Posted in Amy Welborn, Amy Welborn's Books, Apostles, Bible, Bible Study, Catholic, Catholicism, Christian, Easter, Eternity, evangelization, Faith, history, Holy Week, Jesus, Joseph Dubruiel, Lent, Liturgy, Matthew 25, Michael Dubruiel, Morality, prayer, Religion, Spirituality, Vintage Catholic, tagged Amy Welborn, Amy Welborn's Books, Bible, Catholic, Catholicism, Christianity, Church, Good Friday, Holy Week, Jesus, Michael Dubruiel, Reading, Vintage Catholic on April 13, 2017|
Posted in Amy Welborn, Amy Welborn's Books, Apostles, art, Bible, Bible Study, Catholic, Catholicism, Christian, Church, Cross, Current Reads, Easter, evangelization, Faith, Good Friday, Gospels, history, Holy Week, Jesus, Joseph Dubruiel, Lent, Life, Liturgy, Matthew 25, Michael Dubruiel, Mission, pilgrimage, prayer, RCIA, Religion, Vintage Catholic, Works of Mercy, tagged Amy Welborn, Amy Welborn's Books, Bible, Catholic, Catholicism, christian, Christianity, Church, faith, Holy Week, Jesus, Michael Dubruiel, poetry, religion, Vintage Catholic on April 13, 2017|
Lope de Vega Carpio (1562-1613), translated by Geoffrey Hill
What is there in my heart that you should sue
so fiercely for its love? What kind of care
brings you as though a stranger to my door
through the long night and in the icy dew
seeking the heart that will not harbor you,
that keeps itself religiously secure?
At this dark solstice filled with frost and fire
your passion’s ancient wounds must bleed anew.
So many nights the angel of my house
has fed such urgent comfort through a dream,
whispered ‘your lord is coming, he is close’
that I have drowsed half-faithful for a time
bathed in pure tones of promise and remorse:
‘tomorrow I shall wake to welcome him.’
Also, from my favorite vintage textbook. We’ll just keep it simple today. That’s the best way.
Posted in Amy Welborn, Amy Welborn's Books, art, Bible, Catholic, Catholicism, Christian, Church, evangelization, Family, Family Travel, Gospels, history, Jesus, Joseph Dubruiel, Lent, Life, London 2017, Michael Dubruiel, roadschooling, Spirituality, Travel, travel with kids, tagged Amy Welborn, Amy Welborn's Books, Bible, Catholicism, Christianity, family, family travel, food, Gospels, history, London 2017, Michael Dubruiel, museums, saints, travel, travel with children, travel with kids on March 28, 2017| 2 Comments »
Another full, good day, with a few twists and turns. I’m feeling bullet-pointish about this one today.
Posted in amy, Amy Welborn, Amy Welborn's Books, Apostles, art, Bible, Canada, Catholic, Catholicsim, christmas, Church, Cross, evangelization, Faith, Family Travel, history, Jesus, Joseph Dubruiel, Mary, Michael Dubruiel, Mission, pilgrimage, Pope, Saints, tagged Amy Welborn, Amy Welborn's Books, Bible, Bible Study, Canada, Catholic, Catholicism, Christianity, Church, history, Internet, Michael Dubruiel, montreal, saints, travel, travel with children, travel with kids on March 20, 2017| 2 Comments »
If the St. Patrick’s kerfuffle weren’t enough, don’t forget that the feast of St. Joseph is a solemnity, therefore we just can’t ignore it if it falls on a Sunday, as it does this year. Today, we celebrate!
Some images for you, first a vintage holy card from the Shrine of St. Joseph in Montreal that interests me because it predates the construction of the large basilica:
From the Oratory of St. Joseph in Montreal.
I just love the blues on the card above and the not-quite Art-Noveauishness of it.
At the shrine featured in the vintage holy cards. Summer 2011.
In him the Old Testament finds its fitting close. He brought the noble line of patriarchs and prophets to its promised fulfillment. What the divine goodness had offered as a promise to them, he held in his arms. – from a homily of St. Bernardine of Siena.
The wonderful Catholic artist Daniel Mitsui, whose depiction of St. Joseph dreaming is above, has restarted his blog. It is an absolute treasure trove of wisdom, whether you are an artist or not. Please go visit, bookmark, visit every day and support his work.
