by Laura Passard Yurko
To me, the theme of this week's Gospel is Awareness. Lazarus is suffering and in need and the wealthy man ignores him - literally steps over him to get into his house.
Whether it's a stranger on the street or a friend or family member who struggles with an addiction, a serious illness or who recently experienced a loss, pain and suffering is uncomfortable - for person experiencing it and for those of us standing by on the outside. We may ask ourselves "What can I really do to help?" We all have reasons for ignoring people or issues in our lives. But, God is asking us to be aware of the humanity that exists in some of the darkest and scariest places and to do what we can, which is, at the very least, to acknowledge that humanity. In the second half of our meeting we heard from local Marriage and Family Therapist Kelly McCann who spoke about Communication. In her introduction she said that some of our most basic human needs are "to be seen, to be heard and to be understood." A smile and a wave or a simple hello is all it takes to connect with a stranger and saying "I'm here and I'm listening" to a friend or simply asking someone what he or she needs are all ways we can connect to the humanity in each other.
I leave you this week with the following prayer entitled "I Need to Be Aware" and hope that you might be more aware as you journey through your life.
Expand my awareness, O God,
Reflections inspired by our weekly faith sharing and fellowship.