The 64-year-old South African Archbishop expresses gratitude to God “for the blessings of intellect, science and technology and the progress and advancements they bring to human life.”
He notes, however, that such developments “come with the most ancient of temptations – arrogance and pride, as ‘Man’ begins to believe that he is capable of anything, that he does not need God.”
“2020 has certainly brought home to us the frailty of human advances and our need for God,” he reiterates in his reflection published on Archdiocese of Cape Town’s Facebook page and YouTube channel.
“Our relationship with others needs to change,” the Archbishop of Cape Town says and further observes, “The pandemic has brought out the very best in people and there are many examples of astounding sacrificial love, of acts of bravery and courage.”
He acknowledges with appreciation the “sacrificial love” of various frontline workers “who are willing to risk their lives for those they serve, who work long hours and who face the consequences of stress and burnout.”
“But there are some who will not even wear a mask simply because it’s ‘uncomfortable,’ who cannot delay parties or social events because they are obsessed with instant gratification,” the Archbishop bemoans in his reflection.
To Archbishop Brislin, “2020 has made it clear to us the interdependence of life, that the health and wellbeing of others is dependent on my responsible and thoughtful behavior; it has taught us with great clarity that we cannot serve God, who is Life, unless we serve the life of those around us.”
“We should also have learnt that interdependence is not only about our relationship with other human beings, but our relationship with the whole of creation, and the urgent need for us to become more respectful and caring of nature and other forms of life, indeed of the very earth itself,” he adds in his January 6 reflection.
The Archbishop who has been shepherding the people of God in Cape Town since December 2009 also says that 2020 has offered lessons about relating with oneself.
“Do I really understand what faith is all about, or am I like the disciples in the boat who did not recognize Jesus in the storm and who did not understand the miracle of the loaves?” he probes making reference to the Gospel reading of January 6.