MANILA, April 19, 2014 — Love and service must work hand-in-hand to realize Jesus Christ’s message in its entirety, a high-ranking Church official said.
Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle on Maundy Thursday reminded the faithful that love and service must work together, for one without the other would not manifest the true memorial left by the Lord for His people.
Neither activism nor sentimentalism
“Love without service is sentimentalism. Service without love is pure activism. We do not want sentimentalism as a memorial of Jesus. We do not want pure activism to be the memorial of Jesus,” he said.
“True love is shown in service. True service is rooted in love. One without the other will not work,” Tagle said in his homily during the Mass of the Last Supper held at the Manila Cathedral.
According to Tagle, the true memorial left by Christ is characterized by “love that does not hold back anything, love that gives everything as an act of humble service.”
Tagle called on the faithful to open themselves to the service of Christ, primarily through receiving the sacraments of the Catholic Church.
“Our Lord is always ready to serve, always ready to die in the name of service. Let us offer ourselves for Him to wash,” he said.
The cardinal noted that the sacraments of Baptism, Reconciliation, Holy Communion, and Anointing of the Sick are the foremost ways for the faithful to receive the Lord’s guidance through His blessing.
“Baptism is a form of washing. Go to baptism even if you do not have enough money to host a celebration. Baptism is not supposed to be a feast. Just let your child be washed by baptismal waters—with or without a celebration to follow,” he said.
He urged the laity to wash their sins by going to confession, accepting the Holy Eucharist, and being blessed by the holy oil. Tagle also called on the faithful to serve others just like how Christ offered Himself for genuine service to humanity.
“The Lord is waiting for He loves to serve us. Let us accept His washing. After receiving His blessing, letus also serve and wash the feet of other people just like how Christ did,” Tagle said. (Jennifer M. Orillaza)