Fr. Paul D. Scalia: A Different Inauguration

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*Image: The Calling of Saints Peter and Andrew by Caravaggio, c. 1605 [Royal Collection Trust, London]

By Fr. Paul D. Scalia, The Catholic Thing, Jan. 24, 2021

Fr. Paul Scalia is a priest of the Diocese of Arlington, Va, where he serves as Episcopal Vicar for Clergy. His new book is That Nothing May Be Lost: Reflections on Catholic Doctrine and Devotion.


Fr. Paul D. ScaliaSaint John Henry Newman once observed that men always think of their own day and age as the worst. In every time, he said, “serious and anxious minds, alive to the honour of God and the needs of man, are apt to consider no times so perilous as their own.” Indeed, we see this from Cicero – O tempora! O mores! – to Thomas Paine – These are the times that try men’s souls! – to today’s political hyperboles.

Ironically, Newman made this observation on the way to claiming that the trials of his own day were indeed the worst. They were such that “would appall and make dizzy even such courageous hearts as St. Athanasius, St. Gregory I, or St. Gregory VII. And they would confess that dark as the prospect of their own day was to them severally, ours has a darkness different in kind from any that has been before it.”  …