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Greetings, my fellow port swillers, and happy Feast of Corpus Christi!

Ol’ Robbo was struck by a line in the Sequence of today’s Mass. Speaking of the Body of Christ in the Eucharistic Host, it says:

Vetustatem novitas, * Umbram fugat veritas, * Noctem lux eliminat.

Which translates:

“Here, for empty shadows fled, * Is reality instead; * Here, instead of darkness, light.”

While not pretending to be any kind of theologian nor having stayed recently in a Holiday Inn Express, Ol’ Robbo nonetheless believes this “light” to be the same one spoken of in the preface to the Gospel of St. John:

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by Him, and without Him was made nothing that was made: in Him was life, and the life was the Light of men: and the Light shineth in darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.”

(More knowledgeable friends of the decanter may feel free to either backstop me on this or else correct my interpretation.)

But the reason the line caught my attention in particular is that I happen to have been thinking recently about that darkness and light, about that empty shadow and reality. Seems to me there are lots and lots of folks chasing the empty shadows these days and most such shadows seem built around such people making themselves into their own little gods presiding over their own little universes centered around their own little “truths”.*** And they all seem to be so very angry and miserable about it, too. Perhaps this has always been the case but I’m inclined to believe that social media has amplified and encouraged such things, and furthermore given such people, who used to sit alone muttering to themselves, the power now to actively go after anyone who dares express a different view.

It’s really very sad. And even if they drag me off to the camps or put me against the wall because of my own “incorrect” belief in the Light and God’s reality, well, I would still feel rayther sorry for them.

***You’ll no doubt tell Ol’ Robbo that he’s just recycling that old Chestertonian chestnut about how when people stop believing in God, the trouble is not that they believe nothing, but that they’ll believe anything. My answer is that a classic is, by definition, timeless and there’s nothing wrong with applying the old formulae to new situations. So there.


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June 2021