Magazine article The Spectator

Parris Is Worth a Mass

Magazine article The Spectator

Parris Is Worth a Mass

Article excerpt

From the Revd Thomas Crean OP Sir: Matthew Parris's claim that the Church has ignored or effectively repudiated the teachings of Jesus Christ (Another voice, 22 April) is not based on a careful study of those teachings. He affirms that Christ spoke little about heaven or hell; in fact he spoke about both of those awesome things much more than many of us preachers do today. The Sermon on the Mount is dominated by the dual destiny of man. The same is true of many of the parables, as for example the sheep and the goats.

Matthew Parris writes that Christ 'plainly despised ritual', instancing his entry into Jerusalem on a donkey. Yet this was itself a ritual act, an action not casual or spontaneous but deliberate and symbolic, and designed (like the Church's liturgy) to manifest something imperceptible to the senses: in this case his status as the long-awaited Messiah whose kingdom would not be of this world. …

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