Pope Francis, “Fratelli tutti”

Pope Francis finished Chapter One with two paragraphs on hope and begins Chapter Two, nn.56-86, entitled ‘A Stranger on the Road’ referring to the importance of keeping a sense of joy and hope in the midst of the negative aspects of our world. In this chapter he uses the Parable of the Good Samaritan to highlight aspects of how we can develop a sense of fraternity in our world. In the first paragraph of the chapter (n.56) he begins by referring to chapter one and how we must deal with the things we read about in it:

56. “The previous chapter should not be read as a cool and detached description of today’s problems, for “the joys and hopes, the grief and anguish of the people of our time, especially of those who are poor or afflicted, are the joys and hopes, the grief and anguish of the followers of Christ as well. Nothing that is genuinely human fails to find an echo in their hearts”.[53] In the attempt to search for a ray of light in the midst of what we are experiencing, and before proposing a few lines of action, I now wish to devote a chapter to a parable told by Jesus Christ two thousand years ago. Although this Letter is addressed to all people of good will, regardless of their religious convictions, the parable is one that any of us can relate to and find challenging.”

Then he quotes the Parable of the Good Samaritan. The chapter goes on to explore a number of issues in the light of the parable and is broken into a number of sub-sections: (i) The context nn.57-62; (ii) Abandoned on the wayside nn.63-68; (iii) A story constantly retold nn.69-71; (iv) The characters of the story nn.72-76; (v) Starting anew nn.77-79; (vi) Neighbours without borders nn.80-83; (vii) The plea of the stranger nn.84-86.