Aging and Lent

The practices of any society form and are formed by that society’s beliefs. This is perhaps most evident in the rise of modern medicine:

I think there is no denying that the current enthusiasm for ‘genomics’ (that allegedly will make it possible to ‘treat’ us before we become sick) draws on an extraordinary fear of suffering and death incompatible with [the] observation that luckily time makes us grow old. Our culture seems increasingly moving to the view that aging itself is an illness, and if it is possible, we ought to create and fund research that promises us that we may be able to get out of life alive. I find it hard to believe that such a science could be supported by a people who begin Lent by being told that we are dust and it is to dust we will return. (Hauerwas, The State of the University, 53.)

How might Christians in medicine redirect funding for research initiatives based on our Lenten practices? What might it mean for a Christian physician that “in Christ all will be made alive” (1 Corinthians 15:22)?

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