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Holy Land Pilgrimage

The Door of Humility

February 5, 2019

One of the first things that challenges pilgrims as they visit the Basilica of the Nativity in Bethlehem, is the main entrance to the church, a small rectangular doorway less than 5 feet in height called “the Door of Humility.” In order to pass through this door, pilgrims and visitors are forced to bow down as they enter the church. The fact that visitors and pilgrims have to bow down in order to enter the Basilica of the Nativity has a theological significance: We must humble ourselves in order to approach God.

Humility is foundational in our relationship with God and our neighbor. The sacred Scripture tells us that God favors the lowly and lifts them up (cf. Prov. 3:34; Lk. 1:52); He exalts those who humble themselves, and humbles those who exalt themselves. (cf. Mt. 23:12); He resists the proud, but bestows His grace on the humble. (cf. Jas 4:6). St. Peter exhorts us to clothe ourselves with humility in our dealings with one another (cf. 1 Pt. 5:5).

The Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, Christ Jesus, humbled Himself to share in our humanity. He humbled Himself becoming obedient to death, death on a Cross. (cf. Phil. 2:6-11).

Although He was the Master, He washed the feet of His disciples. (Cf. Jn. 13:1-20) He set for us an example that we should follow in His footsteps. (cf. 1 Pt. 2:21) Humility is not optional for us Christians, especially those of us who are preparing for ordained ministry in the Church. It is a Must. If we desire to grow in holiness, and bear much fruit in our ministry, we must embrace and cultivate humility.

As I continue my pilgrimage here in the Holy Land, and prepare to assume the Office of Deacon God-willing, I am reminded of the constant need to ask God for the grace of humility in all circumstances. We must humble ourselves in order to approach God.

Mary, humble servant of the Lord, pray for us!

 

Robain Lamba Binawoe

Diocese of San Jose

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