The Priest Gets A Lesson From The Train Officer

A priest and a businessman were taking a train journey in the first-class compartment. The priest came to one of the officers on the train and said, "Can you imagine how such a bad person can be in the same compartment as I am! He is so ugly, so undivine and so unaspiring! What kind of fate do I have? I cannot trust this fellow in the slightest! My wrist watch is very expensive, plus I have with me $700. Can you keep these for me? Tomorrow morning I will take them back from you."

The officer agreed and immediately took the watch and money from the priest. Then the officer said, "I see you two are in the same boat. The businessman also left all his belongings with me before you came."

The priest was simply shocked! "How can he do this? How can he not trust me? After all, I am a priest!"

The officer said, "Tit for tat. Tomorrow morning you both come and I will return your belongings."

The priest was so annoyed. His pride was deeply hurt. "For sixty years I have been a priest. I have given sermons and led prayers. I was right! The businessman is a very bad person."

The following morning, both the priest and the businessman came at the same time. When the priest saw the businessman, he started going away, saying, "Now you have ruined my day!"

Then the officer gave back all the valuables which the businessman had deposited with him. The businessman thanked him profusely and wanted to give him a tip. But the officer said, "No, this is my duty," and he did not accept any money.

Next the priest came to collect his things. Very haughtily, he said to the officer, "It seems that this is my fate — to have to put up with such an unthinkable person! Now can you please give me back my wrist watch and my $700?"

The officer said, "Sorry, I have thrown them away!"

The priest got furious. "You have thrown away my precious valuables? I am calling the police immediately!"

"Do anything you like," replied the train officer. "You are supposed to have faith in human beings, but instead you are seeing the darkness inside human beings. If you call the police, I will simply tell lies. I will say that you have given me nothing. It will be my word against your word, and you will have no case. None whatsoever! I have thrown everything away."

The priest was disgusted, so he went to the police and told his whole story. The policeman simply said, "I have known this officer for many, many years. If he told you he would return your things, I am sure he would do exactly that. I trust this man. He has always been very honest."

The priest cursed the officer. He started shouting, "I have lost my watch! I have lost my money! Now I will sue you!"

The officer said very calmly, "Do anything you like. I am sorry, but you are not playing your role properly. You are a priest. You should show compassion. But, instead, you are acting like an ordinary person. We appreciate priests because we have faith in you. We feel that you will take us to God. Instead, you are taking us to hell!"

The priest was humiliated. He was grumbling and fumbling. Exasperated, he said, "This is my fate when I deal with ordinary human beings!"

Then the officer said, "Please listen to me! God is speaking in and through me. Never distrust people. With your suspicion, you are taking people to hell. Now I am returning everything to you, but you must have faith in people. Only in this way will they be able to go to Heaven. The very nature of businessmen is to distrust; but you are preaching all the time how we can become good human beings. You are a man of God. If you want to stay in the priesthood, you must trust people and help bring them to God."

On the one hand, this story is funny, but it is also very instructive. God wanted the priest to be illumined. A good person has to see good things in others. If a good person starts to see only bad things in others, then how will he be of any service to others?