Flickr photo by vagawi

Our problem with trust

By Mark Azzara

Dear Friend,

I recently received a fund-raising packet from a conservative legal-action group containing address labels emblazoned with the phrases “One Nation Under God” and “In God We Trust.” It raises an interesting question: Are these statements true?

According to surveys, many Americans don’t even believe God exists, and even those who do believe in God don’t necessarily trust him. Do you? I’m serious. Do you really TRUST God? And does it matter whether Americans trust in God? Yes, it does, because if we don’t trust God we are forced to trust each other.

Given the mistakes I’ve made in my life I can well understand why you wouldn’t trust me at all. Multiply that times 300 million and we have a big problem. Gun-rights supporters don’t trust those who want to limit gun ownership, and non-gun owners don’t trust those who do. African-Americans don’t trust police, and many police mistrust minorities. Rich and poor mistrust each other. Many consumers don’t trust corporations to provide healthy food or safe cars, nor the government to protect them.

All this mistrust is coming to a head in a vituperative campaign centered around two presidential candidates that most voters deem untrustworthy. Add to that a deeply divided Congress that many voters believe is incapable of governing and we have a huge problem.

To, to rephrase my question: If we don’t trust God, our leaders or each other, who’s left?

All God’s blessings,



About Mark Azzara

Mark Azzara spent 45 years in print journalism, most of them with the Waterbury Republican in Connecticut, where he was a features writer with a special focus on religion at the time of his retirement. He also worked for newspapers in New Haven and Danbury, Conn. At the latter paper, while sports editor, he won a national first-place writing award on college baseball. Azzara also has served as the only admissions recruiter for a small Catholic college in Connecticut and wrote a self-published book on spirituality, "And So Are You." He is active in his church and facilitates two Christian study groups for men. Azzara grew up in southern California, graduating from Cal State Los Angeles. He holds a master's degree from the University of Connecticut.

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