Why Christianity is not the UN

An open letter to my Emmaus brothers.

How does our self-professed Christian faith differ from being a UN diplomat? The spiritual veil is much more easily pierced than diplomatic immunity. Waving a Christian card when personal behavior runs contrary to what the card should represent, damages both. In the news this week we see the negative ramifications of having a football player with Ray Lewis’ background be the person most vocal about his Christian faith at the Super Bowl. The point is that if your current actions don’t match your Christian beliefs, only self-promotion is served by such a public advocacy.

In my case, I had a financial dispute with a fellow Emmaus brother which ended with an unpaid debt. The feelings it evoked had predictable stages; anger, disappointment, wishing it would go away. But since very little in my Emmaus walk has benefited from wishing something away, I choose this path. This path is not about recovering monies which I have now written off. This path is meant to take the dispute out of the realm of a personal dispute and address the elephant in the Emmaus meeting room. How are we expected to behave within the Emmamus community when serious disputes arise among Emmaus brothers at the same Parish?

There are certain basic rules which any Emmaus brother would instantly acknowledge:

  • Emmaus Meetings are not to be used to discuss personal disputes
  • Emmaus Retreats are sacred
  • Confidentiality is sacred

Confidentiality pertains to what is said in meetings and Retreats. I do not believe that the principle of confidentiality applies to ongoing unethical behavior outside of Emmaus [for example in business] especially if that behavior has never been the subject of a sharing or discussion within Emmaus. My argument here is that the principle of confidentiality is damaged more by those who seek to hide behind it inappropriately than those who would point out the unethical behavior.

Who is to supposed to determine when or how to point out ongoing unethical or inappropriate behavior? Each of us following his or her own conscious. The facts and our personal integrity as deemed by our peers can sort out the rest over time, without ever using Emmaus meetings or Retreats to make our case. All the while respecting and adhering to the principle of confidentiality.

I deem that right and just.

About Jorge Costales

- Cuban Exile [veni] - Raised in Miami [vidi] - American Citizen [vici]
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8 Responses to Why Christianity is not the UN

  1. El velocipido del poeta trasnochao says:

    Damn! Amen my brother. For those that do not know me…I am Costales other brother [in spirit, not Fred] that is determined to keep my younger brother in check. And publicly must acknowledge that I admire his patience with me everytime I cross the line (He also keeps me in check) but today’s blog also hurts me. But if he, now, allows me, a simple question, from an outsider who is totally biased. “Is respect and honesty part of the Emmaus (code of behavior)?” Should unethical behavior by an Emmaus member be accepted for the sake of keeping the Christian faith (turning the other cheek) concept?

    Ok, Now back to our real world solution….Asere dale un pescozon por el moropo y dile que page lo que deve, toma chocolate y no paso nada …. seguimos siendo Emaus….la situacion esta bien dificil y tu lo sudas muy duro pa que venga un Cristiano “”descarao”” to take advantage of the situation. Lo de descarao no se lo quita nadie! Not trying to be funny just to wake up the other side and welcome some real Emmaus comments. (Or is it easier to stay quiet?) Now if you do not censor my comment and allow it to stand, I apologize for crossing the line again without first discussing it with you….but this my free speech moment.

    • thanks – but I think anyone reading this will have their thoughts diverted to trying to picture “el velocipedo del poeta trasnochado” — please note my only edit was to correct your spanish – how the mighty have fallen

  2. Jorge, I’ll pay you back. I promise!… Ok., I just hope others don’t really think that I am the one at the center of this “descarga.” I love you man…

  3. El velocipido del poeta trasnochao says:

    Ya veo que estabas prestando atencion con el velocipedo – Bet you needed the spanish spell check on that one




    Just a question from a ‘not much of a believer’ – Is it permissible as a time of celebration’, to actually CELEBRATE and REJOYCE the death of another human being? How does the Catholic Church sees this joyfull act? (Can you find these type of answers on an e-mmaus retreat?)
    What is possibility that Chavez did repent at the last second. Did Cardenal Ortega hear his last confession? Wow the possibilities are priceless! Te imaginas al Coma-Andante al oir que Chavez salia del aire…..Dicen que corrio a su babalao de turno a hacerce una limpieza

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