Memorial of Saint Justin, Martyr
About eight years ago, I went to a hospital for a health examination as part of my application process to enter the Jesuits Novitiate. I checked-in at the nursing station and they asked me to wait until my name was called. I waited for an hour but they never called my name. I went back to the nursing station and asked why they haven’t called my name; surprisingly, a nurse on duty was furious and she blamed me for not re-checking earlier. When I looked back at this experience, it was clearly a sign that my journey as a Jesuit will be filled with rejection and humiliation. The longer I stay in the Society of Jesus I realized I always find many new challenges in any stage of my Jesuit journey and formation. Nonetheless, I always see some silver lining in this difficult journey.
Jesus said in today Gospel “the stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone” and this cornerstone is wonderful in God’s eyes. The question is whether being a cornerstone means to have a ticket to live happily ever after. JRR Tolkien once wrote, “Actually I am a Christian and indeed a Roman Catholic, so that I do not expect ‘history’ to be anything but a ‘long defeat’— though it contains some samples or glimpses of final victory.” Thus being a cornerstone means to live in a history of a long defeat and humiliation. Are you ready to embrace the “long defeat” of the disciple of Christ?