Monday, March 14, 2016

new credos for a post-christian age...

We live in a post-Christian realm - certainly a post-creedal season, too - and yet I find myself
drawn to two recent Credos with very different insights.  The first I saw comes from Pat Bennett (I think from the Iona Community.)

We believe in God
The make and shaper of our pathways;
Who sent Jesus to show us the narrow way, and who is the beginning and end of our traveling.

We believe in Jesus Christ, the sharer of our flesh; who entered and experienced the human journey, and who walks beside us on the road of life.

We believe in the Holy Spirit, midwife and nurturer of our potential; who drove Jesus into the desert and calls us now to cast off from the shore.

We believe in Father, Son and Spirit,
The Shaper, Sharer and Stirrer of our journeys;
And we recommit ourselves to following their Way.

As a mystical Trinitarian I like the reworking of the tradition. I would likely replace the masculine language with functional synonyms - Creator, Christ and Holy Spirit - all the while knowing that this is as incomplete as is Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Perhaps that's why I like this second Credo from James Carroll in his Christ Actually: the Son of God for the Secular Age.

Jesus, the Jew from Nazareth, is a living expression of the inexpressible God. He is the Christ, Son of Man, according to the Scriptures. He is present to the world the way meaning is present in the word. Just as a word points not to itself, but to its meaning, so Jesus Christ, Son of God, points to One whom he calls Father. In that way, as one of us, he is the Word of God, whose Meaning comes clear. The Unknowable One, therefore, can be known. Because God is not an enemy, but a friend, we need not be afraid. Because God completes what God begins, death is not the end, but a beginning, wholly undefined. Because God is faithful, creation has a purpose, and its name is history. Imitators of Jesus Christ, we want mainly to be kind and true, taking heart from our dear companions on the way. And we say, with those who go before, and who come after, Amen. So may it be.

I wonder what words help you share what you trust? What do you like about these? What causes you distress? Or concern? Are there others that have become your favorites? Please share whatever you think would add to this exploration.

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