Faithful reminded on Corpus Christi feast: ‘We are all hypocrites’

Faithful reminded on Corpus Christi feast: ‘We are all hypocrites’

Some 15,000 young people gathered to worship Christ at Liveloud X at the SM Mall of Asia Arena, June 2, 2018. MARY ROSE GAYOSO

By Nirva’ana Ella Delacruz

June 4, 2018

PASAY City

Is the Church for the righteous and the virtuous? Hardly, said a bishop, who told thousands of young people gathered for Liveloud X on Saturday, June 2, that all believers are hypocrites “because all of us are sinners.”

“All of us are hypocrites. All of us are sinful. Me, the priests … the lay ministers. Everyone who enters the church are hypocrites. If not, this would be a very nice world… But there is always room for one more,” Legazpi Bishop Joel Baylon told some 15,000 mostly young people at an anticipated Mass for Corpus Christi Sunday.

Organized by CFC – Youth for Christ, Liveloud is an annual praise and worship youth concert that has been running for a decade.

‘Room for one more’

The bishop, who used to head the CBCP Episcopal Commission on Youth, shared an anecdote of a man who told a priest he refused to go to Mass because “there are many hypocrites,” to which the priest replied: “Oh, don’t let that worry you. There’s always room for one more.”

Baylon, who now heads the CBCP Commission on Prison Pastoral Care, said it is the fact that the Church is made up of flawed individuals that makes the Holy Mass what it is.

“Sometimes in the church we see our enemies. … [But] why do we notice the sinners, when we are sinners ourselves? The Lord, in fact, has invited sinners to come. And this is the challenge of this feast. We celebrate as community because we are the Body and Blood of Christ,” said the prelate, explaining the significance of Corpus Christi Sunday.

Parish involvement

The bishop also called on the thousands of youth present to get involved in the life of their parishes.

“It does not end there, it must not end there. You must find yourselves in the most basic structure of the Church which is the parish. It’s true, not all parishes are beautiful. The priest is not kind. The church is dirty. It’s noisy… I know. It is also an experience in my diocese … But that should not hinder us … that we give of ourselves that our respective parishes may become alive,” said Baylon in closing.

After the Eucharistic celebration, the young people sang praise songs and listened to testimonials from two young men, Carlo Azul and Joven Turingan, Jr., about Christ’s presence in their lives.