Saturday, August 09, 2008

Cardinal Schönborn

Cardinal Schönborn
(spotted at this Orthodox website)

In a world full of so much ugliness, liturgy should be a rest for the soul, a repose where the soul can breathe.

Beauty is not aestheticism. It is not an aim in itself. It is a glimpse of God's glory. We shouldn't stay with a glimpse . . . because people are thirsting for beauty and for what they rightly feel is behind beauty: the glory of God revealed to us.

Heaven opens in liturgy. Beauty in liturgy costs time, love, care, commitment. We must take time for preparing the liturgy, looking for the beauty of the flowers, the songs, the space, the incense, the candles. All this has nothing to do with pure aestheticism, but it is an expression of love.

The faithful can tell whether or not there is the love of God in a church. My experience is that wherever you have a beautiful liturgy, people come. People are attracted, and rightly. We should not say that this is only a superficial attraction.

Beauty is one way to God. It should never be separated from goodness and truth. Beauty without goodness is not beauty; so love for the poor has to be cultivated together with love for beauty -- and, of course, with love for the truth.

Jesus of the Scars

Jesus of the Scars
by Edward Shillito (1872-1948)

If we have never sought, we seek Thee now;
Thine eyes burn through the dark, our only stars;
We must have sight of thorn-pricks on Thy brow;
We must have Thee, O Jesus of the Scars.

The heavens frighten us; they are too calm;
In all the universe we have no place.
Our wounds are hurting us; where is the balm?
Lord Jesus, by Thy Scars we claim Thy grace.

If when the doors are shut, Thou drawest near,
Only reveal those hands, that side of Thine;
We know today what wounds are; have no fear;
Show us Thy Scars; we know the countersign.

The other gods were strong, but Thou wast weak;
They rode, but Thou didst stumble to a throne;
But to our wounds only God’s wounds can speak,
And not a god has wounds, but Thou alone.

Friday, August 08, 2008


I wish I knew (more) German

because Scipio has given us what looks like a stellar post about the Scottish duo The Proclaimers ...

(Apparently, I've been mishearing the lyrics to "The Joyful Kilmarnock Blues" for the last two decades. "On a night when I can see with my eyes shut." Got it.)

Eve on St Augustine

(sorry, St. Augustine, for the most part I think you're the squiggly neon shoelaces of the world and I love you to little sparkly bits, but that wasn't your finest hour)

Eve on the great saint's belief about conversion by the sword

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Fr Tugwell

So long as we imagine that it is we who have to look for God, then we must often lose heart. But it is the other way about: he is looking for us. And so we can afford to recognize that very often we are not looking for God; far from it, we are in full flight from him, in high rebellion against him. And he knows that and has taken it into account. He has followed us into our own darkness; there where we thought finally to escape him, we run straight into his arms.

So we do not have to erect a false piety for ourselves, to give us hope of salvation. Our hope is in his determination to save us. And he will not give in!

Simon Tugwell, OP, via August 2008 Magnificat

Novena Prayer

Novena Prayer to Mary Triumphant

1. O Mary, risen from the grave, ascend as the triumphant Queen, crushing with thy blessed foot the proud head of death; enriched with impassible immortality, go forth amind angelic hymns to celebrate the victory achieved, obtaining for us, who now accompany thee with loving devotion, to share hereafter thy happiness and immortality in heaven. Hail Mary.

2. O choice Dove, endowed with perfect agility, hasten thy flight to heaven, for now the severe winter of thy tribulations is past, and thy dear Son invites thee His beloved to come; oh, mayest thou not disdain to carry our hearts heavenward with thee. Hail Mary.

3. O enchanting Cloud, seen by the prophet Elias, endowed with perfect subtlety, the gift of glorified bodies, penetrate still farther into the heavens to be exalted to the very throne of God; but then return to us with an abundant shower of heavenly and earthly blessings. Hail Mary.

4. O Sovereign Lady, more beautiful than the dawn, more resplendent than the sun, rise above the stars amind the ineffable brightness due to thy glorified body; and may that radiant light, through the darkness of this exile, be a safe guide to those who rejoice in contemplating thy assumption to glory. Hail Mary.

5. O Mary, our hope, joyfully ascend to that glory where thy understanding will be immersed in God, the abyss of light, so that He will be wholly in thee as the sun in a shining crystal, and thou entirely in Him as a dewdrop in the ocean, making a new paradise in heaven itself, a source of happiness second only to thy divine Son. O delight of the Seraphim, grant that this splendid vision may render wearisome and disgusting all worldly allurements. Hail Mary.

