May 26, 2011

For Compassion

What did you do last weekend? Were you waiting. The world is still a place we call home, for now.  The smell of fear is in the air across America and also around the globe with Icelandic ash halting travel and increasing concerns about climate change and the environment. Streams of pictures moving across the news about Joplin along with more tornado watches and grim forecasts are disheartening.
It’s time for relief efforts.  It’s time for compassion. It’s time to come together.
You see the devastation and despair.  While we’re carrying on with our lives  trying to find peace of mind with routines, schedules and more to-do lists, we miss the opportunity to reckon. We overlook the ruin of others’ lives thinking that there are no consequences. The gravity of the physical destruction, the significant loss of lives has its effects. Our response or lack thereof will have an impact.  Consider the call for compassion
“ the ability to ‘feel with’ the other, is now essential—not only for the integrity of the religious enterprise, but for a healthy economy and the survival of our species”   

                                                                        —Karen Armstrong, The Charter for Compassion
Compassion should be our response for the relief of pain and suffering.


The turn of the economy and high rates of unemployment are having an impact  on many low- and moderate- income families are seeking unprecedented support from federal and state programs like Medicaid.  Kaiser Family Foundation just released the results of an independent survey revealing 60% Americans want to sustain Medicaid with funding and policies in place to guarantee coverage as well as set guidelines for benefits and eligibility, perhaps a sign of compassion.


We're all vulnerable especially during times of illness even with insurance some individuals require Medicaid to meet gaps in coverage.  Dr. Atul Gawande tweets about these results with some surprise.  I know that the sicker (and the poorer) you are the more likely you are to need Medicaid.  The high cost of treatment and specialists make Medicaid all the more relevant for access to health care.




Kaiser results indicate that "Americans have a strong attachment to Medicaid" with about half self-reporting that someone in their lives if not themselves has received Medicaid benefit --  69 million people will be covered by Medicaid this year.  Most Americans see Medicaid as a resource they would use if needed.




This weekend we’ll remember loved ones and honorable lives.  Families will come together.  Stories and sermons of hope and faith will be told to bring us closer.  Plan to offer and/or accept the invitation for healing and love.
Need help?  Click here to download the Charter for Compassion.


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