We can just imagine the public outcry when Jesus invited Levi to “follow me.”  Doesn’t Jesus realize that this man is a vile tax collector? That Levi has in some way “sold his soul”? And then Jesus explains that his mission is aimed precisely at this kind of person…folks just like us! Jesus’ explanation hits home: “Those who are well do not need a physician, but the sick do.”

Pope Francis echoes Jesus’ words in his own teachings on mercy. As we begin this Jubilee Year of Mercy, Pope Francis explains: “This is what God’s mercy is like: a great light filled with love and tenderness because God forgives not with a decree but with a caress.”  

Todayjust this weekendcan each of us be ready to receive God’s “gentle caress”…and then to share that “caress” with others?

—The Jesuit prayer team