Each Matters

“It is a weakness of our human minds that we must see things, and even people, in groups, in masses; we are not up to the strain of seeing them individually. Coleridge said, truly enough, that if a man went up to the roof of St Paul’s and remembered everything he had seen from it, he would go mad. We select, we generalize, we divide things into classes; lilies, grains of corn, sheep (by which we mean sheeps), sparrows, and so on. But almighty God sees each of them; and how much more evident it is that in this church he doesn’t see a mob of people hearing Mass; he sees you and me. That is why, if you believe in the doctrine of Providence at all, you have got to believe in a Providence which looks after us individually. God sees us individually, and it is impossible that his love should be less all-embracing than his regard. To him, you are not just one flower in a bunch, one grain in a basket, one sparrow in a flight, one sheep in a flock; you are the one he cares about. We (except perhaps when we are in love) find it difficult to think about our fellow creatures except in a general way; masses of men, movements, and tendencies in history, and so on. But to God each of us is unique, and each of us is the one that matters.”

– Msgr. Ronald Knox (Homily given 31 August 1947)