Archbishop Villegas: Easy life ‘a very bad teacher’


Archbishop Socrates Villegas of Lingayen-Dagupan urged the “indifferent” and “unenthusiastic” members of the present generation to embrace their struggles on Monday, August 7. Screen grabbed from the live stream of the University of Santo Tomas’ Facebook page.

AN EASY and comfortable lifestyle is fruitless, an archbishop said, as he urged the “indifferent” and “unenthusiastic” members of the present generation to embrace their struggles.

In his homily during the solemnity of St. Dominic de Guzman on Monday, Aug. 7, Archbishop Socrates Villegas of Lingayen-Dagupan said making sacrifices for others fills life with meaning.

“Our generation needs to rediscover that an easy life is a very bad teacher. You can learn some things from easy-living but those are not long-lasting,” Villegas said.

“Sacrifice, difficulty [and] the cross must be proclaimed to our generation because the most important things in life are taught in difficulty, not in the championship. But in trials. In darkness. In crises,” he added.

The prelate lamented that many people have abandoned the life of simplicity and courage that embraces humility.

“We start laughing at vulgarity. And we start laughing at criminality. And we look at violations of the law, whether laws of men or of God, as something not so serious,” Villegas said.

“We have become a generation of walang pakialam (indifferent). But the last and most serious of all, after being walang gana (unenthusiastic) and being walang pakialam,…walang hiya (shameless),” he added.

These traits, which reflect “the loss of shame for sin,” could be cured by seeking St. Dominic de Guzman in one’s journey to holiness, Villegas said. He called on Thomasians to emulate the saint by preaching the “humility of truth” even if faced with opposition.

“Proud people can frighten us but proud people cannot inspire. Proud people cannot set hearts on fire. They can only intimidate…They might even crush us by their arrogance but there is no way that pride can light the fire of holiness,” the archbishop said.

St. Dominic de Guzman was a Spanish priest who founded the Order of Preachers, to which UST’s founder Archbishop Miguel de Benavides belonged. He was known for converting the believers of the Albigensian heresy, which claimed that all creation was evil.

The Order of Preachers, also known as the Dominican order, aims to “share with others the truth about God.” Founded in 1216, the order has produced some of the greatest Catholic saints, including St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Martin de Porres, St.  Catherine of Siena, St. Vincent Ferrer, St. Rose of Lima, St. Albert the Great and St. Pius V.

The mass was held at the Santisimo Rosario Parish Church and carried the theme “St. Dominic, Our Companion on the Way of Synodality.”

The saint’s feast day, which falls on Aug. 8, is a holiday in UST. F

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