Tagle: Love sets devotee apart from fanatic
MANILA Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle defended the Catholic faithful joining the Black Nazarene procession against accusations that they engaged in “fanaticism.”
Tagle, in his homily during the midnight mass at Quirino Grandstand, explained the difference between being a devotee and being a fanatic, saying it is love that sets them apart.
“Parang taun-taon ay parang kinukwestyon, ‘yan ba ay tama, ‘yan ba ay mahalaga – ‘yung pagiging deboto...at meron pang isang salita na kanilang ginagamit, ‘Hindi ba yan panatisismo?’ Eh kung pareho, bakit may salitang deboto?” he said.
(It seems that people question every year whether being a devotee is right or important. There is even a word they often use: isn’t that fanaticism? But if they’re the same, why is there the word ‘devotee’?”
Tagle said a real devotee loves, while a fanatic just clings on something that gives them value.
“Una, ang tunay na deboto ay nagmamahal… Ang panatiko, nang-aano lang ‘yan eh, kumakapit sa isang nagbibigay ng halaga sa akin. Pero ang deboto, hindi iyon ang dahilan. Devoted ka dahil mahal mo siya. ‘Yan ang ipinakita ni Hesus. ‘Yan din ang diwa ng debosyon,” he said.
(A real devotee loves...a fanatic is just there to cling on something that gives them value. A real devotee is there because they love. That’s what Jesus have shown to us. That’s the spirit of devotion.)
“Ang panatiko, kapag hindi na nakuha ang kanyang gusto, titigil na ‘yan. Pero ang deboto, dahil nagmamahal, mananatiling tapat, may nakukuha man siya o wala. Basta mahal kita, paglilingkuran kita, at magiging tapat ako sa iyo,” he added.
(The fanatic, if they no longer get what they want, they stop. But the devotees stick because they love and they will remain faithful, whether they get something out of it or not. Because I love you, I will serve you, and I will be faithful to you.)
Tagle said aside from being loving, a true devotee is loyal and unites with God.
“Ang unang naging deboto sa atin, devoted to us, ay si Hesus mismo… ‘Yung ibang tao pag nasa langit ‘yan hindi mo na ‘yan mapapababa! Pero si Hesus nasa langit, bababa para samahan tayo,” he said.
(Jesus was the first person devoted to us. The others, if they’re already in heaven, you can no longer ask them to go down. But Jesus will come down from heaven just to be with us.)
“Pati langit iiwanan niya mapasama (lamang) sa mga kapatid na makasalanan, hindi para yurakan sila, hindi para sila’y parusahan, kundi para iligtas, that’s devotion,” he added.
(Jesus will even leave heaven just to be with sinners; not to punish them, but to save them. That’s devotion.)
He urged the devotees to foster their relationship with God day by day.
Tagle made the statement as millions of devotees attended the Black Nazarene procession Wednesday, January 9. The procession started around 5 a.m. from the Quirino Grandstand toward the Quiapo church.
As of 12 noon, the Philippine National Police (PNP) and other government agencies have yet to record any untoward incident related to the religious occasion.
The carriage of the Black Nazarene has already passed the Jones Bridge in Manila.
The PNP earlier said it is expecting the image of the Black Nazarene to arrive at the Quiapo church within 20 hours./sunstar Philippines