Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of August 28, 2006
Young Catholics seek answers over a beer
Theology on Tap speakers challenge The Da Vinci Code
By BILL GLEN
- WCR photo by Bill Glen
"The speakers stimulate conversation with the people I sit with."
Nineteen-year-old Carolyn Slater attended one talk last year that led her to return for every talk this year.
"I've met people from other Catholic parishes. The speakers stimulate conversation with the people I sit with. We take it outside afterwards because there is a lot to think about."
The Da Vinci Code was used as a general theme to discuss a specific topic each of the four weeks, involving the Gospels, Jesus and Opus Dei.
Papenbrock said the book has brought out Christians who want answers to what is real about what they have come to believe is the truth.
"People are asking questions about their faith, or they are being asked and they aren't quite sure how to answer," he said. "We are hoping to give them some tools to go out and talk to their peers or their friends and answer the questions themselves."
Upstairs at Brewster's Brewing Company on Aug. 16, Father Stefano Penna spoke about the reality of Jesus.
An adult audience member asked Penna if what is written about Jesus can be accepted as truth. He wanted to know where to begin to look for the answers.
"Is it possible to go to a place to encounter someone who knew Jesus? Dan Brown didn't," said Penna, assistant professor of theology at St. Joseph's College at the U of A.
"We do have a place and that is called the Gospels. Even non-believing historians will readily admit that in the canonical Gospels, there is access to people who knew Jesus directly or who knew someone who knew Jesus directly," he said.
"The memory of those people in the Gospels gives us an incredibly accurate access to Christ. Not in the way of modern biography, but in the way of a faith statement of people who encountered Jesus and even more, met in the power of Jesus - this man, the resurrected Lord."
If we were to write down stories about our parents for our children, it would be important to do so accurately. Similar care was given by Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, Penna said.
"Who can we historically trust? Not Dan Brown and not conspiracy theorists," he said. "Go and open the Scriptures because even more, we believe, they are the living word of God and that Christ Jesus will reveal himself through the Gospel. And that is our core, as Christians."
On Aug. 23, Newman Theological College professor Jason West was to speak about Opus Dei. West is a member of the Catholic organization.
A Mass and windup barbecue are planned for Aug. 30 at the Catholic Pastoral Centre.
Call Andrew Papenbrock at 469-1010 (ext. 238) for more information.
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