Catherine Pepinster – editor of The Tablet
To many people Christianity seems to be a religion that fears the body, containing it and its appetites. From teaching on sexual continence to the exhortations to the faithful on fasting and abstinence, Christianity is connected in the sceptic’s mind with denial.
Yet Christianity is a very “fleshy” religion. At its heart is not just God or the supernatural but the body, with all its bones, blood and skin. The Incarnation — the miracle that means that God became man — is so familiar to Christians that it is easy to overlook what this means. But there it is in the first chapter of St John’s Gospel — “the word became flesh, and dwelt among us”.