Can Being Single Be a Vocation, and a few other things…

I have an article published in Catholic World Report on the vocation of singlehood – if we may term it so – in response to Mary Cuff’s article in Crisis earlier in August, whose provocative title is ‘There is no vocation to the single life’. Hmm. That all depends on what one means. Are some human beings meant to be single, and find what ‘vocation’ there be in the midst of what might be regarded as an unstable, restless and potential state? The good side of singlehood is a greater inclusivity, an openness to chaste friendships, more capacity to focus on apostolic work, more time and space for prayer, and so on. But only if used well! Anon, read over my words, if you are amenable, and let us know what you think.

Are we supposed to rally behind Erin O’Toole, and carry the nearly-defunct ‘Conservative’ Party to victory in the next election? Mr. O’Toole is a covert liberal, ‘conserving’ almost nothing, a red leprechaun painted in blue, sort of like a chubby socialist Swedish smurf, except he’s of Irish extraction, so he should be more ‘Catholic’ than he is, espousing at least a modicum of the Church’s pro-life stance. I, for one, don’t think I can vote for him as our next Prime Minister. But, then, there’s always the anti-Trudeau vote. Spoiling one’s ballot, perchance?

We are at an odd, critical moment in history, with most of our ‘choices’ being local, private ones, such as whom we are going to hang out, where we go to Mass, what we think, say and do in our homes and amongst our friends, kith and kin. Not a bad way to live, for now, as many of the ‘bigger’ choices – our politicians, our bishops, the protocols we must face each day, in the public square, in our churches – well out of our control. But we fight what battles we might, and should, and let God take care of the rest. What was that from the second psalm?

Why do the nations conspire, and the peoples plot in vain?The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD and his anointed, saying, “Let us burst their bonds asunder, and cast their cords from us.” He who sits in the heavens laughs; the LORD has them in derision. Then he will speak to them in his wrath,
and terrify them in his fury.

Professional sports continue to implode, ratings are cratering, fans dwindling, games being ignored, much, I must admit with some ting of regret, to my own schadenfreude. Men chasing rubber balls around courts may be mildly amusing and entertaining, but to pay them 7, 8 or 9 figures for doing so? And their entitled arrogance, to paraphrase Hamlet, to ‘play or not to play’, as the whim strikes them? As per above, we should return to local sports, where the competitors actually play for a team, for a locale, for a town or city, for their people – that we could get support, and it would be a lot more fun – home games with coolers of beer and bbq’s, instead of overpriced concessions stands.

Remember, fun? The Latin notion of fruor, enjoying something just for its own sake, for the good and honest pleasure it may give? Like dancing and singing, conversation and fellowship? Let us turn off the virtual reality, and return to these solid and real things, which bear the very stamp of their Creator.