CCC 604 By giving up his own Son for our sins, God manifests that his plan for us is one of benevolent love, prior to any merit on our part: “In this is love, not that we loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the expiation for our sins.”1 God “shows his love for us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us.”2
CCC 1825 Christ died out of love for us, while we were still “enemies.”3 The Lord asks us to love as he does, even our enemies, to make ourselves the neighbor of those farthest away, and to love children and the poor as Christ himself.4
The Apostle Paul has given an incomparable depiction of charity: “charity is patient and kind, charity is not jealous or boastful; it is not arrogant or rude. Charity does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right. Charity bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”5
1 I John 4:10; 4:19.
2 Rom 5:8.
3 Rom 5:10.
4 Cf. Mt 5:44; Lk 10:27-37; Mk 9:37; Mt 25:40, 45.
5 1 Cor 13:4-7.