Skip to main content

St. Wendell again

I'm currently reading Wendell Berry's collection of short stories, Fidelity, and I have to say is there anything this man can't write? Drama, perhaps? Anyway, I'm into the second story, but not enough to comment on it; so I'll talk briefly about the first one, "Pray Without Ceasing." As always the story is set in Berry's fictional Port William, Kentucky and we are introduced to many characters and families that Berry has developed further in his novels. The story revolves around a young man trying to understand his great-grandfather who was murdered before he was born. Ben Feltner was shot dead by his friend, Thad Coulter. His grandmother relates the story to the great-grandson and she says,
"People sometimes talk of God's love as if it's a pleasant thing. But it is terrible, in a way. Think of all it includes. It included Thad Coulter, drunk and mean and foolish, before he killed Mr. Feltner, and it included him afterwards."


At this time of year we sentimentalize the birth of a baby, born to yet another poor couple. What we need knocked into our heads is that this event was not a Hallmark card, but something so outlandish, stupid, and incredible that we have to tame it or else we might have to change the way we are.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Dirty Hands Can Save You from Hell

"Eternal life will be a shared experience of awe, in which each creature, resplendently transfigured, will take its rightful place." --Pope Francis, Laudato Si
     Wonder and awe abound in the natural world for those with eyes to see and ears to hear.

     Perhaps we are caught short by a vibrant purple emanating from the petals of a wild lupine. We might stare wide-eyed at the lazy circles of a turkey vulture soaring on thermal air currents. Even the most agoraphobic city-dweller can find something beautiful about a landscape even if it's simply the warm and varied red, yellow, and orange of a sunset glowing on a building.

     "The earth is the Lord's and the fullness thereof" asserts the Psalmist. If that verse is true, why don't we live like it? Why are we flabbergasted trying to come up with the names of the many plants and animals we pass by everyday?

     All people respond to beauty in some way or another--even those who have willingly or unwi…

Worth Quoting

"Therefore whoever is not illuminated by such great splendors in created things is blind. Anyone who is not awakened by such great outcries is deaf. Anyone who is not led from such great effects to give praise to God is mute. Anyone who does not turn to the First Principle as a result of such signs is a fool.Therefore open your eyes, alert your spiritual ears, unlock your lips and apply your heart, so that in all the creatures you may see, hear, praise, love and adore, magnify and honor God, lest the entire world rise up against you." -- St. Bonaventure, Itinerarium mentis in Deum

Another Publishing Triumph (with a new journal!)

I've got a piece on benthic macroinvertebrates in this new fantastic journal: Jesus The Imagination. It's filled with essays, artwork, and poetry. I haven't finished reading it, but I'm impressed so far.

Check it out--it's available on Amazon.