On Being “Radical”


Long ago, I was in and out of the church because I didn’t see the “radical” Jesus being preached or followed.  I love this definition of radical; it fits the lifestyle of an Apprentice of Jesus, I think:

“The more radical a person is, the more fully he or she enters into reality so that, knowing it better, he or she can better transform it. This individual is not afraid to confront, to listen, to see the world unveiled. This person is not afraid to meet the people or to enter into dialogue with them. This person does not consider himself or herself the proprietor of history or all people, or the liberator of the oppressed; but he or she does commit himself or herself, within history, to fight at their side.”  By Paulo Freire in Preface to Pedagogy of the Oppressed.    

And here’s another that puts that radical lifestyle in our faces:

“I am struck by some people who want to enter community. Their energies are so taken up by this objective that they are unable to hear the cry of the poor and to see those near them who need their attention, their love and their presence. Their desire to enter community seems to blind them. The best way for them to prepare for community life is to love and be present to those near them. Then the passage to life in community will come quite naturally.” By Jean Vanier in Community and Growth.

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