Engaging Faith: Practical lesson ideas and activities for Catholic Educators

September 23, 2013

Homeless Man’s Return of Money Can Spark Discussion

Commissioner Edward Davis recently honored Glen James for the character James displayed when returning $42,000 in cash to its rightful owner on Saturday, September 14. Check out the complete story before exploring some questions like those below with your students.

Morality

  1. Would keeping money you found be considered stealing? What if it was a dollar bill or five dollar bill? Five hundred dollars without a person’s name with it? Five hundred dollars with a person’s name with it? More? Explain your reasoning for each case.

  2. Does Glen James’ status as homeless make his gesture more virtuous than the action of a person on the edge of poverty? A middle class person? A rich person? Explain.

  3. A man living in another state wants to raise $50,000 to honor and help Glen James out. Is “virtue its own reward” or does it warrant a monetary reward?

Faith

  • Glen James said that even if he was desperate for money, he would not have kept a penny of that money. He also said he is a religious man and that “God has always looked after him.” Though he did not say that he returned the money because of his faith, do you think that he did?

Social Justice

  • How do you think most employed Americans view homeless people? Do they perceive them to be virtuous? Why or why not? Do you think that Glen James’ actions may cause some people to perceive homeless people differently or will they just think that Glen James is the exception? Explain.

Comments

1 Francine Felske

Sept. 24, 2013
I was just having this discussion with my 4th grade CCD class. This story will solidify my comments about "god taking care of us" and will open up a new discussion about social justice.

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