The Gospel makes the seed of goodness that God placed in every human heart sprout. It is a seed a hope that grows with each personal daily encounter with God’s love, flourishing with the love we have for each other. It spurs us to fight against the bad seeds of individualism and indifference, which cause isolation and conflict, and to carry each other’s burdens and encourage each other.
After our parents died, my sister and I – we’re both married – began to have misunderstandings about our inheritance, which we felt was not distributed correctly. It got to the point that we became enemies. It seemed so absurd to me, yet that’s the way it was. I gathered the courage and went to visit her. She was surprised, and happy enough to hug me. After each of us asked each other’s forgiveness, we decided to take our mother’s jewels that we had received and donate them to a charity. After that we felt free: generosity towards others had brought us closer to each other, and we also felt closer to our parents in paradise. (F., France)
Whatever I have extra isn’t mine
Some time ago, when we used to spend the night at a migrant centre, early one morning Gabriele and I, after spending the night there, accompanied a priest and some teens who had been guests to the door. They were leaving to get their documentation. It was cold, and we were dressed for it, but one of the teens only had a light T-shirt on. I asked him if he was cold but realised from the look he gave me that he could not understand my question. So I took off my coat (I had a heavy jumper underneath) and gave it to him. Gabriele gave him some money to buy something during the day. I got back home with a great joy in my heart. At home, my wife told me that for a while her sister wanted to give me a gift, and she had chosen a coat. (Rosario, Italy)
Children of God
Like most mornings, getting on the subway full of all kinds of people, who as usual were planning on reading or busy with their smartphones, I felt a sense of pain and sadness. Do they know what to live for? Do they have an ideal in life? But then I thought, each of them will have had hardship in life, and perhaps right now one of them is suffering with something… And I began to see them differently: no longer as poor people, but as children of God, who loves and supports each of them. (T., Italy)
I was at university for an exam when I saw that an accountant had come looking for a student who had not paid his student fees. Seeing that right then I had some money in my pocket, I asked that student if I could pay for him. From that moment on, we were friends. Getting to know him better, I learned that he was an orphan who had lost both his parents and looking for some work to pay for university accommodation. I shared his need with other friends, and we committed to helping him both economically and spiritually. (Steve, Burundi)