The Crusader Online

September 19, 2008
Vol. 50 No. 3

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The Chaplain's Corner

Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito's remarks on campus last Monday extolled "the importance of access to justice in supporting the rule of law." All who live in this land have reason to join him in thankfulness that ours is a nation ruled by law and not by the whims of men and women who can be, at times, capricious, arbitrary, self-serving and unjust.

Biblical understandings of justice extend well beyond the rule of law, however. They manifest a pervasive concern for the most vulnerable of society. To care for widows, orphans, resident aliens (some of them undoubtedly undocumented), those who were hungry, oppressed and infirm of body or mind -- all those whom the Bible calls "the poor" -- was a matter not of mercy or charity, but of a just ordering of society.
To the hungry, justice looks like bread. To the sick, justice is access to health care. To those who are oppressed because they are somehow "different," justice is protection and deliverance.

"Access to justice" -- an idea whose time has come once again.

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