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December 18, 2014

Too much focus on self – Jul 27


Too much focus on self – Jul 27 PDF Print E-mail

REGENERATING MORAL AND SPIRITUAL VALUES IN OUR SOCIETY

By Vernon Khelawan

At a funeral service last week, Arouca Parish Priest Fr Ashton Pierre CSSp was led to speak in glowing terms of the deceased who, he said, was always willing to help in whatever way he could. He said even after he had learnt he was terminally ill he continued to offer his assistance.

One could sense the congregation’s silent response: “They don’t make them like that anymore.” Fr Pierre said in today’s society everything was about the self. The response was often the same when people were approached to do anything: What’s in it for me?

Fr Pierre was obviously pointing out the differences in the behavioural patterns between today’s and yesterday’s generations, when villagers looked out for each other. Today, young men, mostly in areas the Police Service has dubbed “hotspots”, draw imaginary lines in the streets, daring their former friends to cross.

The men who kill each other supposedly over turf, but more likely over “free money”, are men who live across the street or track from one another, who grew up on those same streets, who played together in the same neighbourhood and who even sat together in classrooms. Now, those lines are borders which one can cross at the risk of one’s life being snuffed out – and with sophisticated weaponry at that.

Self-centeredness has taken over our society. It is all about self and, as a consequence, values and standards and even simple respect have all been thrown out. There is no longer the brother’s keeper habit; love has lost its appeal to the society.

So where do we go from here? This question has haunted parents, teachers, priests and other civil leaders for many years. We have to stop apportioning blame and, rather, gather our collective thoughts and teach people how to love again – the kind of love that Jesus portrayed during his entire ministry on earth.

Amy Welborn once wrote – and this reminds me of our country’s current scenario, “The Scriptures are a love story. From Genesis to Revelation, they are the story of this lover God, creating us out of love and continually reaching out to us in love, rescuing us from self-inflicted misery and pain.”

Can the Church begin a love revolution that will create national dialogue with the sole aim of Regenerating Moral and Spiritual Values in Our Society and bring to fruition the hope of the Third Pastoral Priority?

 





 

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