The picture above from the news site MSN is about how the rich, of late, despite predictions, have only gotten richer.
Is that good? Should there be people with more money than some entire nations?
It reminds us of an account by way of Father Daniel Reehil, a one-time Wall Street banker-turned-priest (after a trip in 1998 to Medjugorje). When he was crossing over from the worldly to a religious vocation twice, Father Reehil encountered the devil (or at least a demon) in the form of a striking-looking, wealthy, trendy man — a person, to quote a song about Satan by the Rolling Stones (“Sympathy for the Devil”) of “wealth and taste.”
One of the encounters was at a high-end, beach-bottle service restaurant in the Miami area. The devil said to Father Reehil, “What are you doing here? This is my turf.”
As in Roman times, food and entertainment are idolized.
So are those wealthy.
Take a look at the photo and note the pagan goddesses in the candelabras.
Oh, indeed: sometimes it seems, in recent times — with Lexus S Vs as prevalent as Chevys, with $70,000 pick-up trucks, with restaurants packed — that everyone is profligate. Instead of humbling us, the response to covid was consumerism and money.
Mammon has the upper hand.
This is occurring at the same time that religion is seeing an unprecedented drop: Forty million Americans have stopped attending church in the past 25 years, the Atlantic Monthly notes, pointing out that — at 12 percent of the population — it represents the largest concentrated change in church attendance in American history.
Several weeks ago they closed thirty-four Catholic churches in the St. Louis area.
Speaking of luxury, in the news: “Porsche has apologized after it sparked fury by airbrushing out a famous Portuguese landmark in a video celebrating 60 years of its iconic 911 model,” says the London Mail. “The advert, which shows vintage and newer models of the company’s legendary car cruising through the mountains, drew attention after eagle-eyed viewers spotted a massive statue of Jesus Christ was removed. The Cristo Rei (Christ the King) statue – which was inspired by Rio de Janeiro’s Christ the Redeemer – overlooks the capital of Lisbon near the 25 de Abril Bridge. However, in the advert only the 75ft concrete plinth on which the statue stands was visible as a woman in a red Porsche drove past the suspension bridge.”
Porsche and Jesus, it seems, are oil and water.
Meanwhile, “Barbie” is all the rage.
A bit of occultism there, also?
More on that shortly…
[Footnote from Saint Alphonsus Liguori: “What folly it would be for travelers to think only of acquiring dignities and possessions in the countries through which they had to pass, and then to reduce themselves to the necessity of living miserably in their native lands, where they must remain during their whole lives! And are not they fools who seek after happiness in this world, where they will remain only a few days, and expose themselves to the risk of being unhappy in the next, where they must live for eternity?