The Common Good
February 2004

A Life of Compassion

by Rose Marie Berger, Brian Bolton | February 2004

Most media tributes for former Illinois Sen. Paul Simon, who passed away in December following heart surgery, praised his political honesty, integrity, ethics, and commitment to the less fortunate, especially children living in poverty. But few noted the reason for these qualities—his Christian faith. A local TV station reported that his pastor, Rev. Robert Gray, "describes Simon as a man filled with care and compassion for the underprivileged.... And he said Simon took that same kind of compassion into the political arena."

An editorial in his hometown newspaper noted a recent speech at which Simon spoke from the book of Micah, noting that it ends with a prayer and expression of trust in God. "Such a prayer and unshakeable trust," wrote The Southern Illinoisan, "were emblematic of the life of the late Paul Simon."

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