Annual forty day fast for the Truth of Gospel Nonviolence – Day 30

FAST FOOD: Thirtieth Helping

True or false:

A bishop, priest, minister or pastor can morally withhold the proclamation of the Gospel, or some portion thereof, if proclaiming it would cause discomfort for a person or a group?

A bishop, priest, minister or pastor can morally—that is, in conformity with the teaching of Jesus who in His great commission to the Church commanded, “teach them to obey all that I have commanded you” (Mt 28:19-20)—refuse to proclaim a part of the Gospel because, if the withheld section were known, it would demand serious alteration to a person’s or a group’s value system, sense of meaning, economic existence, relationships and/or his or her willingness to support the bishop, priest, minister or pastor who told them the whole Gospel truth?

It is better to have a great deal of financial assistance to proclaim a partial gospel, than to have only a little financial assistance to proclaim the entire Gospel?

Proclaiming only the content of the Gospel that your Church’s, or your Christian organization’s, financial support system will tolerate being proclaimed before withholding its funds, is prudence, good old common horse sense?

“If the Roman Catholic Church were to decide to join the Mennonites in refusing violence, I doubt whether our harmonious relations with the government would endure the day after the decision. I believe that both here and elsewhere the Church can avoid persecution by surviving as it has so far, that is by being the lackey of the establishment of wealth and power, that is, by not being the Church…From the beginning of the Church we have observed that the proclamation of the Gospel has been risky. The risk is never an excuse for suppressing the Gospel. Jesus said that the proclaimer must have trust in the Father, who can do things impossible to diplomacy. The radical reality of the Gospels is the reality of grace and there is just no calculating what grace can do.”

John L. McKenzie, Catholic biblical Scholar


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