Sunday, February 14, 2010

Open and Fearless Speech

(Lk. 12)

We know that expression quoted from the Bible by the great Pope John Paul II: “Duc in Altum”, which translates in the complete citation, as follows: “When he had finished speaking he said to Simon, ‘Put out into deep water and pay your nets for a catch.’ ‘Master,’ Simon replied, ‘we worked hard all night long and caught nothing, but if you say so, I will pay out the nets.’ And when they had done this they netted such a huge number of fishes that their nets began to tear, so they signaled to their companions in the other boat to come and help them; when these came, they filled the two boats to sinking point. When Simon Peter saw this he fell at the knees of Jesus, saying, ‘Leave me, Lord; I am a sinful man!’ For he and all his companions were completely overcome by the catch they had made; so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were Simon’s partners. But Jesus said to Simon, ‘Do not be afraid, from now on it is men you will catch.’ Then, bringing their boats back to land, they left everything and followed him” (Lk. 5:4-11)..

Jesus only came to teach us truth and love, both by word and example. His life shows us that true love is humble, patient and forgiving (cf. 1 Cor. 13:4). He extends his love even toward his enemies. Why I imply here that our mission be open and fearless speech is because I mean by truth — the whole truth and nothing but the truth. You know what a lie consists in – a lie is a half truth or a part of the truth. It would not be evangelization if we hide part of the truth. “Everything that is now covered will be uncovered, and everything now hidden will be heard in the daylight, and what you have whispered in hidden places will be proclaimed in the housetops…. Do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. I will tell you whom to fear: fear him who, after he has killed, has the power to cast into hell” (Lk. 12:2-6).

A previous nuncio to the Philippines , Archbishop Gian Vincenzo Moreni had left me a souvenir medal with some significant inscription in Latin – Robur Pacis Veritas. The medal showed the picture of Jesus and St. Peter kneeling before him. The Latin saying (translated – truth is the strength of peace) intends to say that truth is the very foundation of peace. Evangelization therefore or education in the Christian truth is what can bring peace to our world because it is entirely based on truth and love. “The truth shall set you free” (Jn. 8:32).

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