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when the candidates interpret Jesus

Who is Jesus for you? The question was put to the candidates for the presidential election by the young Catholic quarterly magazine Mission, for a special issue which appears on Tuesday 29 March. For some of those who answered him (only the Trotskyists Philippe Poutou and Nathalie Arthaud, and the communist Fabien Roussel abstained), Jesus is a bit of themselves. “Jesus? But it would be green today, that’s for sure! », thus believes the ecologist Yannick Jadot to know. “If I wanted to be teasing, I would retain in Jesus the subversive figure, slips the rebellious Jean-Luc Mélenchon. It embraces conflict to create awareness. » “Jesus is my little brother, assures Jean Lassalle. (…) He’s a bit of a fool like me: most of the time, he talks when he should be quiet, he comes out of almost nowhere and, basically, for ordinary mortals, he’s not going anywhere either. »

Other candidates see certain traits of the man from Nazareth as a source of inspiration. “Jesus, for me, is a somewhat solitary and visionary hero” equipped with a “singular ability to find the right words to bring people together and address their contemporaries” while being careful of “hate”, explains socialist Anne Hidalgo. For the candidate of the National Rally (RN) Marine Le Pen, he is the man of the “sacrifice for love (…) Not everyone has a vocation to save men, of course! But you can save your country by sacrificing your own life. »

“Doubts and Questions”

Some candidates refer to words or gestures of Jesus, reported by the Gospels, which resonate most with them. The famous “Render to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s” quoted by the synoptic gospels (Mark, Matthew and Luke) are acclaimed by Marine Le Pen and Eric Zemmour. “Without the teaching of Christ, France could not be secular! », says the RN candidate. For his competitor of Reconquest!, Jesus “makes a difference between the spiritual and the temporal” unlike Judaism for which, he argues, “Religion is first and foremost a social order” and Islam, which “is a step back from the great Christian transgression”. Nicolas Dupont-Aignan prefers the episode of the paralytic cured by Jesus at Capernaum (Mark, 2, 1-12). “I found that it corresponded perfectly to the reality of France”, explains the sovereignist candidate.

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Some contenders for the Elysée reveal in this exercise their personal relationship to faith or religious teaching. Anne Hidalgo says to herself “agnostic”corn “convinced that spirituality is necessary to accept our human condition”. “Deeply secular woman”, Valérie Pécresse, the candidate of the Les Républicains party, also says ” Catholic “even if it recognizes “doubts and questions”. Yannick Jadot reports that he has ” made [s]we catechism ». Marine Le Pen displays her faith. On the other hand, if it is “seduced by the pope’s speech”, She is “opposed to him taking political positions”.

Emmanuel Macron did not respond directly to this small survey, but Mission reproduces passages from two interviews on faith that the President of the Republic granted to his editor, Samuel Pruvot, and which are the subject of a book, Conversations with the President (Cerf, 160 pages, 18 euros). “We Catholics…” he slips into it on the occasion of a return on his personal trajectory, passed by a baptism in adolescence.

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