Twenty-SixthSunday in Ordinary Time
The greatness of the humility
Have among yourselves the same attitude that is also yours in Christ Jesus, Who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God something to be grasped. Rather, he emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, coming in human likeness; and found human in appearance, he humbled himself, becoming obedient to death, even death on a cross. Because of this, God greatly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, of those in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Phil 2,5-11
This passage from the Letter to the Philippians, rather than to be pondered, is to be slowly sipped like a glass of good wine. The secret of the true leadership lies in it, which passes through the complete renouncement to the authoritarian command to search for the authority conferred by the condition of servant, chosen for love.This is the strategy which Jesus taught us to transform each community context in a mystical body, be it the universal church, the family or the parish. This strategy is summed up in one word: humility.The history of the salvation exalts the humility of God who, starting from the garden of the Eden, went to look for the man, as the good shepherd of the parable narrated by Jesus goes in search of the lost sheep. The decisive point of the humility of God the Father was the time when he decided to embody his divinity in the Son, “coming in human likeness” in the person of Jesus of Nazareth. The highest point of the humility of the Son is that one described today by Paul: it is the moment when “he humbled himself, became obedient to death, even death on the cross”. There have been events in the life of Jesus, in which his deity was manifested in a visible way: the blinding splendour of the transfiguration on Mount Tabor, the omnipotence of the miracles, the divine wisdom of the parables and of the sermon on the mountain, the mercy in the forgiveness of the adulteress. The events, however, in which his divinity shone by brightest light, have been the humility of accepting the cross and the triumph of the resurrection: “Because of this, God greatly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every man”. In the history of the church, on the contrary, the humility of God shines in the continuous and constant service of the Holy Spirit, always willing to enlighten, to advise and to confort. The different moments of the salvation history, in which the humility of God manifested itself, are reflected also in the role of the parents in the family: in the humility of the service, in the acceptance of the daily crosses and in the faithfulness to the education and to the advice.