Thursday, March 26, 2009

Chesterton - The Wedding Feast

"And, meanwhile, any one Catholic peasant, while holding one small bead of the rosary in his fingers, can be conscious, not of one eternity, but of a complex and almost a conflict of eternities; as, for example, in the relations of Our Lord and Our Lady, of the fatherhood and the childhood of God, of the motherhood and the childhood of Mary." - Where All Roads Lead

I'm not sure if Chesterton was one to pray the Rosary. I can imagine him starting to pray with a Rosary and getting lost in reflecting on some obscure topic he would somehow be able to link to a particular mystery, to the material of which the Rosary was made, or to a bee buzzing about the room.

He certainly knew of the Rosary - as the above quotation shows. Moreover, his great poem, "Lepanto," is about a victory many believers credit to the Rosary (along with a shift in the wind - a prayer-wrought miracle?).

Perhaps those wiser in the ways of Chesterton will know of some essay or poem dedicated to reciting the Rosary - or at least a reference to Chesterton's personal Rosary.

I am certain that he would not have known the Luminous Mysteries. They were promulgated in 2002 by Pope John Paul II. The Baptism of Jesus; The Wedding Feat at Cana; The Preaching of the Kingdom of God; The Transfiguration; The Institution of the Eucharist.

Those mysteries are meditated upon on Thursdays. As I said my Rosary this morning, I thought of Chesterton. I'm not sure that's what Pope John Paul had in mind, but so it goes. The mind at prayer goes where it will.

It was the second mystery that made me think of Chesterton.

The Wedding Feast. The Miracle of the Wine.

I smiled.

Chesterton appreciated food - even cheese - and drink, and joyful celebrations. I pictured him at the wedding, relishing that miraculous wine, and perhaps composing an ode to it that he would leave as a wedding gift.

As a poet himself, Pope John Paul might have appreciated it.

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