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OpEdNews Op Eds    H4'ed 4/6/14

Sunday Homily: Lazarus come forth! Pope Francis Brings Jesus Back to Life

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"  Wealth does not belong to the rich, but to the world's poor (JG 57, 184).

"  But the world economy as now structured concentrates wealth among an ever-shrinking minority of the rich (56).

"  Wealth must therefore be redistributed (189, 204,215).

"  Such redistribution must take place by government intervention in the free market, which (in contradiction to failed "trickle-down" theory) cannot by itself eliminate poverty (54).

"  The rich who are unwilling to redistribute wealth to its true owners (the poor) are thieves (57, 189).

"  More than that, they are murderers, since the world economy as presently configured is homicidal (58).

"  This is a question of being pro-life (213).
 
"  Favoring life certainly includes concern for the unborn (213).

"  But ". . . defense of the unborn is closely linked to the defense of each and every other human right" (213).

"  Human rights include the right to food and shelter, education, health care, employment , and a just wage (191, 192)

"  Respecting human rights involves renunciation of war and preparation for war (60).

"  It also connects with environmental stewardship -- defense of soil, insects, birds, fish, and the seas (215).

And so the tomb opens. And a Jesus who has been buried more than three decades stumbles out.  And in doing so, he renews the faith of so many of us who had given up on the church.

Our faith is renewed because we recognize in Francis' Jesus the embodiment of one of life's fundamental truths: utopian visions of the good and true and beautiful can never be killed, even though they might appear lifeless and be pronounced dead by those who once loved them.

What should we do as a result of encountering the Jesus Francis has resurrected?

"  Be bold in appropriating the vision of Pope Francis that is not at all idiosyncratic within the Catholic tradition. In fact, it represents the authentic teaching of the Catholic Church from Leo XIII to the Second Vatican Council and was even articulated by John Paul II and Benedict XVI.

"  Accordingly and courageously incorporate into progressive political discourse the language and powerful ideas of the Judeo-Christian social justice tradition. It can move people today just as it did in the times of Ezekiel and Jesus.

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Mike Rivage-Seul is a liberation theologian and former Roman Catholic priest. Retired in 2014, he taught at Berea College in Kentucky for 40 years where he directed Berea's Peace and Social Justice Studies Program. His latest book is (more...)
 

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