Category Archive for : ‘Blog’

THE LITTLE BLACK BOOK

THE LITTLE BLACK BOOK

We always mention you in our prayers and thank God for you all, and constantly remember before God our Father how you have shown your faith in action, worked for love and persevered through hope, in our Lord Jesus Christ. We know, brothers and sisters, that God loves you and that you have been chosen.

LONELY — or solitary?

LONELY — or solitary?

At present, being on one’s own — be it in a situation of shielding or vulnerability, or just a question of old age or living in a single household — is the topic de notre jours. It is much discussed as being a cause of danger and of mental health problems.

HOLY ISLAND, HOLY MEMORIES.

HOLY ISLAND, HOLY MEMORIES.

The other day, quite by chance, a small card photo frame fell out of a book. It was a picture of me, my mother, and the dog Sybil. My mother was standing, I was crouching down beside her hanging onto the dog who was obviously dying to charge the photographer — whoever that might have been — in the way dogs seem to want always to do.

OCTOBER, how I love you!

OCTOBER, how I love you!

I have always loved October. Yes, true, it is the month in which I was born but I don’t think that is the main reason, or indeed any reason. After all, once my mother and great-aunt died that day sank without trace!

That Majesty which angels do admire?

That Majesty which angels do admire?

About this time of year I begin to notice angels. Not literally so much (if at all – O ye of little faith!) but in the Psalms, scripture readings and the hymns I sing. (The advantage of singing the Divine Office online with the monks of Glenstal Abbey is that I can sing out as loudly, in as badly pronounced latin, and as out of tune as they do!). Suddenly angels are everywhere – online, in art, television dramas, in the newspapers and referred to in the novels and books I am reading.

FREE SAMPLE ANYONE?

FREE SAMPLE ANYONE?

I read about a recruitment campaign the Jesuits ran in Oz. They hired a PR firm to come up with an attention-grabbing tagline that would draw people to the Jesuits’ website, where the Order’s vocation could be explored in more depth. And what line did they come up with?

WHY ARE WE HERE?

WHY ARE WE HERE?

St John Henry Newman famously said: “God has created me to do Him some definite service. He has committed some work to me which He has not committed to another. I have my mission. I may never know it in this life, but I shall be told it in the next. I am a link in a chain, a bond of connection between persons. He has not created me for naught.”

LOST IN WONDER

LOST IN WONDER

When we were young didn’t we all think we could fly (with or without a magic carpet), turn ourselves into a frog (or a prince/ess) or maybe suddenly, magnificently, be discovered as the long lost son or daughter of the Queen of England (or of a Pirate King)?

BLESSED ARE YOU AMONG WOMEN

BLESSED ARE YOU AMONG WOMEN

It’s often the little things that make us think again of our mothers, although our lives in ways good and bad, big and small are irrevocably interwoven with theirs for all time. Their words, gestures, opinions and emotions — even their looks — become, indelibly, part of us, and only by an effort of the will do some chart new waters.

FROM INDIA WITH LOVE

FROM INDIA WITH LOVE

One of my shielding ‘staycation’ projects is reading Vikram Seth’s over-a-thousand page novel A Suitable Boy at the same time — well, I mean as well as — watching the Sunday night TV dramatisation, running on the BBC.