Several years ago a movement called Random Acts of Kindness began, a movement encouraging us to do kind deeds for strangers, such as paying fees for others on toll roads or buying someone a cup of coffee. I had a t-shirt with this slogan written in big bold letters.
This year is a variation on that theme in Juneau. 2017 has been designated as the Year of Kindness here. Every resident is asked to do one act of kindness each day for the entire year. Once a week we are asked to reach out to someone not usually in our familiar groups, such as someone from a different culture, religion, ethnic background, etc. The goal of this endeavor is to improve the well-being of our community by: lowering the crime rate and improving the over-all health of its citizens. Another goal is to reach across various kinds of boundaries in order to become a more united community.
As disciples of Christ we know we have already been called to care for our neighbor. Reaching out to strangers or those not currently in our social groups is what we are always encouraged to do. By highlighting acts of kindness throughout the whole community my hope is that the negativity we experienced in 2016 will be replaced by more hopeful and positive attitudes in 2017, and we truly will become a kinder community.
How often do you reach out to those who are different from yourself? How can you keep a hopeful attitude this year?
Marie Lucek OP