Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Closed Church?

John Stott tells a story about when he visited “the huge central square of the capital city of a Latin American republic. In the middle was the statue of a national hero, who had rescued the country at the beginning of the last century from the Spanish [soldiers, explorers, and adventurers]. One side of the square was entirely occupied by the Roman Catholic cathedral. I tried to get in, but it was closed. On the steps leading up to its main door, however, were three human beings – a drunk who had vomited copiously, a blind beggar selling matches, and a prostitute who was offering herself to passers-by in broad daylight. A drunk, a beggar and a prostitute, three symbols of human tragedy, and behind them a locked cathedral, which seemed to be saying, ‘Keep out! We don’t want you.’ I realize that there may have be good reasons why the cathedral was closed. My concern is with the ‘vibes’ which were given off by that scene.”

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