Monday, May 11, 2009

Spiritual evangelism

"Religious people have so often pretended to have all the answers. They have seen their mission as being to persuade, to enforce, to level differences and perhaps even to impose uniformity. There is really something of the Grand Inquisitor in most religious people. But when religion begins to bully or to insinuate, it has become unspiritual because the first gift of the Spirit, creatively moving in [human] nature, is freedom and frankness; in Biblical language, liberty and truth. The modern Christian's mission is to resensitize [their] contempories to the presence of a spirit within themselves. [They are] not a teacher in the sense of that [they are] providing answers that [they] has looked up in the back of a book. [They are] truly a teacher, when, having found [their] own spirit, [they] can inspire others to accept the responsibility of their own being, to undergo the challenge of their own innate longing for the Absolute, to find their own spirit."

John Main (1926-1982)

2 Comments:

Blogger Glen Marshall said...

Why do so many people always associate the word, "persuade" with such unattractive partners? What's wrong with persuasion?

4:40 pm  
Blogger Jacob Krueger said...

I think this quote is also apt for we American UUs. When asked to consider ourselves in the face of the US's other Protestant (or Protestant-derived) denomination we see immediately how scattered our own beliefs sometimes seem. "Spirit" can take so many different meanings in our congregations! The call to action in this quote really speaks to my sentiments about the work we *can* do despite not having a unifying creed. We know spirit when we see it, and working to igniting it in the souls of our brethren is as important an aspect of ministry as they come.

3:03 pm  

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