Thursday, 29 November 2012

Old Fashioned Sin

What was it ++Nichols said about all that talk about sin? A misguided attempt to motivate people, wasn't it?  It would seem he thinks we have grown out of that and are now a mature pilgrim people wending our way happily heavenwards.

Someone ought to tell the Holy Father. When he was a mere Cardinal, he wrote In the Beginning, a series of sermons on Genesis, subsequently published as a book. In the fourth sermon, he addresses head-on the problem of sin, and its disappearance from even religious instruction: 'Hardly anyone [...] dares to proclaim the prophetic message: Repent! Hardly anyone dares to make to our age this elementary evangelical appeal, with which the Lord wants to induce us to acknowledge our sinfulness, to do penance, and to become other than what we are.'

Later on he writes: 'Thus sin has become a suppressed subject, but everywhere we can see that, although it is suppressed, it has nonetheless remained real.'

He even insists on Original Sin!  And it is these realities, Original Sin and actual sin that help us to understand our need of redemption. For in the Holy Father's mind, the Old Testament always points to, is explained by, and finds its fulfilment in the New, and specifically in Christ and His saving work.  And so he concludes: May we be touched by the words of Jesus in their entirety: 'The kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.'

H/t Catholic Book Reviews for reminding me of this great book.

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