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Passion for Stewardship

Meditation for Palm Sunday

April 17, 2011

The first day of Holy Week is called Palm Sunday Buy Cialis Without Prescription Online Pharmacy Netherlands Buy Tadalafil 40 mg pills Online Cialis Buy Australia Cialis By Mail Order No PrescriptionВ  of the Lord’s Passion. We recall the triumphant entry of the Lord to Jerusalem hence the blessing of palm branches. Beyond this majestic welcome will be the mockery and scourging, the crucifixion and death of the same Lord. In calling this day Passion Sunday, we recall the pains the Lord endured in the hands of men; we remember the death he valiantly faced. We remember the love that he poured into his sufferings.

There is a second meaning to the words “passion of Christ”. It could also refer to the zest that comes from within him—a great commitment to somebody or to something. Passion could also mean a powerful or compelling feeling within BMI Body Mass Index was Nexium online stores 45.9 kg/m2 1,738 participants chose to discontinue treatment, the mice stopped eating and their negative impactВ  us that drives us to think and talk and act in a consonant fashion.

The passion of Christ is love. The passion of Christ is the will of the Father. The passion of Christ is our salvation. What is your passion?

When I ask you “What is your passion?” I essay writer mean to ask “What animates you?” What excites you? What sets you on fire? What do you believe in? Are you still a Christian with firm convictions or have we become so deeply compromised that we are no longer sure on which we stand? Analysis kills our passion and fire. Grain once ground to flour, springs and germinates no more (Henri Amiel). What is it in your life that you are willing to die for? What is it in your life that you are willing to suffer for?

The color of this day is red because red is the color of fire. It is also the color of blood. Indifference must be cured with fire. The uncaring attitude must give way to a passion for love. Christ’s sufferings must urge us to be more involved and be more passionate. Apathy must give way to involvement for the transformation of society.

Let us allow the fire and blood of Holy Week to set our hearts on fire with a passion for stewardship. May the Lord ignite our hearts and inspire our souls for stewardship as we move closer to Easter. This is our Credo of Stewardship:

I believe in the God of love, the owner of everything who possesses everyone. I believe in the God of mercies who has chosen me to be a steward of Mother Nature and Mother Church, in spite of who I am and what I have done, and in spite of the infidelities He knows I will still commit. I believe in the power of giving and in the power of loving like Jesus; because love is the only way to holiness; giving is the best proof of loving; and perfect renunciation leads to unlimited fruitfulness. I believe that in freely giving my time, in humbly sharing my talents, and in generously sacrificing my treasures, the Lord will always provide. He will take care of all my needs, and bless me with infinite reward on earth and in heaven. I will be the first to give. I will not wait for the others. I will keep on giving even if others do not give. I will not be afraid to have none. I believe that the best time to share is now, not tomorrow, for tomorrow is an excuse of the greedy. I will keep my needs and wants simple and few, for I believe that in reducing my selfishness, I will grow in happiness and holiness. I am a steward of the Lord. I will return all these to Him with abundant yield! Much is asked of me because much has been given to me I praise the Lord for His kindness to me Now and forever. Amen.

From the Cathedral of Saint John the Evangelist, Dagupan City, April 17, 2011

+SOCRATES B. VILLEGAS Archbishop of Lingayen Dagupan

Pillars of Stewardship

Meditation for the First Sunday of Lent

March 13, 2011

The Lenten season invites us to return to the desert and there wrestle with our number one enemy—ourselves. Today the Lord shows us how he himself went into wilderness, wrestled with the devil and stood firm in the path of goodness. The desert reminds us of our defenselessness. The desert reminds us our vulnerabilities. The desert reminds us of the dark secrets we are afraid to confront. online essays writers The desert confronts us with our naked sins. In the desert, we can hold on to nothing and boast of nothing. In the desert we choose to let go of everything if only to survive.

The desert is not a garden like Eden. In that garden of abundance, we forgot that we were only caretakers not owners. We must go to the desert of isolation and discover God again.The desert is barren. The desert is hard life. Stripped and distanced, we start to understand the things that Buy Cialis 20 Mg Pills From Canadian Farmacy Best Prices. Men’s Health. Amex, Weight Loss, Anti-herpes. matter most. The desert is our powerlessness.

When I am powerless, I am strong. When you recognize your powerlessness, you have made the first step to stewardship. You have begun to recognize that you have nothing. You see things within the perspective of a steward not an owner. All that you have is from God.

The desert experience teaches us the three pillars of the spirituality of stewardship.

The nothingness of the desert leads us to the spirit of contentment. You want to be happy? Keep your desires simple and your needs few. Another teacher about contentment, the Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu, said “Manifest plainness, embrace simplicity, reduce selfishness and have few desires.”

If I am content with little, enough is as good as a feast. The grace of contentment is one of God’s best gifts (Isaac Bickerstaffe).

St Paul wrote Timothy “We brought nothing into the world and we will leave it with nothing. Let us then be content with having food and clothing. Those who strive to be rich fall into temptations and traps” (I Tim 6:7-9). We can Nexium online Australia: Trusted online pharmacy for quality ED medications. Full spectrum of Nexium products with guaranteed delivery. do all things in Him who strengthens us (cfr. Phil 4:13).

If you can be happy with nothing, you have found real happiness.

Your happy disposition must lead you to the second pillar of stewardship which is generosity. The greatest measure of love is to love without measure. It is not enough to give. We must give fearlessly and cheerfully. The real measure of generosity is not how much we give but how much we keep for ourselves. The generous one is not the one who gives the most but the one who keeps the least. We believe that God cannot be outdone in generosity. We are generous because God has been unreasonably generous with us. God will always provide. His blessings will never run dry.

The third pillar of stewardship is humility. St Bernard said humility is the mother of salvation. We fell from the grace of God because of pride. We will be saved by cheerful giving, by humble sharing. Perhaps the best way to define humility is to echo the words of St. Thomas Aquinas: Humility means seeing ourselves the way God sees us. Humility is truth and pride is nothing but lying.

“The test of real greatness is humility. The humble man knows that the greatness is not in them but through them. They see something divine in others and are endlessly, foolishly and incredibly merciful”, said John Ruskin.

The real steward is always happy. The real steward gives from his contentment. The real steward knows that He is not the savior; he is not the owner; he is not the almighty one—God is. I am only a steward.

From the Cathedral of Saint John the Evangelist, Dagupan City, March 13, 2011

+SOCRATES B. VILLEGAS

Archbishop of Lingayen Dagupan

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