31 December 2008
30 December 2008
29 December 2008
28 December 2008
27 December 2008
26 December 2008
I dropped Katie and her friend Jessica off at the train station this morning at 6:30 for the beginning of their Italian vacation. We have news that their flight from Vienna landed safely in Venice early this afternoon, and I'm sure that they are strolling around in Venice right now. They were still adjusting their travel plans even late last night, but it's settled as least that they'll stay tonight in Venice, and then two nights in Florence, two in Siena, and two in Norcia. After that point it's not so clear, but they should be in Rome from about 2 Jan. '09 until their flight back to Bratislava on 9 Jan. '09.
Into the way of peace and prosperity direct them, O almighty and merciful God: and may the Angel Raphael accompany them in the way, and may they return in peace, health and joy unto their own homes.
25 December 2008
24 December 2008
23 December 2008
22 December 2008
21 December 2008
20 December 2008
19 December 2008
18 December 2008
17 December 2008
16 December 2008
14 December 2008
Just as last year, John and I are trying to determine what sort of traditions we want to start for important holidays such as Christmas, incorporating some from each side of our families, and coming up with some of our own. This year, we heard of people setting up their Christmas tree on the first Sunday of Advent, but only decorating it with purple ornaments. Then on Gaudete Sunday, adding pink (or rose, whichever is your preference) to the mix, and finally decorating the tree in all its glory Christmas Eve. We liked the idea, and so up until now we've only had purple ribbon on the tree. To honor my family's tradition, we decided to decorate the tree, without lights, today. We'll wait to light the tree until Christmas Eve night. After all the ornaments were on, we realized that we had a bouquet of pink roses from my shower Friday night. We decided to add them, and from now on, perhaps we'll add pink roses every Gaudete Sunday.
We sampled the fruits of all our cookie baking after Divine Liturgy this morning. But don't worry, the rest are packed safely away until Christmas!
I think Maria had more fun decorating the tree this year.
If you look very carefully, you can see roses peeking out between the branches.
13 December 2008
Born at Syracuse in Sicily of noble parents, St. Lucy gave herself to Jesus and chose death rather than lose the incorruptible treasure of her virginity, in 303. Her name occurs in the canon of the Mass.
Katie made 64 chocolate chip cookies, with big chocolate chunks (in which Maria seemed rather interested).
12 December 2008
In honor of our Lady of Guadalupe, we had a Mexican feast in the ITI common room. Huge burritos of black beans, rice, potates, peppers, etc. Big bowls of homemade salsa. Even a mini keg of beer. Delicious!
Lisa also had a baby shower this evening with a Mexican theme in honor of our Lady. She says that Mexican cheesecake is quite good. We got lots and lots of diapers...
11 December 2008
If one can judge by the vestments that a Cardinal wears, the sacred Liturgy would appear to be in good hands.
10 December 2008
My last assignment is a 7-10 page exegetical exercise on the death scene of Christ in Matthew's Gospel (27:45-50). It promises to be rather interesting in light of the atonement on account of Christ's enigmatic cry from the cross: "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"
09 December 2008
08 December 2008
"We declare, pronounce, and define that the doctrine which holds that the most Blessed Virgin Mary, in the first instance of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege granted by Almighty God, in view of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Savior of the human race, was preserved free from all stain of original sin, is a doctrine revealed by God and therefore to be believed firmly and constantly by all the faithful" (Ineffabilis Deus, 29).
07 December 2008
St. Ambrose, Bishop, Confessor, Doctor of the Church
This Bishop of Milan was one of the four great doctors of the Western Church. As an orator he opposed the heretics, as a writer he enshrined Latin literature with his sacred hymns. He died in 397.
Our little pilgrimage to Milan for the feast of St. Ambrose was quite an up and down experience. We left Saturday morning for Vienna, only to discover upon our arrival there that one of our party had forgotten his passport. We continued on to the airport hoping that he'd be able to board the plane anyways, but no such luck. It was quite disappointing to all of us to leave him behind. The remaining two of us landed uneventfully and proceeded into the city to be greeted by this truly magnificent sight: the Duomo of Milan.
