Thursday, March 11, 2010

The Human Factor

A revelation regarding the private life of Rev. Marcial Maciel, founder of the Legionaries of Christ, a congregation numbering 500 priests and more than 2,000 seminarians, only shows the human face of the Church, scil. That we can make mistakes. This happened in lives of saints too, like a St. Paul or a St. Augustine , before their conversion. Rev. Marcial Maciels’s immoralities in sex were published at the Latin American Herald Tribune, March 10, 2010, Caracas, Venezuela, also could be accessed thru Internet; this also appears at the March 5, 2010, Friday at A plus Metro supplement of the Philippine Daily Inquirer on page A26. Is it surprising? If he makes mistakes in personal life, you might ask why the fruitful pastoral apostolate of the Legionaries’ group? Well Pope Benedict XVI ordered him to retire to a life of quiet and penance, which he complied with till he died in 2008. The secretary general of their Order, Rev. Evaristo Sada officially asked apology from the public for the said immoralities in the private life of their founder.

This only goes to show how God uses personalities who are sincere in their efforts of God’s service, in spite of personal deficiencies. In the history of the Church God has made use of weak instruments who repented, because after all the Church is the work of God. The human instruments strive to cooperate, notwithstanding personal weaknesses. St. Augustine had said: “God who created you without you cannot save you without your willing cooperation (Deus qui creavit te sine te non potest te salvare sine te). St. Paul says somehow a similar idea; “By God’s grace that is what I am, and the grace that he gave me has not been fruitless” (1 Cor. 15:10). We can believe that idiom: to err is human, to forgive divine.

A member of the feared Hamas organization, Mousab Hassan Yousef, a Palestinian radical group fighting Israel said he is converting to Christianity, since he wants to avert the fighting and deaths between Palestinians and Israelis. All I wish to say is: “Let’s go deeper. Which is true? Both say ‘Islam is peace’, the other one says ‘Christianity is love’. Let’s dialogue, reconcile and talk peacefully and truthfully. Lay down our arms. Because, it’s actions, not words that can convince us who is telling the truth, deep in the heart.” Check this story which is also published in the A plus Metro supplement of the Philippine Daily Inquirer, March 5, 2010, page A26 under the title Hamas who spied for Israel slams Islam. We may be reminded of the saying: “God goes straight through crooked lines.”

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