I’LL start my column by reflecting on some of the lessons from geese.
As each bird flaps its wings, it creates an “uplift” for the bird following.
By flying in a “V” formation, the whole flock adds 71 per cent greater flying range than if the bird flew alone.
Being Christians who share a common direction and sense of community in Jesus Christ we can get where we are going easier because we are travelling with the support of the Holy Spirit and one another.
Because of bad press many Catholic’s have fallen out of formation and left the Church because of the sex-abuse scandal or some other reason.
I have nothing but the deepest sympathy for those innocent children who were the victims of the abuse and I pray that the Holy Spirit will always be there to guide them through the effects of their troubled past.
There is no better place to be than in the Church that Christ Himself founded. These faults of individuals disgust and demoralise us all from time to time, but they are not “the Church”.
The Church is, truly, the spotless bride of Christ.
God’s love for us is so great that He entrusted His Church to us sinful mortals as we muddle along.
I remember what Jesus said in (Luke 5-42) “I have come to call not the righteous but the sinners to repentance”.
Because Jesus is love, I honestly believe that it is a matter of love the sinner but hate the sin.
It appears many Catholics have decided to adopt what the secular world believes and teaches, along with what the so call liberals and the modernists have to offer causing them to drift away from the truth and put their salvation in peril, because, in rejecting the truth they reject our Lord Himself.
We must be true Catholics and know Christ’s true promises in the contents of the Gospels along with the Church’s true claims as they really are.
If they have as much sense as a goose, they will stay in formation with those who are headed where we all want to go and be willing to stand up for Christ and His Church in these difficult times.
Jesus expects us not to fly alone but take turns in doing the hard tasks like the geese and honk in formation behind to encourage our Church leaders up front to keep up their speed.
We must always remember that it was only a small number of people in the world that brought Jesus and His the Church into disrepute.
But what’s amazes me is that there is little said in the press about the thousands of good devoted clergy, teachers, lay members, volunteers, missionaries, charitable Christian organisations that are doing tremendous work all over the world today assisting the sick, the poor, the hungry, the homeless and the disadvantaged to name a few of their good works.
We need to make sure our honking from behind is encouraging at all times and not something else.
When a goose gets sick or wounded or shot down, two geese drop out of formation and follow it down to the ground to help and protect it.
They stay until it is able to fly again or dies.
Then they launch out on their own, with another formation, or catch up with the flock.
I feel that the example of the Good Samaritan comes into play here – especially when people are hurt or injured.
The greatest message that we as Catholics can deliver in this troubled world today is to stand up for Christ and his Church and aspire to have a Christlike character.
In other words try to live as Jesus lived.
No message on earth is needed more at this moment or more powerful.
If we really want to make an impact on our family, our Church, our society, our neighbourhood, our workplace this Lenten season and throughout each year that’s the way to do it.
Brian Moore is a former state president of the Queensland St Vincent de Paul Society