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The great things the organization once did are now no longer possible that it has lost its faithful core ideals.
O’Connor has a habit of writing characters with meaningful, symbolic names, usually with a sense of irony, and Julian is no exception. Julian Hospitator, making Julian out to be a twisted version of a saint.
O’Connor includes an illusion to the legend of saint Sebastian with a line about Julian “waiting…for the arrows to pierce him,” and also mentions that his chore of taking his mother around on Y trips is a form of “martyrdom,” yet his actions don’t paint him as a saint.
It further suggests that he mother resisting the new found liberty of black people is resisting god’s plan and that eventual convergence.
Ower also states that he sees the coins as a way to say that the old south is gone and one must change their values with the changing world, supporting the idea by pointing out that the mother can’t find a nickel to give the black child on the bus, thus the old south that it represented is gone forever.
The phrase also may refer to the work of Teihard de Chardin, who stated that man is moving to a “convergence” where it will become one with Christ at an “Omega point,” a similar concept to the phrase given and one that seems to fit with O’Connor’s religious views, thus why she names the story after Teihard’s theory.
As we evolve as people, we will eventually connect through love and converge at the final stage of evolution as a people.
(Jauss) I feel that Ower really digs deep into the reading and I find myself agreeing with most everything.
It also supports the idea behind the title, pushing convergence theory through the statement on the coins and tying them between their earthly meaning (obey the government as the will of many) and the spiritual (love thy fellow man and join together).
In the end, he fails to “converge” with her and is damned for it, unable to treat someone close to him properly.
He gives no love, and that becomes his gravest sin that he is punished for.