MARK YOUR CALENDAR:
Oct 25, 2014 - Annual NY Archdiocesan Conference, Cathedral High School
350 East 56 St., Manhattan, NY click here for
the conference postcard with Guest Speaker Ralph Martin!, President of Renewal Ministries an organization devoted to Catholic renewal and evangelization (www.renewalministries.net)
and long-time Catholic Charismatic Lay Leader. Ralph is also the host of “The Choices We Face” a widely viewed weekly Catholic television and radio program distributed throughout the world.
Ralph is the author of a number of books, the most recent of which are The Urgency of the New Evangelization: Answering the Call; The Fulfillment of All Desire: A Guidebook for the Journey to God Based on the
Wisdom of the Saints, and Will Many Be Saved? What Vatican II Actually Teaches and Its Implications for the New Evangelization.
From Fr. Coutts:
“Swallow your Pride. It is non-fattening and it is cholesterol and sugar free.”
Throughout the Bible and the Gospel there is a true
value of Humility. Humility can be best understood from its etymology (origin of the word). It comes from the Latin word: Humus, which means ground. The closer you are to the ground the less painful it is
when you fall. You see, Pride always has a fall.
Humility is valuable because the Lord reveals his secrets to the humble one. The proud person is so full of himself that he does not leave any room for wisdom.
From this we can fill the outlines of wisdom with more descriptions.
- it is based on truth and justice.
- It is being comfortable with what we are : our beauty and our warts. (faults)
- It is acknowledging our talents on the one hand while at the same time, realizing that these are gifts of God.
- It involves using these talents for the good of others and betterment of society.
On the negative side, a lack of humility makes one
- live in fear
- it is shown by being aggressive and arrogant
- we often have an unrealistic and unreal sense of our own abilities and our destiny.
- We often think we are God’s gift to the society. (and a man, he thinks he is God’s gift to the women around!)
Heaven in the Letter to the Hebrews tends to be florid and paints things in bright colours and in simple terms: A heavenly Jerusalem, the usual angels in
a joyful mood and the people who inhabit heaven. These are people who have left their self centredness and self interest behind.
The Gospel carries on the theme of Humility with two teachings. They were
probably given at different times. Luke has linked them together.
People in the times of Jesus and people today try to get centre stage. Take
a photograph and you will notice how some like to be front and centre. They often are the least important. The ones who really should be at the centre,
usually take the back or side position. They are quite content to be there.
Jesus picks on this human behaviour to show us that in the Kingdom of God,
the ones who will get the most importance are the ones who do not demand it here on earth.
We all know certain groups of people insist on being called by their
professional titles. In fact even when they die, their titles and degrees have to be added to their name! It is hard to be humble in our society.
But Jesus is not content with just not running and seeking honours and praise. He knows that when we do not have these qualities, we like to associate and
join ourselves with the rich and the famous. Perhaps, some of their fame will stick to us. So Jesus tells us that when we have a party or when we have a
celebration, do not call the rich and famous. Call those who are unknown, non-celebrities, ordinary people. I do not think, you or I could do this. Only with
God’s grace and with Jesus who we are told in the letter to the Philippians: although equal to God, emptied himself and took the form of a slave.
Because of that, St. Paul tells us in the same letter, every knee in heaven and on earth and under the earth will bow.
In our every day life, we want a place
- in the front of the bus
- in the back of the church
- the centre of attention
Here is a story:
Most Important Question
During my second month of nursing school, our professor gave us a pop quiz. I was a Conscientious student and had breezed through the questions,
until I read the last one: "What is the first name of the woman who cleans the school?" Surely this was some kind of joke. I had seen the cleaning
woman several times. She was tall, dark-haired and in her 50s, but how would I know her name? I handed in my paper, leaving the last question
blank. Before class ended, one student asked if the last question would count toward our quiz grade. "Absolutely," said the professor. "In your
careers you will meet many people. All are significant. They deserve your attention and care, even if all you do is smile and say 'hello'. I've never
forgotten that lesson. I also learned her name was Dorothy.
Appendix: Remember, God is no respecter of personages. God listens to
the humble and the poor. In a corrupt and unjust society as the one that existed in ancient times and still exists today, the situation of the poor was
seen as totally helpless. Without financial backing and social influence the poor would never get justice when they were wronged. Keeping this situation
in mind, the author says God will come to the rescue of the poor, he will punish the guilty and vindicate the poor, humbling their oppressors. In the
words of the response psalm: When the poor man called the Lord heard him.
Fr. Michael Coutts
Read these other articles:
Many new Upcoming Events
Sr. Nancy Kellar, internationally known leader publishes articles here.
Please read the powerful message from Fr. Cantalamessa: “No Need to Fear
Charismatic Renewal, Says Papal Household Preacher”.
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