Being Just in Dealing with Others

The ancient Greeks defined justice as 'giving to another what is his due.' Though they gave a definition for justice, they failed to render the same to their great philosopher-Socrates. Socrates felt he had been given a divine call to right the wrong, enlighten the ignorant and lead people from untruth to truth. He engaged with people in conversation on all kinds of topics - war, marriage, morality, religion etc.

He was always kind and gentle in his disposition, but delighted in exposing the quacks and the humbugs of his time. He practiced the virtues he preached. He was falsely charged with atheism and corruption of youth by the Athenian people and the judge ordered that he should be put to death by the drinking of hemlock poison.

Since his death, history has reversed the judgment, declared Socrates innocent and has condemned the Athenian people and the judge as guilty of giving an unfair and wrong judgment against him. Time and again, we have seen in history that people have been wrongly condemned and put to death. How are we to act justly? When we are called upon to judge, how should we render judgment?

In today's Gospel, Joseph gives us an example of how we can wisely pass judgment on others. Joseph, 'being a just man,' breaks the law by showing compassion. In showing compassion to Mary, he acts as God does in His dealings with His people. St Joseph is the model for all men to emulate in their lives.

Wishing you all a Happy Christmas.

In the service of the Lord,
Father Thainese Alphonse


Copyright ©2003
St. Bernadette Catholic Church