Posted in 7 Quick Takes, Amy Welborn, Amy Welborn's Books, Apostles, Bible, Bible Study, Birmingham, Book Reviews, Catholic, Catholicism, Christian, Church, Current Events, Eucharist, evangelization, Facebook, Faith, Gospels, history, Instagram, Jesus, Joseph Dubruiel, Lent, Life, Living Faith, Loyola Press, Mass, Matthew 25, Michael Dubruiel, Pivotal Players, Pope, pro-life, RCIA, Religion, Reviews, Saints, Spirituality, Travel, Wish You Were Here, Word on Fire, Works of Mercy, Writing, tagged Amy Welborn, Amy Welborn's Books, Bible, book reviews, books, Catholicism, Facebook, faith, Instagram, Lent, Michael Dubruiel, politics, Reading, Septuagesima Sunday on February 3, 2017| 2 Comments »
Well, that’s done. Another book in the bag, manuscript sent in on deadline.
What’s next? With this book, the editors are looking at it and within the next couple of months will return the manuscript to me with suggested edits. Then I’ll return it to them, the publisher will produce galleys for me to take one more pass at, and then it will go to press. The goal was a pub date in the fall. It is an illustrated book, and I have no idea how that’s coming along. Once I get a cover and definite pub date, I will let you all know.
I have taken it easy the past couple days except for a flurry of cooking last night, which I recorded on Instagram Stories. I haven’t cooked much since Christmas, but am back in the groove. Made minestrone, bread and my roasted tomatoes last night.
Work-wise, I have a little pamphlet due in a couple of weeks, and then an essay due on March 1.
I noted a spike this morning for clicks on this post – and I’m glad to see it, although I would have expected the spike next week and not this.
It’s a 2015 post on one of the most inexplicable post-Vatican II liturgical changes (and..there’s a lot of competition on that score) – the total obliteration of Septuagesima, Sexagesima, and Quinquagesima Sundays – the three Sundays preceding the First Sunday of Lent. So for those who celebrate the Extraordinary Form and some Anglicans, I understand, February 12 is Septuagesima Sunday. From a Dappled Things article I cite in the post:
In the chapter titled “The History of Septuagesima,” Dom Guéranger added, “The Church, therefore, has instituted a preparation for the holy time of Lent. She gives us the three weeks of Septuagesima, during which she withdraws us, as much as may be, from the noisy distractions of the world, in order that our hearts may be the more readily impressed by the solemn warning she is to give us, at the commencement of Lent, by marking our foreheads with ashes.”
Despite the work load, I did do some reading over the past month. I can’t focus on work in the evening anymore, so I might as well read.
First up was Christmas Holiday by Maugham. I read it via one of the Gutenburg sites, violating my determination to Set A Good Example by sitting in the living room in the evening, Bartok softly playing, Reading Real Books Oh, well.
Anyway, this was a very, very interesting book. A little too long, I think, and a bit clunky in tone and format, but cutting. It is a bit of a satire on between-the-wars Britons of a certain class, but more discursive and not as sharp as, say, Waugh. It reminded me a bit of Percy’s Lancelot, simply because a big chunk of it involves someone telling their life story to someone else, and also that the last sentence of the book defines the book and perhaps even redefines your experience of reading it.
It’s not a book I finish and say, “I wish I’d written this book,” but it is a book I finished and thought, “Hmmm…I wish I could write something with that effect.”
If you’re not familiar with the book, it made quite a stir when it was published in France in 2015 (the day, by the way, of the attack on the Charlie Hebdo magazine) , it’s about, essentially, how Islam could take over France. The central character is a scholar, drifting, unconnected to family, non-religious, mostly unprincipled, still sexually active, but mostly in contexts where he has to pay for it. He is a scholar of the writer J.K. Huysmans, who is very important to Houellebecq – here’s a good article outlining the relationship.
François’s fictional life trajectory mirrors Huysmans’s actual life: dismal living conditions, a tedious job situation, a serviceable imagination, a modicum of success, a proclivity for prostitutes, and, finally, a resigned acceptance of faith. And just as Huysmans put himself into des Esseintes, François is a self-caricature by Houellebecq—with a twist, or, rather, two: François is Houellebecq’s version of himself if he lived Huysmans’s life, in the year 2022.
Houellebecq and Huysmans have much in common, beginning with their ability to infuriate readers. “There’s a general furore!” Huysmans wrote when “À Rebours” was released. “I’ve trodden on everyone’s corns.” Houellebecq, for his part, has enraged, among others, feminists, Muslims, and the Prime Minister of France. There is more to these two writers than mere provocations, however. Huysmans wrote during the rise of laïcité (French secularism), in the Third Republic, when religion was excised from public life. Houellebecq says he is chronicling religion’s return to European politics today. They each have a twisted outlook on the sacred.
