You can spot them a mile away. Men in white habits with huge rosaries for belts stick out. The Dominican friars certainly stick out in the middle of all the government buildings in Washington, D.C.
Nothing troubles Catholic parents more than the wholesale flight of young people from the weekly practice of the faith. Yet these also are their years of adventure and idealism, when authenticity is at a premium and the world is a mess.
By now most of you are probably aware of the depressing statistics regarding the “nones,” that is to say, those in this country who claim no religious affiliation.
The recent presidential election unearthed a stratum of anxiety and fear that extends across the country like a vein of ore. There is the fear of the person living in a declining industrial town who watches as jobs migrate overseas and wonders how he or she will provide food, clothing, and health care for the family.
It’s a line most of us shoot past as we sing it, but it’s there to make a point, and a point that might help us get more excited about Christmas. We’re used to the idea of God being born. It doesn’t hit most of us as hard as it should.