The crypt of St. Charles, as I mentioned, was supposed to open at 1:30, which would give us just time enough to venerate the great cardinal and bishop of Milan before running off to catch a bus to the airport at 2:00. However, stand there as we might, the door to the crypt was not opened for us and we had to leave without seeing St. Charles. Ah, well.
Our adventures were still not over. We landed in Vienna around 6:20 and headed into the city to meet some ITI folks who were there to celebrate the intsallation as Lector and Acolyte of a seminarian-professors of ours. We knew they were near the Votivkirche, but nothing else. And my fellow traveler's cell phone, upon which we were relying heavily, completely failed us. No service in Vienna. We spent the next few hours looking for our ride home. We pumped about 7 euro into a pay phone and only managed to get a message through to the Kartause that if they were able to communicate with our friends to tell them to pick us up at the Votivkirche. Having arrived in the city center around 7:30 we finally found our ride back to Gaming between 9:30 and 10:00. We are back, though, safe and sound, and happy to have paid our respects to the great bishop of Milan.
06 December 2008
Divine Liturgy was in the main church, and was the only Eucharistic celebration today at the Kartause, so that all the students from both the ITI and Franciscan University could participate. St. Nicholas is a major saint in the Eastern Churches. After Liturgy the children were all called up to the front, and told that if they sang for St. Nicholas, maybe he would come visit them. Sure enough, as you can see below, he came and asked them many questions, as well as asking the parents if their children had been good this year, and then he handed out presents to each of them. Then everyone was able to receive a blessing with oil. After we arrived home this afternoon, Maria told us, "St. Nicholas looks like Br. Basil." Indeed he does.
We hope that John is having a great time in Milan with Max and Rob. Please pray for a safe journey home for them!
05 December 2008
04 December 2008
This morning the second low Mass of the semester was offered in the traditional Latin Rite of Mass. It was offered in honor of St. Peter Chrysologus, with commemorations both of Advent and of St. Barbara (which made it rather complicated for me to prepare the propers, but I figured out how it all works together eventually - I hope).
03 December 2008
02 December 2008
It seems to be the case that as exams approach, time slips by faster and faster... We have only a week and a half of classes left, I've already received one study sheet for an exam, and I still have one more paper to write!
01 December 2008
30 November 2008
1. "They seem to me to lack literary judgment... If he tells me that something in a Gospel is legend or romance, I want to know how many legends and romances he has read, how well his palate is trained in detecting them by the flavor; not how many years he has spent on that Gospel."
2. "The idea that any man or writer should be opaque to those who lived in the same culture, spoke the same language, shared the same habitual imagery and unconscious assumptions, and yet be transparent to those who have none of these advantages, is in my opinion preposterous. There is an a priori improbability in it which almost no argument and no evidence could counterbalance."
3. "I find in these theologians a constant use of the principle that the miraculous does not occur... Now I do not here want to discuss whether the miraculous is possible. I only want to point out that this is a purely philosophical question. Scholars, as scholars, speak on it with no more authority than anyone else."
4. "All this sort of criticism attempts to reconstruct the genesis of the texts it studies; what vanished documents each author used, when and where he wrote, with what purposes, under what influences - the whole Sitz im Leben of the text... My impression is that in the whole of my experience not one of these guesses [made by reviewers in regard to Lewis's own writings] has on any one point been right; that the method shows a record of 100 per cent failure. You would expect that by mere chance they would hit as often as they miss. But it is my impression that they do no such thing. I can't remember a single hit. But as I have not kept a careful record my mere impression may be mistaken. What I think I can say with certainty is that they are usually wrong."
St. Andrew, Apostle (II Class)
29 November 2008
The food was excellent! It was exactly what Thanksgiving dinner should be. We filled our plates a couple of times with turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing, cranberry sauce, bread, etc. Maria especially enjoyed the potatoes. Dessert had more of an international flavor, although it was not lacking in pumpkin and apple pies.
After dinner, we were entertained by music from all different cultures. Above is Katie playing her violin while the kids dance all around her. She kept playing even when little Eli was hanging on her right arm. We took a fair amount of pictures of the evening, which are now in an online album.
