Felix went on to complete his question: “So what?, How is the world a better place because you are studying theology? How is the world improved because you got an education?”
I am haunted to this day; by what I have come to call the “Felix Question”. It is a question that goes to the very heart of the Gospel message of Jesus Christ and for us Christians it is a question that can be asked of any type of education: “So what?, How is the world a better place because you are studying business? How is the world improved because you got a degree in psychology? Is the world any better because you got your PhD in physics? Etc. Etc.”
Jesus insisted that what we do for the least of our brothers and sisters we do for and to him (Mt 25:40). He called us the salt of the earth and warned us not to lose our flavor (Mt 5:13). His own mission statement involves bringing good news to the poor, release to the captives, sight to the blind and liberation to the oppressed and marginalized (Lk 4:19) in other words he came to answer the “Felix Question” to improve the world in which he found himself.
And what about us? How does our education feed the hungry?, cloth the naked?, set prisoners free? and bring health to the infirm? Is at least one person’s life improved because of our education? Is our city a better place? Can our education bring peace, justice and liberation to a world oppressed by pollution, war, terrorism and poverty?