Friday 28 September 2012

Verification by first hand experience of God in Christ


I came across the following useful passage in a chapter by Ralph Townsend in a book called Charles Williams: a celebration, edited by Brian Horne, 1995.


The Catholic approach to Christian doctrine may be described as the insistence that the final and clinching proof of the Christian faith, which raises probability to certainty, for intellectual and simple alike, lies in verification through simple first hand experience of God in Christ, and of Christ in the Church and its sacraments.


What jumped out at me was the phrase 'simple first hand experience'.

Becoming a Christian must make a difference, and that difference must be an experience.

The above is a distinctively Catholic emphasis on the experience of the Mass, the born-again experience is another, the answering of a prayer or an everyday miracle is another.

And the most crippling defect of modernity is the compulsive fashion in which 'simple first hand experience' is subverted, denigrated, ignored, and eventually demonized.


This is, perhaps, the ultimate alienation - in which people come to fear simple first hand experience; and subordinate themselves to... to what? De facto the mass media, isn't it?


1 comment:

The Continental Op said...

"Simple first hand experience." I can hear the sophisticated skeptical abstract "thinkers" laughing at us. Let them laugh! He who laughs last laughs best.