By Christiana Gokyo, Jos
The Catholic Ladies of St. Mulumba (LSM) Nigeria has been charged to emulate the Blessed Virgin Mary’s spiritual receptivity.
“We cannot exhaust the relevance of the Blessed Virgin Mary in our lives. She remains a “docile creature” of God and was spiritually receptive and cooperative with God, her creator, in the salvation and redemption of mankind.
“Humility is a thing of paradox; it is that ability for s
omeone to have everything and, yet, live his or her life as though nothing is his or her’s. It is that moment when a person becomes nothing even when actually he or she is great in the eyes of men.
“Humility helps someone to drop all ego and selfishness and reach out to others in mutual love and fraternity; humility breaks down the barriers of ‘class’ stratification and enables a person to see other people as unique persons created in God’s image.”
This was message delivered at an Annual National Convention of the Ladies of the Knights of St. Mulumba (LSM) in Jos recently, by Guest Speaker, Rev. Fr. David Ajang, while presenting his paper, with a theme, “The need to be as spiritually-receptive as Mary, a Prerogative for the 21th century LSM in the Marian Year.”
The cleric said that “If you are a humble, Lady Knights of St. Mulumba, you will appreciate your place in the church and contribute your time, talent and treasure towards the development of the church of God, and remain obedient to any constituted authority in the church and do all things with integrity and humility.”
He opposed the notion of ‘class distinction,’ saying “It is wrong for Noble Knighthood to show class differences between the rich and the poor members; it is not right to allow our influence or wealth to determine everything that happens in the Knighthood, because pride can make a member think that she is the most qualified for a certain position in the commander or at other levels and end up making her begrudge if things do not go in her favour or ambition.
“Pride is also dangerous because it can keep us far from God and stifle our growth as Lady Knights in the church,” and reminded them that, “a truly noble Lady Knight is a humble Christian.”
Rev. Fr. Ajang reiterated that the Blessed Virgin Mary was honoured because she cooperated with God and was used by God. She was honoured in her service of God; so we, too, can be honoured if we dedicate ourselves to the genuine service in the church of God and in the secular world, calling on the church faithful to renew their commitment to the service, beginning from the church and, then, the society in which we live.
He noted that in our world today, true servants are lacking; people these days prefer to have others at their backs. He further observed that, “many of us want others to serve us rather than give ourselves in the services of others.”
While urging on them to remain consistent in their commitment to the Christian vows as individuals and to the demands of their knighthood, he advised that when we live as if we are not Christians, we compromise many things and may even scandalize other people.
According to him, “the Lady of St Mulumba, who is troublesome to her neighbours, is a contradiction, and who cheats in business is a contradiction. We cannot be Lady Knights and remain uninterested in the proper upbringing of our children, because the time has come; this is a sign – that we have failed in our parental responsibility towards them.”
He noted that the martial life may not always be easy but no amount of hardship should be the reason for them to contemplate divorce, adding that, “this will be scandalous to many people, who are looking up to us, because of the significant place we occupy in the church.”
Speaking earlier, the Jos, Metropolitan Council Chairperson, Dr. Theresa Gyang, called on all the Ladies to see the difficulty of our time as but a ‘stepping stone’ for progress, to step on, achieve more, develop further and untie, actualize more of our goals, adding that, what they need is the fear of God, creativity, innovation, new thinking and approaches to ensure that LSM is synonymous with excellence, honour, integrity, outstanding quality in service to God and humanity.