IN a recent article in Osservatore Romano the Apostolic Delegate to Great Britain expressed the hope that devotion to our native saints would rapidly revive, that our new churches should be dedicated to these saints, and that our children should be given their names.
This is a matter than can profitably be considered in England on the eve of the feast of St. George, as it might be in Scotland and Wales when the feasts of their patrons are approaching.
The unity of the Church has never been of that false or superficial kind which attempts to reduce the manifold qualities of men, countries, races, societies to an empty uniformity. Such a unity is of the kind which modern " internationals " and contemporary ideologies seek to thrust on to the human race. Such a conception of unity argues poverty of imagination, narrowness of mind and the selfishness of the will to power, all of which are characteristic of that plague of nationalism which seeks to make one people dominate the lives .of ethers.
The Church's unity is a union, a harmony of the different qualities which, through the infinite fertility of God's creation, are to be found upon the earth. The greater the differences, the richer and truer the unity which gathers and orders them to the supreme ends of human existence.
For this reason the Church has always encouraged whatever tends to feed and enrich the springs of personal, local and national life so long as this is ordered towards spiritual unity and moral order.
Nothing is better calculated at one and the same time to foster the precious differences between country and country, province and province, and to keep each and all in harmony with the common welfare than the conservation of the special spirit and characteristics of the Faith and religious devotion in every part. In particular the cult of the saints who shared the same blood, who enjoyed the same characteristics and outlook, who helped to make and keep the same land Christian and holy is a natural and friiitful devotion, The breach with Rome after the Reformation, and the progressive paganisation of the modern world, have tended to make Catholics forget what £hey owe to their Catholic ancestors and their own Catholic traditions; but it may be that after the catastrophes of our times we shall be forced to work for the recovery of Christendom in the West through the restoration of the local and national Christian life. In preparation for this, we cannot do better than encourage the revival of the customs and devotions that once made these islands, islands of martyrs and saints.