October 23, 2003

Spanning the Globe to Bring You the Constant Variety of Posts

I know why the caged whale sings --title of a Kairos guy post

How long do you suppose it would be between the time an authoritative "Declaration on the Use of Feeding Tubes" was issued, which provided precise and unambiguous guidelines for all cases, and the first time the statement, "The bishops are exceeding their spiritual authority by meddling in medical matters," was made? --Tom of Disputations

My post on Saturday was partly inspired by my own frustration with the individualist attitude toward religion, which ultimately comes from my frustration with the modern individualist attitude towards everything. I am certainly glad for the freedom that I have in this society compared to others I could be in, especially as a woman. But the dark side of basing society on elective groups is that a lot of people...never really find them. -Camassia, who recently elected to join a Lutheran church.

Openness to the Other requires specificity, not vagueness; attention, not conformity; humility, not pride.... Artists are almost never aesthetic relativists. That's because they know they aren't good enough, and they know they need to improve, and they want to know how! --Eve Tushnet

Te acompaƱo en el sentimiento --Hernan Gonzalez, offering words of healing as I approach my little Gethsemane.

Go Warn the Children of God of the Terrible Speed of Mercy --line from Flannery O'Connor's "The Violent Bear It Away"

'Stop the Bus, Stop the Bus!' Fearing the worst, he did so, and from the back three [inner city] kids pile out of the bus. My friend got out with the other counselor to break up whatever is going on and they see the three kids with cameras taking pictures of one of those vast fields between Columbus and Dayton. One of the kids says, 'What's that?" pointing to the crop growing at the side of the road, and my friend answers 'Corn.'--Steven Riddle

[Oscar Wilde] wrote in De Profundis...that the evil of sin is not in what one does, but in what one becomes. The Gnostics were wrong: the sexual sins touch the soul as well as the body, and they can change the soul for the worse. Dietrich Von Hildebrand explained, "Every manifestation of sex produces an effect which transcends the physical sphere and, in a fashion quite unlike the other bodily desires, involves the soul deeply in its passion," and "The unique profundity of sex in the physical sphere is sufficiently shown by the simple fact that a man?s attitude towards it is of incomparably greater moral significance than his attitude towards other bodily appetites. Surrender to sexual desire for its own sake defiles a man in a way that gluttony, for example, can never do. It wounds him to the core of his being, and he becomes in an absolutely different and novel fashion guilty of sin."

"Whoever denigrates marriage also diminishes the glory of virginity," said St. John Chrysostom, one of the most kick-butt Saints of all time. "Whoever praises it makes virginity more admirable and resplendent. What appears good only in comparison with evil would not be truly good. The most excellent good is something even better than what is admitted to be good." --Enbrethiliel of Sancta Sanctis

Only Anglicanism could produce C.S. Lewis. Only Anglicanism gone bad could give us John Shelby Spong. Orthodoxy can give us Dostoyevsky when it's good and Rasputin when it goes bad. No other tradition could. And Catholicism can produce both John Paul and, when it goes sour, Antichrists like Hitler. Same with American Protestantism: at it's best you get saints like Billy Graham or Jim Eliot. At its worst, Brother Bubba's Informercial Gospel Hour.--Mark Shea

'Well, I guess you could call him a vegetable. I called him Oliver, my brother. You would have liked him.' --Christopher de Vinck writing of Oliver, his brother who was severely disabled from birth, unable to communicate and barely move --via Amy Welborn

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