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Tuesday, 27 December 2011

The Christmas heifer in the shed

    At Christmas in Alexandria, Ontario, we did not have very much. So, instead of buying a turkey, which would have lasted us a couple of days at best, my father would buy half a heifer from the farmer up the road, and he would keep it frozen in the shed attached to our house.
    Every afternoon, my father would head out to the shed with the Swede saw, where he would cut off a piece of frozen beef which my mother would proceed to cook with potatoes and carrots and onions. I used to go out with my father, and watch him sawing the frozen meat. That was the best beef I have ever tasted. It was sweet, and tender, and there was no taste of hormones or other chemicals they put in the cattle these days.
    In some ways, that heifer represented the different type of Christmas we celebrated as a family. Today, there is way too much exaggeration on all fronts. People congregate at large malls for sales on items they do not need. They even fight for them sometimes, and yesterday, a man was viciously stabbed at a mall in a fight over a consumer item which was on sale. Imagine bleeding to death on a mall floor, watched by hundreds of anxious and exhausted shoppers, for being a super consumer.
    One thing Jesus was not was a consumer. The Prince of Peace did not even have a roof over his head when he came into the world. This is true poverty which I never knew. We were a simple family with little extra, but we did not know poverty as Jesus did; however, we did not have extras either.
    It was a happier time. It was a time with less anxiety and less greed. That tender heifer in the shed meant more to us than a big shiny SUV or a house full of high tech gadgetry. When my father unceremoniously brought it into the house on a large plate and handed it to my mother, we all smiled and felt warm inside. We could smell and feel the cold from the shed on my father and his ruddy cheeks glowed with the frost. We knew that supper would be good, and that the fire in the old coal stove would beat out a steady rhythm of heat all night long.
    There was no flat screen television to blare out what we did not have and, what we should buy in order to be happy and to have a complete 'holiday'. We were not subjected to a daily routine of Christmas ads which slowly brainwash shoppers into thinking it is normal to want so many things for our kids and grandchildren. We never heard the word "The Holidays" and if we did, we would not know what it meant. Christmas was a simple time like the birth of Our Lord. And everything revolved around his arrival on this confused, greedy and misled planet, and his Good News, which, if we followed, would change the world forever.
    All we had was the greatest story ever told to think about, and because of it, to thank God for all we had, for, like Mary, the Mighty One had done great things for us, and Holy was His name.
   

Saturday, 24 December 2011

The run for the cash

     People are stampeding the cash registers, but forgetting why they are giving gifts in the first place. It's as if the mass media has set up a new religion based upon how much money people can actually waste at Christmas. Yesterday, on CBC Television, they interviewed the manager of the SummerHill LCBO, and he proudly informed us that this year, he expected to break last year's one day record: $48,000,000 two days before Christmas! We've had helicopter shots of the Yorkdale parking lot wich looked more like Mecca than a store and they keep pumping us up with all these financial forecasts about how much money people are actually dumping.
    And on it goes. Every year has to beat the previous year for greed and insanity, all in the search for good feelings and a sense that yes, I  bought the best gift of all.
    The grandchildren will get a gift from us, but we will continually remind them that they have to give a gift too. That gift is the tiny door in their hearts which we will tell them to open for Jesus, so that they can make some room for the Prince of Peace, the King of Kings, the Almighty Ruler, the Son of God.
    What people who do not believe in Jesus do at Christmas is beyond me. But I do know that we will be thinking of Him a lot, and trying to remain calm at a time of frenetic business, a time of searching and grabbing for things which will be thrown away a few weeks after Christmas, as the anxiety sets in again, and the meaning of the birth of Our Lord is lost on commercialism and secularism once more.
    Money talks, but talk is cheap. Christ says nothing at this time of year. We simply watch a baby in a stable, and the message is loud and clear. The Angel Garbriel does the rest. Settle down, appreciate what you have, rejoice at the good news. The Prince of Peace is here as promised, to be recognized by men of kind hearts and good will.
 

