We will always be close to the people with whom we work, taking into account their values and aspirations.
CC&RR, Constitution 8
Our vocation is to be close to people, and we do this by loving them with the love of the Savior.
It is not to be a paternalistic closeness but a reflection of how Jesus Christ approaches us with arms open, ready to give and receive. We are close to the people because we are open to receive the love of God through them. Rule 8a is masterful in describing this attitude of closeness:
We will let our lives be enriched by the poor and the marginalized as we work with them, for they can make us hear in new ways the Gospel we proclaim. We must always be sensitive to the mentality of the people, drawing on the riches of their culture and religious traditions
They “make us hear in new ways the Gospel we proclaim” – they love us in new ways with the very love of the Savior that we love them with. What an incredible privilege and gift being “close to the people” is!
“One looks back with appreciation to the brilliant teachers, but with gratitude to those who touched our human feelings. The curriculum is so much necessary raw material, but warmth is the vital element for the growing plant and for the soul of the child.” Carl Jung