Responding in Love to Atheist Hitchens’ Cancer

As news breaks regarding New Atheist pundit Christopher Hitchens’ cancer diagnosis and upcoming chemotherapy treatment, we would be wise to recognize that our response as followers of Jesus will say much to our neighbors and to the world about who were are in Christ. Loving response to the illness of others – even those with whom we find ourselves at odds – is a central tenet of the faith. Speaking it to others is one thing. Living it is another (and I would contend a frequently more influential) thing.

And it is not only our responses that matter. What is our responsibility when those who claim to be brothers and sisters in Christ choose to speak unlovingly in a situation like this? Do we stand up for truth and the word of the Gospel as strongly and loudly when it is fellow Christians that are acting in ways that countermand it? These will be interesting questions to ask and answer to ourselves and others as this news finds a wider audience.