Monday, 14 November 2011

La Biche and Papa Boule were real actors

     My Remembrance Day flic this year was a film called "The Train." It is the story of a group of French resistance fighters who plan to 'de-rail' a German Colonel's attempts to ship a fortune's worth of French paintings to Germany at the end of World War II.
     A French railroad inspector named La Biche, played by Burt Lancaster, along with an aging steam locomotive engineer, by the name of Papa Boule devise a plan to bring the trainload of paintings back to France. They do this right under the noses of the Nazis by changing signs at railway stations, steaming ahead at full speed through air raid attacks, and using the railway switches like magicians.
     These were actors whom people could look up to. The black and white close-ups of their faces, pock-marked with the scars of daily life and stained with train soot, and their steely expressions of unrelenting resistance to the evil that was Nazi Germany are works of art. Those were the days when actors were real heroes, and they had little to say about how people should lead their lives.
     Today, Hollywood is like a religion, sermonizing on everything from animal rights to gay marriage, and many people follow like drunken sheep proclaiming its teachings to the letter. Many actors can't keep a marriage together, and plaster their lives all over the covers of seedy magazines, which peep out at you beside the cash register at the super market. Hollywood is a hotbed of irony and so-called humour, which on closer inspection is in reality, an attempt to discredit religion and establish a secular society based on relativism.
     Do yourself a favour and go out and rent "The Train." Watch real men in action, men who led by example and then kept quiet about it. These were men who did not know much about political correctness, but who knew the right thing to do. They knew right and wrong and they did not joke about it. They knew the meaning of true love between a man and a woman, and they knew the value of the family. They respected tradition and the importance of knowing what is right and what is wrong. But above all else, they knew the meaning of loyalty, and staying the course.
     So many people today rely on the media to tell them what is right and what is wrong, and behind its facade lies a culture of death which allows, even promotes the killing of fetuses, and has little respect for illness and old age. Papa Boule was old, but he was respected by all his comrades and despised by the Germans. When it was time for him to push the throttle and roar through an air raid attack at a French station, people questioned his tenacity. He leaned his blackened rotund face out the window, and his eyes blazed with defiance as he said, "Watch me!" It was an honour for him to be shot in a firing squad because he had foiled the German attempts to steal the art from France. La Biche watched him die and then vowed to keep the art in France, even though it did not mean that much to him, but as a tribute to the life of Papa Boule.
    These are the types of people I think about every Remembrance Day, when many around me are wondering why people are standing in silence, with their heads bowed, in respect for the ways of the past.
    

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Lack of respect for ritual

    More and more people are losing their respect for ritual. For example, Remembrance Day has become an embarrassment, unless you are at an official function, and even then, it can be challenging. Society does not like to be told what to do, especially if it infringes on its phone, texing or workout time.
     I was at the gym at the time of the two minute silence at 11:00 am sharp, November 11, 2011, and many people continued working out even though there had been a public announcement. There was rap music playing in the background, and it was very difficult to concentrate on the immense sacrifices which had been made for us over the years, and to give thanks. It was as if people were saying, "Who cares?" I found this very demoralizing and difficult to accept, and it affected my own concentration and sincerity very much.
     But then again, this lack of respect for ritual seems to be a result of the secularization of society. People are afraid to use the word "God" in public, and to be seen standing at attention, and seemingly praying for two minutes in public is almost an offensive act. Where will this all lead us? If we cannot pay our respects to the thousands of soldiers who gave up their lives for our freedom, then what is the meaning of freedom in the first place? And what value does freedom really have if we are afraid to show our deep gratitide to God, even at national ceremonies, which are covered by national television, and which seem to be deleting any reference to God, and the afterlife more and more as the years go by?
    Many of our veterans died for both God and country. Even in a secular society, we would be sadly remiss if we did not acknowledge this on Remembrance Day, by respecting ritual and praying with reverence to Almighty God. Otherwise, we insult the memory of our veterans, and we desecrate the meaning of the freedom we all enjoy every day.
   

