"FOUR FREEDOMS" TO MURDER, TORTURE, ROB AND STARVE
George Burns, Si.
" OUR greeting is specially directed to you, dear men, who return home from the war and
many a 'time face ruin. You were Prepared to die for your people ; pow be prepared to live for them... in union with your wife cut with the girl whose hand you will accept at the Altar of God . . . with diligence, love of sim plicity and union with Csod so you will build a Christian home."
The .men who are tette-fling to civil life from the war zones were told iepeatedly that the wai was fought as a kind of crusade fen a better. soda order ; they find instead that humeri society is overshadowed by clouds of gloom and despair. The prevalent servitude to selfish material ambitions, U! ull levels of life. is the inevitable consequence of the forgetfulness of the meaning of supernatural Charity. The post-war world, foolishly planning to cure its own ills with it own remedies. is falling deeper and deeper into the dark pit of Satanism.
There ft only one way ow—along the road made by mir Lord for us.
Two definite ideas, then. are contained in the above quotation. The Kingdom of Christ must be rebuilt on the foundations of a genuine love of the Christian home and a Christian love of our country. And we must strive to attain these ideals through 0111 ObediClACC to His Laws, and loyalty to His visible Kingdom an earth, tautest, sanctified and niled by Him as Prophet, Priest and King.
Keep the Home Fires Burning
I have just returned trout a e Lancashire tour," . surveying the ravages of the industrial revolution from the top or a bus. " Welcome home, boys !were the words scratched in largo letters on many a wall. The boy--and the girl—hurry home, to their mothers and fathers, their wives and children.
To thee TV return Overburdened with care, . The heate.s dearest face will smile on me there; No more from that cottage again will I roam, Be it ever so humble, there's no place like home.
"Be it ever so humble. . there's no
place like—a house !" It sounds foolish, does it not ?
Current advertising is rich in attractive and alluring pictures of the up-tothe-minute post-war dwelling. Modern planning by efficiency experts, designers, architects and business concerns can at most produce a house. We must aim at transforming the modern house into the Christian home. German bombs have destroyed a portion of the slums; it is up to us to destroy the slum-mind.
The life—and love—of the home is protected by the laws of the Kingdom.
Humanity without Christianity is like the man who fell among robbers, stripped of its supernatural gifts and wounded even in its natural faculties. Without the Good Samaritan, there is no hope of recovery, recruitment or icfreshment. The world needs Christian ideas and ideals, if only to recover human ideas and ideals. " We must talk of the human family in language as plain and practical and positive as that in which mystics used to talk of the Holy Family. . . Then we shall draw on the driving force of many thousand years, and call up a real humanitarianism out of the depths of humanity." (G. K. Chesterton.)
Patriotism is that virtue by which we love our awn country— its Catholic traditions, its literature, customs and people—and serve it in the same spirit in which we serve our family.
It does not mean that we must '• love " the sordid commercial prat:tices and enterprises that have sometimes been promoted widet the shadow of the national flag. Nor does it oblige us to east a cloak over the crimes that can be committed against the human rights of our own people, either in an attempt to crush the. Faith from their hearts or in any policy that seeks to use them as mere slaves to serve the interests of their moneyminded masters. But Christian patriotism, in resisting tyrannies, can never ally itself with wrong methods or seek remedies forbidde i by Christian morality. A " partisan " who carries on underground intrigues. arranges sabotage anu foments social piscontent is not necessarily a " patriot.'
The voyage of humanity across thee centuries is strewn with the wrecks caused by un-Christian nationalism. And thus it behoves a Catholic to distinguish between patriotism controlled, sanctified and animated by Christian charity and the same virtue, escaped from Christian control and become the vice of imperialism and nationalism. Are we not all the children of one Father ? Does not the seeking of a common purpose and the sharing of a heavenly calling bind us more closely to each other ? Are we not all members of the one raoe—the human race ? But the Liturgy of the Feast of Christ the King reminds tee that " the families of the nations are rent by the wounds of sin."
