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Have you lost the joy of orthodoxy? You have to find it again. There’s no Beatitude that says, ‘Blessed are those who Tweet in anger’…

Have you lost the joy of orthodoxy? You have to find it again. There’s no Beatitude that says, ‘Blessed are those who Tweet in anger’…

Mother and Child Smiling at Each Other — Mary Cassatt, 1908

“Joy, which is the small publicity of the pagan, is the gigantic secret of the Christian.”

—G.K. Chesterton

I’ve had a couple different friends ask me, with some dismay, what I think about the recent synods, and how they seem to be getting hijacked by those with heterodox views. “The Church has to change with the times!” they tell us. They seem to forget the words of St. Paul, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Do not be carried away by all kinds of strange teaching.”

We see, for example, documents from various “working groups” that tell us the Catechism must be changed. “That is how we will reach people in this day and age,” we are told. Their recommendations generally seem to ignore the fact that we have some pretty good recommendations already: the Beatitudes, the Ten Commandments, and the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy.

I think for the orthodox Catholic sincerely desiring to serve God, the nonsense coming from those who would rob Christ’s Church of Her truth is a danger to us, but perhaps not in the way we might suspect. The danger isn’t that we are going to fall prey to the nonsense—we know that it is nonsense—the danger is that we become so fixated on the nonsense, that that is what we tend to focus on.

There’s no Beatitude that says “Blessed are those who Tweet in anger, for they shall inherit the kingdom of heaven.” So, yes, the danger is that we act like a husband who spends all his time fixated on someone who insulted his wife. In the meantime, he forgets to actually spend any time with his wife. We can choose to constantly focus on the person insulting our wife. Or, we can simply say, “I don’t have time for this nonsense. I have a wife who brings me joy. These insults are meant to draw me away from my wife. Even though they aren’t working because I don’t believe the insults, I also can’t let them draw me away from her because I am constantly angry about them on her behalf. My defense of her will be finding joy in her. For, no one who sees the love I have for her and the joy she brings me would believe these lies about her.”

And that’s how we win.

We become joyful, holy, and happy to be serving Christ’s Bride. That was always the best defense of Her. It’s always the way the Church won souls.

Perhaps the working groups will remember that.

Perhaps we will too.


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