Excerpted from the book “Strangers in a Strange Land” by Archbishop Charles J. Chaput
“The most powerful kind of witness doesn’t come from a classroom or pulpit. It doesn’t need an academic degree or special techniques. Instead, it grows naturally out of the lives of ordinary people – parents and spouses and friends; people confident in the love that God bears for them and eager to share it with others: people who know the world not as a collection of confused facts but as a symphony of beauty, truth, and meaning.
Second, nature is sacramental. It points to things outside itself. God speaks and creation sings in silence. We can’t hear either if we’re cocooned in a web of manufactured distraction, anxiety, and noise. We can’t see the heavens if our faces are buried in technologies that turn us inward on ourselves. Yet that’s exactly what modern American life seems to promote: a restless and relentless material appetite for “more: that gradually feeds selfishness and separates each of us from everyone else.
Third and finally, every experience of real beauty leads us more deeply into three key virtues: humility, because the grandeur of creation invites awe and lifts us outside ourselves: love, because the human heart was made for communion and for sharing joy, and only the Author of life can satisfy its longings; and hope, because no sadness, no despair can ultimately survive the evidence of divine meaning that beauty provides.”
~ Archbishop Charles J. Chaput