Grief, hurt not enough reasons to stop us from serving other people — Archbishop Villegas
MANILA, Philippines — “Our grief and our hurt are not enough reasons to excuse us from serving other people.”
Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas has this to say on Thursday following the result of the recently-concluded polls, the outcome of which led to the disappointment of some supporters who are now mulling stopping their volunteer works.
Villegas urged the said supporters to pray and seek the Lord’s assistance.
“Let us ask the Lord to fill us with greater generosity so we can serve even if we are hurting and overcome with heartache. Let us ask Him to enable us to look beyond ourselves, beyond our personal sorrows and aches and allow us to reach out to others,” Villegas said in a statement published on his website.
The Archbishop also enjoined the supporters to learn from the life of Jesus, who also experienced grief but did not let it stop him from helping others.
“Most of us, at least once in our life, have felt grief … The Lord experienced that Himself. He grieved over the death of [John the Baptist] — a cousin and friend.
“At that moment of sadness, all He wanted was to be by Himself. He went up to the other side of town, to a mountain where He could be alone. He longed to nurse His hurt and sorrow in solitude,” he said.
“But after He had crossed to the side where the mountain lay, He was again confronted by a multitude who presented their need to be cured and attended to.
“If the Lord were only human like us, He would have barked at these people: ‘Can’t you understand? I just want to be left by myself with my grief.’
“But no such words ensued from our Lord’s lips; instead, He performed one of the greatest miracles in the New Testament – the multiplication of loaves of bread,” the Archbishop went on.
Villegas said this gospel points to the fact that our hurting is not enough reason to stop helping others. However, he said that the Lord understands that there is a time for grieving.
“I don’t mean that we steel ourselves from grief or deprive ourselves of a period of mourning by non-stop service to others.
“There is a time for grieving and mourning and the Lord understands we need this time.
“The Lord makes us see, through His actions in the Gospel, that our grief should not make us so self-absorbed that we fail to see the grief and needs of others,” Villegas said.
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