I had the joy of accompanying Cardinal Agre, who was your guest of honor for this Congress and week of study. You know, when we have the joy of accompanying someone, we have the joy of seeing where he is going, and sometimes of eating what he eats. It is the history of the Apostles of Jesus. The Pharisees wanted to know why the apostles who where the family of Jesus did not fast, while those of St. John the Baptist did. But the friends of Jesus were given the grace to accompany Jesus. They accompanied the spouse, so it was not the time to fast, but the time to eat.
Dear brothers and sisters, I love you. I tell you this because during the two trips that I did to Canada, I learned that Canadians are direct. They are not poets, they are not dreamers, but they are people who are concrete. And that is what is written in the ten lessons of Social Credit for which we have been invited.
I would like, at the end of my greetings, to tell you of my gratitude to my brothers and sisters the Pilgrims of St. Michael. Thank you for your sense of openness, of welcome, sharing, and charity. Thank you for what we have seen. Thank you for what we have not seen. The welcome that you have reserved for us brings me to ask a question, because we were invited to discover Social Credit and to certainly adhere to Social Credit and even more than that, to spread Social Credit.
We take the time, we the Africans, to listen, to say "yes" because it is wisdom. When we say "yes," it is right, we go forward. But in fact I would like to share with you something that concerns me personally. And what concerns me is the following. With the Pilgrims of St. Michael, we have been invited to go "towards tomorrow." (Vers Demain, the name of our journal in French.) But what tomorrow? A tomorrow with the Word of God, or a tomorrow with a project for society? A new project. What is the tomorrow to which we are invited? That is the question that I ask myself.
I find the first answer in the formation that we have received from our master, Mr. Pilote. It is he who we must applaud. As I am a bit curious, I went to go see when it was that this history started with Louis Even. I came to realize that we are in the 70th anniversary of the work of the Pilgrims of St. Michael. You have accomplished a lot and gained ground over the past 70 years. 70 years is quite something in the life of a man. The psalmist salutes this, for the psalmist, it is a big achievement.
But after 70 years we see that God helps the travelers, the Pilgrims who leave their homes, their chains of slavery, and head for the Promised Land. In this march for the Promised Land, there are those who fall and others who take up the banner, there are those who continue the fight, but this land is always promised to them. I think we will soon share this Promised Land. We will share it because it is not the promised land of a project of society, but the promised land of the Word of God. It is from the Word of God that the light has made a click; that it shone in the spirit of Louis Even. It is from the Word of God that this new fire will come and cover the entire world, in the expression of Social Credit, which is making its way.
To see the light, with the permission of Professor Pilote, I have two or three proposals. I had the occasion to exchange words with our brother and sister Pilgrims. The first proposal would be to integrate into the formation of the weeks of study; Bible study and formation on the Word of God, because it is this Word of God that we should receive in all truth, without choosing only the parts that please us, and putting aside those that upset us.
This simply means that in the Word of God, there is the story of the Parable of the talents that we listened to yesterday in the Gospel. They are talking about interest here. We received five talents, we have to multiply these talents and gather five more. There are those who received one talent, but they did not work to multiply the talent that they received. God will not be happy with those people, the Parable tells us.
But these words should not disturb us; why? This is why we must have Bible formation; Bible formation will open our eyes to say that the Bible is not a book on economics. The Bible traces the road to go towards God and it gives images and expressions even from economics. It is the same Word of God that speaks of the dishonest but shrewd steward, who owed a large sum of money to his master and his master called him but he was not able to reimburse him. What did he do? Quickly, he called all those who owed something to his master. He said: "Come, come, come: How much do you owe my master?" "100 barrels of oil." "Sit here, and write 50." This steward received praise from his master because he was shrewd.
Should a parable like this one disturb us? No, it should not because it always traces the ideal road to go to God. The Word of God will not disappoint us. It does not contradict Social Credit, but it opens our eyes to the imperious urgency for us here to convert with the talent of our intelligence and the ardor of our commitment, in the way that Marcel Lefebvre does, so that Social Justice will advance.
I will finish with the other parable of the man who wanted to put Jesus on the spot and set a trap for Him. He said, "Lord, shouldn’t we pay taxes to Cesear?" So Jesus said to his questioner: "Give me a coin." And when he had the coin, Jesus responded to His questioner and told him: "We must give to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s."
It is on this that I wish to conclude, to tell you Pilgrims that I am in agreement with all that I have heard here during this week of study on Social Credit. Social justice precedes charity, the fallacious charity that is given to our countries of Africa. It is high time that Social Justice was established as a priority and primary goal. If this social justice is put first, we will be more comfortable in believing in the charity that ensues.
The second small lesson that Social Credit has left us, it is that we must not be mistaken about charity: it is easy to do charity with the goods of others, but what is more difficult is to practice charity with our own goods. Social Credit has just opened our eyes to what we are receiving in our African countries, which does not correspond to the charity that comes from the pockets of our benefactors, but of the charity that comes from fictitious numbers that do not correspond to the goods. What is crucial is that not only these figures are fallacious, from what we have just understood, but that these figures maintain us in a sealed, a very well sealed tomb. When will we be able to leave it? When will we have the right to a better life, if we are forced to remain under the yoke of this financial and economic law; where the credits and interest on credits will never let us free, and will never let us see a better tomorrow? These are the few reflections that I wanted to share with you.
I dared to speak just after His Eminence the Cardinal but believe me, all that I have just told you has the blessing of Cardinal Agre.