In todays Gospel, when Jesus said, “Every good tree bears good fruit” he was saying that anyone who does nothing but good is a good person in God’s eyes.
That would apply to Jo Cox, the forty-one-year-old member of parliament who last Thursday was shot three times then stabbed to death for her opposition to England’s leaving the European Union.
Her father worked in a toothpaste factory, and Jo worked there to support herself. At eighteen she won a scholarship to Cambridge, where she said for five years she was knocked about by snobs with no other interests than how one spoke and who one knew.
From age twenty-five to thirty-four she worked for the charitable group Oxfam, for whom she solicited help for the severely disadvantaged in Darfur and Afghanistan. Back in England after that, she devoted herself to preventing early deaths among children.
She and her husband had two children whom they raised on a houseboat on the Thames. “Out of the blue” the British Labor Party chose her for an empty seat in the House of Commons where she campaigned for easing suffering in Syria.
Even though she had gone abut her duties quietly, people all over are now realizing that they have lost a true Good Samaritan.