Richard Rohr – Persecuted for My Sake (Oscar Romero)

Saint Oscar Romero
Saint Oscar Romero

Persecuted for My Sake
Sunday, October 14, 2018

 

You’re blessed when your commitment to God provokes persecution. The persecution drives you even deeper into God’s kingdom. . . .  And know that you are in good company. My prophets and witnesses have always gotten into this kind of trouble. —Matthew 5:10,12, The Message

Today Óscar Romero (1917–1980) will be named a saint by the Catholic Church. As Archbishop of San Salvador for the last four years of his life, Romero was a strong, public voice for the many voiceless and anonymous poor of El Salvador and Latin America. When he preached in the cathedral on Sunday mornings, I’m told that the streets were empty and all the radios where on full volume, to hear truth and sanity in an insane and corrupt world.

Here is a man who suffered with and for those who suffered. His loving heart shines through clearly in his homilies:

The shepherd must be where the suffering is. [1]

My soul is sore when I learn how our people are tortured, when I learn how the rights of those created in the image of God are violated.  [2]

A Gospel that doesn’t take into account the rights of human beings, a Christianity that doesn’t make a positive contribution to the history of the world, is not the authentic doctrine of Christ, but rather simply an instrument of power. We . . . don’t want to be a plaything of the worldly powers, rather we want to be the Church that carries the authentic, courageous Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, even when it might become necessary to die like he did, on a cross. [3]

In his homily on March 23, 1980, the day before he was murdered, Romero addressed the Salvadoran military directly:

Brothers, we are part of the same people. You are killing your own brother and sister peasants and when you are faced with an order to kill given by a man, the law of God must prevail; the law that says: Thou shalt not kill. No soldier is obliged to obey an order against the law of God. No one has to obey an immoral law. And it is time that you recover your consciences. . . . In the name of God, then, and in the name of this suffering people whose laments rise up to heaven each day more tumultuously, I plead with you, I pray you, I order you, in the name of God: Stop the repression! [4]

The next day, following his sermon, a U.S.-supported government hit squad shot him through his heart as he stood at the altar.

Only a few weeks earlier, Romero had said:

I have often been threatened with death. I must tell you, as a Christian, I do not believe in death without resurrection. If I am killed, I shall arise in the Salvadoran people. I say so without boasting, with the greatest humility. . . . A bishop will die, but God’s church, which is the people, will never perish. [5]

Romero’s epitaph reads “Sentir con la Iglesia” (“To be of one mind and heart with the Church”); these words were his episcopal motto, his promise to share the suffering and strength of the people he served.

Watch Father Richard’s reflection on Óscar Romero in this 3-minute video.

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Call for Papers: Dumitru Staniloae’s encounter with the West

European Academy of Religion Annual Conference
Bologna, March 4-7 2019

CALL FOR PAPERS

Dumitru Staniloae’s encounter with the West

Proponent: Petre Maican (University of Aberdeen)

Dumitru Staniloae (1903-1993) has been one of the most creative Orthodox theologians of the twentieth century, yet one of the least known. His theological vision is a majestic combination of Florovsky’s’ neopatristic epistemology, philocalic wisdom, and Romanian folkloric elements. Still, Staniloae never shone away from engaging with Western theology and philosophy whether critical or constructive. His theological edifice bears the marks of his encounters with Karl Rahner, Martin Buber, Karl Barth or Paul Tillich. This panel seeks to uncover the significance of these interactions for Staniloae’s thinking. Was Staniloae a faithful reader of Western theology and philosophy? To what extent was he influenced by theological debates in Roman Catholicism or Protestantism, especially Vatican II? How was Staniloae’s interpretation of the Fathers impacted by the trends of Western historical criticism? How did the ecumenical interactions shape his understanding of Orthodox theology?
Language: English
Speakers already selected: Petrea Maican (University of Aberdeen), Viorel Coman (KU Leuven)
Disciplines involved: Theology, Ecclesiology, History, Social Sciences
If you want to submit your paper, please write to petre.maican@gmail.com

