In honor of the 25th anniversary of the Notre Dame Swim Team bus accident (referred to as simply, “the accident”), I am hoping to share 25 Things I Have Learned In 25 Years. The goal is to post once a week; but since I have a year to post, I will consider once every two weeks a win.

Humility Is (Usually) a Good Thing

Each year I look forward to Ash Wednesday and my favorite Gospel Reading. You would think I would know it by heart, but the words allude me more than the message. In Matthew 6 we hear: Do not let your right hand know what your left hand is doing, and When you pray, do not be like the hypocrites.

These words always speak to me, but in particular today as social media dominates so much of our information, both personally and professionally.

I believe there are many people who try to keep quiet about the charitable work they do; not wanting attention or thanks for their good deeds. These are true selfless acts of service: serving others (and in turn serving God) without recognition.
And yet, we see so many Facebook or Twitter (or Instagram and other things I don’t know how to use) posts about someone’s community service project, or  fundraiser, or other good deeds done. This used to bother me; keeping in mind the above Gospel, we are taught not to pat ourselves on the back. But I think I am a little off-target with this.

How many awful news stories do we see or read about and think: I want to hear more of the good stuff. Even when a feel-good story is shared, we often think the same thing: I want to hear more of the good stuff. And yet, the media more often than not, focuses on the negative, the tragic, and the salacious.

So maybe at a time when we want to “hear more of the good stuff,” we need to embrace these social media posts for what they are: sharing acts of kindness. Maybe I was bothered by these posts in the past because I was uncomfortable with my lack of my own outreach. My hope is they will inspire us to look at our own lives, not in comparison, but to find time to do our own good works.

Keep doing good and keep sharing!