The Fatherhood of St Joseph the Betrothed

In The Golden Legend by Bl. Jacobus de Voragine, the traditional approach to St. Joseph’s betrothal to the Theotokos is presented: he was an elderly man from the line of David who was chosen to be the Virgin Mary’s guardian. According to the text, the high priest of the Temple was told he would be [Read More…]

Why India? The Good To Be Had For Christians In The Engagement Of Indian Spirituality

Early Christian writers were able to see the work of providence in the gentile nations. While pagans were outside of the covenant of God with Israel, this did not mean they were outside of God’s providence. For Christ to be the expectation of the nations, God had to prepare them for the Gospel. Thus, there [Read More…]

Vox Nova At The Library: Icons And The Name of God

Sergius Bulgakov. Icons and the Name of God. trans. Boris Jakim (Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdman’s Publishing Company, 2012). Another year and we have more writings from Sergius Bulgakov translated for the English-speaking audience. Here we have two interesting, and somewhat difficult, works: the essay “The Icon and Its Veneration (A Dogmatic Essay)” and [Read More…]

Top-Down Legalism Contradicts The Spirit of Charity

Abba John the Dwarf said, ‘A house is not built by beginning at the top and working down. You must begin with the foundations in order to reach the top.’ They said to him, ‘What does this saying mean?’ He said, ‘The foundation is our neighbour, whom we must win, and that is the place [Read More…]

Prudence Is The Key

The Christian life is to be one in which we are free to love others, even sinners. We are going to be around others who do not live like we do, who do not seek to be holy as hopefully we seek to be holy. We are not to constantly berate them for their lack [Read More…]

Selfishness, Despite Claims To Justify It, Is Not Virtuous

We often do things for ourselves and justify it by some sort of “trickle down” theory of goods. If we get what we want, we will be able to help others. If we get what we want, then what we get beyond our desire can be put to use for others. Though this intention can [Read More…]

Outlaw Justice

Friar Tuck is an interesting character in the legends of Robin Hood. It appears he was not one of the original members of Robin’s Merry Men, but was, with Maid Marian, a later addition to the legend. It also appears that there was some brigand who called himself Friar Tuck, and, much later, this brigand [Read More…]

Quench Not the Spirit!

The spirituality of the Church, while centered upon the eucharist, must not be reduced to going to Mass (Divine Liturgy) and thinking it is all one needs for a healthy spiritual life. But that is what lies behind a comment by Elizabeth Scalia in an article appearing in First Things:  I wonder if a corollary [Read More…]

The Good of Death

Life is a good given to us by God. We must appreciate it, indeed, it is something to treasure. Creation as a whole is a good, and no proper follower of Jesus can entirely reject the world. Gnostic dualism, no matter how attractive its simple approach to evil might appear, is denied by the incarnation. [Read More…]

It’s Lent: Time To Move On

It is said of Abba Agathon that he spent a long time building a cell with his disciples. At least when it was finished, they came to live there. Seeing something during the first week which seemed to him harmful, he said to his disciples, ‘Get up, let us leave this place.’ But they were [Read More…]