Monday, June 27, 2005

The voice of God

I just started reading Whose Bible Is it? by Jaroslav Pelikan. He's a great author and just the first chapter has given me a lot to think about.
He talks about how the primary thing is God's voice, his spoken Word. Eventually it gets written down, of course, but the speaking is really primary. St. Paul says, "Faith comes by hearing" (Rom 10:17). He makes a great point that even when people are converted through books, there's usually a human voice somewhere nearby. St. Augustine, for example, in his great moment of grace, read the passage from St. Paul that led to his conversion. But he did it in response to hearing what seemed like a child's voice saying, "Take and read!"
My community's mission is evangelizing. Publishing books is an important part of that, but the books are coming out of a community of faith and prayer. Pelikan says, "But the agency...distributing the Book was not a library or a classroom but a community of faith and of worship." I remember when I was a novice, the novice mistress said that if we offer up our prayers and sacrifices for the people who will read what we publish, it will draw God's grace on them.
In our world of mass media, we can never forget what Paul VI said in his letter on evangelization, that nothing can ever replace one-on-one witnessing to the faith.
So where does that leave blogs? It's so easy to sit down, pound out something on the keyboard and send it out into cyberspace. But to be really powerful and effective, there also has to be some kind of personal communication in some way. I'm not sure what the solution is. Any ideas?


Karen - Missouri said...

Sister Lorraine, I can feel your prayers and kind nature in what you send out to us through cyberspace. Consider the fact that you are continuing to "publish" each blog entry that we read. In that way, you're still calling down God's graces on all of us who drink in your words.

God bless you in your efforts!

xaipe said...

My conviction is that the internet allows not just our message but "us" to be accessible in some way. When people visit my website or blog, they are really meeting me. (It is not the "whole" me, but it is true enough to be genuine!) The internet offers me a way to be "extended" in time and space beyond my own natural limits. I figure that my website and blog are "mediated presence" and continue my personal witness in a way. It is not just a message, it is a self-communication.

Norma said...

I'm not sure either, but I know someone will click through, an unbeliever perhaps, come across your blog accidentally, and a seed will be planted. Thank you for a peaceful, thought provoking site. I will link to you.