There is a story of a pious old priest who was asked to explain the unique nature of his Religious Order. “Well...” he replied, “When it comes to learning, we are certainly way behind the Jesuits. And when it comes to good works, we are no match to the Franciscans. And when it comes to preaching, we are far below the Dominicans. But it comes to HUMILITY, no doubt we are No.1!”
In this Sunday’s Parable of the Pharisee and the Publican that pious old priest might well sound like the self-righteous Pharisee who thanks God, “I am not like other men, extortionists, unjust, adulterers, nor even like this tax collector.” He goes on to remind God that he religiously goes to Church, pays tithes, fasts twice a week and prays.
The tax collector, on the other hand stood timidly on a dark corner at the back, beat his breast saying, “O God, be merciful to me, a sinner!” (Lk.18, 13). It was this tax collector, this self-accused sinner, Jesus says who “went down to his house justified rather than the other.”
What was terribly wrong was the Pharisee’s whole attitude. He was not praying at all but playing with God. He was using God only as a sounding board for his supposed virtues. Deep down inside, this proud Pharisee did not really feel the need for God. Consequently, what he received from God was nothing but condemnation. By boasting to God of his merits, he patted his own back. Worse still, he despised others, particularly the publican saying in effect, “What a good boy I am!” thereby smashing his goodness in one blow. Jesus concludes: “Anyone who exults himself shall be humbled while he who humbles himself will be exulted” (Lk.18, 14)
Once a person becomes proud he makes full of himself, such individual see no need to improve. Once there was a university professor who went searching for the meaning of life. After several years, he came to the hut of a particularly holy hermit and asked to be enlightened. The holy hermit invited the visitor into his humble dwelling and began to serve him tea. He filled the pilgrim’s cup and then keep on pouring so that the tea was soon dripping unto the floor. Watching the overflow, the professor said, “Stop! It is full. No more will go in. “Like this cup,” said the hermit, “You are full of your own opinions, preconception and ideas. You cannot be taught unless you first empty your cup.”
Similarly, as Christ puts it, a person who is full of himself is actually denying the possibility of growth in his life. An impervious “mind-set” is doomed forever humbled. On the other hand, the humble man who acknowledges his abject poverty before God sees the need to change. By being open to God’s graces to effect growth in his life, he “shall be exalted.” THE PRAYER OF THE HUMBLE PIERCES THE CLOUDS; IT DOES REST TILL IT REACHES ITS GOAL. (Sirach 35, 18)
Key Concepts: Role of Leadership. Successful stewardship and development programs require the active involvement of all of an organization’s leaders (pastor and other church’s workers) working together as a team.
This Sunday is World Mission Sunday and National World Youth Day for USA. On the 28th we celebrate the Feast of Ss. Simon and Jude, the Patron Saints of Diocesan Cathedral. We are still in the month of October, pray the Rosary every day for the end of the Slaughter of the Unborn and Peace in this country. This is all for now, watch for the next bulletin. God Bless!
Your Priest-Servant and Parochial Administrator,