Wednesday, May 20, 2020

A Contrast Between a Saint and a Scoundrel

CLJ: The Unhidden Lives of Jean Vanier and Franz Jägerstätter by John O'Callaghan



In the midst of our anguish over Vanier’s abusive behavior, we need to keep in mind that nonetheless Vanier stated a profound truth: persons with disabilities are not objects of our charity but should be treated as friends among whom we live and share a common life. The irony of the L’Arche communities is that they exist at all, for if we all took that profound truth to heart, if we lived it, there would be no L’Arche, or rather we would all be L’Arche in our homes, neighborhoods, towns, and cities. Jean Vanier’s hidden life cannot destroy that truth.

But how many of the rich or those looking to create paid work for themselves use philanthropy to cover up for their private lives, or to exploit philanthropy for their private sins?

How many people live this truth quietly, by taking care of their disabled children or relatives? If mass population centers at large do not live according to this principle, then those mass population centers need to be evangelized and reformed, and not have its conscience assuaged by con-men using "charity" for their own ends.

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