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What unites us is far greater than what separates us

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What unites us is far greater than what separates us

What unites us is far greater than what separates us

 

November 21, 2016

Let us remember that what unites us is far greater than what separates us. We are all – each and every one of us – created in the image and likeness of a God who, we believe, loves each of us as his daughters and sons.

There are so many of us who are afraid, who are angry, who have been hurt. While some may want to respond to violence with violence, that is not what we are called to do. On Saturday, Pope Francis addressed this, saying that “We live at a time in which polarization and exclusion are burgeoning and considered the only way to resolve conflicts.  We see, for example, how quickly those among us with the status of a stranger, an immigrant, or a refugee, become a threat, take on the status of an enemy.  An enemy because they come from a distant country or have different customs.  An enemy because of the colour of their skin, their language or their social class.  An enemy because they think differently or even have a different faith.”

The Catholic response to that enmity is love and compassion. That is what has made our nation a beacon of hope and promise for the world.

This is a sober commitment, though, one that requires us to stand in solidarity with those who are angry and those who are the subject of that anger. Again, Pope Francis tells us that we are called to be bridge builders and people of mercy. When he preached at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City, he said, “Closeness to the poor, the refugee, the immigrant, the sick, the exploited, the elderly living alone, prisoners and all God’s other poor” teaches us how to be more Christian. That is what it means to be people of peace and compassion. Love is stronger than hate. Mercy is more powerful than revenge. By being people of mercy, people of compassion, people of peace, we will rebuild our nation and renew the American dream.

This coming weekend we celebrate works and feelings of gratitude for our country and each other in our national feast of Thanksgiving.  When faced with so much negativity in our society following this divisive election cycle, let us pull together as a nation and a community to generate hope, unity and appreciation for all the blessings the Good Lord has given us.

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