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A thought on 9/11

One of the greatest gifts the RC Church brings to modern debates is the corporate memory of over 2000 years of successes and failures. It has seen cultures and countries rise and collapse. It has witnessed umpteen social experiments in personal and cultural liberties and restrictions. It has participated in some of histories greatest and worst events.

Alas, these gifts are not appreciated in a world that demands instant answers and solutions. Yet I suggest that even if one does not hold to the church's  teachings and practices, one would be well served to at least give due consideration to the wisdom she offers lest we fall victim to that old dictum about repeating the errors of history. The 24/7 news channels are great at creating a sense of urgency. The internet is fantastic at offering immediate opinion and comment. Yet as we face a multitude of cultural and international crises (especially in this post 9/11 world) it is careful reflection and reason that is needed to ensure that we do not fall into an abyss of religious and cultural conflict. I offer as proof the riots, demonstrations and deaths that have been produced by something as simple as an idiotic and unsuccessful 'pastor' in Florida threatening to burn the book of Muslim scriptures.

We should not respond in a similiarily 'knee-jerk' manner. Refection, contemplation and an openness to voices of reason such as the RC Church offers is a better path.

On this anniversary of 9/11, let's all commit ourselves to walking this path for it may be the only one that will lead us to a future free from the religious and cultural violence that seems to be the hallmark of today's global village.

Fr. Tim


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