Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Points to Ponder: Salt of the Earth

Today's post comes from pages 17 - 18 of the book, Salt of the Earth. Please feel free to comment below. The interviewer's comments are italicized and the Holy Father's comments are bold.

It's evident that people also no longer know what the Church actually is and is supposed to be. The true significance of the signs and words of this faith are hidden behind a kind of fog bank. When it comes to Zen Buddhism, to take an example, it would never occur to anyone that he could understand this entity without teaching and effort.

An awareness needs to develop that in fact to a large extent we no longer know Christianity at all. For example, how many images in a church no longer say anything to some people? The original meaning is no longer generally understood. Even terms that are still barely familiar to the
middle generation, like tabernacle and so forth, have become foreign words. Nevertheless, the predominant mentality is still that we already know all about Christianity and are now in search of something different.

There needs to be a renewal of what you could call a curiousity about Christianity, the desire really to discover what it's all about. It would be very important for preachers to show the way out of this feeling of staleness, this feeling that we are already long familiar with this, to create curiousity about the richness hidden in Christianity, so that this richnesss is regarded, no longer as a matter of burdensome systems, but as a living treasure that it is worth knowing.

Chew on that one for a while!

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