Friday, July 27, 2012

The Diabetic Church

Coptic Christians in Egypt
From an article on persecution of the church in Egypt
In my mind today, the picture I have is a church in a diabetic coma that has gorged itself on the sweets of affluence, materialism, and the idolatry of worshipping the materialistic world. That diabetic coma is now life threatening. We as a church are at the point of death – not the church in the Middle East. We are the ones who can no longer rouse ourselves to even pray for an hour on behalf of things that God would have us pray for.
I like this image. I think he could carry the analogy even further. One of the things that can happen to diabetics is they are unable to feel injuries to some parts of their bodies. They can end up with a toe or a foot amputated because they had an injury and they didn't respond correctly. Diabetics are told not to wear open-toed shoes because small injuries tend to become big problems due to the lack of circulation.

We are seeing that kind of non-response in the body of Christ. Christians are being attacked in many parts of the world. When healthy the body should react. The nerves should feel the pain. The circulatory system should send a bunch of stuff to heal the foot and fight infection. But right now the Christian nervous system is barely noticing the persecution. We are not sending help in any way. We don't seem too concerned that we might lose a toe. 

Moeller thinks this is tied to too much sugar in the church's diet over the long term. Materialism is one problem. Another might be too much concern over getting the pews filled on Sunday morning and not enough about what being the Kingdom of God looks like. Whatever the issue, the lack of response by Christians in the west is cause for concern. Certainly a concern for Christians in those parts of the world but also a concern for the church here that fails to respond to such an obvious crisis. 
One guy who has been talking about this is John Allen.

The second link contains this announcement.
The U.S. bishops, in collaboration with the Catholic University of America and Catholic Relief Services, are planning to hold a conference titled "International Religious Freedom: An Imperative for Peace and the Common Good" on Sept. 12 in Washington. Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York will deliver the opening address, and the Vatican's top diplomat, French Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, has been invited to give the closing speech.

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