I found Submission an interesting and accurate read on social psychology and the current landscape. Yes, this is what so many of us are like now, this is the vacuum that’s been created, and yes, this is how, in some parts of Europe at least, Islam could fill that vacuum, and how post-post-Christians could give into it.
Now, I’m back to the Kindle (in my defense, I looked for this book yesterday at the library, but they didn’t have a copy) reading some Trollope: Miss McKenzie. I’m liking it very much. It’s the usually thinking 19th century treatment of the bind that women found themselves in in relationship to property and independence during the period. This time, we have a woman in her mid-30’s who has spent her adult life so far caring, first for an invalid father, then an invalid brother. After their deaths, she’s inherited a comfortable income. So what should she do? And who will now be interested in this previously invisible woman?
It’s got some great social satire and spot-on skewering of the dynamic in religious groups, especially between charismatic leaders and their followers. I’ll write more when I’m finished with it.
As someone once famously said, and is oft repeated by me, “What a stupid time to be alive.” It’s pretty crazy, and social media doesn’t do anything but make it stupider. If you follow news, you know the daily pattern: 8AM-2PM FREAKOUT OVER THE LATEST followed by 2PM-Midnight – (much quieter) walkback/fact-checking/ – but with the walkbacks getting a fraction of the retweets and reposts than the Freakouts get.
There is not enough time in the day. Really, there isn’t. Add HumblePope to the mix, and Good Lord, what’s a wannabe political and religious commenter to do but make soup and read Trollope?
Well, here’s one contribution to non-stupidity – I first read this as a FB post put up by Professor George, and now it’s been turned into a First Things article on the immigration EO. Helpful. Take a look.
For more Quick Takes, visit This Ain’t the Lyceum!
Posted in Amy Welborn, Amy Welborn's Books, Apostles, Bible, Bible Study, Catholic, Catholicism, Christian, Church, Eternity, Eucharist, evangelization, Faith, Gospels, history, Jesus, Joseph Dubruiel, Life, Liturgy, love, Michael Dubruiel, Mission, Pope, Pope Benedict XVI, prayer, RCIA, Religion, Saints, Spirituality, tagged Amy Welborn, Amy Welborn's Books, Bible, Catholic, Catholicism, Christianity, Christmas, Church, faith, Michael Dubruiel, Pope, Pope Benedict XVI, Prayer, religion, spirituality on February 2, 2017|
On Candlemas, the prayers said by the priest as he blesses the candles with holy water and incense include the symbols of fire and light as metaphors for our faith and for Christ Himself. The choir sings the Nunc Dimittis or Canticle of Simeon with the antiphon “Lumen ad revelationem gentium et gloriam plebis tuæ Israel” (“Light to the revelation of the gentiles and the glory of your people Israel”) after each verse. A solemn procession may be made into the church building by the clergy and the faithful carrying the newly blessed candles to reenact the entry of Christ, the Light of the World, into the Temple.
In honour of the divine mystery that we celebrate today, let us all hasten to meet Christ. Everyone should be eager to join the procession and to carry a light.Our lighted candles are a sign of the divine splendour of the one who comes to expel the dark shadows of evil and to make the whole universe radiant with the brilliance of his eternal light. Our candles also show how bright our souls should be when we go to meet Christ.The Mother of God, the most pure Virgin, carried the true light in her arms and brought him to those who lay in darkness. We too should carry a light for all to see and reflect the radiance of the true light as we hasten to meet him.The light has come and has shone upon a world enveloped in shadows; the Dayspring from on high has visited us and given light to those who lived in darkness. This, then, is our feast, and we join in procession with lighted candles to reveal the light that has shone upon us and the glory that is yet to come to us through him. So let us hasten all together to meet our God.
I love the way Elena Maria Vidal puts it:
At Christmas, we adored Him with the shepherds at dawn; at Epiphany, we rejoiced in the brightness of His manifestations to the nations; at Candlemas, with the aged Simeon, we take Him into our arms. With the prophetic words of Simeon, the day also becomes a preparation for Lent and the Passion of Our Lord. We must offer ourselves with Jesus to the Father; we must embrace our own purification.
This feast day links Christmas with Lent, the joyful mysteries with the sorrowful mysteries.
Finally on the feast of the presentation of Christ in the Temple, we put the light of Christ into our children’s hands for them to carry still further into the world. The Church has never been reluctant to place her destiny in the hands of the rising generations. It was once the custom at Candlemas for her to give each of her members a blessed candle to hold high and bear forth to his home. It was a beautiful sign of our lay priesthood and its apostolate in action. Now the blessed candles seldom get beyond the altar boys who are wondering whether to turn right or left before they blow them out.
