Today is St. Charles Borromeo’s feast day. Do you want to know what a reforming bishop is all about? Do you want to know how it’s done? Check out St. Charles Borromeo. He’ll learn you.
Pope Benedict had some wonderful things to say on the 400th anniversary of St. Charles’ canonization. Here’s a snippet, specifically directed at youth:
The splendid figure of St Charles suggests to me a final reflection which I address to young people in particular. The history of this great Bishop was in fact totally determined by some courageous “yeses”, spoken when he was still very young. When he was only 24 years old he decided to give up being head of the family to respond generously to the Lord’s call; the following year he accepted priestly and episcopal Ordination. At the age of 27 he took possession of the Ambrogian Diocese and gave himself entirely to pastoral ministry. In the years of his youth St Charles realized that holiness was possible and that the conversion of his life could overcome every bad habit. Thus he made his whole youth a gift of love to Christ and to the Church, becoming an all-time giant of holiness.
In 2011, we visited Milan and took a daytrip to Lago Maggiore, the site of the Borromeo estates. Here’s a post about it. Here’s a picture.
Is Election 2016 over yet? Or, as I prefer to call it, “That time I finally learned what Virtue Signaling meant because my Facebook feed burned it onto my eyeballs.”
What else…let’s see.
Working on that book. I need to get a smallish chunk done by next week for a marketing meeting, hence the self-plagiarizing of blog posts. Sorry.
I’m still deep into Reformations (original reference here). I just finished up the chapters on Zwingli and then the Anabaptists and am on the brink of encountering John Calvin. I’m still enjoying it. I particularly appreciated his chapter on the Anabaptists and his treatment of the rather convoluted historiography of the “movement.”
For some reason, I have always been very interested in the meta level of things. I’m thinking it goes way back to my 9th grade world history teacher, who was very good – although very hated – and taught us out of a text that was composed solely of primary sources. The emphasis was on how history is understood and written, and I suppose that planted the seed. At every step of my subsequent studies, I was always most interested in different understandings and narrations of the same events and how history is written. (Historiography).
Anyway, Eire takes a lot of time to tease these issues apart in relation to the Anabaptists, and it’s interesting, albeit confusing, because they were confusing people – and terribly persecuted by Catholics and other Protestants alike.
The chapter on Zwingli and the Swiss Reformation was good to read because I’d forgotten the course of that movement, which, after the theological currents began moving, started with the defiant eating of sausages during Lent and continued with a very methodical top-down iconoclasm directed by civil government.
And it all happened very quickly, and, as was the case with the Luther movement, a great many of the leaders were former Catholic clerics and one can assume that the lay leaders had been serious Catholics as well. Which makes me wonder about the depth of faith, really. I’m not speaking in general terms, but just in terms of educated clerics who are all in the system one day and smashing statues and dissing the Eucharist the next month. It can happen, in obvious and subtle ways.
Don’t forget, either, that from the very beginning, reformers excommunicated and even persecuted each other. Eh. Sola Scriptura = Gnosticism. Discuss.
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