“Won’t you be my neighbor?”
More than 50 years ago, a gentleman known simply as Mr. Rogers began asking that question. This year marked the golden anniversary of the famed children’s television show, Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood, being aired nationwide. Fred McFeely Rogers, Mr. Rogers, was gripped with a defining passion to teach children and families to be compassionate toward one another and to be good neighbors.
But the idea of loving our neighbors was not original to Mr. Rogers.
The Gospel of Luke (Luke 10:25-37) records the Lord Jesus responding to a question about the greatest commandment. First, Jesus responds that we are to love God with all of our being. Secondly, He teaches us to love our neighbor. When asked who is our neighbor, the Lord Jesus goes on to tell the parable of the Good Samaritan.
At the conclusion of the parable, Jesus asks, “‘Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?’ He said, ‘The one who showed him mercy.’ And Jesus said to him, ‘You go, and do likewise’” (Luke 10:36–37, ESV).
As the cover of this edition of the Proclaimer illustrates, SBC of Virginia churches are showing the mercy and compassion of Christ to our neighbors. We are showing the love of Christ and serving as mercy ministers to our neighbors in Virginia and Metro DC, as well as places like Puerto Rico and “to the ends of the earth.”
SBC of Virginia churches are partnering to provide smoke detectors to their local communities, support local school literacy programs, and teach English as a Second Language (ESL). This November, SBC of Virginia churches will join to “Bless Portsmouth” as we gather in Hampton Roads for our Annual Homecoming.
Thank you for loving our neighbors. As we passionately teach the Scriptures, we are serving communities with compassion. We want our neighbors to know they are not alone.