St. Paul Speaks!

Dear Katharine,

Two days ago I was taking an afternoon tea break with St. Peter and he asked if I had heard the latest scuttlebutt from Earth. He then told me about your novel interpretation of the exorcism recorded in the Book of Acts. I know you may be dubious about an electronic dispatch from the other side of death, but the sermon you preached in Venezuela makes clear that you consider the ancient practice of fortune-telling a “gift of spiritual awareness.” I trust, then, that this message should pose no serious challenges to your credulity.

I am astonished, Katharine, by your speculation that I felt threatened by a tormented and theatrical demoniac. When one has faced down a shouting mob of enraged goddess worshipers, enduring one voluble fortune-teller is fairly simple. I did, after all, tolerate many days of hectoring before responding to her. A non-occluded reading of St. Luke’s deadpan text leads to this understanding: As a follower of Jesus, I received his gift of his authority over principalities and powers (as they were understood before the rise of multinational corporations). I rebuked those powers and liberated a slave — emotionally, physically, spiritually. I was imprisoned not for my insufficient commitment to spiritual diversity but for depriving oppressors of their slave. She is with me here in eternity. I tried to tell her about your sermon but I had to stop midway because she was laughing to the point of tears.

Katharine, the next time you encounter someone who does not live up to your principles — a lobbyist for the Republican Party, a person who has left the Episcopal Church, or even a foolish old Apostle in the pages of Scripture — please try something risky: pray for that person, aloud and on the spot. Ask the holy and undivided Trinity to shower that person with grace and mercy. Or, in keeping with your devotion to inclusivity, ask that person to pray for you. Either way, I know your horizons will be broadened.

Paul, servant of Christ
(Channeled by Douglas LeBlanc)

Image: krosseel at morgueFile

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