On Protecting the Church from Sinners

This is not me.

I was praying Evening Prayer yesterday evening (the Feast of St. Teresa of Avila) and found this in the intercessions:Christ, you presented the Church to yourself as a chaste virgin to her spouse: keep her holy and inviolate.And it struck me that in the face of confusion and concern over bishops saying ludicrous things (which things those are depends on the person listening), this prayer is exactly right. It's Christ's job to keep the Church holy, not mine.There's an attitude I've … [Read more...]

Tolkien Illustrations in the Medieval Style

Arwen and Merry at the Battle of the Pelennor Fields

You'll want to spend some time with these illustrations of The Lord of the Rings by Ukrainian artist Sergei Iukhimov. I found them beautiful and unexpectedly moving.There are quite a few at the link; and if you click through there are even more at the artist's own site. … [Read more...]

Troubleshooting and the Synod on the Family


The Synod on the Family is currently going on in Rome; many things are being discussed, and these things are causing many people's heads to explode.I'm not going to talk about those things, but I've got a few observations about troubleshooting.Troubleshooting is the process of looking at a problem, figuring out what's really causing it, and how to make it work. And make no mistake, that's what the pope and the bishops are doing at this synod. The family, that basic unit of society, is … [Read more...]

Some Anecdotes about St. Thomas Aquinas

One of my FaceBook friends commented the other day that she had trouble liking St. Thomas Aquinas; she couldn't warm up to him. All of the books she saw focussed on his theology and philosophy, and made him seem like a thinking machine rather than a person.In part, this is Thomas' fault. He wasn't concerned with himself, so he didn't write about himself; and while others did, they often were concerned with his writings. As a result, we don't really know that much about him compared with … [Read more...]

Thar Be Rough Waters Ahead

As I noted yesterday, I'll be presenting a paper on Quill at the upcoming Tcl/Tk conference. This was a sudden decision, and so I'm scrambling a bit. I spent most of yesterday and all of this morning* working on the paper (which is now finished, at 19 pages of dense technical prose).Thing is, I often spend that time working on blog posts for the coming week. It's now noon on Sunday, and I've got nuttin'. On top of this, I'll be needing to spend time over the next couple of weeks getting … [Read more...]

The TCL/TK Conference Approacheth!

On Saturday mornings recently I've been writing about my views on the esthetics of software development, and I plan to continue with that because it interests me and helps me articulate what I've learned at a deep level but never verbalized. (What, you thought I wrote these posts for your benefit?)I've got to take a hiatus from that today, though, because the 21st Annual Tcl/Tk conference is approaching. It takes place the second week of November in Portland, Oregon, and I'm going to be … [Read more...]

Hold Tight, said the Boogie Woogie Washer Woman

I think most people are familiar with the Andrews Sisters singing "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy"; it's a classic, and a lot of fun. Recently, though (thanks to Pandora, natch) I've been familiar with a couple of other Andrews Sisters tunes that really bring it the full goofy.First, there's "Hold Tight", which is a warm, tender, and upbeat love song to...seafood.And then, once you've eaten (because shrimps and rice, they're very nice, so saith the Andrews), you can get your clothes washed … [Read more...]

Stephen Maturin on Grumbling

I chose this quote from Patrick O'Brian's Desolation Island because it seems to me to particularly capture a lot of what I read on-line. HMS Leopard is in the Great Southern Ocean, trying to avoid a whacking great Dutch warship, and Stephen Maturin is pondering two of her officers:He had the impression that both Grant and Fisher were in a state of powerful fear. There were no evident, direct signs of it, but both complained very often: a stream of blame and disapproval of the modern state … [Read more...]

Think About These Things

An example of beauty.

It's rare that one of the Sunday mass readings really resonates with me, but today the epistle leaped out and (gently and mercifully) took me by the throat and wouldn't let go. The passage in question is Philippians 4:6-9, and it says this:Brothers and sisters: Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God. Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ … [Read more...]