Sunday, 28 March 2010

The full version

What did Christ most criticise? False religion. An example of this was when one of the scribes revealed that he couldn't honour his parents because the money he had was corban - in some way contaminated. Jesus immediately reveals the inadequacy of this scribe's religion. A deformed view of humanity means an impoverished relationship with God. Honouring God begins with honouring humanity.
The Church has embraced a full and truthful vision of humanity since Pentecost becuase she knows that God intends a totally complete and free humanity for every person. The secular vision of human life is somewhat different, based upon a partial vision of the person and changing social trends. It is this vision which has become particularly strong in this era, so strong that it actively challenges and attacks the Christian vision fo humanity. The sexual revolution, which was well underway in the 1950's, lies at the heart of the secular vision today and has been so deformative of humanity for at least half a century.
Why is it so unacceptable that this deformed humanity has entered into the Church? Becuase so many children have been abused, yes, and because it is the Church and not secularism which is the hinge of humanity's real development. How keen then was the request for renewal which entered into the Church at the Second Vatican Council, and how profound is the Church's need for renewal at a human level. Priests, religious and all baptsied people are called to be fully human - to know their humanity, to know who they are and to be free.
With hindsight we can see how inadequate was the veneer of Catholicism of so many in the past. And today, how inadequate is the response of liberal Catholics who offer nothing more than bare-faced Pelagianism, or the response of those Catholics who promote an empty orthodoxy - orthodoxy for orthodoxy's sake without it helping anyone. No, today's signs shout out that the renewal we have been asked to engage in must start with the renewal of Christians as human beings. The Church is called to form her members in their humanity. It is only as human beings that we can really engage with the Gospel, making it a living reality in our lives and then in the life of the world.

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