The Perspective of Justice for October 9th

“Marginal” People

“The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power.” That is the essence of our faith, and it is the focus of today’s liturgy. Naaman in the first reading and the Samaritan in the Gospel both experience the saving power of God.
The wonderful deeds of the Lord should elicit several reactions from us.

The first is gratitude to God, like the cured Samaritan who was the only one to return and give thanks to God.

The second is worship, like Naaman, who vows: “I will no longer offer holocaust or sacrifice to any other god except to the Lord.”

The third is action on behalf of others, as we pray in the opening prayer: “May our love for you express itself in our eagerness to do good for others.”

God has blessed us with a wonderful earth and filled it with a beautiful family of brothers and sisters. As Christians, we are called to have thankful worship of God, expressed in care for the lepers and blind people of our day—the poor, hungry, and homeless, the victims of war and oppression, the suffering and dying.

We are to “sing to the Lord a new song” in a new world where lepers and the blind are welcomed back into society.

The central meaning of Jesus’ ministry is bound up with the fact that he sought the company of people who, for one reason or another, were forced to live on the fringe of society.

These he made the special object of his attention, declaring that the last would be first and that the humble would be exalted in his Father’s kingdom. 

The church finds its true identity when it fully integrates itself with these ‘marginal’ people including those who suffer from physical and psychological disabilities.

US Bishops,
Pastoral Statement on Handicapped People,
1978:12

Gerald Darring

 

**From Saint Louis University

Kristin Clauson