Thought for the Day – 10 April – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
Word and Example
“Good example is the most effective sermon and we are all obliged to preach in this fashion.
God entrusted the care of his neighbour to each one of us (Ecclus 17:12).
Each of us is responsible for the salvation of those who have been entrusted to him in this way, especially for the salvation of those who live near him and are influenced by his behaviour.
Jesus’ exhortations in this regard, have the force of a command.
“Let your light shine before men,” He says, “in order that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven” (Mt 5:16).
St Paul urges us to “provide good things, not only in the sight of God but also, in the sight of all men” (Cf Rom 12:17).
This must not be interpreted as meaning, that we should be anxious for others to see our good deeds, in order that they may respect and praise us.
It is our own undoing if our good example is tainted with ostentation, for we should lose all merit for it and should deserve to hear the words of the Eternal Judge: “You have received your reward” (Cf Mt 6:5).
Our good example should be inspired only by the love of God and of our neighbour but never, by self-love.
By saving the souls of others, we save our own!”