What Does Social Justice Mean to You? Cassandra Novinger

As part of an ongoing feature in SoJust magazine, members of our college community reflect on the meaning of social justice for them and their fields. We asked students from our diverse programs what social justice means to them.


Here’s what we heard:

A Call for Compassion

Cassandra Novinger

Cassandra Novinger, Bachelor of Science in public health



When I read the story of Ruth in scripture, I see a clear picture of God’s definition of social justice. It tells of a man with influence and opportunity, Boaz, and his compassion toward Ruth, an outcast and foreigner in Israel. In the unfolding of the story, God demonstrates His desire to shelter the weak, to protect the vulnerable, to welcome the hungry to His table, and to shower the hurting with compassion.
Ruth is an incredible story about God’s immense care and concern for the poor, and it is a call for us to do the same.

It is also about a God who is more than a friend to the needy, who offers more than compassion toward those who are hurting, and who extends a grace that is much richer than a good life; it is about a God who sends Jesus Christ to die on a cross.
In Jesus’ death, He welcomes anyone who chooses to believe in Him into His family forever. He shows us that God’s provision for the poor is not just temporary, it is eternal. As a Christian, I am absolutely called to serve the outcast as God served Ruth—to fight for people’s physical and material needs as He has done throughout scripture. But I am also called to point people toward hope in so much more than that.

I am called to point those who are hurting toward the truth of who they are in Jesus Christ. If I am not doing that, I am not doing justice at all.

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This feature was originally published in the Spring 2017 issue of SoJust, the College for Public Health and Social Justice's alumni magazine.