Where's the compassion?

As WE WELL KNOW, the news these days can be anything but uplifting. "Where's the compassion?" is a silent cry many of us have made. More often than not, people being mean to people seems to be the norm.

But when I picked up my New York Times yesterday, I read a column about Carl Wilkens, a hopeful reminder that each day there are countless acts of humanity, most of which we never hear about. Carl is a Seventh-Day Adventist missionary, who was living with his wife and two children in Kigali, Rwanda, in 1994, when the slaughter of the Tutsis began. He sent his wife and children to safety, but he stayed throughout the genocide, despite orders by United States officials and his own church officials to evacuate. "It seemed like the right thing to do," he was quoted as saying. Through his ingenuity and (I'm sure) his prayers, he survived the massacre and saved the lives of many of his Tutsi brothers and sisters. His is a story of courage and compassion ("Saying No To Killers," July 21, 2004).

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