27 November 2008
Speaking of this lecture - it was the first one of the semester, unlike last year when they seemed to occur almost every other week - it was rather interesting. The speaker was the head of some institute for marriage and family. It's the group that organized the demonstration in front of parliament in September that we took part in. Anyways, his ideas for improving conditions for family life here are these: (1) lower the voting age to 0; (2) give pensions to children. In regards to the first, his idea is that parents can exercise their children's voting rights up to a certain age - I think it is 16 here - thus giving the most voting power to those with the biggest families. In regards to the second, his idea is that it is simply unjust to give 22% to retired people (who are not earning money, yet need to eat) and only 4% to children (who are not earning money, yet need to eat). Very interesting.
26 November 2008
Sad to say, it seems that tomorrow morning's Traditional Latin Low Mass has been cancelled in the interest of having everybody attend the same Mass for a community celebration (FUS style) of Thanksgiving. Ah, well...
The domestic news of the day regards Maria's efforts at toilet training: I encountered an epic disaster when I arrived home this evening. We can just say that after many paper towels, wetwipes, and tears (not Maria's), everything was taken care of and we sat down for a nice dinner.
25 November 2008
Katie turned in her first paper today! It dealt with Plato's dialogues, and touched upon, among other things, arguments for the immortality of the soul.
24 November 2008
Well, the paper on faith is almost done at long last. I should be able to turn it in tomorrow, and then take a break for a few days before starting in on my last writing assignment of the semester: a 7 page biblical exegesis of a text of Matthew's Gospel.
Maria, by the way, has made immense progress in learning how to use the toilet. We've been going through quite a lot of gummy bears these last few days. She's getting to be quite the big girl.
23 November 2008
In the Novus Ordo calendar today is the Feast of Christ the King. We actually celebrated this great feast day already some time ago, when we were in Lourdes as a matter of fact. The feast was originally ordered for the Last Sunday of October. The Encyclical Letter Quas Primas (1925), of Pope Pius XI, by which he instituted the feast day, is a great read and not very long.
Update: there is a plenary indulgence available today in connection with this Feast. The indulgenced work is the pious, public recitation of the Act of Consecration of the Human Race to the Sacred Heart of Jesus composed by His Holiness, Pope Leo XIII. All of the usual conditions, of course, must also be met: (1) Communion, (2) Confession, (3) Prayers for the intentions of the Holy Father, (4) freedom from attachment to all sin, even venial.
22 November 2008
Final score: Ohio State 42. Michigan 7. Ouch.
21 November 2008
Today was bar none the nastiest weather we've seen this semester. You may or may not have noticed that we haven't complained much about the weather since our first few weeks here when it was raining non-stop. It really has been quite pleasant on the whole since then, really quite beautiful actually. Today though, it was raining hard when it should have been snowing. I mean half a degree colder and it would have been snow. Miserable. Now, however, it has finally turned to snow, and it's coming down pretty hard. We'll see if it amounts to anything in the morning, but it looks like it has a chance.
Very thought provoking, keep it coming.
Your comments will be in the normal font, and mine in bold.
First, regarding the thought experiment that you present. It seems like forgiveness could be involved in either option or not [where is the forgiveness if you kick me back?]; the disjunction is not that sharp. If you wrong me grievously by kicking my shins, it seems that justice demands that both I am revenged on you [clearly not, unless God is unjust for not sending us all to hell] and you pay reparation to me. Now maybe both are accomplished by you washing my car (it needs it) but maybe not. Every evil requires vengeance or punishment, which is penal. But as I say, your one act of washing my car may make reparation and as you say, still involve that penal aspect. [Washing the car, that is, making satisfaction, does involve something penal; but this is still fundamentally different from revenge. It comes down to this: justice may be restored by the sinner offering something sufficiently good to the offended, or by the offended inflicting evil on the sinner.]
In the case of the relationship between God and man, it seems that sin, at least original sin, merits the eternal punishment of damnation [exactly]. Yet God accepts the sacrifice of Christ as satisfaction for our sins [true]: those who become members of Christ, that is, who participate in Him and in His Passion through Baptism, no longer have to undergo this punishment [right; and neither does Christ. So, what has happened to: "justice demands vengeance"? Is God unjust?].
