You know, sometimes Ash Wednesday is super early. Like last year, remember? It was February 10. (The earliest it can be is February 4)
When it does fall that early, some of us complain and moan that we haven’t even had time to recover from Christmas or enjoy us some Ordinary Time when here comes Lent.
Well, here’s what I say. I say that if this year were last year, Lent would already be almost half over and wouldn’t that be great! The sooner it begins, the sooner it ends.
Several Lent-themed posts this past week:
(Not a post, but look for me in Living Faith tomorrow – 2/25)
- Lent resources from me, including digital resources which you can download and not have to wait for the mail to deliver to you.
The role of the press in helping – or not- us understand what is going on in the world continues to be debated. I thought this Tweet from attorney and Federalist contributor Gabriel Malor summed up the problem nicely:
Good coverage: “We can’t tell what Trump was talking about.”
Bad coverage: “Trump made up a terrorist attack.”
See the difference?
— Gabriel Malor (@gabrielmalor) February 19, 2017
Another excellent contribution to commentary on the present ecclesial moment: “The New Jansenism” from First Things.
We are, indeed, plagued by a new sort of Jansenism, one rooted in presumption rather than despair. The “old” Jansenism arose from both anthropological and theological despair—the Catholic absorption of total depravity, and the loss of hope in the possibility of salvation. Ironically, those who criticize the four cardinals—and anyone who believes that Amoris Laetitia is in need of clarification—often fall into a new form of Jansenism. This “new” Jansenism is marked by a similar pessimism with respect to human nature—total depravity under a new name, whether “weakness” or “woundedness” or “greyness.” And like what preceded it, the new Jansenism articulates a loss of hope in the power of grace to regenerate the soul. The difference is that the new Jansenism tends towards presumption.
Over the past year, Noah’s brain has continued to develop beyond all expectation.
A brain scan taken when he was three years old showed that his brain had expanded to 80% of a normal brain – an incredible result that no doctor expected.
Now, after a series of painful and difficult operations on his hips, he’s even contemplating the possibility one day of walking.
And on the Catholic blogger front:
Mark Zuckerberg (not a Catholic blogger) was in Birmingham earlier this week – he’s doing this wandering-around-America tour thing, which surely seems like groundwork for running for political office to me, but anyway. He started his tour of Alabama down in Mobile, then worked his way up here. After meeting with Anthony Ray Hinton, wrongly convicted of murder and confined on death row for three decades, the Zuckerbergs dined at a place called Oven Bird obviously because, I am assuming, Lisa Hendey told them about it, since that’s where I took her when she visited Birmingham in December. And there’s your Catholic blogger connection on that one.
Thomas Peters, whom some of you remember as the “American Papist” blogger and who still writes in other capacities, was paralyzed in a swimming accident several years ago. OSV catches up with Tom and Natalie Peters here.
Jeff Miller started blogging not too long after I did – way back in 2002, according to his archives. He’s been around for a long time as the Curt Jester, writing witty Catholic blog posts, reviewing books and talking tech. Jeff’s wife Socorro passed away last month, and he writes a moving blog post about her here.
I can hardly write how devastated I am from losing her. After over 36 years of marriage I am certainly struggling day-to-day. I thank God for my faith and that she was the instrumental cause God used in my conversion. She was a women of prayer day in and day out despite all those years when I held her faith in little regard. In my then atheistic pride her faith was something I had to put up with. To the end she never wavered in her faith or her prayers. In those final days when she could hardly communicate – she was still making the sign of the cross.
For more Quick Takes, visit This Ain’t the Lyceum!