Father Callam’s reflection on Dr. Leslie Hamilton Neatby evokes a Canada that was, and may never be again: A dominion united by common, fundamental principles, a shared Christian faith, a pursuit of the common good – to use a phrase from our neighbours to the south, one nation under God. Even our educational formation helped to unite us – that foundation in the classics, in Latin, Greek, literature, philosophy.
And ’tis ‘neat’ that today is also the anniversary of the pounding in of the last spike of the Canadian Railway in the mountain village of Craigellacchie on this day in 1885, after much toil, labour and hardship, physically uniting out country from ‘a mare usque at mare’, from sea to (shining) sea’. Its completion was one of the conditions for British Columbia to join Canada, one of the most significant symbols of confederation.
Now, deep divisions are coming to the fore, attached to the long-dormant demons – abortion, contraception, atheism, hedonism, secularism, unleashed by the undermining of our laws and customs under the reign of Trudeau senior – and these foul spirits now prowl the land. This is more evident again in America, as everything is magnified down there, with ten times our population, and a history forged in war. But the principalities and powers know no borders, emigrating where they will, wherever they find a welcome. And the doors of many seem wide open.
The key for us is to keep our own homes, especially our own souls, as ‘clean’ as we might, with the sacraments, and good sweeping with regular confession and examination of conscience.
But as far as this dominion goes, as well as the republic of America, we’re going to need a lot more than a railroad to unite us now.