“What does love look like? It has the hands to help others. It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has the ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men. That is what love looks like.” – St. Augustine of Hippo
The world is a big place, and there’s a lot of evil in it. Open any news site and you are instantly greeted with tragedy after tragedy. It is easy to become discouraged when reading the latest horrifying story about some atrocity on the other side of the world, or perhaps some scandal or heresy in the Church. We feel so helpless, so small.
In the face of such evil, how can we ever make a difference? How can we bring about the kingdom of Jesus?
The answer is actually quite simple. So simple, in fact, that it fits on a bumper sticker I’ve seen more than once: “Think globally, act locally.”
Think Globally
It’s not wrong to want to change the world. In fact, if we don’t have any concern for others far away from us, we should be disturbed by the hardness of our own hearts. It is simply un-Catholic to be aware of the suffering and the needs of others and to have no compassion. Distance does not make anyone less human, or their suffering less terrible.
Seeing our Christian brothers and sisters persecuted and brutally murdered in Syria should grieve us. Knowing that mothers are forced into abortions in China should horrify us. Child prostitution in Thailand should break our hearts.
Now, we should not dwell on these things or fill our heads with evil news. Doing so will only lead to our own discouragement and even despair. St. Paul exhorts us to think about, “whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious.”

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