A couple of weeks ago, Elizabeth Duffy, the proprietess of BettyDuffy.com, shared her Examination of Conscience in Real Time with us, here at Patheos, and her voice was so fresh and singular, we asked her if she’d like to join our ever-growing gang of columnists and bloggers in the Catholic portal.
So, say hello to Elizabeth Duffy and her new, twice-monthly column, The Constant Convert, which she launches this week with New Love, New Vocabulary a poignant look at the great and terrible gift of committed love:
“I recently heard a live performance of Carmina Burana. I’d never paid close attention to its lyrics, which are—despite the opening and closing theme, O Fortuna—all about sex and carousing. Life is terrible, unless you’re young and it’s springtime, then people are drinking, gambling, and falling in love. Everyone is sick with new love, yearning for their lovers, waiting for them to arrive, surrendering to the yoke of passion.
I’m not sure I have retained the verbal or physical vocabulary for that kind of loving. Such infatuation requires youth and a disposition akin to virginity, where each new sign of affection brims with significance and novelty. Can you express all of your hoped-for future communions by holding your beloved’s hand? Then handholding becomes one of the most sensual events imaginable.”
Of course, love is not easy:
“It bears repeating that parents of young children are often tired, sometimes grouchy, that their sex lives take a back burner to sleep, that they lack time for directionless conversation, and that most of their directed conversation concerns the well-being of the children. The family is a petri dish for all kinds of growth, but infatuated new love is not usually among the offerings, unless there’s a new baby in the family, as there often is. I kept wondering what my prize would be for reiterating the marriage prep mantra, “Love is a decision,” when it seemed like everyone else I knew was saying, “Love is following your bliss.”
Our love was undergoing purification, but it felt like hell, and from the fullness of the heart, the mouth speaks, sometimes, none too kindly.”
Read it all, to it’s wonderful, giddy conclusion. I think we’re going to like having Elizabeth Duffy around. Don’t forget to say “hi” in the combox!
She hates that picture, btw, but I think she’s beautiful!