Invitation for the last few days of Lenten season
By Fr. Petelo Vito Pa'u, SDB
Delegate for the Pacific
Suva, Fiji, 23 March 2018 -- A story is told of a man, who while driving a car met with a terrible accident. A few people soon gathered at the place of the accident and came forward to offer him immediate help that he needed. But the man said, “Oh! There’s nothing wrong with me.” “But sir, you’ve just been in a terrible car accident. You’re bleeding and have some deep bruises. There may be internal damage!” someone from the crowd said. But the man said again, “There is nothing wrong with me!” Another man then suggested, “At least have a doctor check you out, sir. We have an ambulance right here – it wouldn’t take very long.” But the man again insisted, “I told you, there’s nothing wrong with me!” And he walked away from the car accident. After this, his wife, when she heard of her husband’s accident came there, picked him up and drove him home. Later at night, he died from internal bleeding.
For a person to stand before God and say, “There is nothing wrong with me” is probably the worst thing we could possibly say. We know in our hearts that, that is not true. There is always something wrong with us. So, a true Christian is someone who humbly stands before God and says, “Be merciful, O Lord, for I have sinned.”
The Holy Season of Lent is a time for our spiritual renewal, calls us for “metanoia”, a complete change of heart through repentance. In this year’s Strenna: “Sir, give me this Water,” Let us cultivate the art of Listening and of accompaniment,” the Rector Major invites us to a deeper reflection on the role of listening and accompaniment in our own lives and with those with whom we journey.
“The synthetic phrase of the Strenna,” writes Fr. Artime, “corresponds to the heartfelt request that the Samaritan woman makes to Jesus at Jacob’s well. In her meeting with Him, the woman feels that she has been listened to, respected and appreciated; and so, in her heart she feels impelled to ask for something even more precious: “Sir, give me some of this water.. the water of life to the full that you are offering me.”
It is important not to forget that, even though the Strenna 2018 is mainly focus on how we must listen and accompany young people in the journey but, its implication is first and foremost for us Salesians leaving in communities to implement and to live the Strenna with each other. I now encourage and invite you dear confreres to study the Strenna; to make it the object of sharing with members of your community, with young people and with the people involved in the mission of proclaiming the Good News.
I wish you well in celebrating Lent in whatever way makes sense to you and your community as sons of Don Bosco.