My Thoughts

In his marvelous book Orthodoxy—which every Christian should read at least twice: once for the pure joy of reading great literature and another for the marvelous insights guaranteed to warm the cockles of your cold heart and concretized mind—G. K. Chesterton wrote, “Progress should mean that we are always changing the world to fit the vision, instead we are always changing the vision.” It seems to me should Chesterton now see the ungodly mess we have made of things in the unholy name of progress he would think we have all gone completely blind and batty, lacking any vision whatsoever. With neither a walking stick nor guide dog we are floundering in the dark believing we are making progress while getting nowhere but lost.

There are some who have suggested that I all too regularly overindulge on Chesterton; I readily admit to resembling that remark for I have found no one better at making the truth turn around and bite the liar where it hurts the most. Even after 90-120 years, Chesterton still rings truer and more current than the preponderance of modern writers, present company included. So, objections from the peanut gallery aside, I will happily continue appropriating GKC whenever I am at a loss for a better thought—which will undoubtedly be more frequent than rare, for he is simply far and away out of everyone’s league. Take for instance this bit of wit, written for the New York Times Magazine, Feb. 11, 1923: “My attitude toward progress has passed from antagonism to boredom. I have long ceased to argue with people who prefer Thursday to Wednesday because it is Thursday.” Or this one, from another must read book What’s Wrong With The World: “Men invent new ideals because they dare not attempt old ideals. They look forward with enthusiasm, because they are afraid to look back.”

Despite Chesterton’s genius it takes no genius at all to match stem to meerschaum pipe, muck to the muckraking politician or hypocrisy to the pompous pontificator. Those who would ask “who am I to judge” are invariably the first to judge with neither a moment’s hesitation nor pang of conscience—logic and common sense only serve to betray their guilt. Notice how often when they see a speck that is in your eye, they remove one of the logs stuck in theirs and shove it into your other eye and call it equal justice.

The current swill of politicians pretending to be Robin Hood, promising to rob the rich to give the poor their pittance, quite cleverly omit what is in it for poor Robbin’ Robin. Highway robbery is never a fair trade. Robbin’ Robin must be paid for his ill-gotten generosity. Thus, he swipes a dollar from your wallet, keeps ninety percent for highway transfer fees and shares what is left with a dozen or more poor buggers he encounters along his way to hedonistic paradise.

There is something unsettling how even money always seems to come up odd, but then, such slight-of-hand escapes those blinded by the trees firmly lodged in the sockets normally used for seeing reality.

Wake up America.

Just my thoughts for a Tuesday, 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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