Grace to you!
Need is the springboard of innovation. Material needs provided platforms for many of the innovative products we enjoy today. Don’t suppose that moments of spiritual needs are an exception.
Spiritual needs call for spiritual leadership. If you are bothered that society has lost it’s moral compass; if you are worried that the Church and many of the leaders are part of the problem; if you believe your family and parish community aren’t a safe-haven either; then do something about it.
You probably feel the way you do because God has put it in your heart, a prayer-burden, for you to do something about it.
A number of choices are available to you. Cry wolf or complain; these won’t help. You may prefer to play along and in the end become mired in the corruption, a sort of moral numbness. What a disappointment it would be.
You could decide to challenge the system through your words and writings. This is good. Nevertheless, if you are like a clashing symbol, merely talking the talk, won’t this be hypocritical? Hypocrisy is dishonorable.
I believe the better alternative is to show, through our words, thoughts and most importantly actions, the very opposite of the corruption in church and state. To do so is to offer a spiritual, saintly alternative that is highly needed today.
Examples abound of people now and in the past who have done this. I will use the story of Philip Neri (1515-1595) as an example.
Philip was born and lived all his life in Rome. He grew up to see how corruption was taking the upper hand in the Church and the State.
Often, we observe a correlation between a corrupt Church and a corrupt society. Society looks to the Church for the salt and the light. When these are lacking, both the Church and the society are in a mess.
Philip Neri saw the need and decided to do something about it. His strategy was simplicity of life to show the foolishness of flamboyancy; joy to replace the sadness and self-absorption of the world; purity to counter sexual immorality; and detachment to overthrow craze for wealth and money.
It wasn’t long before the street preacher became the voice of the re-evangelization of Rome and Europe. Among his ardent followers was the prominent British Theologian – John Henry Newman.
Once again, a corrupt time is the best time for saints to emerge. Would you take up the challenge; be a saint, a voice and an example of morality and holiness, in a depraved world?
God love you. God bless you.
Fr. Maurice Emelu
[Thursday, May 26, 2016: St. Philip Neri, Priest:1 Peter 2:2-5; Mark 10:46-52; Or for the Saint; Philippians 4:4-9; John 17:20-26]
Fr. Maurice Emelu, Ph.D.
Father Maurice provides a daily blog of reflections based on the bible readings of the day from the Catholic liturgical calendar. You will find these reflections helpful for your spiritual growth, inspiration and developing your own thoughts. It may also be helpful for ministers in preparing their sermons for liturgical celebrations.