Posted by: fvbcdm | August 8, 2017

Feast of Saint Dominic (8 Aug 2017)

Today the Church celebrates the feast of our founder and father Saint Dominic, and, of course, it is a very special day for us Dominicans who derive our name and our identity from that remarkable man from north-central Spain who was born about the year 1170.  When he realized his dream and founded an order which would devote itself to the preaching of sacred Truth throughout the world, he chose as the one-word motto of his order, simply “Truth.”  By doing so, he was echoing the words of our Divine Lord who stood before Pontius Pilate, on trial for his life.

Hoping that it would bring about Jesus’s death, the leaders of the people told Pilate, “he says he is a king.”  That was a lie.  Our Lord had never said such a thing.  Pilate, being the politician that he was, was always fearful of a rebellion against the Roman Empire and its Emperor, questioned our Lord, “Are you a king?”  Even here, Jesus will not simply say, “Yes,” since he certainly was not the kind of king that Pilate was talking about.  Jesus, therefore, does not answer directly, but rather says to Pilate, “That is your terminology not mine. The reason I was born and came into the world is to bear witness to the Truth.”

Pilate was no philosopher or theologian.  He was not interested in “Truth,” whatever that might mean.  He was irked by Jesus’s answer since it doesn’t give him any reason to kill our Lord.  Abstract ideas like Truth were not forbidden by Roman law.  Claiming to be a king was forbidden.  Nevertheless, Christ makes this magnificent statement to a corrupt petty politician who is seeking some grounds to kill Him while He, Christ, in turn, is carrying out the Divine Plan for the salvation of the world by His own death.

Saint Dominic took that concept of Truth and made it the motto of his order.  At present the very concept of Truth is being challenged in our world by those who deny the possibility of knowing Truth.  They are called relativists.  They say that what is true for you is not true for me.  Therefore, Truth is whatever you think it is, whatever I think it is, and whatever all the other people on this earth think it is.  Thus, the concept becomes totally meaningless.  So why try to find it, to embrace it, to live by it?  If there is no objective Truth, then the death of Jesus and all the Christian martyrs was a waste, and our sacred doctrines are no more than private, personal opinions.  Not so says Christ.  Not so says the Church.  Not so says Saint Dominic.  Let the relativists live in the confusion that their theories brings them to.  We, in turn, say to our Divine Lord, as did Saint Peter, “Lord, to whom shall we go?  You have the Words of Eternal Life!”  Thank you for allowing God to love you, God bless you.

Note:  Father Brown composed this message some years ago.  Please pray for the souls of the faithful departed, including Father Brown.



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