February 28, 2006


"Anyone who is not a fool at Carnival is foolish for the rest of the year." - quote via ThereseZ of Exultet

Today's feast requires that we all be chairitable to the Pope. - Curt Jester, on the Feast of the Chair of Peter

Someone (I forget who) once said that most writers have one story to tell; they're just very good at telling it in different ways. This is largely true of [Flannery] O'Connor, who writes from the perspective (the Christian one) "that reality is something to which we must be returned at considerable cost," and whose characters are all brought to some point of desperation at which their vanity is laid low, and the illusions of their lives laid to rest. In "Good Country People" a Bible salesman steals a girl's artificial leg, without which her artificial ugliness has not a leg to stand on. In "Revelation" a woman is made to see that the aristocracy of God's favor is not at all what she imagined. - Bill Luse

As with so many heresies, Monotheletism strikes at the Incarnation, without which we're all pretty much just Shriners...We know that having a human will perfectly subject to God's will doesn't mean never feeling distress. It doesn't even mean always desiring, of one's own volition, what God desires, though of course it does mean always choosing what He desires. We are not called to agree with God, but to obey Him. But obedience is the road to perfection, and the more we obey God, the more our human wills become, not merely subject to His, but genuinely like His. - Tom of Disputations

"To change our hearts is to learn to love things that we do not naturally love." This is the core of the ongoing Christian vocation. In this simple sentence Newman speaks of detachment without ever once uttering the scary word. We must learn to love what we do not by nature love--to do so, we must unlearn our entanglement with the world, the flesh, and the devil. - Steven of Flos Carmeli

During the three years of our Lord's public ministry, He never wasted an opportunity to pour out His compassion to those who trusted in Him. He healed the sick and fed the hungry who came to Him (though he barely batted an eyelash in the direction of those who only wanted signs and spectacles), because the sight of their sufferings moved Him so deeply. Yet these acts of mercy were not His main purpose; I daresay He only gave in because we pleaded like little children and He loved us too much to resist. All these miracles were only for the short term. Even the boy he raised from the dead and restored to an inconsolable mother was still to die again--was still dust destined to return to dust. He must have known, as He explained to the Samaritan woman, that quick fixes--even His own quick fixes--would only leave people thirsty again. He must have also been aware, with every sufferer He gave succour to, that there were millions more in the world who could not get close to Him and whom He could not reach because of His human limitations. Of course, what is impossible for Man is possible for God: at the end of our Lord's three-year ministry, He offered Himself as a once and for all sacrifice--in an overwhelming outpouring that would never need to be repeated or renewed--in order to extend His mercy to every last poor, banished child of Eve. - E. of Sancta Sanctis

He who loves the most is always the weakest. He who loves the least is always the strongest. - Author unknown, via Cowpi

It’s not really surprising that the national pro-life groups can’t keep tight control of the movement. Down at the roots, the grass is on fire. After all the careful work writers in journals like FIRST THINGS have done to set in motion the analysis by which Roe can be chipped away, it’s hard to see the South Dakota legislation as anything except a tactical error. But it’s also hard to blame the lawmakers who pushed it through. As the governor said, “Many people will never believe this will not work unless it’s tried.” And the hunger for something to happen—oh, yes, anyone who is opposed to abortion knows that feeling well. - J. Bottum of "First Things"

I can't figure out what granola has to do with the permanent things. - Bill of Apologia

I'm giving everyone a hard time on this because -- well, that's what I do. - Tom of Disputations

What we saw this past week in the Islamic demonstrations over the Danish cartoons of Muhammad was another vivid depiction of the difference between Muhammad and Christ, and what it means to follow each. Not all Muslims approve the violence. But a deep lesson remains: The work of Muhammad is based on being honored and the work of Christ is based on being insulted. This produces two very different reactions to mockery. If Christ had not been insulted, there would be no salvation. This was his saving work: to be insulted and die to rescue sinners from the wrath of God. Already in the Psalms the path of mockery was promised: “All who see me mock me; they make mouths at me; they wag their heads” (Psalm 22:7). “He was despised and rejected by men . . . as one from whom men hide their faces . . . and we esteemed him not” (Isaiah 53:3). - John Piper, via Eric of "The Daily Eudemon"

I haven't read the book, but the title has to be in the running for the most arrogant title ever. - commenter on Amy's blog concerning the Garry Wills book "What Jesus Meant"

If you abandon prayer, you may at first live on spiritual reserves and, after that, by cheating. - St. Josemaria Escrivá via Roz of Exultet

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