SATURDAY READING: Hope — The Art Of Patient Waiting by Paula Huston

March 8, 2014

From By Way of Grace When I want to rest my heart, wearied by the darkness which surrounds it, by the memory of the luminous country to which I aspire, my torment redoubles; it seems to me that the darkness, borrowing the voice of sinners, says mockingly to me, “You are dreaming about the light.” Saint Thérèse of Lisieux (1973-1897) A long-ago wish had come true: I was finally in England, a place I’d wanted to visit since I was a fairy-tale-reading child.  It was as lovely as I’d always imagined it would be, with its meandering hedges, its yellow fields of rape, its Jersey cows and bunchy sheep, its great silent stone cathedrals.  Britain, with all its historical riches – how easily I could settle down for the rest of my life [...]

ADVENT FIRE: December 22

December 22, 2012

From Becoming Fire: Through the Year with the Desert Fathers and Mothers  The Grace of the Cell The angels entered Lot’s house. (Genesis 19:3) The angel entered the house of Tobias and Tobit and his wife. (Tobias 5:10, 5:18) He also entered the house of Manoah.(Judges 13) Now, then, give yourself to the grace of the cell.  All healing will take place for you there. Accidie Will Weigh Down Your Soul Amma Theodora said, “It is good to live in peace, for the wise person practices perpetual prayer. (1 Thessalonians 5:17)  It is truly a great thing for a virgin or a monk to live in peace, especially for the younger ones.  However, you should realize that as soon as you intend to live in peace, at once evil comes and weighs down your [...]

SATURDAY READING: Fighting the Noonday Devil by R. R. Reno

September 8, 2012

From First Things For most of the modern era, Christian apologists have emphasized the role of pride as the primary barrier to faith.  Take Milton, for example.  At the outset of Paradise Lost, Satan rallies his fellow fallen angels with a speech of exculpation.  Bidding farewell to the “Happy Fields” now lost, Satan hails the “infernal world,” promising his followers that they, with him, might make “Heav’n of Hell.”  What seems a disaster can be made a victory.  Satan’s reasoning is simple.  “Here at least,” he says, “we shall be free.”  “Here,” he continues, “we may reign secure.”  The gain, then, is autonomy and self-possession.  Thus, in famous words, Milton has Satan pronounce the purest [...]