eyes with deep love and concern: “Jesus, looking
upon him, loved him” (
10:21). We see how
accessible he is, as he draws near the blind man
10:46-52) and eats and drinks with sin-
ners (cf.
2:16) without worrying about being
thought a glutton and a drunkard himself (cf.
11:19). We see his sensitivity in allowing a sinful
woman to anoint his feet (cf.
7:36-50) and
in receiving Nicodemus by night (cf.
Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross is nothing else than
the culmination of the way he lived his entire life.
Moved by his example, we want to enter fully into
the fabric of society, sharing the lives of all, lis-
tening to their concerns, helping them materially
and spiritually in their needs, rejoicing with those
who rejoice, weeping with those who weep; arm
in arm with others, we are committed to building
a new world. But we do so not from a sense of
obligation, not as a burdensome duty, but as the
result of a personal decision which brings us joy
and gives meaning to our lives.
270. Sometimes we are tempted to be that kind
of Christian who keeps the Lord’s wounds at
arm’s length. Yet Jesus wants us to touch human
misery, to touch the suffering flesh of others. He
hopes that we will stop looking for those per-
sonal or communal niches which shelter us from
the maelstrom of human misfortune and instead
enter into the reality of other people’s lives and
know the power of tenderness. Whenever we
do so, our lives become wonderfully complicat-
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