This is a syndicated post from Daily Meditations with Fr. Alfonse. [Read the original article...]
Wednesday of the Second Week of Advent
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Jesus said to the crowds: “Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for yourselves. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
I’ve always loved this reading. But today it is more fitting than ever before. This morning Time magazine named Pope Francis “Person of the Year.” The honor is startling, if you consider the fact the Pope has been Pope for less than a year.
So why did they pick him? I can’t tell you. I haven’t bought my copy of the magazine just yet. But I can tell you why I would have chosen him; and chosen him over the other contenders, such as Miley Cyrus or Edward Snowden.
The man is meek and humble of heart. It’s not easy today to find a world leader who fits this sort of description. It’s not easy to find someone who dines with high powered officials by day and simple folks by night. It’s rare to find someone who will call the President of Russia one minute and then a stranger in need the next.
Our Pope has hit his stride. He is living his priesthood at its highest level without losing his composure (or his head). He is at the top of his game with his feet firmly on the ground. How does he do it? Through discernment and prayer. This is how we best discover (1) who we are, (2) what God wants and (3) what God expects us to do.
The Holy Father may be above everybody but he doesn’t act that way. He is authentic and sensitive in his love for the poor, the marginalized, and, most importantly, the outcast. The Holy Father has taken the devil by the horns and has tamed his pride and vanity. It is so important our children see this from a world leader, especially in light of our highly competitive nature and society. Catholic schools work very hard to push students to achieve their very best. But they also work extremely hard to make sure success won’t get to their head. What good is it to win the world and lose your soul (cf. Mt. 16:28)? Oh well, as a former school executive, I can honestly say our greatest fear was that wealth or title or position would go to a young students head! Starting at an early age, all our students (or future leaders) must be taught that power and authority is given to some in order to serve all, period.
The Holy Father deserves to be on the front cover of Time magazine because his lifestyle is timeless, and because he would personally prefer to be on the magazine’s back page.
The man is easy to relate to and look up to. What makes the Holy Father extraordinary? He is both brilliant and simple. His teaching style is similar to that of our Lord: simple and yet profound. He has a childlike heart. He loves people. He loves to mingle with people: all sorts of people.
I found his Apostolic Exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium easy to read. Wow! What a relief. I have found his sermons to be interesting, entertaining and engaging. Wow! What a surprise! What a joy!
To put it simply: I find the Holy Father fulfilling his role as Vicar of Christ and Servant of servants simultaneously.
Congratulations to the staff at TIME magazine for having chosen a worthy soul.