My Grown Up Christmas List have discovered I have something in common with Amy Grant--- the same Christmas wish list. BW3 … [Read more...]

He Won’t Give Up on Us :) … [Read more...]

Philomena– The Magdelene Laundries

"The Magdalene Laundries" is a song on the Joni Mitchell 1994 album "Turbulent Indigo". They were the forgotten women of Ireland, kept under lock and key, forced to clean and sew, and to wash away the sins of their previous life while never being paid a penny. Some stayed months, others years. Some never left. They were the inmates of Ireland's notorious 20th century workhouses, the Magdalene Laundries. The laundries — a beneficent-sounding word that helped hide the mistreatment that took p … [Read more...]

Social Description in Early Christianity

Here is an excellent post from Larry Hurtado reminding us that it is wrong to say that early Christianity was largely made up of impoverished slaves, women, minors, and the rural poor. This, is a complete myth. See belowSocial Description in Early Christianityby Larry HurtadoJust occasionally, there have been blog comments reflecting the old assumption that early Christianity was a movement made up simply of "illiterate proletariat". That was a view often touted (even among … [Read more...]

Roma Aeterna– Final Part

Much of southern Italy qualify as being in a semi-tropical climate. Thus plants like the bougainvillea seen above from Pompey can grow all year round without fear of frost. It is not an accident then that the 'beach resorts' of the rich and famous in ancient Roma were also in the southern part of Italia-- in places like Pompey, and Herculaneum (or as it is called today Ercolano). The Italians have a word for ruins--scavi, and thus those who pick over or regularly wander through ruins are … [Read more...]

Rolls vs. Codexes– The Story Continues

Here's a helpful post from Larry larryhurtadoReading a book for review recently on another topic altogether, I came across a casually proffered claim that is frequently asserted/assumed but flatly incorrect: That a major reason early Christians initially turned to the codex as their preferred book-form was that the codex could accommodate a larger body of text than a roll. Wrong on all counts.First, let's be clear about chronology. Sure, by the fourth century CE … [Read more...]

Arrivederci Roma!

What a fantastic week it was in Italy, and lots of good memories created. In this final post, I offer a few parting shots, of a positive sort....Here's a nice spooky shot from within the villa of mysteries at Pompeii.Or here's Yuliya at Trevi Fountain holding her autograph card of Pope Francis... And then a family shot of us there taken by a vendor..And for those who want a wider angle shot of the whole fountain....Or how about a shot of more of Raphael's work in the … [Read more...]

From the Butler to the Book Thief

The movie maestros have decided, in their wisdom, that good dramas which might have a chance at awards shall be showed at the end of the summer or in the Fall, preferably near the peak season between Halloween and the end of the year, presumably because those who decide the Oscars and other awards have short attention spans.These movies tend to be based on best-selling books of one sort or another (see e.g. the Book Thief-- a terrific novel reviewed on this blog a good while back), but of … [Read more...]

Roma Aeterna–Final Chapter, More Herculaneum Scavi

In some ways, Herculaneum is a more impressive site, not in terms of size, but for its location and what is there. This site was discovered when someone was drilling a well in the early 19th century, and came across ruins. This led to the excavation of a huge section of land near the sea. Herculaneum was period in 40 plus feet of molten mud. It has taken a long time to excavate this site--- over 150 years, as with Pompeii. I some ways Herculaneum is more unspoilt, less tourists, and less … [Read more...]