Archive for the ‘orandi et credendi’ Category

de Sales

from Introduction to the Devout LIfe:

Alexander caused the lovely Campaspe, who was so dear to him, to be painted by the great Apelles, who, by dint of contemplating her as he drew, so graved her features in his heart and conceived so great a passion for her, that Alexander discovered it, and, pitying the artist, gave him her to wife, depriving himself for love of Apelles of the dearest thing he had in the world, in which, says Pliny, he displayed the greatness of his soul as much as in the mightiest victory. And so, friendly reader, it seems to me that as a Bishop, God wills me to frame in the hearts of His children not merely ordinary goodness, but yet more His own most precious devotion; and on my part I undertake willingly to do so, as much out of obedience to the call of duty as in the hope that, while fixing the image in others’ hearts, my own may haply conceive a holy love; and that if His Divine Majesty sees me deeply in love, He may give her to me in an eternal marriage.


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From Taize founder Brother Roger, in Songs and Prayers from Taize:

In a technological society, there is a clear separation between prayer and work. When inner life and human solidarity appear to be in competition with one anothe, as if people had to choose between them, that opposition tears apart the very depths of the soul.

Prayer is a serene force at work within human beings, stirring them up, transforming them, never allowing them to close their eyes in the face of evil, of wars, of all that threatens the weak of this world. From it we draw energy to wage other struggles – to enable our loved ones to survive, to transform the human condition, to make the earth a place fit to live.

Taize tonight at Stauffer: facebook event

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I’m writing on something loosely connected to this picture, which I found by accident, but am considering as a tattoo.

I will be looking for a cleaner copy.

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Young’un (picking up Spider Man lego figure from car floor): I’m going to take Spider Man inside to church today.

Me: Ok.

Young’un: He’s going to think this is craazy.

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This idealized newsfeed (HT ME) was really fun for me. It might not be all your hopes and dreams, but it got my imagination going.

It also got me thinking about how we talk about heaven. A lot of our songs and language about the restoration of a broken, groaning creation amount to odd quotes of ideas and images that don’t connect much to the greatest hopes we have for ourselves, or humankind. The glory of streets of gold and vindicated martyrs that fills the eyes (and ears, and nostrils) of John of Patmos has come, too often, packaged as an ancient-future aesthetic in the worst way: a distant, irrelevant, often gaudy and usually baroque collection of characters and props that don’t generate the excitement incited by what we experience in a movie theater, even when it’s no closer to experience than what we read in Revelation.

But in John’s vision, the imagination is cast around something super-real; something on the fringe of conceivable, but rooted very much in the world we inhabit. What are the things out of our reach, that only God could be worthy to hold in hand? Who are the people or situations that seem least likely to gain favor or justice in this lifetime? Which regimes seem least likely to ever submit to righteousness?

Yeah, that’s at the center of things, when the New Jerusalem drops.

NP: Al Green, Just for Me

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Julian of Norwich asked three things of God: a sympathetic vision of Christ’s suffering; an encounter with debilitating physical illness to facilitate pure worship and nearness to God; and “three wounds” described here:

These two desires of the Passion and the sickness I desired with a condition, saying thus: Lord, Thou knowest what I would,—if it be Thy will that I have it—; and if it be not Thy will, good Lord, be not displeased: for I will nought but as Thou wilt.

For the Third [petition], by the grace of God and teaching of Holy Church I conceived a mighty desire to receive three wounds in my life: that is to say, the wound of very contrition, the wound of kind compassion, and the wound of steadfast longing toward God. And all this last petition I asked without any condition.

These two desires aforesaid passed from my mind, but the third dwelled with me continually.

Julian of Norwich, Revelations of Divine Love, Chapter II


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Hard to believe you can get a crowd these days at an event called “Bible Lectures,” but it’s a great week around here for seeing folks you love to see and hearing folks who’ve given some thought to what matters. Highlight of the week so far was a few nights ago when a coupla ministers from Uganda received an honor. Before a predominantly white crowd of over 2000 (preacher’s guess), a Ugandan woman stepped to the microphone and stretched her arms out. She said something like (feel free to correct me if you were there): “When Jesus stretched his arms out on the cross, he brought together Jews and Gentiles, Africans and Americans, black Americans and white Americans.” As the respected speaker who followed her on the text “love your enemies” acknowledged, he got out-preached. It just matters who says it.

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