Tuesday, October 12, 2010

It's a miracle!

I've been following the plight of the Chilean miners stuck 700m underground with great interest, it's an utterly perfect "media event", you have disaster, technology, human interest, jeopardy and a compelling event. Of course it's not only the media that feeds on events like this, let's not forget our religious brothers and sisters who aren't backwards in coming forwards when it comes to feel-good feeding frenzies. The three Christian denominations have each claimed credit for what they say is divine intervention in the survival - and expected imminent rescue - of the 33 men who have spent 67 days beneath the earth. Local Christian flavoured representatives are keen to get in on the act.

Carlos Parra Diaz, a Seventh-day Adventist pastor at the San Jose mine said,

"God has spoken to me clearly and guided my hand each step of the rescue, he wanted the miners to be rescued and I am His instrument."

Yards from where he spoke Caspar Quintana, the Catholic bishop of Copiapo, prepared an altar to celebrate an outdoor mass for a small congregation of miners' relatives and phalanx of TV cameras, he offered his verdict...

"God has heard our prayers, I have received comments of encouragement from all over the world. Let us give thanks."

A litte bit further up the hill of Camp Hope, the improvised settlement of miners' families, rescuers, government officials and media, an evangelical preacher, Javier Soto , wandered from family to family with a guitar and songs of praise. "He listens to the music," said the pastor, gesturing to the azure sky.

Of course rational people know that the success of this rescue will depend on geology and mining engineering, executed by people grounded in technology and science, however the devil in me (because clearly there is one) would just love to remove all the equipment and (real) expertise and let these three jokers finish the mission using only their "spirituality", it would be amusing at least; although on second thoughts I wouldn't want to burden those miners any more, they've probably had enough groping around in the dark for anyone's lifetime.

I can't help wondering, if the Christian God is happy to take credit for the rescue of these miners, can we assume that he takes full credit for all the miners that have ever died too?


Elizabeth said...

I know, it's amazing how God can be the answer but not part of the problem! thanks for a good post.

I'm sorry I haven't been on here as much but struggling with my tome! :)(that you just wrote for me!!)

Steve Borthwick said...

Hi E, thanks for your comment, re. your "tome", I'm sure it'll be a classic :)