God's Hunters?

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God's Hunters?
Comments by Joe Classen - 30 Jan 2010

In Reference to the Article: God's Hunters?

Hello Frank and Mary.

Interesting commentary, but, with all do respect, it is your subjective thoughts on the matter and not the official, authoritative teaching of the Church (or any orthodox community for that matter). Here is what the United States Council of Catholic Bishops has to say on the matter of that passage from Acts, “The vision is intended to prepare Peter to share the food of Cornelius' household without qualms of conscience. The necessity of such instructions to Peter reveals that at first not even the apostles fully grasped the implications of Jesus' teaching on the law.”

And so, while the main point of the passage in Acts is about the issue of Christianity and the Jewish law, the undeniable reality imbedded in that passage is the fact that Jesus declared all foods clean…thus declaring that Christians, or those who become Christian, are free from the confines of the law, and among other things, can now eat any kind of meat, since all are good and “clean” in the eyes of God.

Your article states that, “Peter knew that God would not change His word or the Law.” If this were the case then animal sacrifices (sin offerings) would still be in place today. As you know, with Jesus’ sacrifice comes the New Covenant and the Old is passed away…thus making Christians not subject to the Old Jewish Law.

I’m sorry you see my comments and responses as “hostile.” They are certainly not meant to be so. I have no problem with folks who wish to eat a vegetarian diet, which by the way, the majority of scientists and nutritionists believe is not a “natural” diet for humans. The evidence of humans being omnivorous is overwhelming…but that is a whole other subject.

I certainly have never expressed any ill feelings toward those who care for animals…quite the opposite! As President Teddy Roosevelt (an avid outdoorsman) said, “A hunter must first be a nature lover.” The reason I hunt and fish ultimately has nothing to do with killing animals…that is a very, very, very small part of the equation. I take to the woods and waters primarily to enjoy and immerse myself in the glory and beauty of God’s creation. The vast majority of the time, I “shoot” animals with a camera. It’s just that one can’t eat photographs! So yes, a few times a year, I respectfully harvest of God’s creation to feed myself and others....but I’ve already covered all that too.

Any of my parishioners would tell you of my absolute passionate love of all God’s creatures and all His magnificent creation. However, I do become a bit aggressive (not hostile) when good intentioned folks do things like post a very negative article about me on a website…an article that grossly takes things I have said or done out of context and is filled with subjective opinion and not on objective fact. I perceive that as hostile. Would you not?

One more thing…..I still am waiting to hear your comments on the fact that Jesus (God) and His followers killed and ate fish and lamb. How do you reconcile that fact as Christian vegans? Please tell me? Until you can shed some light on that issue…and the other issue of millions of animals being painfully killed in the process of raising vegetables, all of your other statements and arguments remain well intentioned, but ultimately groundless.

God bless.

Fr. Joe