Feast of St Agathangelus the Martyr
I'VE WRITTEN Wendell Berry on a number of occasions. He has always responded. He has even graciously conveyed kind words about our publications: "I've been reading in the publications you sent me and improving my mind. Thank you."
The last time I wrote him, I invited him to speak at our sixth annual symposium. Here's an insightful snapshot of the explanation he gave for... Continue Reading
Twelfth Day of Christmas and the Eve of the Theophany of Our Lord & Savior Jesus Christ
CHRISTIANITY s a material religion. Everywhere you turn in the Christian tradition, the material world is adamantly affirmed. And every part of it plays a part in the cosmic worship of our Creator.
We see this throughout scripture. From the very beginning, in the creation account, God says His creation is “very good.”... Continue Reading
Eleventh Day of Christmas and Synaxis of the 70 Holy Apostles
THE "OBJECTIVE VIEW” which we attempt to find through science and philosophy is not possible; consequently it falsifies whatever conclusions we derive from it. This is especially true in the contemplation of our own planet. If we seek a detached and objective vista from which to solve the ecological crisis, we have already failed. Detachment is death. Gathering data,... Continue Reading
Tenth Day of Christmas and Feast of St Malachai the Prophet
AROUND SEVEN years ago, living in an apartment in Chicagoland, I read Jayber Crow by Wendell Berry. Two weeks later it occurred to me to start a garden. Then it occurred to me that I might move home to Kansas.
My apartment-balcony garden failed. But the idea for the move home took root and flourished. Fewer than six months... Continue Reading
Ninth Day of Christmas and Feast of St Sylvester, Pope of Rome and St Seraphim the Wonderworker of Sarov
REJOICE exceedingly, daughter Zion, proclaim, daughter Jerusalem: lo, your king comes to you righteous and saving; he is gentle, riding on a beast of burden and young foal. ~Zechariah 9.9
“Obviously,” St. Cyril says, “in this he now proclaims the revelation of our Savior.” Is that so? Is it... Continue Reading
Eighth Day of Christmas and Feast of the Circumcision of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and Feast of Sts Basil the Great and Gregory the Theologian
CREATED LIFE does not generate itself. It is beholden to the One who is Life in himself. Humanity is first of all a creature that receives: “then the Lord God formed man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils... Continue Reading
Seventh Day of Christmas and Feast of St Melania the Younger, Nun of Rome
FOR SEVERAL years, I served as a catechist in Blessed Sacrament’s R.C.I.A. program. R.C.I.A. stands for Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults. It is the program and process for bringing adults into the Catholic Church. In its purest form, the adults have never been baptized or catechized as Christians. The program and process combines both catechesis... Continue Reading
Sixth Day of Christmas and Feast of St Gideon the New Martyr of Mount Athos
IT HAD BEEN a glorious day thus far; one of those rare, bright July mornings when everything came off without a hitch. The tractor started like it was supposed to, the equipment ran like a dream, and I had managed to do everything the way Dad expected me to do. I was twelve. It was... Continue Reading
Fifth Day of Christmas and Commemoration of the Holy Innocents, the 14,000 Infants Slain by Herod in Bethlehem
AS THE NEW year approaches and we begin once again to think about our annual report to Caesar in the guise of the IRS, my mind always turns to one of the more curious words that the early Church stole from the Greeks: liturgy. While it is easy today to understand how... Continue Reading
Fourth Day of Christmas and Feast of the 20,000 Martyrs Burned in Nicomedia
WHEN I was twelve I took life for the first time. A quail rising faster than a bottle rocket against the amber grass field was suddenly lifeless as the echo of my gun rang into the morning air. Some eighteen years later I take life in different forms nearly every day. But instead of a sport, it... Continue Reading