Merry Christmas! Those are the two words that offended one American Airlines passenger so profusely, he got himself thrown off a New York La Guardia to Dallas Ft. Worth bound flight.
The man was attempting to depart on American Airlines Flight 1140 this past Tuesday. The pleasant gate agent wished him a Merry Christmas when she scanned his boarding pass. But that’s when the man said, “You shouldn’t say that because not everyone celebrates Christmas.”
Somewhat perplexed, the gate agent asked the would be grinch, “Well, what should I say then?” The man replied, “Don’t say, ‘Merry Christmas,” before he stormed off down the jetway to board the aircraft.
As the man boarded, one of the flight attendants greeted the man with a very pleasant Merry Christmas. That was apparently the straw that broke the camels back. The man began lecturing the flight attendants and pilots about not saying Merry Christmas.
The flight crew attempted to calm down “Scrooge,” but he insisted on continuing his rampage of lecturing the flight crew.
That didn’t work out too well for him though. The crew called on authorities to have him escorted off the flight. As he was taken away, the entire passenger cabin burst into applause and cheers.
All of that misses the substantive point, in the The Motley Monk's never-to-be-too-humble opinion, that point having to do not only with the secularization of the culture but also within the Church. Namely, all too many people all are too willing to sit back and do nothing, even though they strongly disapprove. And then, when someone actually has the courage and fortitude to do take a stand with regard to the undesirable conduct, those all too many people who are all too willing to sit back and do nothing break into applause to signal their approval.
Perhaps the biggest offenders are not those who claim to be offended but those who sat back and then applaud when someone else does their bidding for them. Isn’t that what “witness” is all about? Sometimes people have to stand for something and "take one on the chin" for the sake of the greater good.
Recalling the Jesus' words about those who were hated for their faith in him, Pope Francis recently said:
When following the Gospel with fidelity and courage, the faithful receive the gift promised by the Lord to men and women of good will: The favor of God and His peace. This peace is able to soothe the conscience of those who, through the trials of life, know to welcome the Word of God and observe it with perseverance to the end.
If you carry this cross with love, you have entered into the mystery of Christmas, you are in the heart of Jesus and of the Church.
Contrast the "applause" on that outbound airplane with the the sacrifices of today's martyrs in Nigeria, for example, whose churches are being destroyed, their members murdered, and their children taken into slavery. Their witness is strengthening the commitment of their fellow believers to recognize and concretely to ensure religious liberty—an inalienable right of every human person—in every part of the world. They stand for something, not everything.
Applause is not witness. It exhibits a spiritual malignancy, namely, the lack of courage and fortitude.
Let the discussion begin...
To read the BuzzPo post, click on the following link:http://buzzpo.com/passenger-offended-words-merry-christmas-gets-thrown-off-american-airlines-flight/