Theology of the “extreme borders”

Paolo Scarafoni and Filomena Rizzo are two theology professors who teach as a couple in Italy and in Africa. write in Vatican Insiderdiary supplement LʹEstampaand we are going to comment on your article on unidentified flying objects, seriously. It can be read at its link:

Say the authors: “The Pentagon will release a report on Unidentified Aerial Phenomena, commissioned last year by the Trump administration and confirmed by the current one. Much expectation among those who await confirmation of the existence of extraterrestrials, and those who think that they are advanced technologies of other world powers, rivals of the United States.”

On the other hand, they also report that: “Last year, the French Defense Innovation Agency created a “red team” to recruit science fiction writers and screenwriters, engaging them in “designing and developing operational, technological or organizational disruption scenarios” to imagine the conflicts of the future in a well-defined period: 2030-2060.”

If we are surprised by the “sidereal war” or “the militarization of space”, then it would be difficult for us to recognize the tendency to create specialized units in “Space and Sidereal Defense”, as the United States of America and France did a few years ago. Fashion reaches our Ministry of Defense of the Dominican Republic.

As faits accomplis, the authors point out that: “In the United States, after decades of denialism, the Pentagon last year created the division Unidentified Aerial Phenomenon (UAP), to «Identify, analyze and catalog Unidentified Aerial Phenomena that may pose a threat to the national security of the United States». UAP is the new acronym that replaces UFO (UFO), and includes a broader category of phenomena.

In other countries we recognize measures tending to readiness or cleverness to repel a threat from space, as Scarafoni and Rizzo point out:

  1. In Japan there are specific guidelines for military pilots in the event of UAP encounters; in Argentina, Israel and other countries there have been official admissions of contacts.
  2. In China in the second half of last year, in the midst of a pandemic, the NAOC, the Chinese National Astronomical Observatory, opened FAST, Five hundred meters Aperture Spherical Telescope, a gigantic radio telescope built between the mountains in China, to astronomers and physicists from the rest of the world. the southwest of the country from 2011 to 2016, to explore the universe and study alien worlds and signs of extraterrestrial life.
  3. Added to this news is the strange signal from the star Proxima Centauri, which confirms the detection of “whispers” generated by unidentified intelligences.

Theologians-disseminators say: “We do not want to seem exaggerated or conspiratorial, but those who live in contact with children, permanently related to the game Fortnite, understand that they are developing a reactive capacity unimaginable for us adults, to hit with extreme speed all bodies in motion. They are in contact with players from all over the world, regardless of gender, age, ethnicity, status, language, social status, culture and religion. Continuous world tournaments select the best players by awarding them important prizes. An application made available to everyone and constantly updated that never seems to have connection problems, even when other important programs crash. Constant combat training. Developers and dataminers have released details about the imminent arrival of UFOs in Fortnite Season 6, with “crop circles” and player abductions by the aliens. Aliens should be the undisputed protagonists of the upcoming Season 7.”

Going from the Game to more concrete and raw answers, we are presented by the authors of Vatican Insiderwhat: “Regarding the search for the possibility of life beyond Earth in 2020, the book “Aliens Oceans: the Search for Life in the Depth of Space” by Kevin Hand, NASA astrobiologist, was published. Attention is drawn to a satellite of Jupiter called Europa, which even thanks to the presence of an ocean, would have living conditions very similar to those on our Earth. This project alludes to George Clooney’s film “Midnight sky”, released at the end of last year. A couple of astronaut scientists, expecting a child, back from a mission on a moon of Jupiter, can no longer return home, because the inadequately guarded Earth is about to collapse; they must turn around and take refuge on that same exoplanet to protect life and give hope to humanity.”

  Friar Teilhard de Chardin.
Friar Teilhard de Chardin.

We know that: Another declared objective of the American tycoons is to reach Mars and then build habitable cities for man. From a theological point of view, it is necessary to intervene early, “primerear” (the action of being the first), developing a theology “from the borders” (Rom 10, 18).

It would be opportune to return to the studies of theologians such as Teilhard de Chardin, who had highlighted the importance of the subject. You can consult the article “Extraterrestrial intelligent life and Christology in Teillard de Chardin” by Agustín Udías Vallinas, SJ, available at the following link: 12366

A few years ago, Armin Kreiner’s book “Jesus, UFOs and Aliens” and the studies by the theologian and astronomer Tanzella Nitti and the Jesuit fathers of the Specola vaticana, including José Gabriel Funes and Guy Consolmagno, aroused great interest. Today it is essential to confront and dialogue for a long time with the scientists who have cared for the development of research on the cosmos, overcoming reciprocal distrust.


  Friar Giordano Bruno.
Friar Giordano Bruno.

Concluding the authors, they make a show of their professional work since they touch on a “Christological” argument: “If the American report confirmed the real possibility of relating to intelligent creatures other than us, difficult issues related to Christology would be raised for theology (incarnation and salvation in Christ) and to anthropology.”

“Christ entered creation becoming one of us, he chose man and the Earth. Geocentrism and anthropocentrism have been based on this mystery for a long time, which unfortunately have sometimes caused a lot of pain.”

“Christ teaches us the «kenosis» to show us the dignity of all men and also of other creatures different from us. Christocentrism, in the dimension of encounter and communion with him, goes beyond the confines of the Earth, and is also possible for intelligent creatures other than us. For Christ to be a man is the way, the service, not the privilege and dominion.”

“The people belonging to the world powers who may find the other beings, representing humanity, must show a relationality and an unlimited welcome, not the pride of the human species.”

I find the theological conclusion interesting from the change of “attitude” towards the possibility of not being alone in the universe: “The theological problems linked to the discovery of new planets where life is possible (astrobiology), refer above all to anthropology and the care of creation. Humanity must definitively overcome the “predatory” vision, as has unfortunately happened in the past. In the face of “new lands”, “conquest” and “colonization” have been justified, often on the basis of a false Christology, with the mistake of blessing the “weapons of war”. Now the explicit intention of selfishness of the powerful and rich is added, who instead of protecting the Earth, exploit it to the point of no return and ensure the possibility of seizing other planets for their survival.

Terrible conclusion: “The poor excluded from these predatory games, without a vigorous intervention, even theological, on consciences and intentions, are destined to remain discarded.”

And the monopolization of this fact by the Christianity of the reporters we hear them sentence: “How to relate to the wonderful discovery of habitable exoplanets, where life can develop, and the enriching encounter with intelligent creatures to welcome them and not to fight them, we are indicates in the Scriptures: “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament proclaims the work of his hands” (Ps 19, 1). Christ, King of the Universe teaches all men and all creatures to accept and love each other.”


How much will the faith of Dominicans change, as Christians, as Catholics, as agnostics? Will the many non-Christian denominations be able to carry out the exercise carried out by these theologians-journalists? I only remember Fray Giordano Bruno, a Franciscan priest-monk, who in the euphoria of the discovery of other suns and other solar systems by Galileo Galilei, proclaimed that other peoples had to be redeemed with the blood of other Christs”. They didn’t let him proclaim it higher and further because he died on the inquisitorial pyre.

But at present the “Process Theology” is in process (something like a procedural theology, a way of dealing with the God of Evolution) which is an update of the world from Theillard’s point of view, in these times in which we already recognize life in the confines of the universe, without fear of following in the footsteps of Giordano Bruno…

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