They do have to undergo the punishment of purgative suffering, however. [Yes, they do. God, in His Wisdom, seems to want our cooperation in our salvation. Sin entails both temporal and eternal punishment; once the sin is forgiven, eternal punishment is out of the question – once again I question how forgiveness remains when the full punishment is inflicted – but temporal punishment remains. Now, for those forgiven of their sins, there is a direct correspondance between the amount of satisfaction they make for their sins through penitential works on earth and the amount of punishment that will be inflicted upon them in purgatory. Making satisfaction = not being punished]. Now it is clear that Christ does not undergo eternal damnation (your point 3). So somehow Christ's sacrifice is sufficient for His members not having to undergo the punishment that they justly deserve for sin.
Here is what I would accept about the situation from what you have said: Christ freely offers Himself to the Father. He does this in obedience to the Father. In doing so, He takes upon Himself the deepest level of human suffering [This last depends very much on what you mean. When discussing the fact that Christ endured maximal pain, St. Thomas is very careful to say that this refers to maximal pain in this life: "The pain suffered by a separated soul belongs to a state of future damnation which exceeds every evil in this life, as the glory of the saints exceeds every good of our present existence. When we speak of Christ’s pain as being maximal, we exclude all comparisons with the pain endured by a soul in the next life" (S.Th. IIIa, 46, 6, ad 3)]. He does this so as to offer perfect worship to the Father, to reveal the glory of the self-donative love of the Trinity in a fallen world, to give us a perfect model of charity. He also does this so as to repay the debt which we owe to the Father, but not just repay it but overpay it, so to speak, that He might have an abundance of grace to pour out upon us [also true; it is at least the common opinion (Sent. communis) that Christ’s atonement is superabundant, that is, the positive value of the expiation is greater than the negative value of the sin. Actually, come to think of it, your point about the superabundance of Christ's satisfaction strikes me as an argument in my favor. Pope Clement VI declared that one drop of blood would have sufficed for the redemption of the whole human race on account of its infinite preciousness (is that a word?). Tradition says that the suffering on the Cross was more than enough; it seems to me that von Balthasar wants to say that it wasn't enough - now Holy Saturday must also be a day of suffering, in fact, of even greater suffering than good Friday. If this is the peak of Christ's redemptive work - his alienation from God in hell - why the stress upon the Cross, and specifically upon His Blood in the Bible and the Tradition?]. He furthermore does this so as to reveal His love for us, to be in total solidarity with us in our every suffering [just curious, but this seems like a premise to me, more than a conclusion – a premise which leads to the conclusion that Christ suffered the pains of damnation – and I wonder upon what is this premise based. It strikes me as unnecessarily assumed], even to the point of descending into death and hell [Christ's descent to hell has always been interpreted as a descent to the limbo of the fathers in order to lead them forth – never as a continuation of his suffering, at least until the modern era. His work of redemption was "finished" on the sixth day (Friday) – on the seventh day he rested]. St. Thomas argues that Christ descends into hell to shame the damned, but I think that there is something to what Balthasar says: He goes into hell so that even there His compassion has been manifested, so that no one can say that God was not there for him. [I’m not sure what that means]
So Christ repays our debt freely as a gift—on this we can agree. But this can lead to some problematic results [It shouldn't. It is one, undoubtably true premise. Problematic results could only occur throught the addition of false premises, or through faulty reasoning]. Our debt involves the punishment of suffering, death, and hell, and Christ takes these on Himself (though not so as to go to hell eternally [well, then, does he or doesn’t he take upon him our punishment? I don’t think you can have it both ways.]). Christ is innocent, yet the Father commands Him to suffer and He obeys—is this just of God to do (your point 1)? Christ is not fallen—so how can He pay our debt? How would it be just? For it is not qua human but qua fallen that we need to pay a debt in the first place. And the Fathers pointed out that "that which is not assumed is not redeemed" and Christ did not assume our fallenness. This seems to be an objection to the whole legal justice model that has to be met. [I don’t see the difficulty here – Christ’s innocence (and divinity) is precisely that which allows him to make such a valuable offering to God, and He makes this offering qua human, not just as a man, but as the definitive and last man, as the new Adam, who takes all of humanity up into himself; indeed, this is exactly why we must be incorporated into His body (the Catholic Church) in order to receive the fruits of the redemption. The “debt” cannot be paid by an innocent man if it is understood as the obligation to undergo punishment; it can be “paid” an innocent (representative) man if it is understood as the obligation to make reparation. If my brother breaks your car’s windows, it would be unjust for you to punish me, but it would be perfectly fine for me to pay for your window to be fixed. Re: the Eastern Fathers, and the "not assumed, not redeemed", it is not our "fallenness" that needs to be redeemed it is our nature, our race. This, at least, was clearly what they who said it meant by it. In fine, I see the points you make as an objection to penal substitution specifically, rather than to considerations of justice in general.]
