How the Samaritan found his vocation

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Image: "The Good Samaritan," artwork by Dinah Roe Kendall, age 82, Sheffield, England. Further information at

Who was the 
Good Samaritan? We don’t know for sure, but it is clear that he was a layperson, not a religious professional. In fact, it is probable that he was some sort of businessperson—for why else would he be on the road from Jerusalem to Jericho early in the morning, just happen to have oil and wine with him, be able to pay the innkeeper to take care of the victim, and promise to return on his “way back"? In other words, the Good Samaritan was in the midst of doing his job when he was asked to be a good neighbor.

What the Good Samaritan did was simple: He saw someone in need; he stopped and did what he could. Acting like the Good Samaritan is simply what you do if you are a follower of Jesus. Jesus told the rest of us to “go and do likewise." That is the essence of the Christian vocation.

Where do you find your vocation? You find it in the midst of what you are doing.

Gregory F. Augustine Pierce is a copublisher of ACTA Publications and author of Finding God @ Work: Practicing Spirituality in Your Workplace (ACTA Publications, 2004) and Spirituality at Work (Loyola Press, 2001).




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