Friday, 17 June 2011

What the Vancouver Riots can teach us about ourselves



Even Jesus got angry and threw things around. We all do at one point or another. It seems to be an integral part of the human brain stem. But Jesus did not physically harm anyone, and what he did, he did in His Father's house; furthermore, He had very good reason to clean up the Temple.
The young people in the Vancouver riots who torched cars, smashed store windows and beat up anyone who called them out, were not in their own houses, and they seemed angry at their own lives, more than anything else. Indeed, a closer look at the Vancouver mob may give us all a better comprehension of our own lot in contemporary society.
Our world has become more secular, less spiritual, more cynical, less polite, more aggressive and decidedly more violent, with much less respect for one's neighbour than possibly at any time in history. Along with this lack of consideration has come a tendency towards sneaky behaviour and the use of lying and play acting as if it were perfectly legitimate and acceptable.
Take the Stanley Cup finals for instance. Although they were not the cause of the riots, they certainly can be taken as a metaphor for what ills society, and has made it such a scary place in which to bring up a family.
Professional athletes who are payed huge salaries to play hockey, lowered themselves to the level of biting opponents' fingers, or offering their own up for sacrifice. They also took dives to try to fool the referees, and play acted so well that some may be asked to move to Hollywood to appear on the soap operas.
They teased each other like little kids in a playground, held onto sticks in order to draw hooking penalties, screamed obscenities at the opposing bench, and each other, fired pucks at the opposing goalie during practice, and generally acted like the boys in the novel, The Lord of the Flies. In other words, they broke all the unwritten rules and stepped all over the taboos they should know like the back side of their hand.
The destructive throng which rolled down Vancouver's streets after the Stanley Cup final reflected the immaturity of the Stanley Cup spectacle which had been playing out night after night, before all of North America.
But they took it a lot further. Many of the culprits even wore Canuck jerseys with the names of their favourite players printed in large letters on the back. So when Joe Blow trashed and looted a store, it really seemed as if it were Roberto Luongo, or Daniel Sedin who was sneakily running away with the loot, or punching someone's lights out.
The fact that most of the trouble makers were male makes the whole scenario that much more frightening and worrisome. These were young men in their twenties, many of them university students,
with their whole future beckoning. They seemed angry and lost, as if they had been treated unfairly. They looked like people who had been searching for something to hold onto and had been left holding an empty bag. Their fine homes, sports cars, computers, cell phones and other high tech paraphernalia meant little or nothing. Fogged by the effects of alcohol, they lashed out at anything they could hurt or destroy.
Are these the future fathers of society? How will they cope with the pressures, responsibilities and required unselfishness which family life demands? They seem to be screaming out at us that they have been cheated of something.
What secular society has cheated them out of is an upbringing in which the Ten Commandments form the basis for all actions, and a spiritual approach to life which lessens the importance of material ownership, and stresses the value of human life and concern for one's neighbour.
A senior citizen I met at the gym the other day told me that she was extremely upset at what she had seen on television, and that her husband had slumped in his wheelchair and sobbed when he saw the footage of the riots.
Perhaps all of Canada should be crying over the death of spirituality, and the foothold which secularism has gained over the past decades. What exactly were those thousands of onlookers flashing their cellphones, and cheering at the destruction and violence thinking?
And I wonder how many of them cried when they sat in front of their high definition flat screens the next day, and realized how far society has come.

