Good Samaritan shows how to make God’s presence known

| Deacon Paul Baker | July 6, 2016 | 0 Comments

It is often remarked in both the secular and Catholic media today that society’s religious beliefs are declining. The Church has been asking the question these last years about what can be done to try to stem the tide of this alarming trend. Her answer so far has been to call for a “new evangelization.”

What is this new evangelization, though, and how are we as a Church supposed to go about it?

The problem with today’s world is that it is first in need of being convinced that there is a God at all before we can even attempt to teach anything about him. This week’s Sunday readings offer us a glimpse at perhaps the most effective means of achieving this goal. Quite simply, if we wish to make the presence of God known in the world, then we are to follow the example of the Good Samaritan and show charitable compassion to our neighbors, especially those neighbors who are the least among us.

How is it possible for the love of God to be known through the actions of a human? It is possible because through our baptism, we are united to Jesus, the God who loved us both in his divinity and humanity. Because of Jesus, the human love we show for our neighbor helps the love of God to be known in a tangible way; through this human love we come to realize that the love of God should not be thought of as some distant, purely intellectual concept, but as an intimate reality that we can sense with our whole being, body and soul.

This is the very reason why Jesus became one of us, so that we would have an image of the invisible God. He came to live among us as one of us that we might know in a human, and thus deeper, way that God loves us and wants to be with us forever. We are called to mirror this in our own life so that our neighbor might know the love of God through us, and that we can love God through serving them. In doing so, they, too, might experience the same and seek to do likewise for others.

Deacon Baker is in formation for the priesthood at the St. Paul Seminary School of Divinity for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. His teaching parish is Epiphany in Coon Rapids, and his home parish is St. Peter in Mendota.


Sunday, July 10
Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Readings

  • Dt 30:10-14
  • Col 1:15-20
  • Lk 10:25-37

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Category: Sunday Scriptures