who's who in acting with mercy?
"The one who treated him with compassion..." —Luke 10:37
The pagan sailors treated Jonah with mercy. They mercifully placed more importance on Jonah's life than on their own safety, working hard and risking much to spare his life. Sadly, Jonah, the religious man, didn't reciprocate that mercy back to the sailors. Through his guilt and disobedience, Jonah put their lives in great danger and it didn't bother him a bit; he slept peacefully while they risked their lives to save him (Jon 1:5ff).
Similarly, the religious authorities, the priest and Levite (temple assistant), did not treat the wounded man in today's Gospel parable with mercy or interest. Although they technically obeyed the levitical law to avoid impurity by risking contact with blood (see Lv 5:3, 7:21), they could have aided the victim in other ways. Instead, they merely passed by without getting involved. The Samaritan, viewed as unfaithful in the eyes of the faithful Jews, was appraised by Jesus as the one who truly fulfilled the heart of God's law (Lk 10:36-37).
What do the people of the world see when they look at our lives? Do they see the fruit of mercy and compassion? Or do they see us as people who don't care about them and who don't want to get involved with their problems? May we be ambassadors of God's mercy and compassion to all in our lives (see 2 Cor 5:20).
Prayer: Father, open my eyes to the reasons behind all my behaviors toward those who dislike me.
Promise: "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself." Lk 10:27
Praise: The Blessed Virgin Mary encouraged praying the rosary for those who most need God's mercy. According to St. Padre Pio, the rosary is a ladder to heaven. Our Lady of the Rosary, pray for us.
Reference: (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, March 11, 2019
The Nihil Obstat ("Permission to Publish") is a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free of doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted the Nihil Obstat agree with the contents, opinions, or statements expressed.