Let’s Ask: How Would Jesus Act?
Fr Peter Switala, Pretoria – In his column “What would Jesus do, Fr Chris Townsend makes liberal use of rather scornful imagery.
Dare I speak up for those who ask the question “What would Jesus do?” when I am going to be painted as a “caftan-wearing, circle-dancing folk music lover”?
I do not wear the bracelet myself (nor a caftan, for that matter), but I do sympathise with the ultimate question to some extent.
In the Church today there seems to be a harsh tendency (especially among us clergy) to treat the People of God as “canonical cattle” who must be held in check at all costs.
Now, certainly leadership demands that one often has to make unpopular decisions. Jesus had to do that among his apostles. Yet I still don’t think it is a nonsense concept to ask: “What would Jesus do?”
A New Acronym
Perhaps it’s more a question of the spirit in which Jesus would do it. I certainly don’t suppose that Jesus would do it in a way that would belittle them in any way.
What I myself get from the image of the Good Shepherd going in search of the single sheep. Jesus is prepared to go the extra mile to accommodate his people.
So, perhaps because of the negative associations with the “What would Jesus do?” question, maybe it’s time for a new one.
Instead of WWJD, I propose that we clergy might wear AIAIC, to denote “Am I acting in Christ?”