My homily for December 22 this year.
Homily December 22, 2020
The mark of any spiritually and emotionally mature man is the mark of humility. It is also a mark of contradiction to what our contemporary society says. The world around us seems to identify those who are self-referent and self-noting as ones to be esteemed and having achieved some level of success and maturity; in other words, those who by their lives direct attention to themselves and their “accomplishments.” This was again recently brought to my attention when I opened a People magazine found in a clinic waiting room.
Yet, we so often hear to the demise of such individuals, the sudden fall from their exalted positions. We can think of many such people in society, and, yes, even in the Church, who have taken such a fall after having aggressively promoted themselves. I need not name them; you know them as well as I.
Perhaps we need only to briefly reflect on our own family history to recall the truly great men and women in the world and in the Church; those men and women who realized that it is God who accomplishes great things in and through them. Our Blessed Mother Mary realized this and expressed it so beautifully in her Canticle which I just proclaimed to you. St. John the Baptist knew this when he said, “He must increase and I must decrease.” We know this when we remember family members, former clergymen, and religious sisters who carried the mark of humility and were indeed mature, strong, and holy people. These men and women who taught us that God is the potter and we the clay; that God is author and we the paper; that He is the One who brings about all good things. Any greatness of ours is a reflection of God’s greatness shining through us.
It takes a mature person to understand this, a spiritually and psychologically mature person. Indeed, humility is a sign of health and strength and holiness. It is not weak. It is not fragile. Humility won’t break us; rather, it strengthens us because it is from God and His strength becomes our strength. Every saint that has lived attests to this, most especially our Blessed Mother.
All things must point to God. All things must magnify God’s majesty and glory. This is always what Mary lived and what she continues to teach us. All things must point to her son Jesus. The greatness that is ours as God’s sons and daughters is His gift to us. To Him be the praise and glory, now and forever. Amen!