Thursday, July 2, 2015
What is to be done?
With regard to SCOTUS; with regard to Vanity Fair; with regard to the co-opting of language, concepts, and symbols; with regard to the sloganeering; with regard to the vitriol; with regard to the violence; with regard to being labeled a bigot; with regard to the seemingly all-pervasive truth claims; with regard to the oppressive nature of such truth claims; with regard to the question of what is to be done: I recall that there is in fact truth, that truth is a person who actually exists, and that he will set me free (John 8:32).
And then I remember what I try always to remind my students of: first, that we live in a broken culture, which has a broken vision of the human person. This vision tells us that we are androgynous; that we are monads; that we are not creatures; that we should not, if we don’t want to, really have to depend on anything or anyone; that love is merely a feeling; that nothing beyond what we want or feel today matters. But that in fact we are creatures; that we were created male and female (Gen 1:27); that our needfulness is not a curse but a gift; that love does in fact constitute our being; that that same love has also already been given and will redeem everything—every last broken thing—from the inside out.
Second, I tell my students that we are affected by the broken culture in which we live. Because we are not in fact isolated monads, the vision of the human person by which we are surrounded does matter. That, in a way, this anthropological and theological vision is incarnated in us. And thus, it is not the nature of the Church to isolate herself, or to run away from the world, no matter how much the world hates her. She exists, along with Christ, her head and bridegroom, to save the world. She safeguards the truth about the human person and all of creation within herself, and we, members of the body, must live these truths incarnately, renewing the culture from within, losing our blood, if necessary.
And then I know that it is only from this viewpoint that we can begin to think about and approach these issues. Because it is, after all, the viewpoint of Christ on the Cross.