The Church birthed in the fiery winds of Pentecost was deeply human and deeply compelled. Its feet itched to get out on the streets and do love; its tongues ached to speak love in every language imaginable. But soon the mammoth Christendom machine rolled into history and its clanging gears and noisy pistons nearly drowned out the human voice of the Church. The goal of the Christendom machine was to keep itself running and it would do anything—including violating human souls—to keep the engines buzzing. Those it wounded most deeply were the open and searching among us: the children, the artists, the prophets. Yet despite all its efforts, the Christendom machine is winding down, its weathered and rusted gears don’t make the kind of impressive noise they once churned out. And in the deepening silence we begin to hear again the sounds of the Church: its feet scurrying into the streets to do love and its tongues speaking love in every language imaginable.*
*With this piece I introduce my Pentecost series, “Taking It Into the Streets.” We will ponder together the meaning and mission of Church from its Pentecost birth to today.