Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Hey! It's Michaelmas

I put up a particularly good via media set of Michaelmas posts here and at W4 two years ago, so I'll link to them here and here.

(Trivia bit which I have gathered from novel reading: In Cornwall and perhaps other parts of England you are not supposed to eat blackberries after Michaelmas on pain of illness and possibly death. Something to do with witches. Okay, end of trivia digression.)

I'm surprised to see that I never seem to have put up the BCP collect for Michaelmas. This was remiss of me, as it seems to me to embody Cranmer's approach, which I find very congenial, to such holy days. Both my Catholic and my non-Catholic readers will notice both what Cranmer says and what he does not say. But hopefully both will acknowledge that this is great liturgy:

O everlasting God, who has ordained and constituted the services of Angels and men in a wonderful order; Mercifully grant that, as thy holy Angels always do thee service in heaven, so, by thy appointment, they may succour and defend us on earth; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

But for Wales?

From A Man for All Seasons:
Thomas More: There is one question I would like to ask the witness.                     
(To Richard Rich) That's a chain of office you're wearing.
May I see it? The red dragon. What's this?

Cromwell: Sir Richard is appointed Attorney General for Wales.

More: For Wales. Why Richard, it profits a man nothing to give his
soul for the whole world.

But for Wales?
I realize that I appear to be have been living in a cave for the past year or two, but I just recently learned that Douglas Kmiec, the "Catholic pro-lifer" who so ardently and suavely supported Barack Obama through his presidential campaign and beyond, has been appointed U.S. Ambassador to Malta.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

"I Thirst"--off-schedule Good Friday meditation

Okay, time for some more Gospel music. Here is the late, great George Younce and the Cathedrals singing "I Thirst."

Here are the words to the chorus again:
He said, “I thirst,” yet He made the rivers.
He said, “I thirst,” yet He made the sea.
“I thirst,” said the King of the Ages.
In His great thirst, He brought water to me.
In line with my desire to bring together high church and low church, Protestant and Catholic, I give you the following parallel, from the liturgy of the reproaches for Good Friday:
I did feed thee with manna in the desert, and thou has stricken me with blows and scourges.

(Response: O my people, what have I done unto thee, or wherein have I wearied thee? Testify against me.)

I did give thee to drink the water of life from the rock, and thou hast given me to drink but gall and vinegar.

(Response: O my people, what have I done unto thee, or wherein have I wearied thee? Testify against me.)
In his 9/11 post, my college Jeff Culbreath at W4 reminded us that we must be careful not to turn 9/11 into some kind of holy day of mourning that overshadows much more important Christian days such as Good Friday.

We're not anywhere near Good Friday just now, of course. (In fact, we're right in the middle of Trinitytide and recently had this great collect.) But having heard "I Thirst" recently and having been reminded of the reproaches, I thought it was as good a time as any to post on it.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Man who burned a few Koran pages on camera fired

...from New Jersey Transit after an 11-year career. The reason? He violated an "ethics code."

Let me get this straight: People who work with trains for New Jersey Transit are subject to an ethics code that prohibits (somehow) mistreating a Koran? I'd love to see the quotation from the ethics code in question. What does it say? "Everybody who works with train logistics for New Jersey Transit must be a multiculturalist in good standing"? I mean, seriously.

And these are the same people who would no doubt be horrified if someone were fired from New Jersey Transit for appearing in drag (or in nothing at all) in a Gay Pride parade or doing a spread for Playboy. Wouldn't they? Bet they'd find a way to sue over it.

Ethics code, indeed.


Saturday, September 11, 2010

What 9/11 means to me [Updated]

In case I have any readers here who aren't friends on Facebook, this is what I said there about 9/11:

I remember 9/11. And the moral I take from it is this: Islam is the problem. We must defy and oppose Islam. It is a major problem that nine years after 9/11, our country is far, far more deferential to Islam than it was before, far more afraid to say that Islam is _not_ a religion of peace. Take off the blinders, America! This is what 9/11 means.

P.S. If anyone hears about whether Bob Old of Tennessee actually burned a Koran and posted it on Youtube, let me know and post a link. I'm very curious.

Ah, here we go: Bob Old followed through. And there was some poor woman (whose husband is in Afghanistan) outside his house saying, "Someone's got to stand up for our troops." Say, what? We are insane.

