LIKE A SHEPHERD
FR. PAWEŁ ROZPIĄTKOWSKI
In the first moment i thought to begin this comment in a different way. However, finally, in the context of disapproving waves, it may not be enough to say that these were aggressive, close to an anti- campaign comments to the homily of archbishop Wacław Depo, preached at Jasna Góra on 15 April 2015, on the Feast of the Assumption of Blessed Virgin Mary and evangelical images of a shepherd and a mercenary came to my mind. ‘A good shepherd gives his life for his sheep. Whereas, a mercenary and somebody who is not a shepherd, whose sheep are not his belongings, when seeing an approaching wolf, leaves his sheep and runs away and the wolf attacks them and makes them run away and disperse (J. 10.11-12).
First, an important hint. The words of the metropolitan of Częstochowa were not said in vacuum. They were a reaction to the last political decisions concerning the so-called anti-violence convention, an act about in vitro and an act about sexes decisions – as well as the fact that in the current campaign, politicians of the governing party, wanting to scare electors and make political profit, imposed their narration about alleged danger from a religious country, nearly Catholic Taliban, threatening Poles, in the case of ‘improper’ voting in October. These unjustified thesis often appeared in the last time in the statements of representatives of supreme authorities, including the former president and the prime minister. This is not only narration, a tactics to the advantage of the campaign, but also a plan of depriving the community of Church of its right to express its opinion on public issues which are issues of the nation. Shepherd of the Church would behave like evangelical mercenaries, if they had not reacted in this situation. They also had to be aware of the fact that they expose themselves to attacks. I believe that the good shepherd archbishop Wacław Depo was aware of it, when saying these words from the throne of Our Lady.
In his sermon the metropolitan of Częstochowa presented himself as a good disciple who learnt pastoral ministry from deceased archbishop Zygmunt Szczęsny Feliński, God’s Servant cardinal Stefan Wyszyński, deceased John Paul II and cardinal Józef Glemp, repeating their teaching word by word, and whose authenticity is confirmed by historical evidences, not only a theoretical analysis.
We can even understand politicians of the central and leftist parties and mainstream media journalists, who are ideologically close to them, who deprive the Church of its right to speak about issues of the nation – and it was something for which its many opponents used to strive in history and who wanted the Church to sit quietly in its ‘sacristy’. They would realize their plans in the nation easier if it was not for the voice of the Church, including definite opinions in defence of obvious issues expressed by archbishop Stanisław Gądecki, archbishop Marek Jędraszewski and bishop Artur Miziński, as well as archbishop Andrezj Dzięga, and, recently, the voice of archbishop Wacław Depo.
Moreover, there are perverse warnings, ‘full of care’, expressed by all critics, that after such words of the sermon, people will go away from the Church. However, it is obvious that critics of the Church do not want anything so much as just this thing.