Welcome the stranger – do not tear gas the stranger – especially when they are women and children. This is an image one might expect to find in an archive of 1930’s German history – not the American present.
Then they will answer and say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or ill or in prison, and not minister to your needs?’ He will answer them, ‘Amen, I say to you, what you did not do for one of these least ones, you did not do for me.’ – Matthew 25:44
He’s right in front of us. All the time. There’s no denying it. We see him everywhere and in everything.
If – and it is a big if – we choose to see him. And how often we choose quite the opposite… We either willingly, or unwillingly look away.
That’s the Rev. David Buck, Rector of St. Alban’s Episcopal Church, in Davidson, North Carolina. Father Buck and his parish community, through a donation, installed a replica of the controversial “Homeless Jesus” statue originally created by sculptor Tim Schmaltz. In full disclosure, I know David Buck and have been to St. Alban’s; I was present when he and a dear friend of mine were married a few years back.