Friday, April 25, 2008

Popping into Rod Dreher’s blog
  • Dreher gets judgemental about women’s plastic surgery. I see his point but am far more sympathetic about this and think he’s being a prig. Why wear at least halfway stylish clothes and keep your beard shaved or nicely trimmed? Is that vanity as well? It can be — but often isn’t. What Ms Acosta did wasn’t a sin — there’s no evidence she deprived her son (spending money he needed on herself instead) by doing this. As somebody who thinks many women are beautiful I say if one wants to and has her priorities straight then she can go for it.
  • ‘Candle-holders’, the Russian slang term for politicians who visit churches only for personal gain: my regular readers know I hate it when pols abuse religion Richard III or Tartuffe fashion for cred (taking God’s name in vain) but consider: ex-Protestant Britain ‘doesn’t do God’ but for Russian politicians Orthodoxy is cool. IMO that says something good about the latter country. Dreher like me believes in religious liberty: in the long run freedom helps the church.
  • Some kind words on the good that priests do: Tonight I went to the Holy Unction service at the cathedral, and to confession. After my confession, as I stood on the other side of the church listening to the chanting and praying, and watched Father John receive more of us to hear us whisper to him of our sins and failing, and I grasped that he has been doing this for hours during Lent, and he’s never abrupt, and never fails to be compassionate, no matter how boring our crummy old sins must be, and how much that means to our little flock ...
  • Modernity drives populations to extinction: No matter where our ancestors came from, we today live in a nation that European culture and ideals made. Watching Europe die off is painful, and not to be wished. Children, as I believe George Weigel has observed, are a culture’s vote of confidence in itself. A society that ceases to reproduce itself no longer believes in itself. That’s true patriotism, healthy Catholic or simply Christian particularity not the bad kind of nationalism or racism.
  • It’s probably time to start hoarding food.

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