When visiting the Wayside Chapel’s annual lunch for the homeless on Christmas Day, prime minister Malcolm Turnbull said of the event, “It’s practical love, it’s unconditional love, it’s really what Christmas should be all about” – a laudable sentiment.
By 2 January it seemed that “practical, unconditional love” was nothing more than a sop for the season as the Turnbull government celebrated a deal with the Nick Xenophon Team that would allow them to cut people’s income support for a month for failing to meet certain obligations. On Christmas Day, love. In the new year, judgment.
Practical love is the firm decision to use whatever power and privilege one has to bring about meaningful change for the better for those whom you claim to love. Love without accompanying action is just a word, bereft of meaning and powerless to bring change.
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