Rod McDonald

Monday, 30 May 2011

Priests in the Bush

     This past weekend, I accompanied my eight year old grandson and his father on a weekend retreat at Camp Brebeuf, situated in the rolling hills, about twenty-five minutes north of Milton, Ontario. The event was sponsored by the Conquest Boys Club, which in turn is sponsored by Regnum Christi, a Catholic organization whose motto is: Love Christ, Serve People, Build the Church.
     There were approximately 30 boys in attendance, ranging in ages from six years old to 15, and the weekend was led by Carl Pinto who runs the Milton Conquest Boys Club, Father Thomas Murphy and Brother John Choi, both Legionaries of Christ out of Cornwall, and Oakville.
     Supporting the leaders were a group of fathers who had accompanied their sons to the camp, the camp supervisor, and several camp workers who made certain that everything was kept running as smoothly as a well oiled machine.
     All meals began with the saying of grace, and the group prayed the rosary together in the chapel each evening. The chapel is a rustic, wooden structure hidden deep in the woods, and connected to other areas by a system of paths which wind their way through the forest, offering safety, security and peace to anyone who is fortunate enough to tread there.
     A group of young boys is a magical, energetic microcosm of humanity. They eat lots and often, they climb, they run, they shout and they push each other, sometimes to their limits.
     The Conquest Boys Club motivates the members by offering points for different activities, all tied in to their Catholic faith. The boys are divided into groups and by the end of the evening or weekend, prizes are awarded, based on the number of points attained. It works and it works well. Boys love to be challenged, especially in aggressive physical activity. So this weekend, they left the dodgeball and lacrosse behind and began climbing rocks and rope ladders, all punctuated by decades of the rosary.
     Little Matteo, who is about eight, attacked the rock wall and made it all the way to the top as if his life depended on it. Once at the summit, he finally turned around and took in the vista that lay before him and was obviously astounded at his feat, crying "Wow!" deep into the forest,  "I made it dad!" There was no sun that morning, but the glow on Matteo's face more than made up for it.
     Down in the valley, my grandson worked his way to the top of the rope ladders and car tires and once at the top beam, started to cry as he held on for dear life, realizing just how high and far he had come on that misty, cold morning in the bushes of southern Ontario. Sometimes pride of accomplishment comes in the form of a little boy's tears, not to mention the ones rolling down his grandfather's face.
     Saturday night, the groups put on skits on a stage set up before a roaring pit fire and later, they roasted marshmallows and generally rubbed shoulders and enjoyed just being boys on a cool, drizzly night, deep in the recesses of the black bush. By the time they hit the bunk beds, their eyes were mere slits, and sleep fell on them as soon as they curled up in their sleeping bags.
     During the retreat, Father Thomas and Brother John walked among the boys, dressed in Roman collars, and the traditional black suit, and somehow managed to keep their black shoes clean and shiny for most of the weekend. They answered questions and gave gentle advice, they laughed and they did a bit of teasing along the way, and the boys were obviously at peace with their presence and their leadership. What a gift for a boy to enjoy in this secular age in which few priests are ever seen on the street and a boy has few opportunities to speak one on one with someone as talented, pious and devoted as Brother John or Father Thomas.
     Saturday evening, Father Thomas and Brother John held a one hour adoration in the chapel, along with confession. It was a cold night, with a chilly drizzle rolling in from the east, so we lit a fire in the woodstove, and prayed to Jesus who was right there in front of us on the altar, under the pine beams and wooden ceiling. It was pure magic, and I said to myself, "Thank you God for making me a Catholic."
     Father Thomas heard my confession in the little alcove which serves as an entrance to the chapel. We could hear a raccoon chastizing us from somewhere up in the rafters just above our heads, and we smiled.
     So somewhere out there at Camp Brebeuf, a raccoon has heard all my sins, but being Catholic, I have no fear. For we believe that our sins are forgiven and like the glowing sparks that flew up through the trees from the pit fire that night, they are sent into the darkness and extinguished, only to fall back to earth as lifeless black ash.
     It was a weekend of learning and spiritual growth for all of us, but it was the boys who really came out on top. As little Ryan warned me in the canoe, as we headed up the pond, trying to catch the others, "Don't get too close to those rapids."
     Partly because of the Conquest Boys Club, and the dedicated Catholics who are behind it, these are boys who will make a mark in the world, a world which they love and respect, a world which will hold joy but also danger, and a world in which Christ will protect and love them, notwithstanding the perils of the dark forest and the roar of the rapids which are always close by.
    
    


    
    
    

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Is the Pope Catholic? You Bet.

     I was reading an article which suggested that Pope Benedict XVI has been  remaking the church as we've known it since his election. Some of the issues mentioned were the outspoken criticism of priests who had been found guilty of sexual abuse. The pope has also made it very clear that the people who killed Jesus were not the Jewish people as such, but rather, a group of Temple politicians. He has also invited Anglicans who are not happy with their church's acceptance of gay marriage to join the Roman Catholic Church.
     But what any of this has to do with a slackening of the Catholic Church's traditional views is beyond me, and I find it most unfair to label the pope as "A Rebel With a Cross." Perhaps the pope has disappointed the press because he has not turned out to be the watchdog they had been expecting. What he has become is the successor to Peter, leading his flock through various crises, all the while maintaining a wonderful relationship with Catholic youth and older traditionalists alike. What more could we ask for?
     As far as I am concerned, the Church has not changed one iota. It remains the one, true, universal Catholic Church instituted by Jesus Christ, and continued through Peter's line of successors, of which Pope Benedict XVI happens to be a fine example. The Catholic Church continues to be based on Sacred Tradition, Sacred Scripture and the Magisterium.
     And Pope Benedict's main preoccupation these days, when he isn't writing books, or travelling to distant lands is reversing the tide of secularism that has swept over Europe, and North America for that matter.
    In conclusion, I totally agree with Mother Teresa who said that she liked all religions, but that she liked hers the best. Long live the pope!
    
    

Monday, 25 April 2011

Where Have All the Cousins Gone?

