Turning a Blind Eye

The Pope’s recent encyclical (Laudato Si’) links both global poverty and the accelerating destruction of the environment to the destructive materialism, selfishness, and competitiveness that are rooted in the daily dynamics of global capitalism. Not many conservative politicians or bishops wanted to hear that stinging message. They want the Pope to visit the poor but not to deal with the root causes of their poverty. Many people inside and outside the Church turn a blind eye to the fact that Jesus had a truly revolutionary political point of view, and he was all about ending the suffering of people on this planet; and it was precisely that message that had made it so easy for Christianity to grow. Today that very same revolutionary message is easy to ignore.

If Jesus was walking amongst us in the flesh today, he would implore us to act together to care for the refugees fleeing the Middle East, to offer a hand to undocumented migrants risking death in the desert for a chance at life in America, to end the vast inequalities on our planet, and to save the life-support system of our planet. Any honest reading of the Gospels would make that perfectly clear…which is why the Gospels are not taken very seriously today. In the face an oppressive and planet-destroying reality, many Christians just shrug and say we must “be realistic” and accommodate the demands of the market and not force strict regulations on the backs of business in order to curtail pollution because they will also reduce profits. I guess Jesus isn’t realistic, so we don’t have to take him seriously…because conversion is always going to be a movement away from selfish ego-centricity to unconditional self-emptying love of others, which is not a journey we naturally want to embark upon because it will cost us everything.


2 Responses to “Turning a Blind Eye”

  1. 1 krebsjoan September 22, 2015 at 7:07 am

    Thanks, Gerry. In the readings and gospels over the past few weeks Jesus repeatedly urged us in this manner: “Whoever has ears to hear, ought to hear; … whoever has eyes to see, should use them to see…. seeds need good ground to take root, grow in order to give nourishment….”

    You’re right. To ignore our fellow human beings; to make blind the eyes of our hearts is the work of an anti-Christ. Pope Francis agrees in Laudato Si when he says that every work for ecology is ALWAYS an act of social justice, therefore of solidarity. The environment cannot be separated from humanity and vice versa. Again thank you

  2. 2 theluzfund September 23, 2015 at 6:13 pm

    Many thanks Gerry, sometimes we need a reminder about what is really important.

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