Because the ceremony has died of disuse in many places, because we want our family to appreciate the great gift of light as a sign of God’s presence, because we all must have continual encouragement to carry Christ’s light of revelation to the Gentiles on the feast of Hypapante (Candlemas), we meet God first at Mass and then we meet Him again in our home in the soft glow of candles relighted and carried far.
This is the meeting point of the two Testaments, Old and New. Jesus enters the ancient temple; he who is the new Temple of God: he comes to visit his people, thus bringing to fulfilment obedience to the Law and ushering in the last times of salvation.
It is interesting to take a close look at this entrance of the Child Jesus into the solemnity of the temple, in the great comings and goings of many people, busy with their work: priests and Levites taking turns to be on duty, the numerous devout people and pilgrims anxious to encounter the Holy God of Israel. Yet none of them noticed anything. Jesus was a child like the others, a first-born son of very simple parents.
Even the priests proved incapable of recognizing the signs of the new and special presence of the Messiah and Saviour. Alone two elderly people, Simeon and Anna, discover this great newness. Led by the Holy Spirit, in this Child they find the fulfilment of their long waiting and watchfulness. They both contemplate the light of God that comes to illuminate the world and their prophetic gaze is opened to the future in the proclamation of the Messiah: “Lumen ad revelationem gentium!” (Lk 2:32). The prophetic attitude of the two elderly people contains the entire Old Covenant which expresses the joy of the encounter with the Redeemer. Upon seeing the Child, Simeon and Anna understood that he was the Awaited One.
Posted in Amy Welborn's Books, Apostles, Arizona, art, Bible, Bible Study, Catholic, Catholicism, Christian, Church, Easter, evangelization, Faith, Jesus, Joseph Dubruiel, love, Matthew 25, Michael Dubruiel, Mission, Pope, Pope Benedict XVI, prayer, Saints, Works of Mercy, tagged Amy Welborn, Amy Welborn's Books, Apostles, Bible, Bible Study, Catholic, Catholicism, Christianity, Church, faith, Jesus, Michael Dubruiel, Pope, sacraments, saints on January 26, 2017|
It wouldn’t take too much to read these letters today: You can find them in your very own Bible, of course, but also just pop over here to read them online.
Timothy is a Greek name which means “one who honours God”. Whereas Luke mentions him six times in the Acts, Paul in his Letters refers to him at least 17 times (and his name occurs once in the Letter to the Hebrews).
One may deduce from this that Paul held him in high esteem, even if Luke did not consider it worth telling us all about him.
Indeed, the Apostle entrusted Timothy with important missions and saw him almost as an alter ego, as is evident from his great praise of him in his Letter to the Philippians. “I have no one like him (isópsychon) who will be genuinely anxious for your welfare” (2: 20).
Timothy was born at Lystra (about 200 kilometres northwest of Tarsus) of a Jewish mother and a Gentile father (cf. Acts 16: 1).
The fact that his mother had contracted a mixed-marriage and did not have her son circumcised suggests that Timothy grew up in a family that was not strictly observant, although it was said that he was acquainted with the Scriptures from childhood (cf. II Tm 3: 15). The name of his mother, Eunice, has been handed down to us, as well as that of his grandmother, Lois (cf. II Tm 1: 5).
When Paul was passing through Lystra at the beginning of his second missionary journey, he chose Timothy to be his companion because “he was well spoken of by the brethren at Lystra and Iconium” (Acts 16: 2), but he had him circumcised “because of the Jews that were in those places” (Acts 16: 3).
Together with Paul and Silas, Timothy crossed Asia Minor as far as Troy, from where he entered Macedonia. We are informed further that at Philippi, where Paul and Silas were falsely accused of disturbing public order and thrown into prison for having exposed the exploitation of a young girl who was a soothsayer by several unscrupulous individuals (cf. Acts 16: 16-40), Timothy was spared.
When Paul was then obliged to proceed to Athens, Timothy joined him in that city and from it was sent out to the young Church of Thessalonica to obtain news about her and to strengthen her in the faith (cf. I Thes 3: 1-2). He then met up with the Apostle in Corinth, bringing him good news about the Thessalonians and working with him to evangelize that city (cf. II Cor 1: 19).
According to the later Storia Ecclesiastica by Eusebius, Timothy was the first Bishop of Ephesus (cf. 3, 4). Some of his relics, brought from Constantinople, were found in Italy in 1239 in the Cathedral of Termoli in the Molise….
