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Saturday, August 25, 2012

Dealing With 'Accolades'...

As I write this, I would have pass over many other notable events, e.g. the Olympics, the National Day celebrations, and from the liturgical settings - two sacerdotal (priestly) ordinations and the celebration of the Assumption.

This weekend, which I find myself now is the one with the seminarians in recollection. We will end soon by 12.30 p.m. after the mid-day prayer. This time round, however, I am not the main person conducting, as per usual, but Deacon Sherman Kuek from the diocese of Melaka-Johor. He is a permament deacon serving as Director of the Pastoral Institute of that diocese. He specialises in catechetical matters and is a well-known speaker within the conference of Malaysia-Singapore-Brunei region. He shared with the seminarians his life changing conversion and provided the framework for his theme of the talk, namely, The Beauty of the Catholic Faith. He also blogs here.

This morning, he gave a homily that while short and succint, was very pointed enough to get the message across which all of us at Mass would not miss out on. The gospel reading that morning was about the scribes and Pharisees with the need to be looked up to, fawn over, wearing broader phylacteries and the warning of not following through with what they preach. Deacon Sherman mentioned about the manner how priests and religious or clergy in general, can also unconciously fall into this trap. An elderly and wise priest once told him that once you have preached, no matter how good the homily may be, when finish, just shut up and get lost!

I believe this is the wisest advice for any clergy to follow and keep to heart. It certainly will put one in place with humility, which is rather rare these days. It will help all of us to know that at the bottom of ut all, this is really about God and not about us (at all). This may also cater for the homily that is half baked - one does not need to be around to get the flak from our listeners...

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