Ascension Sunday

Fr. Boyet was my idol. He was a great man, a great priest. I heard he founded the first home for the abandoned elderly in our province. I came to see him at work. How inspiring! Dressed in old, simple t-shirt, he moved around barefoot while tending to the needs of these old and sick people. But soon after, I heard that he left the place.

He went to another province starting a similar institution. They said he worked with the same passion there among the poor. But after a while, he was off to another place, this time, to found a home for drug dependents somewhere in a mountainous location. Guess what? After some time there, he abandoned his post to go somewhere else. Last I heard aobut him, he is in another area starting another charitable work.

Is this priest crazy? Is this priest a wanderlust? Is he confused and unstable that he never stays too long in one place?

I guess we will quickly judge him this way. But no, Fr. Boyet is my model of a priest, of a truly committed man of God. What he was doing is this – in every place, he starts a good deed, then inspires people with the same heart for the needy, then leaves them behind to take up the work themselves, while he moves on to start somewhere else he is again most needed.

Jesus rose from the dead and his disciples rejoiced that he was back with them. But soon enough Jesus would make them realize that he did not return to resume his work as before. He is needed at the side of the Father. He has given them enough inspiration. He has provided them enough vision and passion. Now, the disciples must continue the work. They must not remain followers but pioneers in their own right.

Jesus preached to all of Israel. But returning to the Father, he gives a command: Go into the whole world! Jesus chose key persons to join him in his ministry, but now he tells his followers: preach to them and baptize them! Jesus drew his followers to the Father and shared with them his vision. Now he commands them: Make disciples of all peoples! (Matthew 28:16-20).

The disciples understood and the rest is history.

At times, we find ourselves admiring people and idolizing their greatness. But our faith tells us it is not enough to stand at the sidelines and cheer our heroes. We must be energized to do the things they do. If we are truly inspired, then we must take over and continue their dream.

Have you been inspired by someone who is no longer here? Someone who has grown old? One who has since moved on? What did you do with that inspiration? Maybe it is time to stop looking up to heaven and start dirtying your hands to work and love and serve as you have been empowered to do.