The clowns of God: a novel
In a futuristic setting of nuclear holocaust threats and big-power standoffs, the Pope, Gregory XVII, abdicates under duress. The Curia, the governing body of cardinals, convinced of Gregory's insanity when he proclaims his knowledge, through personal relation, of the Second Coming of Christ, relegate him to the Benedictine monastery of Monte Cassino.
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The Clowns of GodUser Review - Not Available - Book Verdict
Welcome to West's two vastly different pontifical portraits. Clowns (1981) finds the pope under fire for declaring to his intimates that the four horsemen of the apocalypse are in full gallop. In the ... Read full review
I was introduced to the Clowns of God in a Theology class. A few days later I was having a drink with two theologians who were the basis for one of the main characters.
The most authentic Christian belief is encapsulated in the statement which is often made at the Eucharist "Christ has died, Christ has risen, Christ will come again" But what happens if the Servant of the Servants of God receives a revelation that indeed the end of the world is at hand, that Christ is coming again, that there is going to be the end of time?
So it is that the Pope Gregory having had a vision and is about to publish an encyclical that the Parousia is at hand is driven from office by the Curia.
His Kung/Mackey colleague is told of what has happened. There is death and international tension and action and the gathering together of the poor and the dispossessed as a community of the faithful.
It is one of my Advent books every year.
Here we split. For those without the faith, it is a rattling good yarn. read it for that.
For those wishing the cutalige of the community of the faithful in whatever way, read it as prophecy. A Pope has retired who had an uneasy relationship with Kung. We have new threats. Read the book and remember that at the end Christ is there, but not is a simple form.