The Pope's BHAG

Just got back from the Easter Vigil Mass at my church. What a great celebration! Twenty one neophytes were welcomed tonight.

As I basked in the warmth of my faith community, I thought about Pope Benedict. In today's NY Times magazine, there is an article about how he has set a goal to re-Christianize Europe, to save it from the slide that started long ago toward relativism.

What a BHAG! To save the West by helping it find its way back to its authentic Christian roots.

I'm afraid I don't have much enthusiasm for his goal. Even if he could lead the West back to its roots (which I seriously doubt is possible), would it be worth the trip?

The world is headed to its future, not to its past. The Church needs to face the perils and the promise of the here-and-now. It needs to take a leadership role that will help everyone find paths to peace and justice.

Posted by Terrence Seamon, 04/08/07


Herman Najoli said…
Though I'm not of that religious persuasion, I think that we sometimes need to swing back into the past so that we can deal with the here and now effectively (which will launch us into the future). I learnt this while playing golf: "The quality of your drive is directly dependent on how well you swing your club backwards. You won't be able to drive that ball at all until you swing backwards. It's the backwards swing which provides the momentum for driving the ball into the air.

Think of a child on a swing in the playground. She has to lean back and kick her feet forward in order to gain the momentum for enjoying the experience. Joseph Ratzinger is right on with his BHAG. The Church needs to lean back, all the way back to it's roots established 2000 years ago, before it can kick forward into the future. I think most elements of the Church are trying to putt when they should be swinging their clubs back. They have failed to see that they are not even on the farway yet! You can't putt a teeing shot! It is that kind of thinking which led to the dark ages.

Parametric instability says that the key to the swing is in the here and now. Driven harmonic oscillator says that the key is in the leaning back and kicking forward. The contention then, is on whether, leadership should focus on present problems or use the values of the past and the promises of tomorrow in shaping today's experience.
Terrence said…
Good point about "swinging back," Herman. Not being a golfer myself, I still like the analogy.

Thanks for stopping by!



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