False Prophets

The false prophets began to swarm as soon as the apostles began to preach.

A Month of Sundays: The Foolishness of Father Brown

Despite the wonderful, unfashionably saintly, Mr Chesterton extolling my virtues as an amateur sleuth, I was more often to be seen tending the vineyard of the Lord in a more conventional manner. Even in those dark days before the enlightenment of the Vatican Council I was wont to preach to my sooty, worthy flock. Mine was a simple homiletic style, direct and unadorned, with the meaning unmistakeable. There was none of what some call “creative ambiguity”. My flock had no doubts as to where I stood on matters. Needless to say, I stood with the Church, whether the Church realised it or not.

On leafing nostalgically through my humble homiletic jottings, published as A Month of Sundays: The Foolishness of Father Brown (Bradford, 1940)—which some mischief makers ascribe to my friend Mgr John O’Connor if you please!—I alighted by chance (or Providence) on some thoughts expressed on the subject of false prophets. How they swarm again.

It is our fault that these things have such vogue, for we have lost our vigilance to a great extent—I do not say inside the Church—but the misled of every tribe and tongue are hemming us round, and we must beware more than ever.

A Month of Sundays etc; “A Note on Being Aware of False Prophets”

Perhaps today I would say “inside the Church”…

There are many servants of Christ who do not wear His livery, and many of those who wear His livery do not harbour His habit.

A Month of Sundays etc; “The Fifth Sunday after Pentecost”

Of course, as I have discovered, the wearing of certain liveries is no longer encouraged in many parts of Mother Church. Apparently this is to counter “clericalism” so called, which sounds a lot like judging by appearances. But I digress.

So you have to take trouble to be sure of your faith, for if you do not, the false tipster is always waiting round the corner to get your money for nothing.

A Month of Sundays etc; “The Seventh Sunday after Pentecost”

He’s not getting mine.