Wondering if the recent events at Trinity Wall Street will issue forth the same fever pitch we see happening at St. Paul’s in London…

If so, I pray that witnesses similar to John Milbank, Rowan Williams and Giles Fraser will rise up.

However, given America’s radical division between economics and theology, where a moral critique is often ‘tacked on’ to a supposedly autonomous economic sphere, I doubt we’ll see the same penetrating analysis as the English provided.

Perhaps the challenge, then, is to hear again the voice of St. Augustine who noted that even the barbarians respected the sanctuary of the Basilica:

All the spoiling, then, which Rome was exposed to in the recent calamity— all the slaughter, plundering, burning, and misery— was the result of the custom of war. But what was novel, was that savage barbarians showed themselves in so gentle a guise, that the largest churches were chosen and set apart for the purpose of being filled with the people to whom quarter was given, and that in them none were slain, from them none forcibly dragged; that into them many were led by their relenting enemies to be set at liberty, and that from them none were led into slavery by merciless foes. Whoever does not see that this is to be attributed to the name of Christ, and to the Christian temper, is blind; whoever sees this, and gives no praise, is ungrateful; whoever hinders any one from praising it, is mad. 

De Civitate Dei, I, 7

 

 

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