we wrap ourselves in religious arrogance we are poor witnesses to the gospel. We are called to have regard for the feelings, rights, and traditions of others. Courtesy and consideration are marks of this respect whether we agree with them or not. To dishonor someone publically, to scorn and condemn a whole group of people indiscriminately, is not only disrespect and a sign of hostility, but it shows bad manners and ignorance. It is a painful contradiction to see this being played out in our country and even applauded by those who consider themselves religious people even as they condemn and denigrate those of other faiths.

Prayer

May my attitudes toward others witness to the gospel.

Action

Make time to learn about the cultural and religious practices of other people. Don’t be too timid to express your dismay when you hear derogatory or scornful speech about those different from yourself.

Suggested Reading

If those who claim devotion to God don’t control what they say, they mislead themselves. Their devotion is worthless.
James 1:26

Among people’s rights is that of being able to worship God in accordance with the right dictates of their own conscience, and to profess their religion both in private and in public.
John XXIII. Pacem in Terris

Turning to mutual respect in inter-religious relations, especially between Christians and Muslims, we are called to respect the religion of the other, its teachings, its symbols, its values.
Pope Francis

As we grow in our consciousness, there will be more compassion and more love, and then the barriers between people, between religions, between nations will begin to fall. Yes, we have to beat down the separateness.
Ram Dass

The essence of all religions is one. Only their approaches are different.
Mahatma Gandhi

All religions try to benefit people, with the same basic message of the need for love and compassion, for justice and honesty, for contentment.
Dalai Lama

All religions are designed to teach us how to live, joyfully, serenely, and kindly, in the midst of suffering.
Karen Armstrong

If your religion doesn’t respect the rights of other religions, it is lacking something.
Roger Ebert

It’s always interesting about God because it’s like all of the religions in the world say that they pray to the same God, and yet they ask that same one God to divide itself up and agree with this one and fight against that one.
 Wayne Dyer

What we all have in common is an appreciation of kindness and compassion; all the religions have this. We all lean towards love.
Richard Gere

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