"But a Samaritan traveler who came upon him was moved with compassion at the sight." Lk 10:33
The story of the good Samaritan is one of the most well known and powerful stories in the Gospels, and for good reason. Samaritans were hated by the Jews. Accused of being syncretists, people who mixed religious traditions for their own self centered purposes, Samaritans also built their own temple to which non observant Jews were welcomed in contradiction to Jewish law.
If some of this sounds familiar, it should. Too many people label others in ways that not only challenge their belief systems, but denigrate their persons, and Jesus will have none of it. When a Samaritan woman challenged Jesus about Jewish insistence that all had to worship in Jerusalem, he chides her: "Believe me, woman, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem." Reminding the Samaritan woman that God "looks at the heart," (1 Sam 16:7) Jesus holds up the compassionate Samaritan for our admiration.
The Samaritan not only risks his own life by responding to the fellow who has been robbed, he brings him to an inn so that he can rest and recover from the attack. We know nothing else about this particular Samaritan. Whether he worshiped in the "false" temple on Mt Gerazim in Samaria and therefore was judged unclean by the Jews was irrelevant. That he stopped and aided someone in need is Jesus' only concern.
Today, help someone in need.
What aspect of the story of the Good Samaritan most moves you?