According to the President of the Senate Gérard Larcher, "faith is relevant for Christian action in a world in distress"

Friday, November 26, during a conference organized by the Fondation du Protestantisme au Senate, Gérard Larcher praised the social commitment of Protestants, which he sees as a consequence of their faith.

"Believe and give: Protestants and generosity", was the theme of the conference organized by the Protestantism Foundation at the Luxembourg Palace, last Friday, on the occasion of the institution's 20th anniversary.

Twenty years after the creation of the Foundation whose objective, recalled by its president Anne Corvino, is to “preserve, bring together, support”, the Protestants wished to question the relationship between their faith and generosity.

A reflection that began with an eloquent speech by the President of the Senate, Gérard Larcher. Unable to be present, he transmitted a video message to the participants of the conference. A message in which he praised the action of Protestants with those who are excluded from society, affirming that this is an expression of their faith. 

According to Gérard Larcher, “believing and giving” is a theme that “perfectly sums up the mission of this foundation, which advocates values ​​of fraternity, integrity and openness to one's neighbor”. A theme that also evoked the Gospel of Luke, when a poor woman gives all her savings as an offering. “You cannot really give without giving yourself, and you only give yourself out of love. The gift is an act of profession of faith, ”he stressed.

He then evoked the history of Protestantism which “brought a new look at the gift”, recalling that “the act of giving was no longer determined by the sole logic of salvation and redemption, but by the fact to relieve the distress of those who need help ”. Thus, "the charitable work is a consequence of faith and not a merit before God", affirmed the president of the Senate.

Quoting Dietrich Bonhoeffer, he also recalled that the gift “must be […] a grace that costs”.

“Cheap grace, the mortal enemy of our Church, is grace without the cross. Grace that costs is the gospel that must always be sought anew, it costs because it is for man at the cost of his life. It is grace because only then does it give man the gift of life. Dietrich Bonhoeffer« 

Throughout his speech, the statesman endeavored to highlight the approach of Protestantism in its fight against exclusion and for the implementation of solidarity actions. A mission which “is not oriented according to a religious law, nor to the benefactor's aspiration for his own salvation, but according to the distress and the real need of the women and men, of the children we meet”.

A mission, above all motivated by the Christian faith of the Protestants as emphasized by Gérard Larcher, who recognized the relevance of faith "for Christian action in a world in distress", because it "provides the motivation" necessary for action. while carrying the message of salvation.

“Faith is relevant for Christian action in a world in distress. It provides the motivation to get started but it also carries the message of a salvation to be made known to all. "

A thought "which will color the look and action of Christians in the face of poverty" he declared in conclusion.

Camille Westphal Perrier

Image credit: Creative Commons / Wikimedia

 

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