Home Page -> Commentary -> 28 May 1999 -> christian vs. Christian

Small-c and Capital-C Christians

I use the word christian with a lower-case c to denote those people who have lost sight of Christ's teachings in the way they live their lives. They tend to want to enshrine their religion in preference to the beliefs of others, often at the expense of the rights of those others. They're using their religion as a bludgeon, but they are usually totally unaware that they're doing so.

I also apply the term to those few but far worse people who have hijacked the name of Christ for their own nefarious purposes.

I reserve the capital-C Christian for those people who live their lives according to the teachings of Jesus Christ. I haven't met many of them, but I would be remiss if I didn't mention three who stand out in my memory.

Two of them, Dr. Alfred Weaver and a fellow named Rick (whose last name I don't remember), offered me support on two occasions when I was feeling incredibly depressed during my college years. They didn't try to convert me to Christianity; they didn't expect anything in return. They simply saw that I was in need of friendly advice and they extended that friendship to me.

The third is Father James Mifsud of Queen of Apostles Church in San Jose. I met him through a Catholic friend of mine; his love of people and dedication to his calling is self-evident when you talk to him. He's a delightful, compassionate man who is definitely doing the Lord's work.