Cohen & Francis

Dec 15, 2013

I have several friends for whom Christmas has come early with the Leonard Cohen concert in Christchurch on Saturday night. I too am a bit of a Cohen fan, and yesterday as I drove between the Hurunui Masses I savoured again his Live in London album.
Cohen is well known for surviving the 1960’s and ’70’s, and now lives well into his 70’s (he’s 79) encouraging others to gracefully do the same. His gentle warm manner, and easy conversation with diverse audiences at sell-out concerts. are trademark Cohen characteristics. At the Live in London concert he introduced “Ain’t No Cure For Love” reflectively recalling his previous London appearance:

“It was about 14 or 15 years ago. I was 60 years old, just a kid with a crazy dream. Since then I’ve taken a lot of Prozac, Paxil, Welbutrin, Effexor, Ritalin, Focalin. I’ve also studied deeply in the philosophies and religions, but cheerfulness kept breaking through.”

The “cheerfulness keeps breaking through” is a Ben Jonson quotation and every time I hear it I’m reminded of how most people see religion as a killjoy occupation. It is a tragic commentary on the efforts of Christians that our religion is so often perceived as unattractive and unnecessary for the one who seeks to live fully.
Earlier this year Pope Francis spoke to catechists saying”

“The Church does not grow by proselytizing; she grows by attracting others.” And what attracts is our witness. Being a catechist means witnessing to the faith, being consistent in our personal life. This is not easy! We help, we lead others to Jesus with our words and our lives, with our witness. I like to recall what Saint Francis of Assisi used to say to his friars: “Preach the Gospel at all times; if necessary, use words.” Words come . . . but witness comes first: people should see the Gospel, read the Gospel, in our lives.” Address to Catechists, April 27, 2013

I think Pope Francis and Leonard Cohen in conversation would be a not-to-miss concert. What do you think?

 

 

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Latest Posts

follow

follow

Take a moment to imagine Jesus pointing you out in the crowd, calling you by name, and inviting you to follow.

feasting the cross

feasting the cross

The cross is not just a difficulty or an obstacle, but when carried through suffering to death, IS the pathway to life.

maturation

maturation

only by recognising one is loved do we at last enter into a truly mature, familial and free relationship with God.

Fathers’ Day

Fathers’ Day

It’s Fathers’ Day today in New Zealand and Australia

to be wise

to be wise

In my unloveliness I plunged into the lovely things which you created. You were with me, but I was not with you