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Saturday, January 27, 2007

I had attended one of Fr. Cedric Pisegna's talk some time ago. I remember his analogy of the Dead Sea: that unless we give to others, we have no life. The Dead Sea does not feed another body of water. OK.

But this relative of ours, with the mental illness which robs the memory, laments in moments of lucidness, "I am useless to anyone." This is utilitarian. This is the logic of "If I am unproductive and useless, then I am worthless." So I ask you, where will your head be if you find yourself unable to contribute to society? Do you define yourself by what you can do?

I, myself, think that I exist so that I may be of help to someone--I know not who, but it is my special task to help at least this one specific person. That sort of thinking leads me to conclude that I would become useless as soon as I am unable to be of help to others. So then the question is: "Is it ever possible to be of no help to others?" I concluded, "No."

Couldn't I somehow, should I cease to be able to care and think for myself, be of inspiration for others? Couldn't God speak to others through my state of senselessness? In caring for me, couldn't my caregivers turn hearts and minds to God, to grow in love and service and gratitude for what IS in contrast to what isn't?

We do have the responsibility to help ourselves and others as we are able. But if we are unable, that doesn't make us worthless.

Will what is made say to its maker, "Why have you created me so?" Or does not the potter have a right over the clay, to make out of the same lump one vessel for a noble purpose and another for an ignoble one? (Rm 9:20-21)

May our very existence glorify God.