The Forgotten Town
Is the Place of Favor
I come from a small, rural town in Southern Iowa. It’s the sort of place that once had a railway station, an opera house, a fine hotel, and a couple of good restaurants but got left behind as the world moved ahead. I was never embarrassed or ashamed to be from such a place; I simply didn’t think much of it. Fate required that journey forth and wander but lately I long for my hometown.
As we prepare to journey beyond our planet and its atmosphere, we need a new way of thinking, the novus habitus mentis Pope Paul VI called for. In the worlds of tomorrow, we will not need a single bank CEO or high-powered lawyer or cardinal in frilly garb.
However, we will need people who can grow food, repair vehicles, build buildings, take care of the sick and aged, clean up the messes that follow human beings, deliver babies, educate the young, and keep animals healthy. People who understand dirt and rocks and air and water and stars.
We will need people who care for the land, people who care for the mind, and people who care for the spirit.
We will need to laugh. We will need to sing. We will need to read. We will need to be comforted.
Those are precisely the things that people in small, forgotten towns like Chariton, Iowa know how to do.
The inconsequential people from forgotten small towns across the US are happy without 1,000 count Egyptian cotton sheets, $500 shoes, a Rolex or a Mercedes. They don’t need the best seat at the banquet, exclusive services, or a place at the front of the line.
People from towns like Chariton, Iowa are people of the future — and that gives me reason to be proud of the land of my birth.
May 19, 2016