There is an annual convention in the USA for their equivalent of the National Council of Churches. When this convention started, and for much of its history, it involved the Christian Churches of the Protestant or Evangelical persuasion. Our own Catholic Church was not really welcome. Times have changed and representation from our Church is now welcome. Indeed, some years back a Rabbi was invited to be one of the keynote speakers to give a Jewish perspective on Jesus. After his address, there was time for questions. One gentleman stood up and asked the Rabbi what he thought of Jesus’ saying, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.” This passage has been used to highlight the exclusiveness of Christianity, saying that it is right and other religions are wrong. The Rabbi answered, “Oh, I quite agree.” The questioner was shocked and asked how he, a Rabbi, could say that. The Rabbi replied, “The way of Jesus – was not that the way of love? The truth of Jesus – was not that the truth of love? The life of Jesus – was not that a life lived in love? No one can come to the Father except through love.
Fr. Ray Sanchez CP is the leader of the Oxley community and responsible for Parish Missions and Retreats throughout Australia and NZ.