In honor of the Triumph of the Cross, I thought I might offer a thought or two on a provocative subject.
This subject solely interests Downton Abbey enthusiasts. But, after all, isn’t that everybody?
The situation in late autumn 1919: Matthew and Mary could not wed. Too much misunderstanding, outside interference, and even death, had flown under the bridge. Both had lived through the death of another very attractive young person in their respective arms.
In other words, Matthew and Mary were doomed, their love consummately star-crossed. Hopeless. Tragic. Swallowed up by the merciless vagaries of cruel Fate. Nothing to look forward to but the long, slow, solitary march toward death and nothingness. Black suits and dresses forever.
But here’s the question: What happened? Something changed. Before we knew it, the snow was falling, they took the air on the veranda, and Crikey! they’re engaged.
What changed? How do you go from doomed to vavoomed like that? The fundamental nature of time, reality, justice, and love seems to shifted. Death no longer holds a viselike grip over this couple.
Simple. Christmas. Christmas came, and the black clouds over the cemetery blew away.
Anna falling in love with Bates has never made sense to me. Bates bores me beyond tears. But Matthew and Mary have offered something genuinely interesting. And the jubilee their romance experienced makes perfect sense, when we remember that the Savior had been born in the meantime. The Christian faith allows mankind to start fresh every year. Death doesn’t win. Love and life win.