Kindness in Action
“My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness.”
Spending the Easter weekend as a guest of an order of nuns in the Marche region of Italy turned out to be more than just a peaceful few days break for me. It provided a window onto kindness and compassion in action today.
As I witnessed the nuns’ dedication and commitment to caring for a number of elderly people in their charge I was struck by how their lives, their religion and their work all fit together, indistinguishable parts of a whole.
There was no compartmentalization involved; everything flowed naturally. No clock watching or squabbles over whose turn it was to do whatever. Each went about their duty clearly happy to be doing exactly what they were doing at that moment.
The sense of belonging to a community, guided by a shared purpose reminded me of the time I spent, years ago, as a volunteer on a kibbutz. Although the underlying faiths are obviously different, the respect for the elderly and the joy of being part of a like-minded group seem to be the same.
It could be argued such considerations are only relevant to ‘isolated’ communities. Perhaps. An alternative perspective could be that the ‘isolated’ communities are actually those many of us actually belong to. How often do we separate ourselves from others by clinging to limiting identities related to our nationality, our profession, our religion?
If we choose, and with a little effort on our part, it is quite likely our communities can likewise be sources of wonder and fullness to our existence.
Keep in touch.