" Instead of the great law of love and human brotherhood. which embraces and holds in a single family all nations and peoples . . there enters hatred. driving all to destruction." Pope Pius XI wrote these words before the advent of Nazism. Since then Hitler has come—and gone. . But the hard rocks of hatreds remain with their menace of world-wide wreckage to the human race.
Cartoons deliberately intended to inflame passions and any propaganda of lies over the wireless, offer new opportunities of extending satanical influences over the affairs of men and nations. Startling .headlines are raised over horrifying pictures of Nazi-inspired 13e1sent and Buchenwalds: there is silence and a snow-white mantle thrown over Siberia.
Murder, torture. robbery, starvation are the four " freedoms" handed out to the thousands of our fellow-Christ.
ions in Europe to-day. '
The Unconverted World The policemail knocks at their doors : they whispei their words of worship and disappear into the darkness of the night. Those who remain are left with little more than their lives ; sometimes not even their iives. But the newspapers are silent—if silence is the policy of their masters.
A Christian need not be scandalised or surprised. For " the world " human society planning ie. polieies without reference to the Law of Love, or merely with a lip-service to the Gospel—can never, of itself, become better Os. wiser. " safer or :leaner '*—Winston Churchill's promise in one of his speeches.
But the unconverted aorld does not even keep a grip on any good standards it may have acquired in the past. It seems 05 if it is doomed to final perdition, amid a welter of " mutual sits picions and international anarchies' " Ellen Wilkinson's alternative to a failure at San Francisco !
Experience proves that the only alternative to the law of humanity is the law of animality; violence and paeaionusurp the places of order and harmony. Human society collapses into one huge brigandage without authentic Chi istianity.
It cannot he a pill of Christian patriotism 1o3 applaud tuitional policies and political plans, if they arc the mere reflection of " the world's principles and maxims. ministering to the uprooting of Christendom or to the crippling of the healing influence of the Kingdom of Chnst. A Christian, therefore, must entleavotti to form judgments about national and international events, such as Christ forms; he must aim at looking at world-histary as He looks at it. To think with the mind of the Church is to think with the mind of Christ. " crowned the King of Kings to rule the nations yet unhorse"
The True Kingdom When He founded His universal Kingdom, our Lord did not take the Bible, or ii law of mere logic-chopping as its basis. The Bible, privately inter prated, leads to sectarian divisions; a law den be broken or diversely interpreted ; logic-chopping leaves you where you began. His Kingdom mats on the foundation of Faith, capable of giving all His subjects, of all nations and in all stations of life, a certain and a vivid knowledge of Ciod and a true purpose in life Faith teuches them to adore the Sacied Heart, as itie scat and source of Ilis tender human affections and the organ of His infinite divine love. The they learn to love, even at He has loved; whether they eat or drink, talk, pray or seek their recreation, journey to different places orrornain at rest, labour with head or with hands, in all things, they can obey Him by ministering to Him in His various disguises—the poor, the outcasts, the persecuted, the brokenhearted in their broken homes.
As a Kingdom, it has laws of its own. with more legislative wisdom than the laws of secular States.
'fhe Feast of the Kingship of Christ dills His subjects to yield Him the obedient homage of their intellect and will ; He is not only loved, but obeyed. There me be thushm opposition between the outward juridical structure of the Kingdom and its interior supernatural Life; the one is divinely contrived to develop the other. It is both art organisation ruled by the successors of the Apostles and an organism cn• ricked by the Holy Spirit with the wondetful gifts of love. Its one purpose is to perpetuate in this world the work of the Redemption. Law and love are interlocked in one embrace !
His true subjects. therefore. cherish an ardent devotion towards His mystical Body and this eisible Kingdom: they are governed by one Head, guided by one Holy Spirit, given the one Sac rammt of His Love—until, at the end of their earthly pilgrimage, they come to enjoy in Heaven one everlasting happiness. Faith vanishes with the attainment or this heavenly vision: Love is there perfected and purified. Meanwhile, they learn to love and beg Him to reveal His Heart to their hearts more fully ; they cherish loyalty to His Kingdom and herald the great Feast of His Kingship with the Vesper hymn:
" Thee Lord of every age, we jug; Thee. Christ, we hail the nation's King: Confess Thy right Thy realm to find Within the hearts of all mattkind."