Which is to be master?

FATHER GEORGE W. RUTLER

Connecting with people you'd like to have known is a nice hobby, and I can claim to be just three handshakes from Abraham Lincoln and only five from George Washington.

Recently at the opera, I put several people three handshakes from Puccini.  Alas, an employee in a sporting goods store near Grand Central was unmoved when I put him four handshakes from Mendelssohn.  Just two handshakes from the Alice of Wonderland, I spent many hours in the rooms she knew when her father was dean of the college where I studied and where Lewis Carroll wrote the stories for her.  Alice Liddell, later Mrs. Reginald Hargreaves, died in 1934 at the age of 82, shortly after she visited New York to be honored by Columbia University.

In Through the Looking Glass, Humpty Dumpty boasts: "When I use a word, it means just what I choose it to mean — neither more nor less."  "The question is," said Alice, "whether you can make words mean so many different things."  "The question is," said Humpty Dumpty, "which is to be master — that's all."

When the State tries to be master over nature, behavior becomes disordered.  The results of the disastrous legalization of the destruction of unborn children prove that, and now it is happening again in attempts to "redefine" marriage.  So far, eleven countries have done it, as well as nine of our own states, along with the nation's capital.  Hundreds of thousands have publicly protested the attempt of France's Socialist president to play "master."  It should be obvious to all except the dense and the willfully ignorant, that the next step will be to attack the Church through civil penalties for refusing jto accept the authority of the State to invert the natural order, of which the State is only a steward.

Pope Benedict XVI has said: ". . . if there is no pre-ordained duality of man and woman in creation, then neither is the family any longer a reality established by creation.  Likewise, the child has lost the place he had occupied hitherto and the dignity pertaining to him.  [Rabbi] Bernheim [the Chief Rabbi of France] shows that now, perforce, from being a subject of right, the child has become an object to which people have a right and which they have a right to obtain.  When the freedom to be creative becomes the freedom to create oneself, then necessarily the Maker himself is denied, and ultimately man, too, is stripped of his dignity as a creature of God, as the image of God at the core of his being."

At the wedding in Cana, Christ's mother said, "Whatever my son says to do, do it."  We are free not to do what he says, and to play Humpty Dumpty with nature, but when the social order has a great fall, all the politicians will not be able to put it back together again.

 

 



ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

Father George William Rutler. "Which is to be master?"  From the Pastor (January 20, 2013).

Reprinted with permission of Father George W. Rutler.

THE AUTHOR

Father Rutler received priestly ordination in 1981. Born in 1945 and reared in the Episcopal tradition, Father Rutler was an Episcopal priest for nine years. He was received into the Catholic Church in 1979 and was sent to the North American College in Rome for seminary studies. Father Rutler graduated from Dartmouth, where he was a Rufus Choate Scholar, and took advanced degrees at the Johns Hopkins University and the General Theological Seminary. He holds several degrees from the Gregorian and Angelicum Universities in Rome, including the Pontifical Doctorate in Sacred Theology, and studied at the Institut Catholique in Paris. In England, in 1988, the University of Oxford awarded him the degree Master of Studies. From 1987 to 1989 he was regular preacher to the students, faculty, and townspeople of Oxford. Cardinal Egan appointed him Pastor of the Church of Our Saviour, effective September 17, 2001. 

Since 1988 his weekly television program has been broadcast worldwide on EWTN. Father Rutler has published 17 books, including: Cloud of Witnesses — Dead People I Knew When They Were Alive, Coincidentally: Unserious Reflections on Trivial Connections, A Crisis of Saints: Essays on People and Principles, Brightest and Best, Saint John Vianney: The Cure D'Ars Today, Crisis in Culture, and Adam Danced: The Cross and the Seven Deadly Sins.

Copyright © 2013 Father George W. Rutler