“Take and eat; this is my body.” MT 26:26

“Take and eat; this is my body.” MT 26:26

Sunday, 5 May 2019

THE ART OF READING

At the moment, it's not that I can't sleep, I won't sleep. That's where my kids get it from. (There! I found it.) Instead of sleeping, which I should do, I'm writing. But maybe I should be reading.

I love reading. It's something I've loved for years. That said, there was a large gap where I didn't read much more than anything I had to for work. Social media and "news" counts, to a degree. Now, I see that counts mostly under the time column.

Recently, I started picking up books again. I went through just over a dozen last year, I think, but that's a rough count. So far, since December, I've read five or so. One was massive, The Catechism of the Council of Trent. At the moment, it's St. Augustine's City of God that has me going. (Maybe it should be, quite literally, keeping me up at nights, but it's not.) I have at least eight books waiting for me after I finish this one, and plenty more on my reading wish list. So how can I fit them all in before I die? How about wasting time (and taking up precious minutes of eyeball activity) to find out how to read more:



I like the part in the video where it talks about reading as a form of meditation, to get into that inner "temple." That says to me that prayer is more important than reading. If you're reading to meditate or to get in touch with that inner silence, than what are you really missing in life? It's not more books.

Tuesday, 2 April 2019

BEAUTY IS PROOF THAT GOD LOVES US

We can know the wonders of God by partaking in the wonders of His creation. The human voice, for example, is proof. The Lord made man's capacity for song can be a sublime instrument for praise. Out of order and abused, it is wretched. Rightly ordered, in sync, it is sublime. Please, enjoy this performance of Miserere mei, Deus(Gregorio Allegri) by Ars Nova Copenhagen. According to the video description, this was recorded in Copenhagen on April 6, 2016. The conductor is Paul Hillier.



For some background to this song, here's what Wikipedia has to say:


Miserere (full title: Miserere mei, Deus, Latin for "Have mercy on me, O God") is a setting of Psalm 51 (50) by Italian composer Gregorio Allegri. It was composed during the reign of Pope Urban VIII, probably during the 1630s, for use in the Sistine Chapel during matins, as part of the exclusive Tenebrae service on Holy Wednesday and Good Friday of Holy Week. 
Description and use
The Miserere is written for two choirs, one of five and one of four voices, and is an example of Renaissance polyphony. One of the choirs sings a simple version of the original Miserere chant; the other, spatially separated, sings an ornamented commentary on this.
The Tenebrae service where the Miserere would be sung normally began at dusk, hence the name (tenebrae is Latin for "shadows" or "darkness"). During the ritual, candles would be extinguished one by one, save for the last candle which remained alight and was then hidden. Gregorio Allegri envisioned the setting of the Miserere to be the final act within the first lesson of the Tenebrae service.
Thanks to Wikipedia again for providing the lyrics. First, here they are in Latin:


Miserere mei, Deus: secundum magnam misericordiam tuam.
Et secundum multitudinem miserationum tuarum, dele iniquitatem meam.
Amplius lava me ab iniquitate mea: et a peccato meo munda me.
Quoniam iniquitatem meam ego cognosco: et peccatum meum contra me est semper.
Tibi soli peccavi, et malum coram te feci: ut justificeris in sermonibus tuis, et vincas cum judicaris.
Ecce enim in iniquitatibus conceptus sum: et in peccatis concepit me mater mea.
Ecce enim veritatem dilexisti: incerta et occulta sapientiae tuae manifestasti mihi.
Asperges me hysopo, et mundabor: lavabis me, et super nivem dealbabor.
Auditui meo dabis gaudium et laetitiam: et exsultabunt ossa humiliata.
Averte faciem tuam a peccatis meis: et omnes iniquitates meas dele.
Cor mundum crea in me, Deus: et spiritum rectum innova in visceribus meis.
Ne proiicias me a facie tua: et spiritum sanctum tuum ne auferas a me.
Redde mihi laetitiam salutaris tui: et spiritu principali confirma me.
Docebo iniquos vias tuas: et impii ad te convertentur.
Libera me de sanguinibus, Deus, Deus salutis meae: et exsultabit lingua mea justitiam tuam.
Domine, labia mea aperies: et os meum annuntiabit laudem tuam.
Quoniam si voluisses sacrificium, dedissem utique: holocaustis non delectaberis.
Sacrificium Deo spiritus contribulatus: cor contritum, et humiliatum, Deus, non despicies.
Benigne fac, Domine, in bona voluntate tua Sion: ut aedificentur muri Ierusalem.
Tunc acceptabis sacrificium justitiae, oblationes, et holocausta: tunc imponent super altare tuum vitulos.
Now, for the english:


