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« The Spirit of January »

Jean-Marie de Bourqueney


This name was given by many to the collective movement and general opinion that, in reaction to barbarity, (re)discovered the fundamental values of our society, the first of which is liberty. Some called it humanism. Indeed, henceforth, we are all humanists, believing in the value of human beings, in our capacity to build a radiant future or at least a less ugly one. Even in our churches, at any rate in their public statements, this was tangible. So be it ! And so much the better ! Humanism and liberty have finally been reaffirmed. But who has been defending these values for a long time ? Who defends the assertion that diversity is a beautiful thing ? Who, even before our society became globalized, asserted that we cannot think alone, within the doctrines of our institutions ? Who prefers to revisit our well-worn discourse on humanity rather than to repeat ancient and dusty dogma ?

In other words, this « spirit of January » suits us well ! Our monthly review will always affirm its liberal convictions, reconciling faith and reason, theology and humanism. We will reiterate forcefully the value of a human being, his or her capacity to do good, to explore new paths, to imagine a new world. We refuse the idea according to which, in the name of the omnipotence of God, man would be nothing by himself or next-to-nothing. But we shall remain vigilant in practicing a dialogue that is always critical-minded. We prefer debate, even sharp, to the soft consensus of verbiage. We shall continue too to read and reread, to scrutinize time and again the texts of the Bible as though they were new, without closeting ourselves inside two thousand years of doctrinal tradition or simplistic literalism. And because we are free in the face of the Gospel, we shall be free in our relationship to our contemporaries, free to criticize them, free to accept their criticism. Free to love them. Truly and always.


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À propos Gilles

a été pasteur à Amsterdam et en Région parisienne. Il s’est toujours intéressé à la présence de l’Évangile aux marges de l’Église. Il anime depuis 17 ans le site Internet Protestants dans la ville.

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