Questions liturgiques / Studies in Liturgy vol:88 issue:2 pages:157-169
This article argues that David Power, in his book Sacrament, the Language of God’s Giving, reflects, in his pre-occupation with onto-theology, the influence of an epistemological twist that has occurred in the history of Christian thinking: one that has created a wrapped dualism in relationship to faith. Reason has been made the equal partner, and sometimes even authority, over faith. The overall result has been that reason has either been dismissed, or placed on an idolatrous height. This is an issue theology has to address. One of the ways in which it can do so, is by recovering and strengthening the actual partner of reason, with its very own logic and epistemology: affection.
When affection and reason work in close association together, faith can once again be seen, and therefore lived, wholeheartedly. Sacramental celebration is an excellent locus where this can be exercised, as it is within this context that we are offered the choice to open ourselves up to the mystery of life, and therefore to the possibility of a Giver.
There is, however, one condition for this epistemology to do its work. That is that sacramental celebration is approached from the choice for an active, wholehearted ‘yes-saying’ to all of life, including the reality of suffering. When this is done, we can eventually come to simultaneously welcome the loving presence as well as the painful absence of God. Profound meaning is discovered in the whole of reality, and life can be doxologically rejoiced in.