Have mercy upon me, O God, after Thy great goodnessAccording to the multitude of Thy mercies do away mine offences.Wash me thoroughly from my wickedness: and cleanse me from my sin.For I acknowledge my faults: and my sin is ever before me.Against Thee only have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that Thou mightest be justified in Thy saying, and clear when Thou art judged.Behold, I was shapen in wickedness: and in sin hath my mother conceived me.But lo, Thou requirest truth in the inward parts: and shalt make me to understand wisdom secretly.Thou shalt purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: Thou shalt wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.Thou shalt make me hear of joy and gladness: that the bones which Thou hast broken may rejoice.Turn Thy face from my sins: and put out all my misdeeds.Make me a clean heart, O God: and renew a right spirit within me.Cast me not away from Thy presence: and take not Thy Holy Spirit from me.O give me the comfort of Thy help again: and stablish me with Thy free Spirit.Then shall I teach Thy ways unto the wicked: and sinners shall be converted unto Thee.Deliver me from blood-guiltiness, O God, Thou that art the God of my health: and my tongue shall sing of Thy righteousness.Thou shalt open my lips, O Lord: and my mouth shall shew [show] Thy praise.For Thou desirest no sacrifice, else would I give it Thee: but Thou delightest not in burnt-offerings.The sacrifice of God is a troubled spirit: a broken and contrite heart, O God, shalt Thou not despise.O be favourable and gracious unto Sion: build Thou the walls of Jerusalem.Then shalt Thou be pleased with the sacrifice of righteousness, with the burnt-offerings and oblations: then shall they offer young bullocks upon Thine altar.
(Who says Wikipedia is full of garbage?)

Holy Week is still a ways off, but seeing as we are in the middle of Lent, this is good music for the soul. Amidst the pains and lamentations of this penitential season, in a prayerful way, let the beauty of this rendition of Miserere lift your heart and mind to the Lord.

Sunday, 3 March 2019

HUNTER S. THOMPSON VS. BACH


On the threshold of Lent. A distraction. A beer. A "random” algorithm generates a video about a writer who is not long-dead or entirely forgotten.


From the dust and slime of the earth and back again. A return and new life through coding. An eternal fate underway. A daily routine, elevated on what kind of pedestal here? Unsure. Scary. I certainly admired the voice, at one time. Reflecting on this lifestyle now, what a shame. Could you have that writer without the vice? Maybe not. The world would not have been less without this dangerous influence. Somehow great? No. Yet, now, we can turn from a pit of hell and look at the work and legacy of another:


Legendary.

JMJ

RORATE CÆLI

Whispers in the Loggia

ZENIT - The World Seen From Rome

Vericast

News.va

EWTN News - World Catholic News

Catholic News Agency Daily News

Creative Minority Report

CatholicCulture.org - Catholic World News

AmericanCatholic.org

The Catholic Key Blog

The Integrated Catholic Life™

LifeNews.com

Credo Catholic

Crisis Magazine

Catholic Herald

Catholic Tech Talk

Chiesa -

Catholic Web Services

The Deacon's Bench

Catholic Morality

The Roman Road

Call To Holiness

The Sacred Page

The Busy Catholic

Salvation Is an Adventure

Catholic and Enjoying It!