Letters 09.12.21 | Catholic National Register

Readers respond to articles in Register.

Small silent actions

Regarding “Fabric of the Liturgy” (Culture of Life, August 1 issue): I would like to thank Virginia Aabram for her fascinating article.

There is so much coverage of the big issues of the day in all media that it is especially gratifying to read the quiet little actions of members of our Church that remind us of the foundational and often silent goodness of people like those at St. Martha’s Guild. .

Such actions are often overlooked and always underestimated. Miss Aabram’s story was as fascinating in its technical descriptions of the actions of the guild as it was well written and pleasant to read.

John Brewer

Clayton, North Carolina

“Quantitative measures”

In the midst of a nation that has awakened, a pandemic that cuts our civil liberties, a Pope turning his back on Church tradition and another Church sex scandal, we must ask yourself: where is Evelyn Waugh when you need him?

Evelyn Waugh is best known for her novel Brideshead revisited, a story of the unfathomable works of grace. Her writing is graceful, and her portrayal of the flaws of modern civilization is caustic, hilarious, and fair. He is perhaps the only one capable of writing a novel satire worthy of the absurdity of our time and give a clue as to how to proceed. Maybe he did.

His Sword of honor The trilogy is the story of Guy Crouchback, an English Catholic who, at the start of WWII, joined the military seeing the war as a resurgence of Christianity against the atheistic powers of Nazism and Communism. (Waugh served in the war, and it must be remembered that when it started Hitler and Stalin were bedfellows.) Guy’s enthusiasm for the crusade is slowly stifled as he becomes familiar with irrationality of modern war and life.

Several dark and humorous events reveal to him that a once glorious cause seems to have become political as usual. Then, recovering from the wounds suffered during the ignominious English retreat from Crete, he learned of the new alliance of England and the United States with Communist Russia. He is completely disenchanted. Convalescent in England with his father (a truly holy figure), Guy expresses his sense of futility in the institutions he once believed in. We all need his father’s advice: “Quantitative measures don’t apply. It could have come straight from Thérèse de Lisieux. I don’t know what to do, and sometimes what and who to believe, in this mess of a culture we live in. And Waugh would be the last to advise sticking your head in the sand and not screaming rot when you see it. Yet I must remember that I am not called to save the world, but only my soul and, God willing, help a few others save theirs. If my faith in institutions has decreased, my faith in God must increase. I will do the good that I can. Quantitative measures do not apply.

Robert B. Greving

Potomac, Maryland

Correction

An article in the August 29 issue of the Register incorrectly stated that the current governor of the state of New Hampshire is John Sununu. Sununu was governor of New Hampshire from 1983 to 1989. His son, Chris Sununu, is the current governor. The registry regrets the error.


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