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LAITY IN THE CHURCH - page 8 / 21

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lay people, who are and always have been the majority of Christians.  When Theo­philus of Antioch, martyred about 180 A.D., was asked conde­scen­dingly by his pagan interrogator, "Show me your God," the martyr gave this brave and wise reply:  "Show me your man and I will show you my God."  That is, show me what kind of man you are.  If your heart -- your inner disposition -- is sound, then you will be able to see God, and I will show Him to you.  

Handing on tradition is a challenge.  As Blondel says:

But the Maronite Church has an even greater challenge today than merely the general challenge of handing on tradition in every generation.  As Lacordaire put it:  "It is well known that distance destroys unity."  Maronites are scattered all over the world today.  Even when enough of us settle in one place to warrant having our own church, it is difficult for us to gather week after week as we might have done had we lived in Syria and Lebanon in the small villages of yesteryear.  As we see Maronites drift off to non-Maronite churches and children raised with only half a sense of our beautiful tradition, we sometimes despair.  And yet I dare to suggest a specifically Maronite role in a changing society.

We ask, "How what happened once, in a given place and in a

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