Mary, a young resident student in a hospital had an amazing impact on children. They responded joyfully to her guidance, in a way that they would not for any other staff. The seniors assigned a nurse to find out the secret behind Mary’s success. The secret was simply this; each night during her last round she would smile, hug, and tuck in each child. It was in her act of compassion that she made contact with the children. This compassion belongs to God and reaches out to us in Christ. As the Bible depicts, it was Jesus’ compassion that attracted crowds to Him.

We read about how when Jesus saw a great multitude He was moved with compassion for them and healed their sick. When the crowd followed Christ from morning till evening, His disciples came to Him, saying, “This is a deserted place, and the hour is already late. Send the multitudes away, that they may go into the villages and buy themselves food.”  But Jesus said to them, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat” (Matthew 14:14-16). This instruction applies to us today, as well.

Jesus’s healing is for all. An intensive care waiting room is entirely different from any other place in the world. In here, nobody is rude or demeaning. The distinction of religion, race, caste, colour or economic status melts away. Vanity and façade do not make an appearance. A father admitted is just that, a father, no other aspect matters. The poor labourer loves his wife on the ventilator, just as much as the university professor loves his wife struggling to live. Anxious relatives are focused on the doctor’s next report; if only it will show signs of improvement. The only thing that stands out here is love and service.

As we celebrate the coming of Jesus into this world, let us imitate Jesus’ challenge to be “good Samaritans” and clothe ourselves with heartfelt compassion and so do our best to love our neighbour.

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