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Title: Kwetsbaarheid en macht
Author(s): GONZÁLEZ-ANDRIEU, Cecilia
Journal: Tijdschrift voor Theologie
Volume: 60    Issue: 2   Date: 2020   
Pages: 131-146
DOI: 10.2143/TVT.60.2.3287674

Abstract :
Intentionally choosing the perspective of Latinx peoples in the United States, especially the undocumented, following the rise of Trumpism, reveals insights of theological consequence. First, the rise of white nationalism is achieved by dehumanizing the ‘other’. Thus, the very act of creation, in which God gifts all of humanity with God’s image, is sinfully negated. This calls for a recovery of the history and stories of communities that represent many nations, and trace themselves back generations prior to the U.S. occupation. Already racially and culturally mixed, Latinx persons live in complicated hybridity as they face the dominant U.S. culture. The community however, is resilient, nurtured by a religious imagination that understands the whole of existence as sacred, communal and hope-filled. Second, the vulnerability experienced by Latinx peoples discloses the imperative of reclaiming Christianity’s critically prophetic voice. If Christianity has nothing to say to the present situation, it has stopped being Christianity. Continuing the tradition of rereading the Scriptures in light of history and from the perspective of God’s beloved poor begun by Latin American Liberation theologians, I propose an interpretation of the Beatitudes calling the addressee to action on behalf of the vulnerable ‘other’. Additionally, the perspective of the suffering reveals that prayers, such as the Salve Regina, can contribute to a paralyzing state of self-blame. Such a theology that separates the now from the heavenly, the body from the spirit and the particular from the ideal is felt in the lives of people who are told to put up with their lot and wait for heaven. The Gospel witness does not present such a view, but rather, as Jesus says of his own reason for coming to dwell with humanity, the view is of abundant life. Thirdly, as we come to know Latinx persons in their struggles, and reflect on the requirements of the Gospel to transform reality into abundance, how do we go about this? Here, I engage an analysis of power using Poder and poder, to delineate the difference between the Power of empires and corrupt officials, and the power of the women of Scripture who constantly dared before every obstacle and were fearless. Their stories give a whole new definition to power and encourage those of us on the peripheries to engage this kind of power on behalf of ourselves and the vulnerable.

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