More pictures incidents, including a video link to another pastor, at VFR here.
I really have to hand it to Lawrence Auster. He has his readers inspired to take oaths not to submit to Islam even at the cost of their lives. Pretty impressive.

Friday, September 10, 2010

"Musical child abuse" page

I've been researching penny whistles lately, and in the process I found this absolutely hilarious page about a penny whistle set sold at Christmas some years ago. Be sure that you are all set to laugh when you read this, though actually, I agree with the guy. Whoever did this should be shot, figuratively speaking.

Sunday, September 05, 2010

Acoustic Sunday--Kevin Williams, Buddy Greene, et. al.

If you like acoustic country and bluegrass music and hymns, you should buy this album. My favorites are "At Calvary" and "Amazing Grace."

Really beautiful stuff.

Amazon link here. Detailed review here.

HT: Eldest Daughter

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

The Pooh Community

Very fun satire by Richard Bauckham. Some tidbits:

The stories afford us a fairly accurate view of some of the rivalries and disputes within the community. The stories are told very much from the perspective of Pooh and Piglet, who evidently represent the dominant group in the community - from which presumably the bulk of the literature originated, though here and there we may detect the hand of an author less favourable to the Pooh and Piglet group. The Pooh and Piglet group saw itself as central to the life of the community (remember that Piglet's house is located in the very centre of the forest), and the groups represented by other characters are accordingly marginalized. The figure of Owl, for example, surely represents the group of children who prided themselves on their intellectual achievements and aspired to status in the community on this basis. But the other children, certainly the Pooh and Piglet group, ridiculed them as swots. So throughout the stories the figure of Owl, with his pretentious learning and atrocious spelling, is portrayed as a figure of fun. Probably the Owl group, the swots, in their turn ridiculed the Pooh and Piglet group as ignorant and stupid: they used terms of mockery such as 'bear of very little brain.' Stories like the hunt for the Woozle, in which Pooh and Piglet appear at their silliest and most gullible, probably originated in the Owl group, which used them to lampoon the stupidity of the Pooh and Piglet group. But the final redactor, who favours the Pooh and Piglet group, has managed very skilfully to refunction all this material which was originally detrimental to the Pooh and Piglet group so that in the final form of the collection of stories it serves to portray Pooh and Piglet as oafishly lovable. In a paradoxical reversal of values, stupidity is elevated as deserving the community's admiration.
Such insight into the tensions between various factions in the Pooh community could easily be extended into more debatable territory (the identification of the Eeyore faction e.g. is still debated - some recent scholars have argued that Eeyore is best seen as representing the adults of the village). But I move on to give you an example of the way in which various crises in the community's history have left their mark in the traditions. One such crisis, we can be sure, was caused by the arrival in the village of an Australian family. This was a highly disturbing event for such a community of rural English children - otherwise isolated from the rest of the world. Rabbit (in the book) voices what must have been the general reaction of the community: 'We find a Strange Animal among us. An animal of whom we had never even heard before!' While Rabbit voices the indignation, Piglet expresses the community's fear of the newly arrived Australian children: 'Generally Regarded as One of the Fiercer Animals.' The Australians are represented in the story, of course, by Kanga and Roo.
One small correction for Prof. Bauckham and his Pooh community scholars: He states that honey is not found in the Narnia books (while it is found in the Pooh books). I beg to differ. The Bulgy bears give honey as a gift to the exiled boy king Caspian when he is taken to visit them in Prince Caspian, and we are told that it took him a long time to get unsticky again afterwards. No doubt modern scholarship will provide us with at least one scholarly article or perhaps a dissertation on this matter.


HT: Esteemed Husband

A foreign events fantasy

My fantasy speech from an Israeli Prime Minister:

I have no interest whatsoever in the so-called peace process. The peace process is a sham and worse than a sham. We do not have a "partner for peace." The only thing that can come of our engaging in such talks is that we will make dangerous concessions to our bitter enemies, enemies who relentlessly seek our eradication. Why should we do such a thing? So far from asking for the opportunity to engage in "direct talks" with representatives of the "Palestinians," I ask only that we be left alone to get on with governing our country and keeping our citizens safe. Oh, and by the way, a construction freeze in our capital city of Jerusalem is obscene, and construction in the eastern part of our capital begins tomorrow. Have a nice day.
I can dream, anyway.