In my ministerial experience as a youth leader I have been consoled and built up in the soul many times, and many others denied in my opinions by the words of hearts that palpitated with love for my God.
The text starts from a singular preaching pronounced on an unspecified date by Jonathan Swift (1667-1745), Anglican pastor and dean of St. Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin, as well as poet and writer known to all for his literary masterpiece, a classic for children, Gulliver's Travels. Published in 1776, thirty years after the author's death, it is a vibrant sermon against the somewhat widespread habit of sleeping in church. Swift starts from the episode of Paul and Euticus in Acts 20 to focus on an unholy disinterest in preaching, especially by those who need it most. This message allows some reflections on the current state, in the hope of providing ideas for general reflection, but also for personal growth.
The parrhesía in the first Christian communities according to the book of Acts
A thesis in New Testament exegesis dedicated to the "parrhesía" of which the book of Acts is characteristic, characteristic of the first disciples sent to testify the Gospel. Starting point for a reflection on the work of the Spirit beyond speaking in tongues.
Do you know the story of Jonah? Have you ever read the book of the same name in the Bible? If these questions were addressed to an audience of believers, they would not make sense, but the daily contact with people professing a faith without biblical knowledge has fueled my desire to reread one of the shortest and most exciting books of Scripture. I am deeply convinced that the story of this character has such charm that it captures the attention of even those who do not believe and, at the same time, the power to reveal the interest and love of God for mankind.
The figures of Elijah and Elisha may be the right compass to guide us towards understanding a prophetic ministry, albeit a particular one, today latent and too confused in the church. In the prophets there is not only the word of God, but human depth, ideas, passions and above all actions that bring them closer to each of us and make them feel our friends. In fact, what is preeminent in their figures is not verbal interventions, but their undertakings. We all prefer facts to words.