|There’s no ‘quick fix’ – May 11|
REGENERATING MORAL AND SPIRITUAL VALUES OF OUR SOCIETY
By Vernon Khelawan
As we try to focus on ways and means to excite Catholics, and indeed the nation, about the dire need to regenerate the rapidly decaying moral and spiritual values of the society, it must be remembered that there is no “quick fix” to this problem.
It will be a lengthy process, and as the Priority guidebook states, “We must begin by bearing in mind that Christian morality is founded on following Christ.” The recently canonised Saint John Paul II in his encyclical Veritatis Splendor wrote, “Following Christ is the essential and primordial foundation of Christian morality.” To follow Jesus means holding on to the very person of Christ himself.
More recently Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI reminded us that we have to follow Jesus’ command to love others as he Jesus loved. This kind of love is becoming less and less in our country, as is evident from the kind of heinous criminal acts we are now witnessing.
Pope Benedict stated, “Jesus’ way of acting and his words, his deeds and his precepts, constitute the moral rule of Christian life. Indeed, his actions, in particular his passion and death on the cross, are the living revelation of his love for the Father and for others. This is exactly the love that Jesus wishes to be imitated by all who follow Him….Jesus asks of everyone who wishes to follow Him, ‘If any man would come after me let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.’”
In June 2010 the late Fr Henry Charles, in an article published in the Catholic News talked about the hurdles Christianity would have to encounter as it sought to fulfil its mission in today’s world.
“It is clear,” he wrote, “that it will have to deal with a very secularised little nation (Trinidad and Tobago), that like most of the western world has placed the self first.” Last weekend’s tragedy, when eminent Senior Counsel Dana Seetahal was gunned down in her car, speaks loudly to that pattern of selfishness.
Prompted by the recent sad events, the Church has called us all to rise from our complacency and to recommit ourselves to saving our nation: to do everything in our power to regenerate the moral and spiritual values, now so lacking in our society.