Isaiah Cantrell’s racist identity crisis and the rest of the story: Thank you, Jesus

REPORT: “Reports later surfaced that police jailed suspect Isaiah Cantrell, who, according to the court affidavit, said Jesus’ ‘skin color of the statue was the wrong color.” Cantrell added that ‘Jesus was Jewish and therefore should be a darker skin color.”

My comment: Dearest Isaiah, you’re right, of course, about the outside thing, you know, the skin color thing, the melanin thing, sure, gotcha, I’m with you on that, totally. And the ol’ whiteys don’t like it, they just need to get over it. The Word of the Father become flesh, the Divine Son of God, the Divine Man, entered our fallen history in a very specific time in a very specific place by way of a very specific mother, bearing all those characteristics of that time and place and person. You’re right on emphasizing that: Jesus is a Jew, and salvation, as He said, is from the Jews. Yep. Great! That insight puts you head and shoulders above revisionist historians.

But you effectively kill off the statue of the very One you proclaim to respect? You got yourself some deep misunderstanding, deeper than just skin deep.

Here’s the deal: Jesus said that when He would be lifted up on the Cross, He would draw all to Himself, so that what He validated in one particular place and time as God-Incarnate with all those historically unrepeatable circumstances He validated, in Himself, for all particular individuals of all particular places and cultures and for all time, from Adam until the last man is conceived. Saint Paul speaks of this as the “Body of Christ” with Jesus being the Head of the Body and we, all of us, Jew and Gentile, slave and free, man and woman, are members of that Body of Christ. All lives matter to Jesus. He proved it. He laid down His life for all of us. We find our redeemed identity in Him, not in mere skin color.

As it is, I’m a lily-white white boy, lots of Russian, lots of Baltics, lots of Polish, lots of German. I rejoice that when Jesus reached down into this world at great cost to Himself he stretched out His hands on the cross so far that He was able to grab me, the lily-white white boy, and draw me to Himself, He having pardoned me my many sins, He inviting me to be in humble thanksgiving to Him. I rejoice that unlike what we do, He reached across skin color, across borders, across time, to do this. And for all those reasons I have much for which to be humbly thankful.

Don’t take all that rejoicing away from me, Isaiah Cantrell.

Don’t take all that rejoicing away from Jesus, who was happy to do this for us all.

I find my identity in being brought to life by Jesus. I’m a lily-white white boy, and Jesus is a Son, the Son of Abraham.

Dearest Isaiah, it’s a mistake to reduce Jesus to skin color. But Jesus died for you too. You can repent of all this foolishness. Go to Confession. I do. Jesus loves you, even to die for you.

You might notice, art critic that you are, Isaiah, that Jesus and His blessed Mother have been depicted with the skin color and cultural characteristics of all peoples right around the world right through the centuries, right through the millennia, not to claim Jesus and His good mother as only their own and to hell with everyone else, but to rejoice that Jesus’ redemption – good Son of His mother – has reached even as far as them.

I’m happy for Jesus and His mom to be depicted as a white, as Jewish, as black or brown or yellow or olive or whatever. This is our Jesus!

From the Apocalypse, 1:7:

  • “Every eye will see him, every one who pierced him; and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen.”


Filed under Jesus, Racism

4 responses to “Isaiah Cantrell’s racist identity crisis and the rest of the story: Thank you, Jesus

  1. sanfelipe007

    Your points are well taken , Father. Let me be an advocate for poor Isaiah.

    What if you entered a church with a statue that portrayed Jesus with the wrong gender? I have no doubt that there must exist a person or persons, somewhere, that entertain thoughts of introducing a statue of Jesus with the “right gender.” [eye-roll] I can equally imagine a member of the laity taking matters into their own hands and toppling the abomination. I would argue that this poor soul was not attacking Jesus, but the misrepresentation of the truth. The destruction of property, notwithstanding, was this action a contribution* to the virtue of justice?

    Isaiah’s destruction of the statue of Jesus is shocking and disappointing, yes. But it seams reminiscent of a certain Saint punching a fellow Bishop. Perhaps I dismiss too much error, it may be that I lavish too much charity, but I cannot help but sympathize with the poor sinner whose offended pious sensibilities have been turned against him. I know not where, in the balance, Isaiah resides between sinner and saint. God knows.

    I, myself, am much annoyed seeing one of the apostles depicted with feminine features, even though I have seen men who were just as feminine looking. So I know what it is to suffer from such a pernicious defect that must be the weakness most likely to be exploited by our adversary. But I do not know if Isiaiah shares my failing. God knows.

    * I wonder, did this contribution to the virtue of Justice come at the possible expense of the virtues of Temperance, Patience, and Charity?

    • Father George David Byers

      Your points are also well taken, sanfelipe007. I guess what I’m upset with is that the SJWs and the media and their bankrollers have created circumstances in which having a chat about such matters for a better outcome is no longer seen as an option, so that violence is the only way. I see now that really a lot of students on today’s campuses think that using “physicality” to remove speakers at Universities is good.

      Anecdote in my own life as pastor of a church which had just such a huge statue of the Sacred Heart of Jesus: Whatever way it had been originally painted I don’t know, as the statue had been literally whitewashed from head to foot, including the Heart. Uggh! We had the statue professionally repainted to something more fitting to a Jew back in the Day. We did the same for a similarly sized statue of Jesus’ good mom.

      Whatever about the Body of Christ’s members, etc., I rejoice when I see that Jesus is depicted as He came among, where and when, the whole of the Historical Jesus who is, of course, entirely our Jesus of Faith.

  2. sanfelipe007

    First, Twitter delenda est!
    Now read the following twitter responses to the Reuters story:
    Maria Del Greco
    Being Italian I can assure you that we use the word “Fratelli “ to mean brothers and sisters so it is inclusive.
    __ _
    Christopher Brown
    American liberalism sets its sights on the Italian language
    __ _
    Looking forward to Reuters’ next linguistic critique of a fatwa.
    __ _
    Troll Not A Bot
    Is it written in Latinx?

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