Taking Responsibilities

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The WORD in other words (2021) by Fr. Jerome C. Alburo, SVD (Madagascar) 

January 2 Before Epiphany

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

In today’s gospel, John makes clear that his role and mission is to prepare the way for Christ. John really knew himself, understood the nature of his vocation, accepted his role and responsibility, and eventually played his part in the salvation history.

Every day, like John the Baptist, we are called to play specific roles or responsibilities. Whether to our colleagues, constituents, loved ones, or to ourselves. Yes, even to ourselves!

I remember feeling excited on the day I first knew that I would be assigned for mission work in Madagascar. But at night, haunted with low self-esteem, overshadowed with self-doubt and anxieties, I had difficulty sleeping! “Am I courageous enough to combat homesickness? Am I prepared to study new languages and cultures? Am I qualified for any responsibilities?  Am I ready to do God’s mission on an island-country like Madagascar?” These questions exhausted me to the point of falling asleep on that cold night in the seminary. 

Three years have passed. After studying foreign languages and doing mission as an assistant parish priest in the village, I can humbly relate to John the Baptist.  I have discovered and accepted my weaknesses, embraced the nature of my vocation, and happily taken part in doing God’s mission. 

Sometimes, in our lives, we struggle to accept new roles and responsibilities. But today, we are reminded to accept our limitations, to always anchor ourselves in God, and to continue living and loving amidst doubts and fears. Anyway, God is always in control! 

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