Time to know and live our faith – Jan 13

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Time to know and live our faith – Jan 13

Time to know and live our faith – Jan 13 PDF Print E-mail

Revitalisi Catholic Culture and IdentityBy Vernon Khelawan

According to the calendar of the Roman Catholic Church, today – the feast of the Baptism of Our Lord, officially marks the end of the Christmas season, slightly different from the secular custom of the 12 days of Christmas, which closes the period on January 6.

The Christmas trees, the lights and the multitude of decorations which adorned homes and business places over the last six weeks or so will all be storage bound, closing out another Yuletide season.

Resolutions have been made – and some may have even been broken by now – but there is need for Catholics to look back and, after serious consideration, determine whether or not they marked the holy season in a manner which was pleasing to God.

Introspection and retrospection must reveal whether more attention was paid to the material things – the cuisine, the parties (home and office), the decorations – as households on the same street or in the same district tried to outdo each other.

The question must be asked whether the decision to attend Holy Mass and other Christmas services was genuine, whether you attended to ensure that you and your family – and even neighbours – understood the true reason for the season or whether it was simply to satisfy some egotistic urge or a mere mimicking of others.

If the acts of gift-giving, attending Holy Mass, etc. were not genuine, then we would have failed to be supportive of the Second Pastoral Priority – Revitalising Catholic Culture and Identity – in a season which lends itself to espousing the Priority, and this requires some immediate attention.

Moreover, as we enter the second quarter of the Year of Faith, there is need to pay heed to the words of Archbishop Joseph Harris in his Pastoral Letter of October 14 2012, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief.”

He stated, “If this faith which has been passed on to us by missionary priests and religious, by parents and grandparents and in our Catholic schools is to overcome the storms which assail us so that we can be, as Pope Benedict tells us in Porta Fidei, ‘salt of the earth and light of the world’ (Matt 5:13-16), then we here in Trinidad and Tobago must be that beacon, that light of the hills of Aripo and Naparima and Signal Hill for God’s people in Trinidad and Tobago; we must know our faith, but know it in such a way that it can help us respond creatively to the problems which we face as a nation today.”