"For us let it be enough to know ourselves to be in the place where God wants us, and carry on our work, even though it be no more than the work of an ant, infinitesimally small, and with unforeseeable results."
-- Abbé Monchanin

Monday, October 15, 2007

Charlie Reese recently had a good commentary in the local paper here (The Sentinel-Record). Here are a few extracts:

How can anyone look at the levels of corruption, both public and private, and say this is a Christian nation? We swim in a sea of lies. Preachers with sixfigure incomes, mansions and private jets are about as un-Christian as an ignorant cannibal in Borneo. Warmongering Christians and Christians who preach hate are naturally contradictions of everything Jesus Christ stood for. Multimilliondollar churches whose shadows fall on the poor are a contradiction of Christianity.

Evangelical Christians all too often act like insurance salesmen. As soon as they sell a convert, they forget about him and move on to the next prospect. There is a great deal more to Christianity than selling conversions, but too often the evangelicals act like the operators of a pyramid scheme. Their message to the new convert is, now that I’ve sold you, you go out and sell others. Mouthing the verbal rituals of conversion do not a Christian make. Nor does writing a check fulfill one’s duty as a Christian.

The last thing Americans have to worry about is Christian influence. It is practically nil in the United States. I imagine all the true Christians in America would fit into one of those 5,000-room hotels in Las Ve gas, where, by the way, you can find thousands of nominal Christians seven days a week. Las Vegas is the capital of hedonism.

One ought to be able to tell a Christian by his behavior, demeanor and conversation, and I don’t mean mouthing slogans like "praise Jesus." I challenge you to see if you can do that. The essence of Christianity is love, humility and compassion.

There hasn’t been much of that around ever since a Roman emperor decided to make Christianity a state religion.

I'm sorry to say that he's pretty well got it right. There's not a lot of the Imitation of Christ in what passes for Christianity around here these days. However, a remnant remains and it is beautiful to encounter.

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