“One cannot honor another person without blessing God who created the person. One cannot adore God without loving all God’s creatures.”
Catechism of the Catholic Church #2069
Loving our neighbors as ourselves is another way of expressing the golden rule — “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” The golden rule challenges us to develop empathy — the ability to feel with others. To empathize is to walk in our neighbor’s shoes, to put ourselves in their place. Catholic social teaching rests on the principle that every human person is sacred, made in God’s image and likeness, possessing inalienable rights to life and its basics. We cannot love God without loving our neighbor. We cannot love our neighbors without listening and learning their culture. Loving our neighbors is vital to becoming our whole selves.
Some ideas for putting your faith in action include inviting neighbors of diverse cultures in your area to visit your class and talk about their lives, values, and dreams, practicing empathy consciously for a day — put yourself in the shoes of people you dislike or dismiss, talk to a classmate you don’t know every day for a week, and visiting the Southern Poverty Law Center to explore and use the center’s 101 Tools for Tolerance.