Tuesday, May 16, 2006

what Christians are about (3 of 4)

"They are gentle, moderate, modest, and truthful. They love one another. They do not overlook the widows, and they save those who are orphaned. The person who possesses material goods ministers ungrudingly to those who do not. When they see strangers, they take them under their own roof and rejoice over them as true brothers and sisters, for they do not call themselves brothers and sisters according to the flesh but according to the soul. And when they see that one of their poor has died, each one of them contributes ungrudgingly to his burial, according to their ability. And if they hear that some are condemned or imprisoned on account of the name of their Lord, they make contributions and send them what they need; and if possible, they redeem them. And if there is any that is a slave or a poor person, they fast two or three days and what they were going to set before themselves they send to them, considering themselves to give good cheer even as they are called to good cheer." - Aristides, a Greek Christian who died in 134 A.D.
(Source: Inheriting Wisdom: Readings for Today from Ancient Christian Writers by Everett Ferguson, p.210)