My Thoughts: Why I do not identify as a mask

In recent days I have been confronted both to my face and behind it for not masking up like a bandit intending to rob anyone and everyone I meet. I have, on occasion, wondered what would happen should I mask up, enter a bank, and say to the teller, “Give me all my money.” It used to be, not that long ago, that wearing a mask was an indication of some nefarious, criminal activity, now, it would seem, not wearing one is deemed naked facial aggression and a crime against humanity.

To that I would prefer to what the sainted apostle Paul said to his brothers and sisters in Corinth, “When I was a child, a spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; when I became a man, I gave up childish ways. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall understand fully, even as I have been fully understood. So faith, hope, love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love” (1 Cor 13:11-13).

Two things in this passage are pertinent to the current issue: (1) as Christians each of us hopes one day to stand “face to face” before the Lord—I have to believe no one would insist on wearing a mask when they come before God in heaven, or dare chastise Him for not wearing a KN95 surgical mask, and (2) each of us now sees in a mirror dimly, knows but partially, no one fully understands or is fully understood, only God knows and understands fully.

No one owes any other an explanation for what they choose to do or not do, what they believe or do not believe or why. Such an explanation is owed only to God. What we do owe ourselves and others is to “be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect” (Matthew 5:48), that is, to seek toward our own perfection by looking to our heavenly Father as the model of perfection. To be perfect we must seek endlessly for the truth, no matter where it might lead, no matter how much the truth once discovered disparages our most convicted thoughts. No one, but our heavenly Father, who is Truth, knows perfectly.

There is a wealth of information available on the inefficacy of masks and facial coverings. Even the heads of the CDC, the NIAID, and WHO have come to admit to the uselessness of masks, even the vaunted KN95 surgical masks. At a minimum, KN95 masks may provide, according to public health experts, extremely small protection for the wearer if individually fitted and worn properly, all other forms of facial masks fail to provide any meaningful protection against the virus. Some, because of the hardness of their hearts, refuse to seek the truth lest the truth deny them their false convictions.

While I do not owe anyone an explanation for not wearing a mask, I have nevertheless decided to do so. I have been vaccinated against my better judgment. Despite being vaccinated I have subsequently been infected with the virus; I have suffered far more seriously from the common cold. I have antibodies running rampant and amok throughout my body. According to the vaunted “science” I am immune both coming and going. Therefore, for all of the previously stated reasons, I do not wear a mask because all it does is hide my pretty face and make it extremely difficult to breathe and to be understood. As Christ himself said often: “Be not afraid” so also do I say to you, “Be not afraid.”

If you choose to continue to wear a mask, despite the above, I will not judge you, I will never tell you not to wear a mask, I will not be offended in the least. I will, however, love you, pray for you, ask to see your smile, and ask for your forgiveness. In Christ Jesus, I am His.

Just my thoughts for a Friday for what it is worth.

About the author: Deacon Chuck

Deacon Chuck was ordained into the permanent diaconate on September 17, 2011, in the ministry of service to the Diocese of Reno and assigned to St. Albert the Great Catholic Community. He currently serves as the parish bulletin editor and website administrator. Deacon Chuck continues to serve the parish of Saint Albert the Great Catholic Community of the Diocese of Reno, Nevada. He is the Director of Adult Faith Formation and Homebound Ministries for the parish, conducts frequent adult faith formation workshops, and is a regular homilist. He currently serves as the bulletin editor for the parish bulletin. He writes a weekly column intended to encompass a broad landscape of thoughts and ideas on matters of theology, faith, morals, teachings of the magisterium and the Catholic Church; they are meant to illuminate, illustrate, and catechize the readers and now number more than 230 articles. His latest endeavor is "Colloqui: A journal for restless minds", a weekly journal of about 8 pages similar in content to bulletin reflections. All his reflections, homilies, commentaries, and Colloqui are posted and can be found on his website: Comments are always welcome and appreciated. He is the author of two books: "The Voices of God: hearing God in the silence" which offers the reader insights into how to hear God’s voice through all of the noise that surrounds us; and "Echoes of Love: Effervescent Memories" which through a combination of prose and verse provides the reader with a wonderful journey on the way to discovering forever love. He regularly speaks to groups of all ages and size and would welcome the opportunity to speak to your group.

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