A Discerning Pareidolia [Pope Francis Bookclub]

constant vigilance

In 2014, I’m reading and blogging through Pope Francis/Cardinal Bergoglio’s Open Mind, Faithful Heart: Reflections on Following Jesus.  Every Monday, I’ll be writing about the next meditation in the book, so you’re welcome to peruse them all and/or read along.In this week's chapter of Open Mind, Faithful Heart, Pope Francis is discussing the promise of Christ's return and the good fruits of its uncertain timing.  Let's recap that part of Christian thinking briefly using Handel's Mess … [Read more...]

The Blessings of Asked For Mercy

divine mercy text

Today is Divine Mercy Sunday, which providentially turned out to be the day my friends and I are holding our debate on the Brendan Eich donnybrook.  But, since both faith and works are both required to save us, I've also thrown together the NYT Best Chocolate Chip Cookies recipe, so that we can all break bread (or better than bread) together.But, while I'm occupied with my gavel and the oven mitts, I think I do have an appropriate story for today from church. Some indeterminate length of … [Read more...]

Out, Dusty Spot! Out! Hell is Murky [Pope Francis Bookclub]

1276137-dusty_mirror

In 2014, I’m reading and blogging through Pope Francis/Cardinal Bergoglio’s Open Mind, Faithful Heart: Reflections on Following Jesus.  Every Monday, I’ll be writing about the next meditation in the book, so you’re welcome to peruse them all and/or read along.Pope Francis narrates the presentation of Christ at the temple, and the prophesies and joy of Simeon and Anna.  And then he says: There is radiance in the temple because the Light is entering into it: "a light for revelation to the Gent … [Read more...]

The Last Enemy to be Destroyed is Death

harrowing-of-hades

From a very old Holy Saturday sermon: What is happening? Today there is a great silence over the earth, a great silence, and stillness, a great silence because the King sleeps; the earth was in terror and was still, because God slept in the flesh and raised up those who were sleeping from the ages. God has died in the flesh, and the underworld has trembled.Truly he goes to seek out our first parent like a lost sheep; he wishes to visit those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death. … [Read more...]

So Small a Cloud of Witnesses

dali

In Arthur C. Clarke and Stephen Baxter's The Light of Other Days, a scientist invents little wormholes that function as peepholes.  You can peer back from the present to any point in time before now, or in the present, and society struggles to cope with its sudden transparency.People peer at each other or watch the original productions of Shakespeare, but something very odd happens when the viewers in the novel try to look back at the Crucifixion, the day we remember on Good Friday. The m … [Read more...]

On Palm Sunday, Blood Will Have Blood

From a Wesleyan production of Richard III

On Palm Sunday in Catholic churches, the Passion narrative is read aloud.  The whole congregation is on our feet while the priest reads the part of Christ, and two lectors pitch in.  One of them handles the descriptions and narration and the other takes on the parts of each person who speaks along (Peter, Pilate, etc).  The lines spoken by the crowd are assigned to the laity all together.And our lines are mostly brutal.We are the ones who have to call for Christ's death, all saying in un … [Read more...]

A Vainglorious Desire to Suffer [Pope Francis Bookclub]

300_3

In 2014, I’m reading and blogging through Pope Francis/Cardinal Bergoglio’s Open Mind, Faithful Heart: Reflections on Following Jesus.  Every Monday, I’ll be writing about the next meditation in the book, so you’re welcome to peruse them all and/or read along.In this week's reading, Pope Francis discusses a prideful kind of hope, that redirects and tarnishes our natural desire to serve: We are permeated with vanities of every sort, but the most common type of vainglory among us is defeat … [Read more...]


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