Monday, February 26, 2007

God doesn't waste opportunities

Reading Fr. Martin Fox's post about the "Jesus tomb" fiascostory got me to thinking. Among other very insightful statements, he says:

It's providential insofar as it will occasion quite a bit of discussion about what Resurrection means.

Another way it's providential is that it will help clarify who stands for what, and help Christians realize the scalding hatred that is and always will be directed against our Lord.

Some will no doubt say that's a case of whistling past the graveyard, that this is yet another heavy attack on Christianity in general and Catholicism in particular (albeit only slightly more in this case, unlike Da Vinci). Certainly, there will be some few whose already very weak faith in Christ and his Church is shaken to the breaking point, and for them we feel and moreso pray. But the truth is simply that this attack will not lead to the emptying of churches, just as Da Vinci failed to spark mass exodus.

More is waiting for us, however. God does not waste opportunities, and it is up to us to make true and full what Fr. Fox states above, that this attack of woefully inadequate intellectual proportions becomes instead a providential opportunity to reinforce the faith of those who may be inclined to believe in it and find their faith in a loving God who lived, breathed, suffered, died and rose for each and every one of them and maybe, just maybe it will become an opportunity for the catechesis we have been longing for.

We should be thankful Mr. Cameron was, frankly, stupid enough to bring this story out at a time when the Church (Catholic and catholic) is more focused on what it is and what it is called to be than at any other time in the year. Deny Easter when people are so tightly focused on deepening their understanding of what Easter is, how it is true and why it matters. What a feat of incompetent marketing. They've done their part - the question is, do we do our part? God doesn't waste opportunities - will we?

Update: I see The Anchoress has also made the same type of statement, saying, "I think it’s an extraordinarly good thing that this issue is coming up during Lent, when we’re already supposed to be in a mindset of humility and conciliation." I'd say great minds think alike, but I don't want to insult her.