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After the Riot on the Capitol, What Now?

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In the wake of the Capitol riot, and in the midst of reading Pope Francis’ encyclical Fratelli Tutti, something in me snapped this last week. Our poor, poor country… what have we gotten ourselves into? Do we understand how far down the rabbit hole goes?

It’s bizarre reading the different assessments of what happened January 6th and what led up to it. One blogger I follow put into words what I’ve been feeling. While some of us are confident we know what’s wrong with the world – “Biden stole the election!” or “Trump has been feeding lies to his base!” – others like me are still searching for “veritas”: the truth.

Maybe it’s not the truth I’m looking for so much as a way out of this mess. I found myself praying a lot on Sunday for wisdom.

What can I do to help? Get more involved in politics? Run for office myself? Do different YouTube videos? Where can I be part of whatever fight is going on to bring some sanity and healing to my country?

Yet that is the very problem. Everyone is fighting for what they believe in, which is to say, everyone is fighting each other.

I know you’d hit out

If you only knew who to hit

And I’d join the movement

If there was one I could believe in.

U2, from the song Acrobat

But who do we believe?

Trump supporters say we can’t trust the media, so I suppose they are out. BLM spent the entire summer explaining to us in no uncertain terms that the entire system is flawed. Half the country seems to think the courts, the legislature, everything is corrupt from the top down. (Oh, exc

I came with a heavy heart to Mass. I was distracted by everything. But the saving grace always given to me on Sundays is the focus of the liturgy. With every movement, every rote word spoken, every gentle reminder, Jesus is offered to me.

“What are we to do, Lord?” I ask.

“Feed them,” he says.

“But all I have are five loaves and two fish.”

Yet in the blessing of the bread and wine, in giving it to us the faithful, Jesus says again, “Freely you have received, freely give.” And we trust that the little we have to offer will be enough.

When the priest makes the sign of the cross at the end of the Mass and tells us to “go forth”, he’s telling us to go forth and bring the same Christ to others that has been given to us.

As it was 2000 years ago, so it is today. The world still needs Jesus. And we are still the ones through whom he wants to meet that need.

It doesn’t really matter in the end how big the door is or what size the lock. Jesus is always the key. As we try to be saints ourselves, we will become whatever it is our country needs in this moment. However Pollyanna that seems, it is still true.

There is your Veritas.

©2021 Catholic Anonymous

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