Thursday, October 30, 2008

Jesus not God: Bathurst priest

"No human being can ever be God, and Jesus was a human being. It is as simple as that," Bathurst priest Fr Peter Dresser argues in a booklet on sale in several Catholic parishes, including South Brisbane's St Mary's.

"This whole matter regarding Jesus being God ... not only does violence to my own intelligence, but must be a sticking point for millions of people trying to make some kind of sense of the Christian religion ... No human being can ever be God, and Jesus was a human being. It is as simple as that," Fr Dresser of Coonamble argues, a report in The Australian says.

Fr Dresser said he found his own rural flock "very conservative" and admitted that many of them found his theology difficult to accept, the paper says.

He said he had rethought his approach after taking an interest in science.

"I'm delighted they're opening up the debate at St Mary's," he said.

In his book, Fr Dresser claims Mary had as many as six children, Joseph was the father of Jesus and the bodily Resurrection is not to be taken literally.

But Sydney lecturer in Church history, Anthony Robbie, said Fr Dresser's claims defied all scriptural evidence.

"What a breathtaking know all, to claim he knows the mind of Christ contrary to scripture and tradition. His words rob Christianity entirely of its meaning and purpose," Fr Robbie said.

"The Council of Nicaea settled the question that Christ was God in 325, so he is 1,700 years out of date. The rest is a regurgitation of every discredited 19th century liberal Protestant German cliche in the book."

The $20 booklet is also on sale at two Brisbane parishes: St Mary's and the Wooloowin/Windsor/Kalinga Parish of outspoken Brisbane priest Fr Richard Pascoe.

The Australian says St Mary's priests, Fr Peter Kennedy and Fr Terry Fitzpatrick have also canvassed the idea of Catholics celebrating the Eucharist in their homes without a priest.

A discussion paper handed to parishioners by Fr Kennedy and written by Charles Kelliher said the lack of priests in the 21st century should prompt the faithful to look back to the first 200 years of the Church, before the priesthood and the Church hierarchy came into existence.

"Like the house church of the first 200 years, it is the community of believers who can concelebrate and bring about the presence of Christ in the eucharistic celebration. Let us embark on the journey as a community of believers in the modern day house church.

"The community of believers would call forth one of its members to preside at this memorial service. This person could be either man or woman, married or single ... with no special designation except being chosen or called forth to leadership by the community," the discussion paper argues.

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Sotto Voce

(Source: CTHN)


Anonymous said...

Was the human body of Christ not the vessel that contained the Spirit - the God within? The same body by which he offered the sacrificial death that proved his divinity?

Anonymous said...

It's important , I think, for thinking Christians to be aware of what's being said and hypothesised and to ponder it. Obviously there are uncommitted persons in Oz who will say they never were convinced Jesus was God anyway. It's necessary to know what's being suggested in order to debate, argue or refute erroneous propositions.

Let's not condemn a church that encourages its members to THINK!