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From The Chaplain's Desk
From The Chaplain's Desk: Am I My Brother's Keeper?

By Charles Dimmick, CT State Grange Chaplain

  July 5, 2017 --

Although this question was originally, rather flippantly, posed by Cain, after having slain Abel, as an attempt to feign innocence, it is answered fully in many places in scripture. Yes, I am my brother’s keeper, in that I am told to watch out for the welfare of all other people with whom I have any sort of relationship. This can be divided into two parts: firstly we should avoid any sort of violence towards others, including not only physical violence but also heated argument and verbal abuse, slander, gossip, and arrogance; secondly we should act with brotherly love towards all, keeping them safe to the best of our ability, and helping them to find adequate food, shelter, and love.

Perhaps St. Paul says it best in his first letter to the Corinthians, chapters 12-13, which includes this description of brotherly love:

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

And again, in the first letter to the Thessalonians, Paul writes:

“And we urge you, brethren, to recognize those who labor among you, and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, and to esteem them very highly in love for their work’s sake. Be at peace among yourselves. Now we exhort you, brethren, warn those who are unruly, comfort the fainthearted, uphold the weak, be patient with all. See that no one renders evil for evil to anyone, but always pursue what is good both for yourselves and for all”

And in Psalm 82 we read:

Give justice to the weak and the fatherless; maintain the right of the afflicted and the destitute. Rescue the weak and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.”

And finally, as members of Patrons of Husbandry, we are told that part of the chief objective of the Grange is “to develop a mutual respect and concern through Brotherhood.


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