The Good Samaritan

This Sunday, the fifth Sunday after Pentecost, we will encounter the “Good Samaritan” of the tenth chapter of the Luke’s Gospel. Rev’d Lucy Winkett, ordained as an Anglican priest in the first generation of woman ordained in the Church of England, writes about these verses with reference to witnessing a profoundly moving play while she was in residence at a L’Arche community. L’Arche communities celebrate the fostering of dignity and acceptance in the lives of people with intellectual disabilities, and in Reading the Bible With Your Feet, Winkett describes such an actor playing the Samaritan’s role. 

She describes the planned narrative progression all the way to when the man on the roadside was cared for, and his face wiped gently with a towel. Though the audience thought the actor had finished there, they watched as she went on to seek out the people who had been too busy to stop to help the bleeding man, and tended to them also. They watched as she found the Levite, then the innkeeper, and gently tended to them. Then they watched as she sought out the robbers, who were hiding, and saw her gently tend to them.[1]

What if we experience the God shown by the actor in this play: a God of seeking and walking, tending and finding? Perhaps this God of astounding patience and tenderness is always walking the long road around to find us, or to seek any who “walk around in darkness” (Psalm 82).

In our identification with any of the roles of the story – the priest, the bleeding man, the Samaritan, or the robbers who mistreated the man so terribly – we may encounter an expansion of ourselves if we are open to a reckoning with grace.

Allana Wales
July 2022

[1] Winkett, Lucy. Reading the Bible With Your Feet (Norwich: Cantebury Press, 2021), chap. 1, Kobo e-book.