In full: Lord Sacks speech that brought Vatican conference to its feet


This is a beautiful speech on the importance of marriage and the family, given to the synod held by the pope on marriage and the family.

Originally posted on Catholic Voices Comment:

Sacks[From Austen Ivereigh in Rome]

Among many speeches yesterday following Pope Francis’s address to the Humanum colloquium on complementarity, that of Lord Jonathan Sacks, the former Chief Rabbi of the United Kingdom, was the standout, bringing the audience of 300 in the synod hall to their feet. Using dazzling oratory, he offered a magisterial account of the development of marriage from the very start — a sexual act between fish in Scotland — right up to the present day, told by means of seven stories, and ending with a spectacular exegesis of the Genesis account. It is a story with a tragic end: the dismantling of what he calls “the single most humanising institution in history” resulting in a whole new era of poverty and social division. Yet the recovery of that institution offers hope.  The full speech follows. 

I want this morning to begin our conversation by one way of telling the story…

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Five Minute Friday : Dare




Today’s prompt word is DARE

I used to think that Dares were stupid.

The idea that someone would willing compromise their sense of dignity or common sense to do something that they wouldn’t otherwise do, simply because someone ‘dared’ them to was ridiculous. Actually, I still do.

Only, now I better understand the fear that we all have about not fitting in, of not belonging, not being wanted. Fear of being seen as somehow lacking in an area that we desperately long for kudos or approval.
I understand the desire to leap to prove yourself and any cost.

But when we are willing to hand over our sense of responsibility or integrity, we lose something of ourselves and hand it over to someone else.
We willingly enslave ourselves.

Whilst the game of ‘Dare’ is usually only played as children or teenagers, the sense of expectation that we will do as expected is still present in adulthood, but under the surface.
Rather than daring us to be different or brave, conversely these hidden dares want us to stay small and conform. Not rock the boat.

This is not who we are called to be.
We are given the offer of true and lasting freedom by a God who loves us and knows us for all our gifts and all our faults. Who accepts us.
Daring is associated with bravery, and adventure is offered to us in a life spent following Jesus.

The difference is that there is no coersion.
We are free to say yes. Free to say no – without being loved any less.
And that is a very important distinction.


**Five Minute Friday is an initiative set up by Lisa-Jo Baker over at Surprised by Motherhood. It has now been taken over by Kate over at Heading Home. The basic premise is to take the word Kate gives and write, non-stop for 5 minutes. Then you stop and post. Read more about it here.



Precious moments found
In pausing to simply be,
Relishing their company
Without any hidden agenda.

No need to plug the gaps or
Fill the time,
Instead it flows, as glitter dust
Poured through fingers not clenched tight,
Leaving the flickering light of a memory.

Connection is built,
Warmth –
Not eroded.