More Info

W           E ARE in a strange
            situation in the Western
            world today. There is a
great deal of talk about spiritual
                                            their obedience to anything or
                                                Neither were they afraid to link
                                            themselves to actual communities
values and yet the Churches seem to         with all the sin and dirt and pettiness
be slowly emptying.                         and compromise that this brings.
    Spirituality is ‘in’, religion ‘out’.   Jesus was prepared to die between
Typical today is the person who             two thieves, mistaken for someone
wants faith but not the Church. Why         who       was     naive,     who     had
are so many people who are                  compromised the truth as seen by
searching for God not turning to the        those in power.
Churches?                                                       In the end to think
   Part of the reason                                        of    spirituality    as
may well be our own                                          distinct from religion
shortcomings.       There                                    gets us off the hook in
are notable exceptions                                       terms of real spiritual
but we have to admit                                         progress. Because one
that we don't live                                           can always escape the
adequately         enough                                    Crucifixion by contin-
what we preach, we                                           uing the quest. The
seem to close off                                            quest that does not
questions prematurely,                                       want a hard answer is
we radiate too little of                                     ultimately trying to
the charity, the forgiveness, the joy       avoid something -            like actual
of God. We are not offering enough          commitment.
to attract people.                               'Thirst is made for water; inquiry
   We do admit this - at the                is made for truth'.        The spiritual
beginning of every Mass - and ask           quest is about questions - but it’s also
for help. 'Thy will be done on earth -      about answers. The fullness of truth,
through us'.       But there are hard       the answer to the spiritual quest is
questions also for those who seek the       there in Jesus, truly God and truly
spiritual apart from organised              human.
religion. It's too easy just to think           'The words I have spoken to you',
about higher things, too individual-        says Jesus, 'are spirit and they give
istic, too clean, too non-committal to      life'. Then Jesus says to the Apostles
ever lead to real self-sacrifice -          - and ourselves; 'What about you, do
which in the end is what the spiritual      you want to go away too?' And Peter
quest is all about.                         answers for all of us; 'Lord, there is
  Jesus and the great saints were not       nowhere else to go. You are the
bent on self-centred spiritual pursuit,     truth - about God, about life, about
understanding themselves as way             ourselves'.                      25/5/07
above everyone else, unable to give                                  Peter Knott SJ

To top