There are now two cruiser-weight world boxing champions. Should they fight to unify the titles? “Everyone wants to see this fight,” said the man. Everyone? “No-one’s interested in politics, that’s the trouble,” said the man. No one? “I feel certain that the majority of people in this country, city, society, parish feel as I do,” he said. Do they? How many did he speak to?
Do you ever talk like that: “everyone”, “no one”, “the majority”? Opinions pretending to dress up as considered judgements. I hope you don’t.
“People don’t come out at night,” agreed the church meeting. But people do-for football matches, concerts, dinners, dances, social events, theatre, a drink. But not for church. “You can’t have a meeting during the day,” said the church meeting, “because people are at work.” So when shall we have meetings?
I was told 4.00 pm was a bad time for our Church Unity Service on Pentecost Sunday. I asked what a good time was. Perhaps 6 or 6.30 pm. All the other churches have our Unity Services at that time during the year, I said, but do you go? No, was the answer: I never go to Unity Services.
It isn’t the time, it’s the lack of interest. People can sound silly when they make the time of a meeting or service the excuse. To admit a lack of interest would be more honest and straightforward.
The short answer is that we make time for what we want and don’t find time for what we don’t, then try to make up reasons or excuses.
Do you find your considered opinion on the EU Referendum convincing? Do you find the other side prejudiced and scare-mongering? Do you agree with a prominent Catholic in this week’s press who says he feels sure most Catholics will vote Remain? Or the archbishop who says the economic arguments of one side are ludicrous? Does he know more about economics than we do?
Let us pray, say our bishops, about the Referendum. Then shall we Catholics vote Leave or Remain together? Would the Holy Spirit guide us to vote differently? Hardly bears thinking about. The bishops have asked us to pray and some have publicly advised us how to vote – even before we’ve prayed! I love the thought of prayer inspiring everything we do in every day – but I’m leery of the way it can be used as a weapon of righteousness: “I have prayed about this so know I am right.”
May God bless us to do everything with integrity and live in harmony, not uniformity.