Theologian and prolific author Fr. Thomas Weinandy, OFM Cap., recently delivered a lecture at Christendom College’s Graduate School, speaking on the mystery of Jesus Christ. Engaging a packed lecture hall, Fr. Weinandy spoke on Christ’s humanity with clarity and wit, providing a fitting theological prelude to the season of Advent.
Fr. Weinandy, a member of the International Theological Commission and a former faculty member at Oxford, specializes in Christology, Trinitarian theology, Soteriology and philosophical notions of God in the Fathers, Thomas Aquinas, and contemporary theology. He turned to these specialties for his lecture, beginning by summarizing the three core truths of the Council of Chalcedon: it is truly God the Son Who is man, it is truly man that God the Son is, and God the Son truly is man.
With his characteristic insight and humor, Fr. Weinandy then challenged his audience to think about the significance of Christ’s humanity by appealing to an originative thought experiment.
“Jesus went to the house of Martha, Mar,y and Lazarus for dinner. Martha served him raw carrots and garlic dip, which Jesus ate. Who was it who ate the carrots? It was the Son of God who ate the carrots. Did he eat the carrots as God or as man? He ate the carrots as man,” began Fr. Weinandy. Turning to the miracles of Jesus, Fr. Weinandy then threw some of his listeners for a loop.
“Lazarus also ate the carrots, but unfortunately he got a rotten one and died of food poisoning. Four days later, Jesus returned and raised Lazarus from the dead. Who was it that raised Lazarus from the dead? It was the Son of God who raised Lazarus from the dead. Did he raise Lazarus from the dead as God or as man? It was as man that the Son of God performed the miracle…In raising Lazarus from the dead, the Son of God performed a divine action, but he did it in a human manner,” said Fr. Weinandy.
A native of Delphos, Ohio, Fr. Weinandy entered the Capuchin Franciscan order in 1968 and was ordained to the priesthood in 1972. He has held teaching appointments at a number of American Catholic Universities including the Franciscan University of Steubenville and Mount St. Mary’s University. Fr. Weinandy was also the warden of Greyfriars Hall, Oxford, and a member of the theology faculty at the University of Oxford from 1991-2004. Fr. Weinandy served as Executive Director of the Secretariat for Doctrine at the USCCB from 2005-2014 and is a recipeint of the Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice medal.
Christendom College’s graduate school, located in Alexandria, Va., offers MA degrees and certificates in Moral and Systematic Theology, Spirituality, Evangelization and Catechesis, and the Consecrated Life. Courses are available both live in class and online. For more information, please visit http://www.graduate.christendom.edu