The church of action

February 27, 2020

When the Lord came down from the Mount of Transfiguration, we encounter another part of the Church. Nine apostles were trying to deal with a social problem. A distraught father who has a boy with mental problems comes into the picture. He is the symbol of every social problem and the symbol of every father's worry. The father goes to the Church and says to the Church: 'Will you help this boy? This is not a religious problem that I have. It belongs to the social order. Heal him.' The father comes to our Lord and says: 'They could not drive the devil out of my son. Will you drive him out?' And our Blessed Lord said to the disciples, 'How long must I suffer you?' This is the church of development; this is the church of social action. This is the church of economic and political order. This is the church of secularity. This is the church of involvement. As the other was the church of ecstasy, apartness, individual sanctification, joy, happiness, peace. When his disciples said, 'Why can we not drive him out?' the Lord almost became intolerant of them. He said, '0 ye of little faith. You have no faith. You are trying to build up a new world. That kind is driven out only by prayer and fasting.' Which church was right? Neither. And that's the modern world. Divide it as you please. Say the church on the mountain represents the old. Say the church in the valley represents the young. Both of them are ineffective. One sleeping, misinterpreting the Passion of Christ, trying to translate an emotion into a religion. The other was dealing with the hard facts of life. This is our divorce. Neither one was right. So if we are to build up a Church for this new age, we will have to begin by putting the two together, by returning to the very fundamental doctrine that the Word became flesh: first the spiritual, then the action.