May the Risen Lord grant you grace, peace and health in the Holy Spirit.
It is 01st May 2023. We celebrate the memorial of St. Joseph, the Worker. Being the patron of all working people, he remains a shining example all who are honest, hardworking, and humble. We thank the Lord for giving us wisdom and courage to work. Work offers identity, allows us to bring out the talents and skills entrusted by God, continue to develop something new on our own, and contributing for welfare of common good without destroying the texture of creation.
A young man applied for a job in a company. He wrote: “I am interested in filling the vacancy left by the one who left.” The company replied to him: “we are sorry, but when he left, he did not leave a vacancy.”
Danish Proverb: “God gives every bird its food but does not drop it into the nest.”
Work is inevitable but not at the cost of annihilation of one’s integral health.
We reflect on Acts 11:1-18 and John 10:11-18.
The first reading narrates a new situation in the growing Church. Some people wanted the Apostle Peter to behave the way they deemed correct. We are too quick to condemn and wish to propose a correction to the leaders and those who are in the helm. A good shepherd thinks of the welfare of the whole group not a particular point of view that serves a limited leading people. St. Peter boldly sets tone to stand up for God. “Who am I to stand in God’s way?” (Acts.11:17).
Under the pretext of working for the Lord, and the Church, are we standing in God’s ways? As long as there are people who think that they are better informed, highly educated, having a status different from the other, they wish to impose something on the other especially on the leadership. The Holy Spirit descends on all. At times we find it hard to believe that the outsiders and the newcomers do not have the anointing like that of those who have been in the Church or institution from the start.
God does not belong to one group. God does not offer God’s gifts looking at the skin, colour, race, affluence, influence, and affiliation. We just need to come to terms with the style and the approach of the leadership. Early hiccups cannot remain as hindrance for the growth of the Church or any institution for that matter.
The Gospel supports the experience of St. Peter. “And I have other sheep, that are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will heed my voice. So, there shall be one flock, one shepherd.” (Jn.10:16). The intention of Jesus was not limited to one group that listens, knows and responds but the others that are outside is so significant for the work of the good Shepherd. May all our intentions to work for the Church be for one that unites and to take everyone on board to continue the vision of Jesus to have one Church, one Leader and one mission. Let us not try to destroy Church innocently, ignorantly, and intentionally. “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” (Jn.10:10). May we allow our leaders to lead the Church the way God wants not the way we wish. Have a Happy and fruitful Labourers Day. May you have a good day. God bless you.