All we are saying…is give history and chance

A little over a week ago I was scrolling through my Facebook feed on the train when I gasped and screeched, “WHAT?!”

It had to be a hoax….right?

I am of course talking about Nicaea III. While everyone else was gossiping about the NBA finals and new Disney movies, I could only talk about this awesome news bomb.

If you haven’t heard yet, during his trip to the Middle East Pope Francis and Pope Bartholomew announced that they were hoping for another ecumenical council in 2025.

…Let me give you another second to read over that sentence again…

Can you even handle how much of a big deal this is?

Well, it seems like many people can. The jury is apparently out on this one. Some people seem to be as thrilled as I am and are clamoring to somehow get themselves a ticket in 11 years. Others might manage to think this is somewhat interesting, but they move on pretty quickly. And I am sure there are those that think this is a horrible idea (but that’s for another time)

Yet despite all of the opinions being thrown around, all I can seem to think about are Christian origins and how no matter where someone is now, we all started from that one point.

You see, Nicaea was the council where it was decided what Christianity really was—what it means theologically and doctrinally when a person says, “I am a Christian.” There were a lot of branches of belief, debates, fist fights, and exiles that go along with this story, but Nicaea is and was a big freaking deal. However, among the thousands of churches and denominations in the United States alone, most people have either never heard of Nicaea or probably have no idea how it connects to them.

As a historian, it has been really hard to come to this realization, but the truth is a lot of people either don’t know or don’t care about the history of their faith or denomination. With social justice projects, scripture reading, personal spirituality, inter-religious dialogue, and church activities…church history has just not made it to the top of people’s priority lists.

I get that. It makes total sense. However, I think that the past has so much to teach us about our faith and ourselves. Sometimes it can show us that we are making the same mistakes over and over again. Or sometimes it might give us the answer we have been searching for.

Either way, I think you should give it a shot and maybe this amazing news about Nicaea III will be the exact door you need to go search for the answers to some of your questions.