Word Magazine February 1981 Page 22
Homily by Father James C. Meena
Involvement is the name of the game. Either we get involved or we get out. With every area of life that challenge is thrown out, “Get involved!” If you’re worried about the way the schools are being conducted, get involved and change the school system. If you don’t like the political system of your city or your state, your nation, get involved change the system . . . get rid of the candidates . . . exercise your franchise . . . don’t leave it for someone else to do. If you don’t like what’s happening in your neighborhood, get involved! Join your other neighbors and form a neighborhood association.
But to get involved, you have to be turned-on. You can’t be a drop out. What St. Paul said in the Book of Acts certainly applies to our generation for the last twenty years, “I know quite well that when I have gone fierce wolves will invade you and will have no mercy on the flock. Even from your own ranks there will be men coming forward with a travesty of the truth . . . to induce (you) to follow them”. (20:29)
Now I don’t condemn the ravening wolves, and I don’t really condemn those deviates who change the faith, so much as I question the sincerity of those people who sit passively by and allow themselves to be influenced like a straw in the wind, blown from pillar to post.
People in our society say, “there is no God”, and we begin to believe them. People in our society say, “turn on to drugs” and we believe them, and many of us turn on to drugs. Or people in our society say, “sex outside of marriage is a terrific thing”, and we believe them, and we begin to fool around outside our marriages and make no bones about it and our consciences become glutted and desensitized and we have no idea really of what sin is anymore, because we are ‘turned off’. What is worse, because of our passivity, even though we do not drop acid, smoke pot, get involved in illicit sex, drink excessively or do any of the things advocated by these detractors of our society, by our passivity, we are worse than they.
The secret of life is to get involved. The secret of life is to activate yourselves. The secret of life is to involve and activate other people by the lifestyle that inspires them to seek their own involvement and commitment.
Beware of those who turn-on artificially. Beware of those who go to extremes in getting turned-on. But also beware of those who never turn-on at all. I said before, I don’t blame the ravening wolves. I don’t blame the detractors. I blame those who call themselves the faithful of God who will not do anything in order to increase their fidelity to God. They never read the Scriptures. They never pick up a religious book. They never involve themselves in anyway so that they might grow, spiritually.
The Lord said, “A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither does a man light a candle and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick, that it may give light to all who are in the room.” And then He preaches active commitment, getting involved when He says, “Let your Light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in Heaven.” (St. Matthew 5:14)
Are you a light, hidden under a bushel? Are you a village that is hidden in a forest, are you a city that is set on a hill so that all men might see it, that your lights may brighten the way? Are you a lighthouse, are you a foghorn, are you striving to activate people by your lifestyle, or are you just giving lip-service to your faith?
Each of us must stand before the throne of God and make an account of our lives. I hope at that time that we will not be accused of passivity. Let us be accused of almost any other sin, but let us not be accused of having done nothing. I think God can forgive almost anything, but I think He would find it almost impossible to forgive passivity, for how can He forgive nothing?