Monday, April 27, 2015

I stumbled, by chance, on the Radio, into Evensong. I understand the broadcast was from an Anglican church, but most of the readings were as described in the current Roman books. In any case, there was an extra lesson (read in French, but that should not frustrate us!) from Exodus (Ex 28), and it included these verses I'd never before noted:
31 And thou shalt make the tunick of the ephod all of violet, 32 In the midst whereof above shall be a hole for the head, and a border round about it woven, as is wont to be made in the outmost parts of garments, that it may not easily be broken.
And what this directly called to mind were these words from St. John's Gospel:
[...] Now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout. 24 They said then one to another: Let us not cut it, but let us cast lots for it, whose it shall be [...]
John himself points to prophecy of this moment; I'd like to think that he's also pointing out that Jesus walked to Golgotha actually vested as a priest.


Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Causes of concern

It occured to me about the time that silly movie just impending and the ads for it cluttered up between the segments of Doctor Who (which is also silly, but differently) — That the name of the hazardous game consisted of two words, one French, one German, both meaning "yes".

For sure, invoking you-cannot-even-say-what to whatever end is a hazardous game fool's rush, but to build into the very name of the game ab-initio acquiescence — to agree to say "no" only to saying "no" — is, shall we say, cause for grave concern. It is agreeing, at the start of play, that you have already lost.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Dignus est Agnus

Our New Fire fizzled out before they could light the Paschal Candle from it.

The choir twice didn't get the Ferial Tone (at the Exsultet and blessing the Font... while the organist is ... enthusiastic ... about ... helping us along ... and making sure we have enough time to sing all the notes)

But what more than makes up for all that?


... am I being a bit silly? But it's still Easter!

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

to Avoid Excessive Latinity

... or, don't be you too Norman.

A dear dear friend of mine who has been through a lot (and I won't tell you any more than this) was once frequently worn down by the maxim "Patience is a virtue". Like all propositions that happen to be true, it isn't at all a helpful thing to say unless one properly understands the proper meaning of all the words in it and their interconnections. Worse, some phrases become so culturally bound that they work, in conversation, like single words ("for all intents and purposes", anyone?). A triage nurse might have fun announcing "Patient has a vert hue", and it might be true, and it might be what the doctor hears, but that's not the true expression "Patience is a virtue".

Now, the hapless proponent of the virtue of patience may well have meant: "if you'll wait quiet a while longer, perhaps I'll praise you later on", because "patience" has come usually to mean "enduring delay", and "virtue" that which is praiseworthy. But that also is not the true meaning of "Patience is a virtue". For the True Meaning, we must translate the Latin into "plain brittish".

Suffering is Strength.

Ok, you will counter that "suffer", from latin "su(per)fero", or "bear up", is still Latin. Thing is, we don't read it as Latin anymore.

Next, you might complain "That's backwards. Suffering needs strength; you can't 'suffer' the way you mean if you aren't already strong". Well, yes and no; but the formation of strength requires exercise: you have to try first what you aren't good at before you get good at it. Then doing it well is proof of strength.

And, here's the odd bit. Doing it well need not mean "quit yer belly-achin'". It does mean "Despair not". It does not mean that the pain goes away, or becomes "bearable". It does mean you are lovable. And a good and loving neighbor will suffer with you, and so exercise his patience, too.