Monday, July 10, 2006

Top quotes of Bishop Romero

Tim Muth, of Tim's El Salvador Blog, picks up on a list of top ten quotes by Bishop Oscar Romero. The list was compiled by the San Romero Discussion Group, which from the title I gather is one of the groups advocating for Romero's canonization. There are more than just ten quotes in terms of the many gems and words that Bishop Romero said and shared with his people and the world. Hopefully, these ten will give people a start and maybe urge them to go find out more. In a time when Christianity seems to be co-opted by people who are pretty much Christian in nothing but name, it is nice to be reminded that there are some decent Christians who strive to live as their gospel actually dictates. My readers may know that I am not a religious individual, but Bishop Romero is one of those heroes I admire.

From the list:

9. "We believe that from the transcendence of the Gospel, we can
assess what the life of the poor consists of and we also believe that
placing ourselves on the side of the poor and attempting to give them
life we will know what the eternal truth of the Gospel consists of."
(Feburary 1980 speech at Louvaine University, Belgium.)

Now, if some of the so-called "christians" in this country would actually read that, remember it, and act on it instead of acting like their deity belonged to one of the political parties, things might be a little better. Yes, the lower case is intentional. I know there are some Christians who are moved by their faith sincerely to do good works and truly help their neighbor (apparently a minority as of late), and then there are the christians who pretty much do anything to give the faith they allegedly follow a bad name. Then again, a lot of major religions will have their decent and less than decent folk.

3. "May God have mercy on the assassins." (Last words.)

Now those are brave last words. I am not so sure I could be as forgiving of people who had just killed me. Then again, that is probably why I would not make sainthood anytime soon. And the number one quote, which we probably could put up in signs in this country as well given the current climate:

1. "Stop the repression!"

Music fans, on a side note, may recall that Ruben Blades had a song a few years back about a priest in Latin America, "El Padre Antonio y el Monaguillo Andres," (note: lyrics in Spanish. You want a translation e-mail me for one or try your library for help) about a priest and his altar boy who are killed in the jungle in the way Romero was killed. Regardless of my heathenism, as I like to call it, men who are willing to stand with the poor against oppression and abuse are heroes to be admired and remembered.

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