Monday of the Twenty-seventh Week in Ordinary Time
Reading 1Gal 1:6-12 ;Gospel Lk 10:25-37
Who is my neighbor? In today’s gospel, we come across the story of Good Samaritan. Jesus shares this story as an answer to the question paused to him: ‘who is my neighbor’? Jesus presents this story, not with an intention to decide upon our authentic neighbour instead to create awareness that how we can be good neighbours to others? Why did choose Samaritan as the central figure of this story? Jesus wanted to challenge the existing value system of his time. Jews had an avert feeling towards gentiles. Jesus challenged them to come out of their narrow mentality and build a universal brotherhood. This message is very relevant in our context too. We might have come across several migrant workers in our cities. What is our attitude towards them? Sometimes, we treat them as mere slaves and deny even the basic human rights. Their economic poverty is not a reason to underestimate their dignity as human persons.
Why did Jesus keep the priest and Levite as the villains of this story? Here, Jesus challenged the legalist mind frame of people of his time and the present time. In front of the law the priest and the Levite, they were not culpable for their failures because they had to fulfill their duties. But Jesus underlined the fact that charity comes first. At times we give emphasis for rules and regulations, neglecting the human person who is entangled with various problems. Like the Good Samaritan, who is Jesus himself, let us be good neighbours to each other who care the other in genuine love.