Monday 19 November 2007

Building bridges between believers and non-believers

This makes a refreshing change: a religious leader seeking dialogue with the secular world, rather than picking a fight with it. In a recent speech to the Catholic bishops of England and Wales, Archbishop Bruno Forte of Chieti-Vasto in Italy argued that 'The non-believer is not outside believers, but within them' and suggested that 'dialogue between believers and non-believers can be understood as an exercise of reciprocal respect and a witness to religious freedom.'

The Archbishop added:

In this age of ours that lacks great hopes, perhaps more than ever the real difference is not between believers and non-believers, but between those who think and those who do not, between, on the one hand, men and women who have the courage to face life’s pain, to go on trying to believe, hope and love, and, on the other, men and women who have given up the struggle, who seem to content themselves with the penultimate horizon, and no longer know how to burn with desire and yearning at the thought of our last horizon and last home.

(via The Tablet)

1 comment:

Andre said...

I always cringe when senior clergy want "dialogue". Another thing which makes me cringe is ecumenism. Let's face it - everyone believes they are right and they have the "truth" - and no one is willing to compromise with the "truth" (although if something is true there is no compromise to be made). We'll just have to learn to live with each other - and respect each others beliefs or lack of.

Secularism is a destination - not an option. No matter how much people will resist it, they'll have to succumb to it.

The church can either adapt and find it's place as part of civil society in a secular society, or it can resist such changes and risk becoming an anachronism.