LETTER FROM A MINISTER
SEX, DEATH, RELIGION & POLITICS
These are, allegedly, the four no-go areas of social convention ... Much safer to discuss weather, lack of parking spaces, mobile-phone use and Mondays. But, of course, most of us are conceived through sex; death comes to us all; religion and its abuse is all around us, and 'eu' can't get away from politics during election time! That's the thing about conventions for society to work, it seems safer to keep to the bland, the beige, the mediocre. Those who say unspeakable things, or who act in worryingly-surprising ways, or who ask questions wanting answers to Things We'd Rather Not Discuss... these are the unsettlers, the change-makers. Perhaps, though, they can actually help us to see life in differing perspectives, and even liberate us.
It can be complicated. Society and the churches get themselves in a tangle over the definition of marriage, and how far sexuality and gender can be legislated for. Medical Science and the Churches agonise over the ethics of how long to extend life for, or not. Some politicians prefer their Politics without Religion; some religious people prefer their Religion without Politics. On it goes. How much easier to live under the clouds of weather, parking, mobile phones and the sad inevitable gift of another Monday!
Into these musings comes Jesus.
He loved the married, the single, those with 'bad reputations'—because they are made in the image of God.
He loved the dying and those who had died—because they are made in the image of God.
He loved the religious leaders and the humble faithful—because they are made in the image of God.
And he loved the political rulers and those at the sharp end of their rule—because they are made in the image of God.
Jesus disturbs, surprises, challenges, enlightens and blesses—because he starts and continues to the end and beyond with LOVE.
Sex, death, religion and politics?
It's all about love, actually.
Revd Christopher Huxtable,
Associate Priest C of E,