Friday, January 22, 2016


Pic.: Azriel D'Souza

Some years ago, when the Bishop had visited our Parish, in his sermon, he casually told us this interesting fact. In the first Century, the early Christians were being persecuted by the Roman authorities. So, they would gather secretly in dark places, light candles and quietly worship there. So, lighting candles before Christian worship – Mass, Novena, Holy Hour whatever it is – became a practice. It has been there for over two-thousand years… and, unless someone really tells us, “Dumb-heads, why do you need those candles in broad daylight, that too, when there are such bright lights and chandeliers all over the church?

That Sunday, I wished our Bishop said that!

Candles are still being lit in our church, whether it a night or a broad daylight… It is something they do there, because it has been done so before. A religious custom!

Why ask… Why stir the hornet’s nest? Leave alone, why get crucified like our Master - Jesus Christ?

Jesus Christ, our Master, would have been spared from the Cross had He not challenged the High Priests, questioned their dumb-and-dead Laws… Had He not rebelled against what He felt was unjust… stupid.

Yet, after His death, we Christians created a thousand sets of Laws and began to act exactly the way the High Priests and the Pharisee’s did…

We are no different from those who hanged Jesus!

It took a Pope Francis to abolish the old Law, that on a Holy Thursday, only men could sit as Apostles to get their feet washed… The Pope said, “Why can’t women, too, be the Apostles of Christ?”

I was watching on YouTube the fierce debate on women (between the age 10 and 50) being barred from entering the Sanctum Sanctorum at Sabarimala…

Frankly, it did not amuse me at all… Why go to the forests of Sabarimala… Right here, in our very kitchens, we do not allow our menstruating women to enter saying they are ‘impure’ during this period!

I wish we did that out of a genuine concern for women’s health… They really need some good rest during this time… Why not we men give them some break from the kitchen? And, hello, why only during menstruation… Why not give them some good rest during other times, too?

I would neither have the guts, nor the honesty – to ask my lady doctor whether her periods are on before she treats me…. Ditto when it comes to my lady lawyer or judge, the lady banker or baker, the lady government officer or the lady teacher of my children… Leave alone my lady boss!

Why, I would never have the guts or the honesty to check it with our house-keeping ladies or our maid servants!

Did anyone stop our mothers from feeding us – their little babies – when they were going through their monthly biological-cycle?

Did we men not touch them during this time?

God must be laughing… “All in my name”!

Who says we don’t live in caves anymore?


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