[A letter intended for the archbishop, but not going to send and he is used to not responding to any such, a good for nothing attitude! 15th Feb ‘13]
Church claims to be a theocracy wherein the ‘authority’ don’t seemingly mind the people! But they conveniently forget the scriptural exhortation to no less a person than Samuel: “…hearken to their voice’! It is always better to consider a wider view than one person’s decision, however wise he was. (I Sam 8:1-9)
Yesterday’s (Friday, February 15, 2013) Hindu, in its OP-ED page brought an article on Rahul Gandhi’s projection to be the Prime Minister of India sooner than later by Vivek Katju. Some pertinent point for pondering for any ‘ruler’ was there and am taking the freedom to quote it in the church context. “…It is of utmost importance for a leader to keep his ears open at all times to the ‘voice of the people’ and to ensure that it reaches him without the filter of those who surround him. However, it is equally important for him to sense what they hold in their hearts and do not articulate out of fear of authority. Such fear is not confined to dictatorships and despotic regimes. It exists in democratic (here theocratic) systems too. Nowhere is this fear more evident than in the hesitation to openly speak on matters concerning the actual or perceived wrongdoing by the members of a leader’s family (team). …How he deals with them would be the … test of leadership, for it would set its moral tone and test how much one values probity in public life.
… in the absence of competent and honest regulatory mechanisms, economic (for that matter any growth) has been accompanied by extraordinary corruption in the area of the country’s (church’s) natural resources, especially land.
…It would be terribly misleading to think that the people overlook these issues and do not care. They watch the wrongdoings with a sense of hurt and despair at the injustice of it all. When they see growing disparities, their feelings turn to anger which occasionally manifests itself on the streets or in elections.”
on your Pastoral Letter No. 001/2013/CL Dated 08.02.2013 titled “Thabasukaalam 2013” with a note to be read during Mass on 17th, I Sunday of Lent.
A disciple is one who values Jesus more than anything. Now, the relevant question is: Who is Jesus? Matthew 25:40 and 45 identifies the ‘son of man’/’king’ as the ‘least of his brethren’. Is he not the ‘anawim’ of Yahweh, those denied of justice?
‘Being content with what one has’ could be interpreted differently! The so-called ‘rich’ would mean this to be what is left over after their avaricious grabbing. Here, it is good to remember what Gandhiji seems to have said: ‘There is enough for everyone’s need but not to anyone’s greed!’ Birds seem to be contended as they get their due, because no bird ever hoards anything thereby making someone go hungry. Jesus taught us to ‘pray for our daily bread’ and not to be anxious of tomorrow. Praying could mean laboring and daily bread, the necessities of everyday life. Love has the meaning of caring and sharing too. Bread is to be broken and shared with the hungry.
While presenting the national data on BPL, ill-fed children, illiteracy due inadequate educational infrastructure, homeless people, people devoid of minimum facilities for their basic amenities, of potable water, health and hygiene resulting in contagious disease and so on, have we ever tried to have a census of these details in our archdiocese, at least in this year of Platinum Jubilee and Synod? As you have rightly observed Trivandrum district, mostly in the coastal regions where our diocesan population live in concentration, is one of the two districts designated as most backward, especially in education and health and hygiene. Recent reports on ‘public defecation’ in the said area are really a shame for all of us!
These people were under the stewardship of the church since the time of Francis Xavier and especially with our diocese/archdiocese! What have we really done? Could we not have made them a ‘self-esteemed’ people, leave alone everything else? If only we had the determination to do so would have certainly worked wonders. Have we not had our share in the exploitation our people in the manner of the very shepherd becoming the butcher himself!
You seem to refer to resourceful people keeping aloof of the church! As long as we don’t take them into confidence and entrust them with responsibilities, this sad situation may unfortunately continue.
You may present the detailed accounts to the ‘responsible’ bodies, if you prefer so, though such bodies are not