Weblog Commenting and Trackback by HaloScan.com Rum , Rome and Royalism: March 2005

Rum , Rome and Royalism

I would much rather belong to a church five centuries behind the times and majestically indifferent to the fact than to a church five minutes behind the times, frantically running to catch up.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

New Book on St. Francis

I learned from a friend today that a new book on the life of St. Francis of Assisi will soon be published. Hardly a surprising thing, St. Francis is one of the most popular saints in history, not just amoung catholics but amoung protestants and even non-Christians, so books about him are hardly a rarity. What makes this book interesting is it's authour, environmentalist and lawyer Robert Francis Kennedy juniour, son of the famous Attourney General and Presidential hopeful.

Smells Good

As I write this post I'm listening to "Nevermind" the 1991 albumn by Seatle Grunge R band Nirvana. I've been listening to said albumn quite a lot lately and am getting hooked. Back in 91 I thought Grunge was just a lot of noise, but the more I listen, the more I discover a surprising diversity of melody and structure.

Some years back, I was shocked and outraged when the Australian National University student newspaper "Woroni" printed an article which awarded "Nevermind" the title of "Greatest Rock Albumn Ever". Now, don't get me wrong, I still disagree (I think I'd give the palm to Bob Dyalns "Highway 61 Revisited"") but the claim of "Nevermind" is nowhere near as silly as I once thought.

Now, I make no claims to be an expert on grunge (I couldn't even explain what it is that puts a song in that genre) but I think that one would get a general agreement that Nirvana are the greatest grunge band ever and that "Nevermind" is the greatest ever grunge albumn.

Now, what inspired to write this post, was a discovery I made yesterday. As most people know, the lead singer and guitarist of Nirvana was the late, great, Kurt Cobain, a man almost synonomous with grunge. Now "Nevermind" has twelve songs on it and eleven of them were written by Mr. Cobain. But what really surprised me was the discovery that "Smells Like Teen Spirit" the lead single from the albumn and the one Nirvana song most people know was written by Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

John Paul the Great?

I don't agree with everything in this article by ex-pat Australian Fr. Brian Harrison, but he raises many interesting and valuable points.

I personally find the suggestion that the current Holy Father should be offically known as "John Paul the Great" truly laughable. There have been hundreds of Popes, dozens of whom have been declared saints, many of whom steered the church through difficult times, yet only two of whom (Leo I an Gregory I) have been oficially named "the Great". On blogger, who is normally full of good sense, suggested the current Pope should be called "the Great" because he has modled great personal holiness. Presumably this blogger thinks the great number of Popes who have been declared saints but have not been given that title- men like Gregory VII, Pius V and Pius X did not have great personal holiness.

Monday, March 07, 2005

St. Thomas, Pray For Us!!!

Today is, (at least Traditionally) the feat day of my hero, St. Thomas Aquinas, friar, theologian, philosopher and poet. St. Thomas lived in a world of great change, the introduction of Aristotelian philosophy into Europe, while a great blessing, had caused many people to raise questions about the degree to which the Catholic faith could be harmonised with reason. Also, this was a time when the Albergensian heresy, which claims the existence of two Gods, one good and one evil, was rampant.

It was into this breach that St. Thomas, who has been called the great warrior for truth, stepped. In his famous works, he showed clearly the rationality of beliefe in one God and the solid compatability of true faith and right reason. For all the differences between his time and ours, St. Thomas remains a figure of great relevance, if anything, our age, an age in which the teachings of the church are constanly under attack from inummerable sides, needs the solid defence of the faiththat St. Thomas can give us and the general sceptisim of modern philosophy, which denies any object truth or knowledge, needs to be counted with a solid Aristotelian/Thomist defence in the reality of the real.

Laetare Jerusalem

Yesterday was the fourth Sunday of the Western lent, traditionally called Laetare Sunday, from the Latin "Laetare" the imperative (command) form of the Latin verb "rejoice", which, at first blush, is a rather strange name for a Sunday in the middle of Lent.

Fr. Ken Webb, FSSP preached on this very theme, pointing out that, from the viewpoint of the world, rejoicing while doing penance is a contradiction. It is only in the paschal mystery of Christ that we can find a reconciliation of this appearent contradiction. I can't do Fr. Webb's sermon justice, so I'll simply let the liturgy speak for it's self:

Laetare Jerusalem: et conventum facite, omnes qui diligitis eam: gaudete cum laetitia, qui in tristitia fuisstis: ut exsultetis, et satiemini ab uberibus consolationis vestrae

Rejoice, O Jerusalem: and come together all you that love her; rejoice with joy, you that have been in sorrow; that you may exult, and be filled from the breasts of consolation.