Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.' These men without possessions or power, these strangers on Earth, these sinners, these followers of Jesus, have in their life with him renounced their own dignity, for they are merciful. As if their own needs and their own distress were not enough, they take upon themselves the distress and humiliation of others. They have an irresistible love for the down-trodden, the sick, the wretched, the wronged, the outcast and all who are tortured with anxiety. They go out and seek all who are enmeshed in the toils of sin and guilt. No distress is too great, no sin too appalling for their pity. If any man falls into disgrace, the merciful will sacrifice their own honour to shield him, and take his shame upon themselves.
Ever since he repented of religion and shaved off his clerical beard and mustache, he has had the constant feeling that he has taken off his trousers, and that his nose protrudes altogether indecently and must at all cost be covered. It's sheer torment! With one hand over his nose, the deacon knocks again and again. No one responds. And yet Martha is home; the gate is locked from within. And that means - what? It means that she is with someone else... The deacon punctuates the scene inwardly with the three dots we have graphically depicted just above, and, tripping over them at every second step, he proceeds to Rosa Luxemburg Street. ("X")