Wednesday, September 10, 2014

"Born again?" Examining the Catholic Response

If you've ever been asked whether you're a a "born-again Christian," you might have felt a little nervous and weren't exactly sure how to reply. This is totally understandable since this term ("born-again") is usually used by and associated with evangelical Protestant groups. It's just not a phrase that we Catholics use very often.

But actually, being "born again" is at the heart of the Gospel and is central to our Catholic beliefs. The term comes from the third chapter of John where Jesus has a conversation with a religious scholar named Nicodemus where Jesus tells Nicodemus: "Amen, amen, I say to you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above." (John 3:3). 

Last week at Good Cheer, we explored the root of the brokenness in our world - the Original Sin of Adam and Eve. Their disobedience to God's loving commands resulted in a self-chosen separation from God and an exclusion from God's kingdom that lasted for generations upon generations and, in many ways, haunts humanity to this day. 

Tonight at Good Cheer, we'll examine this pivotal question: "Who is Jesus and why did he come?" The answers inform who we are as believers and help to explain how and why we, as Catholic Christians, "must be born from above ... born of water and Spirit." (see John 3:3, 5) We'll find out the Catholic response to the famous question "Have you been born again?" and we'll hear the testimony of one of Oxford and Ole Miss's most widely-known and beloved residents: Dr. Sparky Reardon, the recently-retired Dean of Students at Ole Miss who's a native of the Mississippi Delta and a great story-teller. 

See y'all at 8 tonight!