As the article “Are you Samuel, Israel, or Benjamin?” relates, Deuteronomy 2 is an excellent place to begin the story of the entry into the Promised Land. Here, Moses relates, “I sent messengers from the wilderness of Preceding First to Conversation, Messenger of Contemplation, with this offer of peace: “Let me pass through your country. I will travel only on the road. I will not turn either to the right or to the left.”The Latin word for “Left” is “Sinister.” Traveling the right way, we do not travel to the left, to the way of “Sinister.” We do not travel to the right either. The Latin word for “Right” is “Dexter” from which we get our word, “Dexterous,” “Skillful.” The Hebrew word is, “Amen.”
An interesting example is that of the city bus. I want to go four miles due north. My two choices are one bus going three miles due east, and another three miles due west. The question is, “Which bus should I board?” Of course, both buses leave me, not three miles or four miles from my destination, but five miles. It is better not to get on a bus and all, Then I only have three miles to walk. Still, in all too many articles we read, “Vote for______. He is the true conservative.” “Vote for_______. He is the true liberal.” Where is ________?” Where is the true Christian?
The article “A Catholic voters guide for Reno Nevada, part 2” discusses Deuteronomy 30 which relates, “This Mitzvah which I am giving you today is not too wondrous or remote for you. It is not in the heavens, that you should say, “Who will go up to the heavens to get it for us and tell us of it, that we may do it?” Nor is it across the sea, that you should say, “Who will cross the sea to get it for us and tell us of it, that we may do it?” It is something very near to you, in your mouth and in your heart, to do it.
“A Catholic voters guide for Reno Nevada, part 1” lays out the essence of the Mitzvah. It is to love God with all of our hearts, with all of our animate being, and with all of our measure. We do not need to memorize 2885 sections of the Catechism, although we do need to do Lectio Divina with that text. How do we love God? What do we give someone who already has everything? We respect what is his, as the articles above relate. In particular, we respect what he made in his image. There may be devil in the details. We may disagree from time to time, as to how the road actually moves through the desert of our lives. There can be no doubt as to the fact that we must stay on the road, together, as one nation, under God, with liberty, and justice for all. We do not get on the eastbound bus, and we do not get on the westbound bus. We await the northbound bus.
We meet this bus at Mass where we find Jesus in the Physical Presence of the Eucharist. We meet this bus when we see the poor homeless child who has no place to lay his head. We meet this bus when we leave Mass and find the homeless out on the streets, or without adequate food, clothing, shelter, healthcare, or transportation. We love God with all of our hearts, all of our animate being, and with all of our measure. That does not mean, with all of our measure, except for what is inconvenient, or except for our society or our government. We love God with all of our measure.
That is what Psalm 72 tries to tell us when it begins “To Solomon, and ends with “The Psalms of David are finished.” That is what Psalm 82 tries to tell us when Asaph dumps on the rulers of his day for not doing so. That is not what Matthew 25:31-26:1 demands when Jesus tells us in person, “As you do to the least of these my brothers, you do it to me,” and then begins his Passion.
This Saturday we have our Nevada Caucus. In that caucus, we will decide who we want to represent us in the general election. Having no viable candidates is not an excuse. Two of the men running claim to be Catholic. We have 224 Catholic Colleges and Universities, and 26 law schools. These schools graduate 70,000 students each year. If we do not have a candidate each for State Assembly, Governor, Member of the US House of Representatives, two for the US Senate, and one for President, there is something radically wrong. It is probably that we are pushing our leaders to get on that east or westbound bus too. The time has come for this to stop. The time has come for the true Christian leader, and no longer the true conservative or liberal leader.