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Thursday, May 14, 2009



I like the expression often used by another Jesuit, Fr. Mitch Pacwa. "That's a management issue, and I'm in sales."
Having read some of the comments at Commonweal I think that it is easy to overburden ourselves, which is partly what Fr. Pacwa was pointing out.
There is another expression, "Live like it all depends on us, and pray like it all depends on God." (paraphrase)
One of the com-box posters at Commonweal, a Joseph Gannon, wisely says, "trying to satisfy Nietzsche’s criteria for anything strikes me as a mistaken effort."
We do represent Jesus Christ and to the extent that we love him we will find it critical to not mis-represent him to others. True repentance is the heart-ache of knowing we have let him down. And in his love and mercy he forgives, reaches down and gives us a hand up again. That is the life of a Christian, and a perceptive observer will see the hope in that, and the witness to Christ himself.
For hardened hearts who see us as Nietsche does, it is only the Holy Spirit that can reach them. That is the management part. That by no means lets us off the hook, but if our motivation for being an exemplary Christian is to win over the cynics, while that is good, it misses the much higher motivation of love for Christ.
It seems to me that some of the greatest witnesses for our Lord are those who in humble devotion to Christ don't realize how great a witness they are. Their focus is so outside themselves on Christ and other people that Christ radiates through them and often they are unaware of it. I've met people like that, quite ordinary, but magnetic, drawing people to Christ.

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