My theory is that in a part of Minneapolis there is a disconuity in the local fabric of space time
or some effect like in the movie Groundhog’s Day and that the sixties are endlessly repeated. Now why would I say that? Perhaps because Julie at AdoroTeDevote sent me a link to
the infamous St. Joan of Arc parish that recently had a retreat with a speaker whose theme was “God Almighty is Dead and Good Riddance: Reassessing God’s Power (and Our Own) As We Challenge a Destructive U.S. Empire.”
Nelson-Pallmeyer argues that Christianity has twisted Jesus’ God of Compassion into a God of Violence. Christianity is radically disconnected from the Jesus of history, says Nelson-Pallmeyer. His writings and talks are an attempt to recover Jesus at the heart of Christianity and to reinvent our response to the misrepresented Jesus.
Oh yeah when I read the Gospels all I think about is how violent Jesus is. Now you might thing this is wacky, but wait they have proof.
For example, Matthew’s Jesus shows wrathful images of God: “Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire” (7:19). “You snakes, you brood of vipers! How can you escape being sentenced to hell?” (23:33). And what about that gospel reading we heard just before Christmas? The one about the maidens and the lamps? The foolish ones had the door slammed shut on them and the Lord said, “Stay awake, because you do not know either the day or the hour.” And, consider the incredible despair of the apocalypse in the book of Revelations:
Door slamming Jesus? Now I checked several different Bible translations of Matt 25:10 and pretty much they all said "The door was shut." I wonder what the Greek word for slammed was? Though maybe they used the RSV (Really Super Violent) translation and that would explain their view of a violent Jesus. Or maybe they just don’t like Jesus ‘language on judgment I mean the final judgment is just so judgmental you know. Not warning us about the possibility of an eternity being able to roast marshmallows on our fingers would have been so much better.
Isn’t our hope in Jesus then? Nelson-Pallmeyer asserts that the New Testament writers, coming out of the Old Testament tradition, sometimes misrepresented Jesus to support their own agendas. The Gospel writers both distort and reveal Jesus. Because of this, the task is to discern the texts that offer a glimpse of the historic Jesus, the man who was different from his contemporaries.
Yes let’s assert that the Holy Spirit is not the author of Scripture.
Those divinely revealed realities which are contained and presented in Sacred Scripture have been committed to writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. For holy mother Church, relying on the belief of the Apostles (see John 20:31; 2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Peter 1:19-20, 3:15-16), holds that the books of both the Old and New Testaments in their entirety, with all their parts, are sacred and canonical because written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, they have God as their author and have been handed on as such to the Church herself. In composing the sacred books, God chose men and while employed by Him they made use of their powers and abilities, so that with Him acting in them and through them, they, as true authors, consigned to writing everything and only those things which He wanted.
Therefore, since everything asserted by the inspired authors or sacred writers must be held to be asserted by the Holy Spirit, it follows that the books of Scripture must be acknowledged as teaching solidly, faithfully and without error that truth which God wanted put into sacred writings for the sake of salvation. Therefore "all Scripture is divinely inspired and has its use for teaching the truth and refuting error, for reformation of manners and discipline in right living, so that the man who belongs to God may be efficient and equipped for good work of every kind" (2 Tim. 3:16-17, Greek text).
Now where did I pull up such a statement? Why Vatican II ‘s Dei Verbum of course. I know unfair to use the actual teachings of Vatican II.
Nelson-Pallmeyer has been inspired by the Buddhist monk, Thich Nhat Hanh, who teaches that inner peace provides our capacity to make outer peace. Nelson-Pallmeyer has collaborated with musician, Bret Hesla, to put together some ideas of how to re-ritualize a liturgy (Worship in the Spirit of Jesus) and we ended our retreat with such a liturgy, sharing songs, poems and bread and water.
This re-reitualization with bread and water is just so much better than say the Body and Blood of Christ in the Eucharist.
I have decided to add a new feature to my blog. The prayer indicator. Punditry without prayer is pointless, so please send out some prayers to these probably very nice but misguided people.
Anytime someone speaks of re-creating the “Historical Jesus” you can be sure of serveral things – it’s not historical and it’s not Jesus.
Anytime someone’s “Historical Jesus” looks just like they do – it’s not Jesus, it’s self-worship.
You are tagged with the triplett meme. Go here to check it out: http://catholicfire.blogspot.com/2006/01/triplett-meme.html.
“…the final judgment is just so judgmental.”
Now that’s a terrific line, Jeff. You should make bumperstickers.
Without generalizing, I am always slightly suspicious of a person with a hypherated double last name. It is some kind of insidious Unitarian code that will force us to eventually master Esperanto. And it always amazes me that there are so many people on the fringes of religious life who feel that, through some kind of massive channeling process, they can get behind Scripture into the “real” Jesus. A Jesus who bears an uncanny remblance to themselves.
Having spent a year in Minneapolis in grad school way back in the mid-Seventies, I can easily second your suspicions about that city. There are many living there who can attest by example and word that original version of “The Invasion of the Body Snatchers” was actually a documentary.
Didn’t Mark Shea write a book demolishing this sort of thinking? By What Authority?
Having spent four years at St. Paul Seminary, I decided to go one weekend to St. Joan of Arc to discover if what I’d heard was half as bad as reality. And, unfortunately, it was. I wanted to go to mass after whatever it was that happened. It’s no big surprise that they would offer something like this. What is a big surprise is that there is a new pastor there who is taking some steps to bring some sanity. He is receiving all kinds of flack for…can you believe this…wearing his clerics. Please pray for this misguided parish that has had bad shepherds.
Hey–I love the prayer tag. I try to remember but sometimes you read the lastest weirdness and just sit there numb. Keep tagging!
amen on the “don’t just sit there, pray.”
Something we will all do well to remember
“The notion of an almighty God minimizes the power of our own hands..”
Is Pax Christi always this nutty?
Mark Shea thinks he is the Pope himself, deleting any post or harassing anyone who does not agree with his liberal form of Catholicism. If you look at his blog he is always using the word “conservative” but he is by no means conservative, as he today once again bashed tradition, as he is the expert on what is to be held as part of tradition and what can be changed. Basically if it was up to Mr Shea anything except for the actual words of Our Lord and his Apostles should be changed, which by the way they have with the 4th and latest retranslation of the Bible by the “theologians” , the New American Bible that is at your local Novus Ordo parish, and actually have changed the words of our lord to make them less offensive to Jews, woman and alike.
I was also reading they are now considering changing the male form of God the Father to “creator” to make it genderless. Something Mr Shea would of course enjoy
Lynn asked, “Is Pax Christi always this nutty?”
This actually isn’t Pax Christi, but St. Joan of Arc’s “Pax Christi Annual Retreat”. Ironically (or not, as you may see it), Pax Christi parish also tends towards heterodoxy, but not to the degree of Catholic in Name Only SJA.
And to answer your question, not only is SJA this nutty all the time, but it’s actually worse. They purchase their communion bread from an Eastern Bakery, they offer “Cup of Christ”, and they have no concept of the very idea of sin. It’s all extremely sad. Check out the website if you are in need of a good cry.
And pray. A lot.
I checed that website, and I was appalled. It almost looks like satire. Let’s pray that the new pastor can make a real difference in the parish.
Thanks for your comment on my question, Julie.
It’s been my experience that some Pax Christi groups tend to be heavy on “social justice” and ignore abortion and/or support the “pro-choice” mentality I decided to put my volunteer time and energy into pro-life activities instead.
Is there a bishop in that diocese? Is he on permanent vacation?
We have a new Bishop, who has been making some changes.