“The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by an endless series of hobgoblins, most of them imaginary.” — H.L. Mencken
Almost a year ago, shortly after the Corona Monster (Covid Aberration, Covidiocy, call it whatever you want) was wound up and thrust upon the world, I posted an article in this blog literally stating that Christian churches everywhere ought to defy government orders and throw open their doors, allowing and encouraging people to come in and celebrate the Good News of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. I said that pastors and church boards should “gird up their loins” and tell the State to get out. I also predicted that this would not happen and concluded with the admonition that, “We must not be quiet or we will be silenced.”
This article was an expansion of a Letter to the Editor which I had published in the Ravalli Republic just a few days earlier. In the initial throes of insanity, panic, and fear-mongered hysteria, this was DEFINITELY NOT well received. Needless to say, my counsel was not followed and church doors were locked on that morning. History shows that, in the face of entrenched, over-powering evil, people will do whatever it takes to avoid trouble and churches everywhere did just that, collapsing into piles of quivering rubble instead of standing erect and strong as the megaphones and mouthpieces of the Light of the World.
Nevertheless, it is now one year later and we (some of us, at least) are “free” to conduct our affairs in a (more or less) restricted atmosphere. The parishioners will be treated to sermons which expound on the glories of “Resurrection Power” and what it means for us today. I wonder, though, how many pastors will take the bull by the horns and preach about being sold a “Pot of Message” and actually dare to admit personal wrongdoing by leading the congregation in a direction which is completely opposed to the liberating, freedom-enhancing message of Jesus.
Not very many, I’ll bet. More than likely, they will proclaim their gratefulness and thanksgiving to a State system which “graciously” allows them to meet together on this Auspicious Day, so long as they sit seven feet apart, do not greet each other with a hug and a kiss, and take Communion digitally instead of in a physically dangerous manner.
I would really like to say “God damn them all!”, but since this blog is read by people who might be offended by that, I will not say it. Besides, God might take that curse seriously at face value and start orchestrating events which would flush them down the toilet. I prefer that did not happen, so I will not curse them. Furthermore, “Judge not, lest you be judged.”, is an admonition I am slowly beginning to realize the value of, so I will pray for them instead and try to encourage them to be consistent with their stated beliefs.
Now that I think about it, however, it might be far better (easier, safer) to avoid controversial topics like Covid, lockdowns, mask mandates, anti-social isolation, etc., and focus on a more important topic of the season–Easter egg hunts. That ought to bring the wayward children home again.
God help us all. We are going to need it.