I’m just thinking about today’s hearing. I am not an anti-mask person by any means, but there seemed something even more dehumanizing about these hearings to see Amy Coney Barrett having to wear a face mask while listening to herself be attacked as an extremist — even before she had a chance to speak and before we saw her face. It was such a blessing to see so many of her children there — I loved seeing them walk in, and I only wish some of the little ones were behind her for the hearing view. Their presence on the national stage is healing.
I ran out to Mass during the break, and just before it started, I opened my breviary to pray midday prayer. And you cannot script this better: The second psalm was Psalm 82 — “Denunciation of evil judges.”
God stands in the divine assembly.
In the midst of the gods he gives judgment.
“How long will you judge unjustly
and favor the cause of the wicked?
Do justice for the weak and the orphan,
defend the afflicted and the needy.
Rescue the weak and the poor;
set them free from the hand of the wicked.
Unperceiving, they grope in the darkness
and the order of the world is shaken.
I have said to you: ‘You are gods,
and all of you, sons of the Most High.’
And yet, you shall die like men,
you shall fall like any of the princes.”
Arise, O God, judge the earth,
for you rule all the nations.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
— as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.
After a morning of a thinly veiled abortion rally from the Democratic senators, it was quite the Word to open up to! Even down to doing justice for the weak and the orphan. It was sure light I needed — as the Liturgy of the Hours so often is.
When she finally got to speak, Barrett said: “I believe in the power of prayer, and it has been uplifting to hear that so many people are praying for me.”
She’s already made a contribution to our nation by this witness on the national stage in a culture that has come to frequently deride prayer. Let’s pray it makes an impression and softens the hostility in places of power to the real lived life of faith.