Saturday, December 06, 2008

St. Gilbert, Patron Saint ...

Saint Gilbert Chesterton.

It has a certain ring.

St. Gilbert.

There are already people agitating for the canonization of GKC. While I support those efforts, that is not my purpose here.

I am considering a post-canonization question.

You see, many saints have particular places, occupations and conditions over which they are considered the patron saints, serving as advocates and intercessors. Some are considered patron saints over multiple areas.

My question is of what thing(s) what would St. Gilbert be a patron saint?

Obviously, he was a prolific writer. Might he join St. Francis de Sales as a patron saint of writers and journalists? I have not found who is the patron saint of essayists, so perhaps St. Gilbert could fill that role.

Although his poetry is not his best writing, it still has its strengths and beauty – and sheer volume. Perhaps he could join St. Columba as a patron saint of poetry?

Then again, given the delightful Father Brown stories, why not a patron saint of mystery fiction?

St. Gilbert was a staunch defender of the faith and a profound thinker. Perhaps he could join St. Thomas Aquinas as a patron saint of apologetics and of philosophy. Given his debating skills, he might be an apt patron saint of debaters – another area for which I have not yet found saintly coverage.

As a convert, he could join the ranks of patron saints like Charles Lwanga, Mary Magdalen and John the Baptist (maybe joining at the same time as Cardinal Newman).

Of course, he did like to drink and eat. Maybe he could join St. Nicholas, St. Augustine and St. Luke in being a patron saint of brewers, or St. Martin of Tours as a patron saint of vintners and innkeepers. He could serve with St. Lawrence as a patron saint of cooks, and, appropriately, comedians (Lawrence’s joke of presenting the poor as the treasures of the Church was a knee slapper).

And while St. Anthony of Padua is the patron saint of lost items, St. Gilbert might be an appropriate patron saint of people who keep getting lost.

The possibilities are endless.

For what other things might he be a fit patron saint? I welcome the input.


Anonymous said...

Perhaps the most obvious one.....the patron saint of common sense. Would come in handy these days.

A Secular Franciscan said...

Makes sense!

Anonymous said...

Patron saint of absent-minded people? :-)


Innocent said...

Patron saint of classical realists?

Patron saint of Catholic bloggers and part-time-apologetists? (Seeing how he dashed off many of his essays with great haste.)

A Secular Franciscan said...

Interesting ideas so far.

Keith said...

Patron saint of OCD sufferers.

"It is always perilous to the mind to reckon up the mind."

"If you argue with a madman, it is extremely probable that you will get the worst of it; for in many ways his mind moves all the quicker for not being delayed by the things that go with good judgment. He is not hampered by a sense of humour or by charity, or by the dumb certainties of experience. He is the more logical for losing certain sane affections. Indeed, the common phrase for insanity is in this respect a misleading one. The madman is not the man who has lost his reason. The madman is the man who has lost everything except his reason."

"In these cases it is not enough that the unhappy man should desire truth; he must desire health. Nothing can save him but a blind hunger for normality, like that of a beast. A man cannot think himself out of mental evil; for it is actually the organ of thought that has become diseased, ungovernable, and, as it were, independent. He can only be saved by will or faith. The moment his mere reason moves, it moves in the old circular rut; he will go round and round his logical circle, just as a man in a third-class carriage on the Inner Circle will go round and round the Inner Circle unless he performs the voluntary, vigorous, and mystical act of getting out at Gower Street. Decision is the whole business here; a door must be shut for ever. Every remedy is a desperate remedy. Every cure is a miraculous cure. Curing a madman is not arguing with a philosopher; it is casting out a devil. And however quietly doctors and psychologists may go to work in the matter, their attitude is profoundly intolerant--as intolerant as Bloody Mary. Their attitude is really this: that the man must stop thinking, if he is to go on living. Their counsel is one of intellectual amputation. If thy HEAD offend thee, cut it off; for it is better, not merely to enter the Kingdom of Heaven as a child, but to enter it as an imbecile, rather than with your whole intellect to be cast into hell --or into Hanwell."