Many clerics still live like they are, "in the village where on Sunday mornings, when the bells are ringing, people are running to church," said Curia Cardinal Ravasi - No real atheism, but a form of religious apathy in most western countries
Rome (kath.net/KAP) From the point of view of Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi (archive photo), many clerics still do not want to believe that believers in the West are a minority. "They still live as if we were living in a village where on Sunday mornings, when the bells ring, people go to Church." Some clerics still live like "in a village where on Sunday mornings, when the bells ring, people run to the church" The Italian curia cardinal Ravasi says - No real atheism, but a form of religious apathy is in effect in most western countries," said the president of the Pontifical Council for Culture in an interview for the newspaper "Corriere della Sera" (Thursday). Ravasi said before the start of a conference on the rededication of churches, which will take place until Friday at the Pontifical Gregorian University.
There is no real atheism in most Western countries. "Rather, there is a form of religious apathy: It does not matter if there is God or not," the Italian Curial Cardinal described the prevailing consciousness. However, this leads to everyone building up their own moral system, as it is convincing and fitting for them.
Even if in surveys someone calls himself a Christian, that sometimes means little, says Ravasi. Some time ago he wrote on Twitter: "I was a stranger, and you took me in,” and received masses of violent reactions. "Most of them did not even understand that I quoted the Gospel, Matthew 25:43."
The cardinal sees two alternatives as possible reactions. One sees it in the behavior of many Protestant churches: to give in to the trend, to retreat and to limit to a minimum of religious and moral statements. But he thinks that
as wrong. "The presence of believers, even if they are few, must be a shout, not a whisper," says Ravasi. It would be better to preserve the core of the Christian message in this way: "the Ten Commandments, the Sermon on the Mount, the Truth, Life and Death".
For this, however, they would have to be proclaimed in such a way that they are understood today, in appropriate language and media. Pope Francis, for example, describes this when he speaks in simple short sentences, using imaginative images as Jesus does, describing tangible things in the virtual world.
The two-day international conference "Dio non abita più qui?" (Does not God live here anymore?) Deals with possibilities of rededication of ecclesiastical buildings. In Italy alone, around 65,000 churches are owned by parishes and dioceses. The conference is organized by the Gregoriana, the Pontifical Council for Culture and the Italian Bishops' Conference.
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