Saturday, 26 October 2019

Synod 2020. Number 21. Cardinal Sarah's thoughts

I'm reading Cardinal Sarah's book "The Day is now far spent".
A very powerful read.

Some of his thoughts jump out the page at me as wholly relevant to the Synod here in Liverpool. I believe one of the ingredients missing is a lack of any reference to the doctrines of the Church.

"Rather dry and dusty; talking about THOSE is not going to get anyone jumping for joy and running back to the arms of Jesus..". I hear the groans already. 

But what are those doctrines? Surely, the beautiful teachings by which Jesus wants to look after us in our lives on earth; care for us in our relationships with one another and His world.. and show us to Heaven. 

I'm not suggesting that we stand at street corners trying to hawk St Anslem's satisfaction theory of atonement to the passing punters but a sound theology surely needs to underpin our practical efforts. Beginning from only our own individual subjective experience is just not enough - for Faith or for the process for a Synod.

This following paragraph struck home with me.

Cardinal Sarah:

"Surely the most alarming symptom [of the crisis in the Church] is the way in which men and women who call themselves Catholics pick and choose among the truths of the Creed. Joseph Ratzinger mentioned it in these terms in 1970: 'What was hitherto unthinkable becomes normal: that men who long ago abandoned the Church's Creed should in good conscience regard themselves as truly progressive Christians. For them, however, the only standard by which to measure the Church is the expediency with which She functions.'"

In large sectors of the Church, we have lost the sense of God's objectivity. Each individual starts from his subjective experience and creates for himself a religion that suits him. What a shame!'"

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