Thursday, December 11, 2014

Thomas Aquinas in China

I have beaten the Thomist drum for realigned Anglicans for so long my drum is broken. Anglicans want to evangelize without theology, without apologetics.  The folks who are in charge of Evangelism are inevitably unconscious Cartesians. They continually underestimate the competition and the opposition and so they surrender to scientism and secularism and are happy to relegate religion to the land of warm fuzzies and emotional irrationality. 

But not so China! See
St. Thomas Aquinas is the latest thing in China preciously because the Angelic Doctor makes sense of the relationship between philosophy, natural science and religion/faith. As my good friend, Fr. Guptil, is fond of saying about Anglican evangelicals (and it applies to many Anglo-catholics as well) "they have no metaphysics."  At least the Chinese are doing something about it. Maybe we will have to wait until they export back to us "existence and essence", "formal cause, efficient cause, material cause and final cause" etc.

What is faith? I have never met an avid Church Growth partisan who can tell me. What is the final cause of Evangelism? Hint: Presumably the answer is not Church growth. How is belief related to opinion, on the one hand, and science, on the other. What do we want folks to believe? The sinner's prayer? Ask a Chinese philosophy student!

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