Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Narrow-mindedness (June 23, 2009, Tuesday)

Most people find it hard to forgive a priest here or there who’ve committed a mistake - whether big or small. I don’t know but perhaps it sprang forth from their dignified office that we easily consider them as saints already.

For my part, I don’t mind seeing their faults as they are still God’s ambassadors. But when news regrettably spread touching the sacred vow of chastity, my heart eventually pounds and I couldn’t but express dismay and disgust. It’s as if every sense of reason is excused from this point of view. Why? Because how come?!? Weren’t the many years spent in the seminary enough to secure their purity? Didn’t they consider soundly the meaning of celibacy and have they forgotten that they accepted it with their very own free will? Didn’t they study well the protocol when it comes to the opposite gender - those encyclicals of great pious popes and the Summa Theologica of St. Thomas? Doesn’t it ring on their minds to cut off - even as abrupt as it should be - any conversation with a female acquaintance whenever an occasion of scandal might likely arise? Zealous or not, I don’t think prudence could be wanting in any ordained priest. Thus, I simply couldn’t reconcile it.

Oh well, the problem with me is that I tend to forget that they are human beings - that even saints were sinners before. This thought went deeper in me that I found myself asking questions that are rather compassionate. Who is it that cleanses our souls in the confessional whenever we sin? Who is there to give God an offering most worthy to appease His anger? And who is there to consecrate the bread and wine into Our Lord’s own Body and Blood so that we may have Him and live? And yet why is it that whenever priests ask the faithful for forgiveness, most of the time it is received with a cold and insulting manner?

It is far easier for us to have the comfort of a priest by our side as it is demanded from their state of duty. That sometimes, even admonitions are sweet to bear due to the priest’s assuring words. But priests, on the other hand, couldn’t expect it from us. Ah, poor priests, if only we know how much they suffer but who would dare listen to their entreaties? Fool that I am, it was only then my narrowed mind stopped criticizing.

I started realizing that every time I abhor them, it is the same as if I haven’t forgiven those who’ve injured me. It’s as if I’m shutting the door of my heart with a sign “Closed: No entry.” How much more if Our Lord was the One knocking and wearied out?

Hence, I began to make a new perceptive. Intriguing as the sound of any tinkling rumor may be, I’m going to try debarring my mind with uncharitable thoughts. Rather, the need for an ever increase of prayer of supplication for the pitied priest’s soul. I’ve come to conclude that it’s wiser to pray Hail Marys in behalf of the unfortunate priest’s soul than attempting to ill-judge the reputation of the one whose character resembles Our Savior and Lord.

Oh Blessed Virgin Mother of God, help me to shun away rash assessment when it comes to this particular defect of thy priests. I ask that thou shelter them in thy Virginal Heart that no evil of impurity may come near them. In their loneliness, grant them not to seek for unchaste pleasure but to find in thee a most splendid love. Grant them always in sanctifying grace and if they unhappily lose it, aid and give them the strength to recover it immediately by a sincere repentance! Amen.

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