Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The Return of Indulgences? New York Times article and Fiat Lux blog

Wow! (What would Martin Luther say?)

My friend, Jim Richardson, who blogs over at Fiat Lux, posted today about a New York Times article highlighting the return (actually they never went away!?) of indulgences...you've got to check it out!

Jim writes:
The New York Times has a curious story today about the return of indulgences in the Roman Catholic Church. It seems they never really went away but the current pope is bringing them back. You may recall from your western civ course that indulgences were a major issue of the Reformation, with Martin Luther contending that we cannot buy our way into heaven. A contemporary Lutheran scholar, quoted by The Times, points out that the basic problem is trying to quantify God's grace. That said, the writer gives this subject a fair treatment. See what you think. You can read the story HERE. The photo is from The New York Times and goes with the story.


Mary said...

We talked about this article in my Paul class this morning--the members of the class who are Catholic pointed out that the way the author presents indulgences as working (they buy you time off Purgatory) isn't actually the way they have worked traditionally at all. Apparently they served as a substitute for public penance, which is no longer widely prescribed, hence their decline in popularity. So, as my professor summed up, "either the author of the article didn't do his research very well or the Vatican has seriously gone off the deep end."

Peter Carey said...

Good quote from your professor!

Very interesting, especially on the heels of some of the other news coming out of the Vatican over the last few weeks!