“Le Génie du Christianisme”

Tomorrow Sunday, and for the first three Sundays of Advent time, the “gauge” for attending Mass is set at 30 people. From December 15, it will be determined in proportion to the surfaces …

This decision, one of the most burlesque that has been taken in recent times – and yet we did not miss burlesque things – is symptomatic of the degree of dysfunction of the state in recent weeks:

  • First it is absurd. The idea of ​​an gauge indifferent on the surface of the places considered defies common sense. Even more so when we know that it will become proportional after the third Sunday of Advent. A “miracle” in the run-up to Christmas that would make our rulers rediscover the rule of three?
  • It is then unfounded. The Prime Minister’s statement on Thursday that “Places of worship have been, in France as elsewhere, places of contamination” is false, as we know.
  • Finally, it will not be respected, most of the bishops of France having called not to apply it.

In a Tribune published yesterday on the Catholic site Aleteia, François Huguenin suggests to his readership to ask two very simple questions: faced with such an abusive measure, is our religious freedom deeply denied or superficially flouted? Are peace and harmony in danger or simply undermined?

And he concludes with some sort of obviousness – even if one might not have hated taking a stand – that to these questions Christians may not have the same answers.

In the preface to the first edition of his “Génie du Christianisme”, Chateaubriand has this beautiful profession of faith: “I have become a Christian. I have not given in, I confess, to great supernatural lights; my conviction came out of my heart: I cried and I believed “.

Written from his exile in England during the last years of the 18th century, the work was published in France in 1802. Chateaubriand undertook there to defend the wisdom and the beauty of the Christian religion, affected by the philosophie des Lumières and then the revolutionary turmoil.

If secularism is the freedom to believe or not to believe, why not show the deepest respect to those who believe in the beauty of their faith, instead of sending them back to what would only be outdated? or even an archaism?

The French President has probably understood what the deep wound of many Catholics is: “The link between Church and State has broken down, it is up to us to repair it.” It was April 2018, and he was speaking to the bishops of France at the Collège des Bernardins in Paris.

But the progressist “at the same time” is there! Complicated all that …


Iconography: a musician, playing in front of Strasbourg Cathedral © Jakub Arbet


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