Some Greek Words Worth Knowing

The traditional developmental map for the contemplative life, as put forth in the earliest centuries of the Christian era by mystics like Clement and Origen, consisted of three stages: Purification, Illumination, and Union. The aspiring contemplative mystic began his or her journey with a rigorous program of repentance and renunciation, "purifying" one's self in order to become a worthy self-offering to God. One of the happy consequences of such asceticism would be the eventual experience of … [Read more...]

Communion and the Broken Body

As the National Conference of Catholic Bishops puts it, Because Catholics believe that the celebration of the Eucharist is a sign of the reality of the oneness of faith, life, and worship, members of those churches with whom we are not yet fully united are ordinarily not admitted to Communion. To put in the language of the street: Catholics have closed communion. Non-Catholics are not invited to the table (well, technically Eastern Orthodox Christians can receive communion in a Catholic Church, … [Read more...]

The Vatican in the news

Mike Morrell has his ear to the ground (or, at least, his eyes on his keywords) and has brought to my attention several interesting news tidbits concerning the Vatican this week.First, we learn that Benedict XVI is interested in issuing a conciliatory statement about Martin Luther — while I wouldn't go so far as to believe the pope intends to "rehabilitate" the man who unleashed the Reformation, I do think this is a hopeful sign for future ecumenical dialogue. I suppose it took having a German … [Read more...]


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