Sunday, July 7, 2019

Quote of the Day (Francois Mauriac, on the ‘Danger in Priestly Power’)

“In Christian countries and in the ages of faith, there has always been a danger in priestly power. Just as Caesar is tempted to use his power to dominate the people, so Peter is tempted to use his power to dominate Caesar; this has in fact been our history for two thousand years. The duel of the Priesthood and the Empire has always involved a complicity. Shall we be scandalized by this? We must remember that grace builds on human nature; it does not change it. The will to power inherent in human nature makes use of everything, and even of Christ who is in some sense a victim of it. It was necessary that it be so in spite of all the risks. It was necessary that the words ‘thy sins are forgiven thee’ be pronounced as many times as a sinner expressed his repentance to a man who represented Christ. In this way Christ has become a prisoner of his own creature.”—French Nobel Literature laureate (and lifelong Catholic) Francois Mauriac (1885-1970), The Son of Man, translated by Bernard Murchland (1958)

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