Christian?

Posted on October 21, 2007
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            Back in September, Charles Moore, a columnist in the Saint John Telegraph Journal made me livid.

            He wrote a column headed “Christianity Is Under Siege by Sacraphobes.”

            It began “When religion is the topic du jour in newspaper letters, columns, on open line radio and TV shows and journalistic commentary, a chorus of atheists, secular humanists, and cranks can be relied upon to regurgitate a threadbare inventory of the Christian Church’s shortcomings – imagined and real – over the past two millennia.

            “The standard complaint list includes hypocrisy, mediaeval corruption in the Church, sexism, patriarchy, the Crusades, the Inquisition, alleged bigotry and homophobia, clerical sexual abuse scandals – yada, yada, yada, all accusations calculated to put Christians on the defensive.”

            For one thing, Moore misleads about some of the things that outrage critics of some church hierarchy behaviour. Sexual abuse is a horror. The common practice of church hierarchies to cover up crimes, shelter offenders and transfer them to other unsuspecting congregations is the truly despicable action. It made church hierarchies accessories to the offences.

            To make light of the horrors he himself listed with “yada, yada, yada” is outrageous. It sounds more like a teenager reaction to a parent nagging about homework, household chores, curfews and safe driving than an indictment of crimes against humanity.

            There are, in my opinion, huge differences between Christianity and the church organizations which profess to practice Christianity.

            There are huge differences between many people who call themselves Christians and Christian behaviour.  Many who talk loudest about being Christian don’t even really talk the talk much less walk the walk.

            Crusades, inquisition, bigotry, yada, yada, yada?

            A “threadbare inventory?”

            “Imagined and real?”

            “Alleged bigotry and homophobia?”

            “Calculated” to put Christians on the defensive?

            My mother used to say that of all the jobs God has to do, the one people are most willing to help with is the judging.

            I identify myself as an agnostic, by the definition I like, which is that an agnostic does not know the true nature of God and does not believe that you do either. In my case, I am tempted to add “especially Charles Moore,” after the “you.”

            There are many good people trying to be good Christians which is, in my opinion, much the same as trying to be a good secular humanist. Walking the walk is what matters, not blindly supporting a power structure.

                                                                        DAC

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