A sign of the times

Catholics are not automatic!

by Jean-Pierre Denis

Deer, 184 p., € 15

What if the pandemic was a sign from God sent to men? With this provocative question, Jean-Pierre Denis begins a form of question-answer meditation, with a virtual interlocutor, a Socratic dialogue that does not say its name. The author took the time to seek the meaning of the event that befell the whole planet. Rather than talking about the “next world”, he turns to the sky. Would God have wanted to punish men? No, but people must know how to discern the “signs of the times”, this vulnerability in which we have all been plunged. With the epidemic, it is the very reality of what we are living that moans and rebels, a protest against our claim to be the absolute masters he writes: “God’s groans on our behalf, that’s what I call signs of the times. “ Signs that urgently need to be understood: “A Church that gives up speaking sign language ends up being blind and mute. “

A sign of the times, the way in which Catholics were deprived of Mass, and were able to rediscover the importance of reading the Word. Another sign of the times is their ability to come together in more informal communities, and to mobilize to come to the aid of people affected by the crisis. This is the opportunity to ask the question of Christian witness, when it is necessary to leave our stone churches and “Of sacramental consumerism”. Because Catholics must not give up testifying in a society whose Covid has shown all the dead ends and the illusory power.

Jean-Pierre Denis offers a nice rereading of the pandemic, which gives a glimpse of what the Church “in the world after” will be like. A Catholic Church “Post-Eucharistic”, he says, but there is nothing hopeless about it, on the contrary. Because we will still need Christians who will know “To make a sign to say that God is beckoning”.


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