Metro Manila singles told: ‘Loving others impossible without God’
Nearly 2,000 young professionals gathered for the opening Mass of the 24th Metro Manila Regional Conference, led by Fr. Arnel Haber, director of the Youth Ministry of the Archdiocese of Caceres, Aug. 25, 2017. JIONEL TIAMZON
NAGA City – Dispelling the notion that one needs to choose one over the other, a priest reminded close to 2,000 Metro Manila Catholic singles that it is impossible to love others without loving God first.
“[Sometimes, we say] ‘Anyway, im working hard for my family, anyway, I’m doing my best at my job…it’s ok if I don’t go to Mass.’ These are not authentic expressions of love of neighbor because they are not rooted in the love of God,” said Fr. Arnel Haber, director of the Youth Ministry of the Archdiocese of Caceres during the opening Mass of the 24th CFC – Singles for Christ Metro Manila Regional Conference (MMRecon) on Friday, Aug. 25. “It does not flow from our relationship with God.”
According to the priest, Jesus summarized the content of the Mosaic law into a single dynamic of love. “He summarized all the laws into the law of love. These two commandments are so connected to each other, they are so interrelated.”
The 2 loves
Speaking at the University of Nueva Caceres (UNC), he explained the faithful can show their love for God best through their love for others.
He stressed, however, that these two loves flow into one another and one cannot be set aside in favor of the other, noting how some Catholics think cursing the household help is ok as long as one has devotions and goes to Sunday Mass “Sometimes, we disregard one for the other.”
Haber noted the centrality of love to the Christian faith. “The only real Christian practice is love. We end with the words of St. john of the Cross, ‘In the twilight of life, God will not judge us [according to] our earthly possessions, human success, but we will be judged on how much we have loved.’”
Hundreds of Catholic singles from the different Metro Manila sectors attended this year’s 3-day MMRecon, which carried the theme “Eimai Katholikos”, Greek for “I am Catholic”.
For the first time, the MMRecon started nearly a day earlier to include Live Catholic sessions that featured activities like parish clean-ups, “random acts of service”, adoration, etc. CBCPNews