If you missed Sr. Lisa Doty talking about talking in Church, do check her out, and while you’re over at the portal, do yourself a favor and avail yourself of some thoughts on promises and propaganda.
First, read Max Lindenman — typically sharp, sweet and funny — On Dating Nice Catholic Girls:
Annie Proulx once ascribed to a crippled ex-rodeo cowboy “a carved-wood quietude common among people who had been a long time without sex, out of the commerce of the world.” That’s it: the visible sign of an invisible buzzless-ness.
I was approaching carved-wood status, though not quietly, when I met—really met—my first nice Catholic girl. It was at a vocational discernment retreat. I was standing on the monastery porch, peering through the French doors toward the living room, wondering whether I should bolt now and apologize later, or vice-versa. I heard tires on gravel. Turning, I saw a girl step out of a Honda wearing a tight pair of jeans. They were not, I hasten to add, skinny jeans; they were cut ’80s-style, high at the waist.
When the girl faced me, I saw that her glasses, too, were cut in the style of the Reagan Revolution: square, in every sense. But her legs—timeless. Perhaps her ensemble seems to spell out a mixed message? Not for me. I read: I am beautiful, but either don’t know, or don’t care.
Why, you could be my vocation, I thought, as she skipped past me, smiling.
This may become your favorite read of the week, and the one you want to send to your kids, your nieces and nephews.
You might also want to send them Fr. Dwight Longenecker’s third Luciferian Lesson from the demon professor Slubgrip: on Pop-Culture as Propaganda :
This is not what we want. Instead the poor nincompoops must be given an image not of reality, but of some idealized future that they might one day attain. This is what we call propaganda. Through images, speeches, plays and entertainment and music, literature, and every kind of communication possible we build up in their minds a beautiful world that they want to attain.
Of course they will never attain such an idealized future because it was only ever manufactured by us to start with. It never did exist, never will exist because it never can exist because it was never real. If you turn to pages fifty-seven through sixty-nine in your textbooks you will see some examples of our most successful campaigns in the past.
Better yet, buy them The Gargoyle Code for Lent!
Also, if you’re still feeling Hollywoody because of lastnight’s overlong show, and if you like Edward G. Robinson (and I know you do) read Joseph Susanka on Scarlet Street; Film Noir Loves a Telltale Heart. A movie that might have its own Lenten undertones!
Santiago Ramos on The King’s Speech
Completely unrelated: hope for those of us stuck with ugly churches