– ”Paraphrasing the words of St James the Apostle (cf. 2:14-17), we could say: mercy without works is dead within itself.“ 

     Comment: Being full of mercy should result in deeds 

– ”Sometimes we pass by situations of dramatic poverty and it seems that they do not touch us; everything continues as if it were nothing, into an indifference that eventually creates hypocrites and, without our realizing it, leads to a form of spiritual lethargy that numbs the soul and renders life barren.“ 

     Comment: Unless mercy is manifested in works, we will be subject to indifference and lethargy, which means that we fail to meet the others, and do pass by the wounds of those who suffer from poverty 


– ”It is necessary therefore, that we remain as vigilant as watchmen, so that, when facing the poverty produced by the culture of wellbeing, the Christian gaze does not weaken and become incapable of focusing on what is essential.“ 

      Comment: Mercy that is with us is designed to act in favour of removing structural sins that are rooted in the oppression by the North of the South 

 Queries of further study: 

– What are the cases of indifference that occur in our life? – Passing by the wounds of those who suffer from poverty 

– What are we called to do, based on the selected text, in order to get rid of indifference (and lethargy)? – To act in favour of removing structural sins by animating civil movements, raising good thoughts and feelings, humanism, and more responsibility throughout the society, and seeking to build renewed communities in the respective local Catholic church 

– Testimonies on mercy? – Taking actions against the indifference experienced in the CEE region where societies are fragile and disintegrated, being subject to all the more authoritarian political power that oppresses active participation in dealing with public matters 

 – ”(F)acing the poverty produced by the culture of wellbeing“ – Removing immense economic inequalities that globally exist, to face the structural vice of inequality – the concepts of the structures of virtues and sin should avoid reductionism to either an anthropological individualism or deterministic structuralism 

”… social sin refers to the relationships between the various human communities.  To speak even analogically of social sins must not cause us to underestimate the responsibility of the individuals involved.  A situation – or likewise an institution, a structure, society itself – is not in itself the subject of moral acts.  Hence a situation cannot in itself be good or bad.“  Post-synodal apostolic exhortation; Reconciliation and penance of John Paul II, Rome, 2 December 1984, 16 

”Sin is evident in oppressive structures, in the exploitation of humans by humans, in the domination and slavery of peoples, races, and social classes.  Sin appears, therefore, as the fundamental alienation, the root of a situation of injustice and exploitation.“  Gustavo Gutierrez, A theology of liberation: History, politics, and salvation, transl. by Sister Caridad Inda and John Eagleson, Maryknoll, Orbis, New York, 1988, p. 103 

– Belief based on religious dogmatics and belief established on ethics 

„Donc il n’y a pas de religion, il n’y a pas de code religieux dans l’Évangile, il n’y a pas de religion, il y a de la foi, une foi en Dieu qui passe par la foi de Jésus en Dieu.  Une foi qui n’est pas faite d’énoncés dogmatiques, il n’y a aucun  énoncé dogmatique dans l’Évangile, mais une foi qui est orientée vers une pratique humaniste.“  Joseph Moingt, ”L’humanisme évangélique


– „nullum tributum sine libertate“, „nulla libertas sine egalitate“ 

„Wenn der Sozialdienst katholischer Frauen eine Öffnung des Dienstrechts für wieder verheiratete Geschiedene will, dann darf er es nicht offen sagen, weil ihm sonst die Zuschüsse für seine karitative Arbeit gekürzt werden können.  Das Absurde: Diese Zuschüsse kommen aus der Kirchensteuer, also von allen Katholiken. Die Kirche kann kritische Katholiken sanktionieren, indem sie ihnen ihr eigenes Geld entzieht.“  Evelyn Finger, „Schwierigkeiten mit der Wahrheit“, Zeit Online, 31. Oktober 2013.