The Start of a Reckoning, Dr. Robert Royal

What’s at Stake with the Reopening of the Nation, by Michael Brown
April 20, 2020
Msgr. Charles Pope: Perfect and Astonishing Divine Mercy
April 20, 2020

*Image: Doctor Schnabel von Rom (a plague doctor) by an unknown artist (published by Paulus Fürst in Nuremberg), 1656 [British Museum, London]

By Robert Royal, The Catholic Thing. April 20, 2020

Dr. Robert Royal is editor-in-chief of The Catholic Thing, and president of the Faith & Reason Institute in Washington, D.C. His most recent book is A Deeper Vision: The Catholic Intellectual Tradition in the Twentieth Century, published by Ignatius Press. The God That Did Not Fail: How Religion Built and Sustains the West, is now available in paperback from Encounter Books.


Robert RoyalAs the coronavirus seems to be receding, many questions will now arise. Some quite surprising.  For instance, who – other than the historical greats like St. Benedict, St. John of the Cross, Dostoyevsky, Solzhenitsyn – knew that confinement could have beneficial effects? And in so many ways? Inspiring spiritual reflections (hereherehere, and here). Good practical advice (herehereherehere). And much (gallows) humor: (hereherehere, and here).

And that’s just scratching the surface. We’re not as poor and mean and savage as we sometimes seem, even to ourselves.

A legitimate Christian debate is underway about whether the virus is a “chastisement” for the many sins of the modern world, even in Christian and formerly Christian nations. In the nature of things, we can’t say for sure, unless we receive some message from on high. But whether God sent the plague or has merely permitted it, He must want good things to come from it. And in unexpected ways they already have.  …

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