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Cardinal Advincula: All people of God, not just priests, need to be renewed

Manila Archbishop Jose Cardinal Advincula encouraged the Filipino faithful to renew their faith during the Chrism Mass on Maundy Thursday.

During his homily at the Manila Cathedral, Advincula said every people of God must be renewed, not just the priests and holy oils.

“We all need to be renewed, not just the priests but all of us people of God. We need to summon the Holy Spirit once again to anoint us, to animate,” he said.

Advincula said even the church must be renewed, adding that a church that is not open to renewal may easily “grows old, insignificant, and obsolete.”

He said a church that is “docile, responsive, and open to renewal” will remain “young and vibrant.”

The Manila Archbishop said the Chrism Mass was held every year because of the renewal of commitment to priestly service by the priests, the consecration of the Chrism, and the blessing of the oils for sick and catechist humans.

“Why do we do this? Why do priests have to publicly renew their priestly promises every year? Does it mean that there is an expiration to their promises? And how about the holy oils, do they lose their efficacy or power after a year? Do they cease to be sacred or holy? After some time? The answer, of course, is no,” Advincula said.

“The promises of the priests are lifetime commitments. The sacred oils will never cease to be bearers of God’s presence. We renew, bless, and consecrate them not because the divine element has departed from them but because the elements of creation, the physicality of our faith, experience some weakening and deterioration,” he said.

He said priests are also human who may “forget and lose zeal for the mission,” as well as the oils may lose "their fragrance and effective material qualities.”

“We renew, bless, and consecrate our priests and our holy oils every year because we believe that although God’s grace is constant and faithful, we are not. God’s anointing is ever strong, we are not,” Advincula said.

"Our faith needs to be renewed and even the church and especially the church needs recreating. Ang simbahan na na takot sa pagbabago. Ang simbahan na ayaw nang magbago. Ang simbahan kung paano noon, ganun pa rin hanggang ngayon. Ang simbahang ganito ay mabilis tatanda,” he added.

(A church that is afraid of change. A church that doesn't want to change. A church that is still the same today. A church like this will grow old quickly.) —NB, GMA Integrated News