Dating a practical catholic guide

Amidst the lessons and carols, amidst the bells and laughter, amidst the exuberance of family conversations, let us recall the silence of the Holy Infant. That love of being unknown seems utterly foreign to us, proud and vain as we are. Abstract windows cast unseemly splashes of light over softwood pews. My hope is that by examining a few of its exponents, we might come to get a better glimpse of the art that is renewing our own Church today. So he turned instead to the architecture and design of the Middle Ages. He set up altars with gilded angels and smiling saints and all manner of gloriously decorated tiles. He almost single-handedly re-established the rood screen as a typical feature of English churches. He attempted to show, by way of (rather unfair) architectural differences, that the religious and social makeup of the Middle Ages was decidedly better than the squalid life of post-Reformation modernity.So let this Christmastide see our entry into the mystery of God’s humility. It’s ahistorical nonsense, but very pretty ahistorical nonsense at that. He’s making a threefold argument: aesthetic, religious, and socio-political.There was an amusing spat between Faber and Pugin when the latter visited St. What started off as a friendly chat turned into a vigorous fight.Faber inveighed against rood screens and Pugin accused Faber of favoring the “pagan architecture” of, , Italy. Pugin, however, was probably more influential than Newman or Faber when it came to setting 19th century tastes in liturgical art.The only truly Christian style was that which reigned at the high noon of Christendom. Is it all that surprising that Pugin and Newman never really cooperated?Oratorianism is a Counter-Reformation phenomenon, and both of the first English Oratories were built in a grand Neo-Baroque style.Christmas is here, reminding us of God’s wondrous love. Pugin hated the High-and-Dry preaching tabs and whitewashed walls and triple-decker pulpits of the 18th century Church of England.

How like Christ the preacher is the Dominican in his humility!

So, too, is he invisibly bound to the conception and birth of the God-Man.

His own deeply domestic spirituality drew its core of humble charity from the life of the Holy Family in Bethlehem. Joseph, the all-meek Virgin, the wakeful and overawed shepherds. God has entered the world in darkness and obscurity, that He might commune more profoundly with those few quiet souls.

Let us therefore ascend to higher things by way of lower ones. Philip Neri was always repeating to his disciples was ,” that proud and self-commanding reason common to us all. Philip say to his penitents, “The sanctity of a man lies in the breadth of three fingers,” and pointedly lay those fingers on his forehead. All the greatest saints were humble and taught humility to other, lesser souls. The monk who has achieved the Twelfth Degree of humility goes about with his head and eyes ever downcast, pondering his guilt and preparing himself for Judgment (Regula VII).

The outlandish practical jokes, the daily confessions, the severe and thankless workload he imposed on his sons; everything tended to mortify the intellect and cultivate humility. In this state, the monk is spiritually united to Christ on the cross. Ever spurring his sons on with a single battle cryhe demands a humility that can only grow in the self-effacing pursuit of excellence for God. Like Christ in His ministry, they have no place to lay their heads (Luke ). His active life was marked by a profound interiority.

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