First Reading: Jon 1:1-2:1-2. 11; Psalm: Jon 2. R. v. 7; Gospel: Lk 10:25-37
“GO AND DO LIKEWISE”
BY FR VALENTINE NNAMDI EGBUONU, MSP
Love is not a sentiment of pity for one’s unfortunate condition or predicament. Love is actually offering a helping hand to anyone truly in need of help. In the parable of the Good Samaritan, the Priest and the Levite saw the wounded traveller but passed by. Apparently, they felt pity on seeing the critical condition of this unfortunate traveller; but their sin was that they did not move a finger to help him. The Good Samaritan acted differently. He was not only moved to pity but acted in love. He stopped and bandaged the wounds of the dying man. He took him to an inn; paid for his treatment and was ready to pay more if required.
A sentiment of pity for peoples’ unfortunate condition will go nowhere to lessen their pain or worry. A true neighbour is someone who takes practical steps towards helping those in need. We may be very good at pitying and consoling people, but if we cannot turn these sentiments of sympathy into practical generosity when we have all it takes to help a suffering neighbour; then our sentiments of sympathy are nothing short of pretence. Pity or concern for people’s helpless condition should translate to action to prove that we are truly a neighbour.
The question of the lawyer: “And who is my neighbour?” was obviously answered as Jesus concluded this parable. The lawyer therefore has no excuse anymore as to what constitutes a true neighbour. We heard his reply to Jesus that the one who showed mercy among the three passersby proved a true neighbour to the dying man. And Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.” When we are clear on what is required of us as Christians called to be neighbours to one another; we have no excuse why we shouldn’t be one. Love is not pity. Love is reaching out in mercy. Love is that unconditional charity towards those truly in need. So, just like the Good Samaritan, we can go and do likewise.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY
Lord Jesus, help us to be true neighbours to one another in charity and love. Amen.