I have just returned from a weekend at the Deacon Convocation, where the deacons and their wives get together for a weekend of talks, spiritual nourishment, community, and good food. The word that kept coming up for me was humility. It refers to the idea that you treat others as better than yourself. It takes seriously the words of Christ who said that the first shall be last, and the last shall be first (Matthew 20:16). Our Lord died so that our sins may be forgiven and our relationship with God reconciled. This is true humility, a self-emptying, a pouring out of oneself for another.
Humility is that attitude that I will sacrifice for another, because they are worth it. I am privileged and honored to give some of my time and energy to NCEON, the agency that helps the poor in Anne Arundel County with food and financial support. Now on the weekend, we were introduced to two young men, Colin Miller and Nathan Belk. At the direction of Fr. James Boric at the Baltimore Basilica, they have begun a ministry to the homeless. It is called Source of All Hope (Sourceofallhope.org). They walk the streets of Baltimore and share water and pairs of socks with the homeless they encounter. They offer them their time and attention. They show them dignity and welcome their stories. They are humble young men who have been touched by the Spirit to do a great work. They do not see themselves as superior to the men and women they encounter but blessed and called to serve them. They understand well the Church’s call to serve the poor. Let us practice that virtue of humility in all we do.
Our vocation as Catholics is to follow the model of Christ in his mercy and humility. There is much we can offer others not in our pride and superiority but in our humility and service.