You should realize, my dear brothers, that if all of us were interested in contributing to the salvation of our fellow brothers, then in a short time evil people would correct their ways, and relatively quickly our cities would become free of evil and sin. This is certainly the case, because if one
single person alone possessing a heart filled with godly zeal and filled with love for his fellow man is capable of correcting an entire nation, how much more so can large numbers of Christians
—when of course they decide to lay hold of zeal and are determined to implant brotherly love within their souls —correct people who are living in sin? Truly, the sole reason for the perilous plight of contemporary sinful people, the primary cause that has allowed immorality to increase in our days and permitted the devil to reign within present-day society is none other than we ourselves. For when we witness our fellow brothers and Christians sinning openly and carrying out various evils, we do not take the initiative to collectively go to them in an attempt to help them and correct them with brotherly advice and even reproof, if necessary. On the contrary, each one of us comes up with various excuses, we all remain silent, we quietly withdraw to ourselves, and thus we allow others to continue carrying out all the sin they choose and all the evil they desire.
Behold how the gold-tongued St. John Chrysostom precisely confirms these truths:
“Therefore, let us not say these things.
Rather, let us display proper solicitude for our brethren. I promise with all exactitude, and I
guarantee you, that if all of you who are present here resolve to secure the salvation of all who inhabit this city, everything will speedily be
restored to good order... Let us then take an interest in the salvation of our brothers and sisters. One man filled with zeal is sufficient to correct an entire city!
Hence, when not one, or two , or three, but such a
great multitude is capable of contributing in the correction of them who live carelessly, and yet the majority are perishing and falling, it is from no other cause other than our own laziness—not our weakness.
Isn’t it irrational for us to hasten to lend a hand and help raise up an animal that has fallen, yet to
neglect and show no concern for our fellow human beings who are perishing?”
St. Nicodemos the Hagiorite