“One can give without loving, but one cannot love without giving.”—Mother St. Teresa
The theme “Witness and Solidarity with those in need” should be received as a spiritual ballistic, piercing our souls and awakening the presence of God, thereby diminishing His absence. This eternal outcry from the Divine Master to His creation, of which God is immanent and transcendent, is seemingly seasonally thematicized to catch our consciousness. This theme is an opportunity to be humanly divine children of the Divine-Human child.
To witness and be of solidarity with those in need is a fundamental, existential endowment of the creation. The free will of human beings has been, and is capable of, virtues and vices. As we progress in holiness, only the virtues will be chosen and the vices will cease to exist; the polarity will become centrality. The subjectivity of the practiced virtues and exercised vices needs ongoing mystical and spiritual explorations and research, practical and practicable contemplations. Nonetheless, the certitude of the objective holiness (truthfulness in secular attire) in juxtaposition with sinfulness is, until its culmination, irrefutable and indefatigable.
The glittering and numerous forms that the existential counterpart sin contains might many a time make all humans oblivious to what and how the fundamental goodness of the human free will, unfathomably and with eternal strength, is unfolding the Creator; many times going ahead and many times staying behind.
The rise and fall of empires, dynasties and dictators who wanted to rule the world impacts transformations of ideologies, such as capitalism, socialism, communism, Marxism, etc. The circulating winds of globalization, pluralism, secularism, subsidiarity, etc., occurred and is occurring, but the structures like democratic governments, revolutions and renaissances, all the scientific and non-scientific fields and innumerous angels, agents, ambassadors and emissaries existed, exist and will exist. These configurations don’t “occur” like their unworthy counterpart evil—whose end is a forgone conclusion. The theme “Witness and Solidarity with those in need” is the inheritance of this existing goodness; Existence—I AM WHO AM: I AM THE WAY, THE TRUTH AND THE LIFE. These words could be the verbal allegories of the philosophically defined God, the “Immovable Mover,” and vice versa; the “immovability” of the AM and the “movability” of THE WAY. For those who wonder how can the Way move when, typically, only living things move on their way, observe how a treadmill functions—in which, through which and with which the walker moves, the walking belt moves, though the machine is static.
Pride causes departure from the fundamental goodness of the creation of which God is immanently transcendent and transcendently immanent. The cause of pride is one of the tiniest splinters in the entire capacity of the free will (a chink in the boat of eternity). The non-used capacity of free will in ‘the way,’ freed by the creator, has led to misuse causing pride. To be dismissive of the cause of pride and to deactivate the already effects of pride is slavery and it behooves the freewill to seek freedom given only by the creator. That is why “Incarnation happens (ed),” “Eucharist IS.” Witness and Solidarity with those in need is as integral a constitution of divinity as Eucharist is and will be as long as the whole creation is in labor pains. Free will is a freed will as long as it is entrusted, embedded and existing in the Creator.
Remember the woman who was afflicted with hemorrhages? She strove just to touch the clothes of Jesus to receive healing. The crowd was pressing upon Jesus. They might be likened to plastic, dry wood or stone, which will not conduct electricity. Whether anything happened to them or not, Jesus doesn’t look for them. He looks for somebody else, as if he came in contact with copper. The woman was a conductor of Jesus! She was a Faith explosion and implosion at the same time. Witness and solidarity with those in need should likewise be a reciprocal process.
It is immaterial whether the amount of being witness and solidarity with those in need is big or small. What matters is who or what it carries. The penny given by the widow in the Scripture and the brought-forward loaves and fish of a small boy can be likened to a memory stick which can contain an entire library of books. If an electronic chip, an invention of a human being from the dust of the soil, can contain so much, how much more does the Eucharist, which is of similar size to the above-said material morphemes, contain and unfold?
The whole creation is a mystic, invited to be a Mr. Tick in the clock of God’s will. Then the mis-Tick and the mistake in the same clock is known to be nonexistent. “Let your ‘Yes’ mean ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No’ mean ‘No.’” (Mt 5-37) The “Neti Neti and Eti Eti” of Indian philosophy is already contained in the “Yes and No” of Christ. As we strive to bear witness and have solidarity with those in need, let us beware of the leaven of Pharisees and hold fast to the teachings of Christ.
Graceful Christmas to one and all!
Father Murali Rayappan, Pastor of Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish in Auburndale
Published in the December 2021 Issue of Catholic Life Magazine