Richard Rohr – Art. Imagination

The imagination retains a passion for freedom. There are no rules for the imagination. It never wants to stay trapped in the expected territories. The old maps never satisfy it. It wants to press ahead beyond the accepted frontiers and bring back reports of regions no mapmaker has yet visited. —John O’Donohue [1]
Being made in the image and likeness of the Creator isn’t about “getting it right” or rationally understanding God. Jesus taught us that being “perfect even as our heavenly Father is perfect” (Matthew 5:48) is more about loving than having correct beliefs or following the rules. How do we grow into such loving likeness?
Each of us has our own unique imaginarium, an unconscious worldview constructed by our individual and group’s experiences, symbols, archetypes, and memories. For example, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Catholics, and Protestants live in quite different imaginaria. God comes to us in images that we can trust and believe, that have the inherent power to open our hearts. Spirituality tries to move beyond words to evoke our imaginaria at the unconscious level, where real change must first happen. Continue reading “Richard Rohr – Art. Imagination”

Urbi et orbi – 1973, Vanju Mare

Danut militar
DanutM, soldat, Vanju Mare, 1973

Urmărind în ziua de Crăciun transmisiunea de la Vatican a mesajului papal urbi et orbi din ziua Crăciunului 2017, care este întotdeauna emoționantă pentru mine (ce să facem, vor spune unii, „un ecumenist va fi întotdeauna un ecumenist!”; la care eu răspund: „amin!”), mi-am adus aminte de un alt Crăciun, de acum exact 44 de ani.

În decembrie 1973 mă aflam într-o unitate militară la Vânju Mare, în Mehedinți, unde făceam armata la termen redus, la intendență, înainte de începerea studiilor universitare economice. Tocmai împlinisem 19 ani. Cele opt luni petrecute acolo au reprezentat una dintre cele mai dificile perioade din viața mea.

Când am ajuns în unitate, purtam deja asupra mea eticheta unui proscris. Pe dosarul meu scria „baptist”, ceea ce, în limbajul militar comunist se traducea prin „sectant”, „retrograd”, „dușman al patriei”, și altele asemenea. Am fost preluat imediat sub observație de ofițerul de contrainformații, securistul unității militare, care a recrutat imediat câțiva informatori dintre colegii mei (delațiunile lor aveam să le găsesc mulți ani mai târziu, în primul meu dosar de urmărire de la Securitate – au fost în total patru la număr, și care acum se află transcris în întregime pe acest blog – dacă vă interesează, găsiți aceste documente, însoțite de comentarii, dând o căutare după expresia „File I-1065”). Au urmat interogatorii umilitoare, batjocuri („nu avem nevoie de savanți pocăiți în țara noastră”, amenințări („nu vei termina niciodată facultatea”, și multe asemenea. Continue reading “Urbi et orbi – 1973, Vanju Mare”

What’s Missing from the Pope and Patriarch’s Statement on Climate Change – Public Orthodoxy

Source: What’s Missing from the Pope and Patriarch’s Statement on Climate Change – Public Orthodoxy

O blatantly neoliberal view of ecology – with the worship of the so-called ‘free market’ and wild capitalism included; a genuine ‘gospel according to capitalism’.
And, of course, very critical of the biblical and theological critique made by Pope Francis and Ecumenical Patriarch to the incessant and unmoderated search for profit with the excuse of looking for the illusionaary greatest good for most people, in spite of the worrying growing disparity between the richesst and the poorest of this world.

Richard Rohr on Prophets

Continue reading “Richard Rohr on Prophets”

Richard Rohr Meditation: Saved by the Cross

Source: Richard Rohr Meditation: Saved by the Cross

In case you wondered what Fr Rohr thinks about the Cross (I know my dear friend Eugen Matei does). This spells it out a bit.