We’ve taken a backwards look at the long slide from orthodox Christianity to Roman sacramentalism to Protestantism to liberalism to fundamentalism to the new evangelicalism. The twentieth century was destined to birth another movement as the child of her departure from the authority of the Bible.
While visiting the Whit Tuesday Sprangprocessioun in Echternach a few years ago, I interviewed a few tired young people relaxing in the late morning sunshine at the end of their hop around the town. I asked one of the gals what the procession meant to her and if people still believed in what it represented.
Well, that's what we heard last week at a fascinating conference for parents at the International School. Dr. Douglas Ota, an expert in helping parents get their children successfully through the adjustment period after an international move, mentioned that Descartes' famous dictum Cogito ergo sum ("I think, therefore I am") should be replaced by "I am seen, therefore I am".
In our attempt to trace how CCC in Luxembourg fits into today’s theological currents, we come to the rather elusive label “evangelical”. What does that mean? Who can legitimately call himself an evangelical? To get our arms around that question we’ll have to turn the clock back a generation or two. And we’ll have to look at the very different ways this word has been used in Europe and the United States.
Fundamentalism -- now there’s a dirty word for you! Today to be a fundamentalist is to be noted for violence, blinkered narrow-mindedness, intolerance, naive commitment to literal interpretation of ancient (read “outdated”) religious documents . . . in short, all the politically incorrect attitudes that secular western society despises.