     I was talking to a young mother, and she was telling me how much her little son enjoys the company of his seven cousins. "They are all older than he is and they pay him so much attention. He just loves it." I could see the joy in her eyes as she talked about the cousins and their value in her family. This brought me back to my own childhood and memories of heading out to the farm to play with my cousins.
     They showed me how to milk a cow, feed the pigs and climb up into the hay mow and shove the hay through the trap door, without falling down through the hole in the hay that looked like a big black mouth. We ran through the fields in rubber boots, climbed out to the far rickety reaches of the old apple tree branches and rode the bucking horses through the pastures like the James Gang. When my cousins came to town, we would strut down the main street and look into the store windows, or pay a quarter to go to watch an afternoon of Three Stooges fun.We learned from each other, protected one another, and it was good.
     I told the young mother that my two grandsons have two first cousins, both from near Montreal, and she said, "Oh yes, they don't have many children any more in Quebec." Her response startled me a bit, but there is some truth in it when one considers the declining birth rates, and the mass exodus from the Catholic Church. I told her that her little boy was fortunate to have so many cousins because more and more children have fewer and fewer cousins.
     It's the same everywhere you look. And perhaps this is an opportunity for society to extend itself in a new way. Families used to be more close knit and private, but now families socialize more often because the children enjoy each others' company. They want it and they need it.
     As Mother Teresa says, "It is easy to love those who live far away. It is not always easy to love those who live right next to us....I want you to be concerned about your next-door neighbour. Do you know who your neighbour is?"
    My wife and I were with our grandsons and their parents for Easter dinner. We were just about to say Grace when the doorbell rang and the little boy from down the street whose parents are going through a divorce asked if he could come in. My daughter said, "Of course," and invited him to eat with us. He declined because he had already eaten but he sat in the dining room with us and obviously enjoyed our company, and our grandsons enjoyed his.
     Perhaps this is what Mother Teresa was talking about. Could this be the new family which makes up for a lack of cousins with a greater hospitality and more welcoming home? At first, I found it a bit difficult to have a stranger sitting with us as we ate, but as I thought about it more, I could see that a lot of good was being done, and I was proud of my daughter and her husband for being so generous.
      The boys were happy about it too because they basically had a new cousin in the house and that was just fine with them.
     By the same token, the real thing can be better than a tonic. This weekend, I attended a family reunion of one side of my wife's family, and there were cousins galore. There were cousins in the house, cousins on the porch, tiny cousins rolling in the grass, and cousins sitting around in chairs like philosophers.  I sat back and took it all in, feeling the warmth only a family of cousins can produce, and watching the joy of life in the cousins' eyes.
     They spoke of family tragedies and family celebrations, hilarious incidents which nobody but the family, and those lucky enough to have been invited like me, would ever know or hear about. They hugged, they kissed, they cried, they laughed, but most of all, they shared something which is both indescribable and also so real you can almost touch it.
     That of course, is the gift of family, the gift of cousins, the gift of the heart, the gift of the soul, and above all else, the Gift of God which is the gift of life.
     Thank God for cousins.

   



   

Saturday, 23 April 2011

Holy Saturday in the City

     The subway rumbles underneath the vegetable store on Bloor Street, shaking the tiles and making the Easter lilies tremble. It could well be the rumbling of hell, upset at the crucifixion and death of the Lord of Lords, King of Kings, who has descended into hell for a day and a half. Imagine the uproar, the angst and the unsettling of Lucifer's den.
     People skitter about, buying flowers and hams, adding wrinkles to their faces in the rush to get everything back to the hearth. I say "Happy Easter" to the man who sells us some mashed potatoes, but shrugs and keeps on serving. Perhaps he is Muslim. I like to think I would return his greeting, no matter what the occasion, but I won't know until it happens.
     My mother came to the city once, for my daughter's wedding. She came up with my two sisters and they had to take a cab from the train station to the Old Mill. My mother had never seen a turban and so was petrified by the cab driver who was probably a recent immigrant from India. She panicked and it took her several hours to calm down, but she never quite got over it until she got back home in rural Ontario.
     My mother thought that just about everybody believed what she did because she had such a strong Catholic faith. The urban landscape changed all that, and she never went back to the city again. I guess she sort of felt like the bible salesman in Flannery O'Connor's short story, "Good Country People."
     "Lady," he said, "for a Chrustian (sic), the word of God ought to be in every room in the house besides in his heart. I know you're a Chrustian because I can see it in every line of your face."
     Like my mother, I check every line of peoples' faces, and often I'm left with a sad, empty feeling. That's when I rhyme of the St. Michael's Prayer and carry on the New Evangelization in my own tiny little way, and in the lines of my face.
     And I try to imitate my mother's heart, impossible though that is.