6. Rise, O mysterious Ark, borne upon the arms of thy Beloved, and take possession of that exalted throne prepared next to Him, as Queen of the universe. Call vividly to mind the gifts, privileges and graces with which thou wert filled to overflowing, and repeat with unceasing joy, "He that is mighty hath done great things unto me." But remember, O Mary, that because of us sinners thou wert elevated to the sublime dignity of Mother of God. Hail Mary.

7. Fly, O Mother most admirable, with wings of the will and of burning desires, rather than with the swiftness of thy glorified body, to everlasting union with thy only-begotten Son, the center and place of rest for thy tender affections. What sweet ecstasy shall thrill thy soul in that beatific embrace! Do thou cause the flames of that love to descend upon us who are so lukewarm and slothful. Hail Mary.

8. Who will grant us, O Mother of holy love, that we may always be inflamed with that charity, which was enkindled in thy heart at thy Immaculate Conception, and increased beyond measure until it gently consumed thy life? O love, stronger than death itself, that neither saw nor will ever see lessening or extinction! Do thou make that love effective in our weak and troubled hearts, and likewise in the souls of the faithful departed, that on this day of thy triumph they may come forth all-beautiful from the cruel, cleansing flames. Hail Mary.

9. Enter, O Mary, fairer than Rachel, lovelier than Esther, into the blessed mansion of the King; enter upon thy office as our powerful advocate, for the Most Holy Trinity has awarded to thee the kingdom of Mercy. O Queen most benign, say to God that we are thy devoted children; this alone will suffice to make us happy for time and eternity. Amen.

Hail Mary, Glory be to the Father, etc.

V. The holy Mother of God is exalted.
R. Above the choirs of angels in the heavenly kingdom.

Let us pray

Pardon, we beseech Thee, O Lord, the transgressions of Thy servants, that we who by our own works are not able to please Thee, may be saved by the intercession of the Mother of Thy Son, through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

One word meme

One Word Meme
spotted at Fructus Ventris

1. Where is your cell phone? None.
2. Your significant other? Ditto.
3. Your hair? Unkempt.
4. Your mother? Nearby.
5. Your father? Chelsea?
6. Your favorite thing? Beer.
7. Your dream last night? Forget.
8. Your favorite drink? Beer.
9. Your dream/goal? Private.
10. The room you're in? Den.
11. Your church? Catholic.
12. Your fear? Hell.
13. Where do you want to be in 6 years? Alive!
14. Where were you last night? Asleep.
15. What you're not? Slender.
16. Muffins? English.
17. One of your wish list items? [?]
18. Where you grew up? Boston.
19. The last thing you did? Edit.
20. What are you wearing? Casual.
21. Your TV? Nearby.
22. Your pets? None.
23. Your computer? Old.
24. Your life? Dull.
25. Your mood? Average.
26. Missing someone? Yes.
27. Your car? None.
28. Something you're not wearing? Tie.
29. Favorite store? Books.
30. Your summer? Thundery!
31. Like (love) someone? Indeed.
32. Your favorite color? Blue.
33. Last time you laughed? Recently.
34. Last time you cried? Sunday?
35. Who will re-post this? Nobody!



seeming's enough for slaves of space and time
--ours is the now and here of freedom. Come

Sunday, August 03, 2008

The Dream

The Dream
by Theodore Roethke (1908-63)


I met her as a blossom on a stem
Before she ever breathed, and in that dream
The mind remembers from a deeper sleep:
Eye learned from eye, cold lip from sensual lip.
My dream divided on a point of fire;
Light hardened on the water where we were;
A bird sang low; the moonlight sifted in;
The water rippled, and she rippled on.


She came toward me in the flowing air,
A shape of change, encircled by its fire.
I watched her there, between me and the moon;
The bushes and the stones danced on and on;
I touched her shadow when the light delayed;
I turned my face away, and yet she stayed.
A bird sang from the center of a tree;
She loved the wind because the wind loved me.


Love is not love until love's vulnerable.
She slowed to sigh, in that long interval.
A small bird flew in circles where we stood;
The deer came down, out of the dappled wood.
All who remember, doubt. Who calls that strange?
I tossed a stone, and listened to its plunge.
She knew the grammar of least motion, she
Lent me one virtue, and I live thereby.


She held her body steady in the wind;
Our shadows met, and slowly swung around;
She turned the field into a glittering sea;
I played in flame and water like a boy
And I swayed out beyond the white seafoam;
Like a wet log, I sang within a flame.
In that last while, eternity's confine,
I came to love, I came within my own.


Am not the biggest Szymborska fan

but I do like this one.