….Then, as regards the figure of Titus, whose name is of Latin origin, we know that he was Greek by birth, that is, a pagan (cf. Gal 2: 3). Paul took Titus with him to Jerusalem for the so-called Apostolic Council, where the preaching of the Gospel to the Gentiles that freed them from the constraints of Mosaic Law was solemnly accepted.
In the Letter addressed to Titus, the Apostle praised him and described him as his “true child in a common faith” (Ti 1: 4). After Timothy’s departure from Corinth, Paul sent Titus there with the task of bringing that unmanageable community to obedience….
…To conclude, if we consider together the two figures of Timothy and Titus, we are aware of certain very significant facts. The most important one is that in carrying out his missions, Paul availed himself of collaborators. He certainly remains the Apostle par excellence, founder and pastor of many Churches.
Yet it clearly appears that he did not do everything on his own but relied on trustworthy people who shared in his endeavours and responsibilities.
Another observation concerns the willingness of these collaborators. The sources concerning Timothy and Titus highlight their readiness to take on various offices that also often consisted in representing Paul in circumstances far from easy. In a word, they teach us to serve the Gospel with generosity, realizing that this also entails a service to the Church herself.
He spoke again about them in another GA, this time focused on Paul’s pastoral letters, during the Year of Paul, in early 2009:
Another component typical of these Letters is their reflection on the ministerial structure of the Church. They are the first to present the triple subdivision into Bishops, priests and deacons (cf. 1 Tm 3: 1-13; 4: 13; 2 Tm 1: 6; Ti 1: 5-9). We can observe in the Pastoral Letters the merging of two different ministerial structures, and thus the constitution of the definitive form of the ministry in the Church. In Paul’s Letters from the middle period of his life, he speaks of “bishops” (Phil 1: 1), and of “deacons”: this is the typical structure of the Church formed during the time of the Gentile world.
However, as the figure of the Apostle himself remains dominant, the other ministries only slowly develop. If, as we have said, in the Churches formed in the ancient world we have Bishops and deacons, and not priests, in the Churches formed in the Judeo-Christian world, priests are the dominant structure. At the end of the Pastoral Letters, the two structures unite: now “the bishop” appears (cf. 1 Tm 3: 2; Ti 1: 7), used always in the singular with the definite article “the bishop”. And beside “the bishop” we find priests and deacons. The figure of the Apostle is still prominent, but the three Letters, as I have said, are no longer addressed to communities but rather to individuals, to Timothy and Titus, who on the one hand appear as Bishops, and on the other begin to take the place of the Apostle.
This is the first indication of the reality that later would be known as “apostolic succession”. Paul says to Timothy in the most solemn tones: “Do not neglect the gift you received when, as a result of prophesy, the presbyters laid their hands on you (1 Tm 4: 14). We can say that in these words the sacramental character of the ministry is first made apparent. And so we have the essential Catholic structure: Scripture and Tradition, Scripture and proclamation, form a whole, but to this structure a doctrinal structure, so to speak must be added the personal structure, the successors of the Apostles as witnesses to the apostolic proclamation.
Lastly, it is important to note that in these Letters, the Church sees herself in very human terms, analogous to the home and the family. Particularly in 1 Tm 3: 2-7 we read highly detailed instructions concerning the Bishop, like these: he must be “irreprehensible, the husband of one wife, temperate, sensible, dignified, hospitable, an apt teacher, no drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, and no lover of money. He must manage his own household well, keeping his children under control and respectful in every way, for if a man does not know how to manage his own household, how can he care for God’s Church?…. Moreover he must be well thought of by outsiders”. A special note should be made here of the importance of an aptitude for teaching (cf. also 1 Tm 5: 17), which is echoed in other passages (cf. 1 Tm 6: 2c; 2 Tm 3: 10; Ti 2: 1), and also of a special personal characteristic, that of “paternity”. In fact the Bishop is considered the father of the Christian community (cf. also 1 Tm 3: 15). For that matter, the idea of the Church as “the Household of God” is rooted in the Old Testament (cf. Nm 12: 7) and is repeated in Heb 3: 2, 6, while elsewhere we read that all Christians are no longer strangers or guests, but fellow citizens of the saints and members of the household of God (cf. Eph 2: 19).
Let us ask the Lord and St Paul that we too, as Christians, may be ever more characterized, in relation to the society in which we live, as members of the “family of God”. And we pray that the Pastors of the Church may increasingly acquire paternal sentiments tender and at the same time strong in the formation of the House of God, of the community, and of the Church.