MONG the sayings I have over
1-a heard this week are: One fell round me last night, but I wasn't there "; " He went to Cambridge to get a bath," and, from a bus conductress, `'We don't want no medals, lady; we only want to go on living." And I must pay my tribute to the citizens of a great town in Southern England. A traveller from the country would notice no difference, except perhaps signs of sleeplessness. There is the same smile, the cheery devotion to duty, the same refusal to take anything for more than It is worth. Remarkable I Hate or Understanding ?
IOHN Gordon of the Sunday J Express assures us that the flying bomb has done more than any propagandist could to fix the determination of the British people that the enemy should be adequately punished. He advocates the steady obliteration of German towns (1 thought that had been our policy already) as a retaliatory measure—the retaliation to continue even if the flying bombs stop (and that by the way is to prove that this isn't a reprisal but a military measure I), I'm afraid I cannot claim Gordon's remarkable insight into the minds of the whole British people. I find, however. in my own necessarily very limited conversation that people arc really beginning to wonder whether there is any real satisfaction to be got by inflicting on the common people of Germany the same sufferings and anxieties as they themselves are experi
encing. After a certain degree of suffering a sense of common humanity begins to make itself felt, and through our own experiences we begin to
understand what others feel. It is usually those who have been through least who are loudest in their demands for revenge and punishment, Soldiers, for example, arc generally the least vindictive of classes where their opponents arc concerned. And I can understand no one who has seen a child suffering through the wanton act of man deliberately wishing to do things that must inflict the same suffering on other children, whatever their pawntage.
Dutch Envoy IONKHEER Marc 1 W. van Weede (whom you see here) told me when I met him at an Overseas League luncheon last week that when he takes up his appointment as Dutch Envoy to the Vatican he will be going back to the scene of his
Jonkheer van Weede goes home childhood, H i s father held a diplomatic post in Rome ninety years ago and the family remained there for seven years. For two years Jonkheer van Weede himself served in the Royal "Netherlands Legation in Rome and he was there when Italy declared war. " I saw no enthusiasm for war that day," he said.
It was a matter of internal politics that the Netherlands was not repre sented at the Vatican since 1925. It was made a. financial issue and as a protest against the refusal of a grant to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for the maintenance of the post at the
Vatican, the whole Cabinet resigned. Like our own Mr. d'Arcy Osborne, Jonkheer van Weede is not a Catholic. Fle thinks it is a good thing for a Protestant country, like Holland, to send a Protestant representative to the Vatican, A Lisieux Link THE links between Normandy and the island which it conquered are many and are being pointed out these days. Here is a little footnote sent in by a reader. Three of the seven bishops who ruled the Norman Church in 1086 were tenants-in-chief of the Bishop of Lincoln's lands in Eynsham,
Oxfordshire. One of these Bishops was Gilbert Maminot, Bishop of a Lisieux. In those days, of course, the Diocese of Lincoln embraced most of Oxfordshire. Hence Lincoln College, Oxford, and the Church of St. Hugh, Bishop of Lincoln at Witney.
Two Priests on the B.B.C.
rpHouGH I writes it as shouldn't, a since 1 am talking about a close relation, I must say that the three B.B.C. talks on prayer (ending last Thursday) by Fr. Anthony Tborold, proved to be a very exceptional feature in religious broadcasting. Talking quietly and gently, yet without any sentiment (he sometimes reminded me of Fr. Martindale), Fr. Thorold just laid bare in the simplest terms the nature of prayer and how it is relevant to the lives of all of us. A real radio personality, I think—and I believe he has had a big response from listeners asking for further help. Accidentally, I suppose, his twentyminute conference, hymn and prayer were succeeded by the reading of Fr. Gerard Manley Hopkins' great Catholic poem, " The Wreck of the Deutschland," with a brief note about the life and work of the Jesuit poet. It proved a wonderful illustration of the lessons of the earlier talk—and I found myself asking myself whether any radio station, even in Catholic countries, would be found offering a half-hour or so at once 50 Catholic, so dignified and so " educated "—if that's the word.
The Depths Q0 keen are some of our politicians I_) on driving the enemy down to the depths that they get involved in other depths themselves. Here is an extract from the recent debate on the Ministry of information: Mr. Burgin: " Most of them are inclined to believe that mankind cannot sink to the depths to which we know the leaders of Germany and Japan are capable of sinking."
Earl Winterrorr: " In this war, and in the last."
Mr. Burgin: " Yes, it is surprising how quickly the lesson of the last war has been forgotten."
And apparently these eminent gentlemen have forgotten that Japan was a noble ally in the last war.
A New Light IPRINT the following letter from A Chelsea without comment:
Sir, — Surely the genius of Shakespeare is revealed in a new light when we recall that he gave the beautiful " mercy " speech to an Italian Portia, arid that the Pope, also from Italy, is the first authority in Christendom to advocate the use of the " Quality of Mercy " in the world's affairs.