Messengers of mercy

    March 10, 2024

    “The more things change, the more they stay the same.”

    This familiar quote is recorded to be first used in 1849 by Alphonse Karr, a French journalist and novelist. In comparison to the 5th Century, B.C. — the likely time frame referenced by the 2nd Book of Chronicles in today’s First Reading — 19th Century France is a whiff of yesterday’s history and the repetitive challenges of the human journey we all seem to struggle with through the polarity of enormous changes in our world, while the priceless lessons of virtue, integrity and reason seem to always pass us by.

    2nd Chronicles recalls a familiar Scripture narrative of our Lord and God continuing to send us messengers, prophets and signs of the good news of His salvation while we ignore and sometimes consciously rebel against them. No clearer case of the dismissal of God’s will is the widespread indifference toward the millions of God’s children who flock to Catholic Charities in search of help and hope in the face of desperation. We sadly witness the disgusting ways and means that are leveled against refugees, those seeking asylum and people literally starving for food and basic life needs. I’m sure that I’m not alone in feeling overwhelmed at times with being unable to change the continuum of care, or even the tone of conversation, as we swim upstream to carry out our work in the face of such divisive odds.

    Thanks be to God for the Second Reading and Gospel! We are comforted in knowing that God never gives up on us, or on anyone. His mercy lives with each of us, as we attempt to be good messengers of mercy to those we serve. Despite our own flaws and sinfulness in a fractured world, we bathe in God’s light, His Peace and His Grace to sustain us. Perhaps our mission is as challenging and as important now than ever before, as we collectively stand up for justice, for equality and for humanity. As people of the resurrection, let us all find our courage and strength in the Savior who opens His arms wide to love us, to heal us and to forgive us.

    Deacon Tom Roberts is President & CEO of Catholic Charities of Southern Nevada.

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