After election, be a peacemaker

Published May 19, 2019, 12:35 AM

by Charissa Luci-Atienza & Bernie Cahiles-Magkilat

WORD ALIVE

By FR. BEL SAN LUIS, SVD

Fr. Bel R. San Luis, SVD
Fr. Bel R. San Luis, SVD

Dito sa Pilipinas,” someone remarked, ”walang natatalo; nadadaya lamang” (In the Philippines, nobody loses, only cheated).

Is it a defense mechanism to save one’s face instead of accepting defeat?

* * *

A losing candidate may file a formal protest before the Comelec if he believes he was cheated.

Obviously, that’s not easy to do. However, if there are indeed substantial proofs to prove serious irregularities, then go ahead.

* * *

BE HEALERS, PEACEMAKERS. After the midterm election,  let us all be reconcilers and peacemakers. Instead of adding more fuel to the hatred and conflicts of people, our Christian task is to heal wounds and promote peace at all cost.

Jesus Christ said, “You must be a lamb among wolves” (Lk 10,3).

* * *

There’s a haunting song which goes, “Lord, Heal Our Land.” But to have healing, it’s not enough to sing its beautiful lyrics or pay peace with lip service. We must strive to get rid of the root causes of conflicts like the spirit of hatred, revenge, or unsportsmanship.

* * *

We pray with St. Francis of Assisi: “Lord, make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is doubt, faith…It is in giving that we receive; it is in pardoning that we are pardoned. And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.”

LOVE ONE ANOTHER

 Fr. Joseph Dau Vu, SVD, was a Catholic chaplain of the Vietnamese “boat people” refugees in Morong, Bataan. He related to me how he, together with 55 compatriots, slipped out  of communist Saigon on an old, decrepit motorized boat and sailed to freedom.

* * *

The “boat priest”  reminisced with a tinge of sadness, “When fishermen from neighboring countries saw us, they attacked, robbed, and exploited us. But when Filipino fishermen saw us, they gave food and welcomed us. Why are Filipinos different?” Fr. Dau Vu asked and answered: “It is because Filipinos are Christians.”

That Vienamese priest’s comment  is very heartening, a  tribute to Filipinos known worldwide for their compassion and hospitality. Indeed, Christianity that’s truly lived should make one more loving, more kind, more compassionate.

* * *

This is Christ’s explicit teaching in this 5th Easter Sunday’s gospel. At the Last Supper, Jesus said that the chief characteristic whereby every follower of his  should be known is love. “I give you a new commandment: Love one another… By this, everyone will know that you are my disciples” (Jn 13,34).

* * *

By the way, in wedding Masses, the gospel is the reading of this Sunday, stressing “love one another.” However, for some, as the years pass, it becomes, “Love another one!”

* * *

Love is not to be shown by mere words but by deeds.  As one writer puts it: “They do not love — those who do not SHOW it.”

In an article by an anonymous author entitled “What Is Christianity?”,  it articulates Christian love in concrete terms, thus: “In the home it is kindness, in business it is honesty, in society it is courtesy, in work it is fairness.

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“Toward the unfortunate it is pity; toward the weak it is help; toward the wicked it is resistance; toward the strong it is trust; toward the fortunate it is congratulations, toward the penitent it is forgiveness, toward God it is reverence and love.”

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The real measure of our spiritual growth is in the measure of how we approximate Christ’s commandment — to “love one another as I  have loved you.”

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LAUGH ONE ANOTHER:  Manila Mayor Erap adamantly said, “I don’t want to CONCEIVE!” No wonder, he was misunderstood. He didn’t  want to concede.

* * *

When Mayor Erap won the presidency in 1998, he said, “I won by a landscape! (landslide).” He should now admit humbly, “Isko won by a ‘landscape.’”

 * * *

SUPPORT SEMINARIANS.  Today we have a shortage of priests and missionaries, so let’s help and support our seminarians who are our future priests.

How about chipping in an amount or sponsoring a seminarian’s schooling for one year?

For inquiry, e-mail me at: [email protected].

 
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