My Dear Church,
I write to you on this the occasion of your fiftieth anniversary – 50 years since you, ancient Mother, set upon your aggiornamento. Congratulations to you, the arrested eternal, throwing open your windows to the particularity of a new time, to modernity, to me, writes Alice Priest in The Good Oil.
I too have recently celebrated an anniversary, 38 years since I came into this world and was baptised into you. You are old. I am young. I reach back through you, and you forward through me.
Though I was still a twinkle in my father’s eye, I feel sure you had me in mind, dear Church, when you stated those opening words of the Council, “that the human family is on the threshold of a new era”… “at a turning point in the history of the Church”… “a new day is dawning”.**
You were thinking of me when you said that, in the light of your Council, you, and in turn, I would “gain in spiritual riches”… enabled “to face [our]… future without fear”. For that is me; the child of a turning point, a new era, wherein the ability to face the future – the climate changing, war-torn, nuclear, virtualised, pluralised, GFC future – without fear is truly the greatest gift of all. I thank you for knowing something of both my heart and my changed world, and thus, of who you must better become.
I think you looked to the future and knew that two of my running companions early on Sunday mornings would be Shabbat-keeping Jews, texting me images of their Passover-set dining room tables as I celebrated Easter this year, when your Council spoke of a new “unity” of the whole Christian and human family.
I think you knew that they could teach me something about how to bring my Eucharist home to my family table. You finally had the courage to say what I live with my marathon companions, that “the source is one”, and our being on the road together as we run (literally and figuratively), is a reality and a truth beyond our differences.
FULL STORY A letter to Mother Church from a Gen X-er