    

Friday, 22 April 2011

Divine Mercy on the Subway

     The drunk had a Scottish accent, and he wore a woolen cap that was slanted to the side as if to say, "I'm rough and tough." I knew he hadn't been partaking of the Black Fast for Good Friday because that part of the car smelled of stale beer. I was reciting the Chaplet of Divine Mercy as I sat on my subway slab, returning from the Good Friday service at St. Thomas Aquinas Church (Newman Centre) on the campus of the University of Toronto.
     There were three scrappy kids standing at the door, and when the drunk pushed past them, he turned around on a dime and with a red face and pointing finger growled, "I show you, runt!" The kid with the bill of his baseball cap turned to the side stood quietly and waited for the subway door to shut. Then he said, "Old drunk," to his friends and they all guffawed.
     "For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world," I sang to myself as my thumb pushed the beads. Perhaps the kids are seeking redemption, I thought. They could have pushed the drunk over and onto the hard tiles of the platform but they just stood there and waited for him to leave.
     Then they sat down and quietly terrorized the people around them until they got off a few stations down the line. When they had left, a lady who looked like a tired angel took their place and stared blankly into the Good Friday afternoon subway light. Below us, hell rumbled with fear at the knowledge that Jesus had really done what he said he would do, and the devil was on the run.
    
    

A Good Man is Hard to Find

The only time I saw an an upcoming abortion in living colour was on the side of a muddy bus in Guelph a few years back. My wife and I were driving behind the bus and there it was, an anti-abortion slogan, bigger than life, paid for by a group of pro-life University of Guelph students. We were looking for a new home, and I remarked that perhaps Guelph had the intestinal fortitude we were looking for, especially if a city bus could carry around a large pro-life ad through the streets of a university town, without  being defaced or worse. Try that in Toronto and the poster would probably end up on the front page of the newspapers, followed by a slanted editorial on hate crimes. And then there would be the demonstrations at Queen's Park with the requisite police brutality and jail sentences.
The poster depicted a fully formed fetus, floating blissfully in a blue sea of amniotic fluid, and its eyes were full of life. We never did buy in Guelph, but that image on the side of the bus haunts me to this day. Later on in the afternoon, we attended mass at the majestic church at the top of the hill. overlooking Guelph, and I prayed for the baby on the side of the bus. I could still see its face and the light around its head which resembled a halo splattered in street grime. 
And yesterday, a Conservative backbencher from the wild and wooly West informed a pro-life group that the Harper government would not be supporting abortions in the Third World. Mr. Harper immediately let us know that he would never re-open the abortion debate, and looked as if he were swatting at flies. The Liberals were all over Harper about womens' rights and the NDP claimed that Mr. Harper had a hidden agenda to shove through anti-abortion laws like a thief in the night.
The sad part about all of this is that these men are trying to answer to the wishes of a majority of urban Canadians. So what happened yesterday is simply a reflection of the lack of morality in this expansive, democratic country, where the hockey score takes precedence over the running count of abortions being performed daily. Even when the CBC news announcers simply mention the word abortion, their face muscles tighten, and they stop smiling in that simplistic way they do when they are talking about politically correct material, or they start looking very gloomy as if another puppy mill has been found within the confines of our politically correct city.
The magnificent Catholic writer, Flannery O'Connor pretty well sums it all up in her stunning short story called "A Good Man is Hard to Find." Just before he shoots the grandmother, the Misfit claims that, "Jesus was the only one that ever raised the dead. And He shouldn't have done it. He thown (sic) everything off balance. If He did what he said, then it's nothing for you to do but thow (sic) away everything and follow Him, and if He didn't then it's nothing for you to do but to enjoy the few minutes you got left the best way you can (sounds like a John Lennon song)...by killing somebody or burning down his house or doing some other meanness to him."
Just like the Misfit, society is confused by its lack of faith and commitment, and its cynicism, and just like the Misfit, it will end up enjoying the killing fields of abortion, reeling it back from goodness, as if a snake had bitten it. But it's not all darkness. Flannery O'Connor always gives her characters a stab at daily redemption.
Who knows? Perhaps one day, Canada will find a really good man to lead this nation. But a good man is hard to find, and Canadians would have to begin believing that Christ really did what He claims to have done.
Then it will be nothing for us to do but throw away our stinking old politics and follow Him, as the Misfit suggests.
Have a blessed and peaceful Easter
and may Christ help Canada to find a really good man.