Present Reading--The Plot Against America

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My small book group has taken up for its next read (the last was St. Dale) Philip Roth's The Plot Against America. I am by no means a fan of Roth's writing--there is something in it I find tremendously off-putting most of the time. But this book may crack that open and allow me to investigate Roth's works more extensively.

The Plot Against America is about an alternative USA in which Lindbergh wins the 1940 election and signs a concordat of understanding with Hitler. (I had not realized how very anti-Semitic some of what Lindbergh said and did was.) The story is the tale of a Jewish family in the aftermath of that election and what happens to them. I've only read about 100 pages (about 1/3) but I find the prose compelling, and while I don't particularly like some of the characters, I find their plight appalling.

I guess part of what drives this home for me is that I had not realized how very strongly anti-Semitic some groups within the Catholic Church are. All the while denying their anti-Semitism, I have read in several place on St. Blogs the lies and the filth that through the ages have weighed down our Jewish brothers and sisters with the onus of Christian hatred. The modern world has changed that a lot. But it should come as no surprise when Jewish people are hesitant to believe that, especially when we have the likes of the writing of some extreme elements.

During Holy Week, we do well to keep in mind that the Jewish people did not kill Christ. While some of the leaders of the Sanhedrin (we must be very cautious about how we say this remembering both Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea) were complicit in the events that led to Christ's death--they were merely the instruments--we, all of us, today and throughout time, are the cause. The question is less, "Who killed Christ" than it is "For whom did Christ die?" As He said in the passion of St. Matthew, "Do you not think at this very moment I could give the word and more than 12 legions of angels would come to my aid? Nevertheless, how would it be fulfilled according to the scriptures?" As it is said, Christ went to His death for us. We arranged it, and we were responsible for it, but He took it up and bore it. Questions as to who was responsible miss the point entirely. As in any murder mystery, the most likely culprit is the one who benefits most.

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Yes, what you posted was so thought provoking. "They" didn't so much manipulate His death as much as they were manipulated by Him. He could have escaped the Cross so easily, but directed his footsteps towards Jerusalem to fulfill God's infinite purpose of love. He truly was regal when He said, "No man taketh my life from me; I lay it down of myself."

As one other poster noted, you are on a roll today. Thanks for all the spiritual food. It was very nourishing.



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This page contains a single entry by Steven Riddle published on March 22, 2005 7:47 AM.

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