Day 24: Loving the Distant and the Future Neighbor

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3-13-15Readings for Today

Which commandment is the first of all?

“You shall love the Lord (…) and your neighbor as yourself,” says Jesus in a quite straight-forward manner. This is, in a nutshell, the heart of Christian ethics. We know we will fail in living up to this higher calling. But, equally, we strive.

The hard question of our time is whether we could raise even more the already unreachable Christian ethical ideal. As hard and challenging as this might sound, we urgently need to consider it.

Should we extend the core Jewish and Christian command to include future generations and our far-away brothers and sisters whom we will never meet?

Our abuse or sound use of God’s created goods will indeed determine the fate of our descendants and of the poor. Caring for Creation and caring for the poor (both the distant one and the unborn) has become one and the same task. We cannot have one, anymore, without the other.

Reflection Questions:

  • Do I ever think of my distant neighbor?
  • Do I exercise and “stretch” my spiritual imagination to consider those I will never meet?
  • Is Creation ever present in my prayer?

Jaime Tatay is a Jesuit priest and a forest engineer currently living in Madrid, Spain. He is working on a doctorate in social ethics and is involved in campus ministry (and he doesn’t hike as much as he’d like to).

1 reply
  1. Lorraine
    Lorraine says:

    Yes, it is urgent from a justice, stewardship and spiritual point of view. I pray for mercy for future generations and relevant action now.


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