Regarding Christ’s alienation from God, I think this is to be understood on an experiential or phenomenological level, not on the level of the actual principles involved. So there is no divide in the Trinity. [What does it mean to experience something that is not true/real? If Christ is not separated from God (remember: He is God), how can He experience this?] Rather, Christ willingly takes on all of our sufferings [I admit only maximal suffering in this life], including the experience of alienation from God [this is the suffering of the damned – this is the necessary conclusion of the penal substitution theory, which is precisely why I think that theory so woefully errant]. This does not preclude that He is actually close to God at the moment of his cry on the Cross. But we could tell the story this way: in the immanent Trinity, the love of the Father for the Son and the Son for the Father involves the total self-donation of each to the other and thus their union. But when the Son becomes man in a fallen world, this total self-donation is experienced in terms of all the uncertainties and divisions that come with our fallen world. Coupled with His choice to experience all of our sufferings [again, only temporal sufferings], this means that the Son, in pouring Himself out to the Father on behalf of humanity reveals the glory of the Trinity (that is, the self-donative, self-emptying love of the Godhead) but this is experienced, in virtue of His humanity, in terms of uncertainty and loneliness. Thus it seems to me that both Balthasar and Ratzinger could be correct to a certain degree. [In regards to the story just told, I think that I can only admit that I don’t speak fluent von Balthasar. What does it all mean? I’m not really sure what you mean especially by kenosis within the Trinity. I’m aware of this word only in Phil. 2. Do you really think that Christ experienced uncertainty? What about the experience of the Beatific Vision that was his from conception unto eternity?]
It seems to me that we must take seriously the fact that our experience of alienation from God is the deepest source of suffering, and thus a 'place' that Christ must go if He is really to be 'God With Us' [I don’t see why. He is "God with us" in everything but sin.]; we must also take seriously the fact that the Son and the Father are one [I think that this actually has to be taken way more seriously than the previous point, since it is the Primary Dogma of the Catholic Faith, whereas the assertion that "God must experience alienation from God in order to be with us" could only be, if granted, a conclusion at some remove from the articles of faith. Theology works from the top downwards – soteriology is to be understood in terms of Christology, not vice versa]. An objection that you could make is that Christ is not fallen and so has no way of having this experience, but I think that this lodges you in the same difficulty I raised earlier about the justice model to begin with [I disagree, but I wrote a few inadequate words there, so I won’t repeat myself]. Part of the merit that Christ earns is that He suffers through this alienation, which is indeed arduous for Him on an experiential level in virtue of His humanity, still trusting in the Father. By taking this on Himself He both fully allows humanity to be assimilated to Himself and offers the perfect and total sacrifice of Himself in a fallen world as a man, and thus reveals to us the sacrifice of Himself which He eternally makes to the Father in His self-donative love in the immanent Trinity.
I look forward to hearing from you re: the weak points in all that I said, and re: which concerns of yours you think that I failed to address.
P.S. I see you've entered a new comment.
It seems to me that the hierarchical notion of truth is a good one, but the Trinity is, to say the least, difficult to understand. All of our understanding is in the form of analogies and metaphors. Thus it seems that it is possible that different models of the Trinity can be correct and thus perhaps different models of the Redemption. It seems to me that there are various paradoxes or aporias involved here, as I mentioned in the above post, and involving various Bible quotes. I'm not sure that there is a "one size fits all" interpretation of them, and it seems that we need to respect these difficulties and not just try to explain them away.
Just two things: (1) I agree that the Trinity (as well as the Hypostatic Union) is difficult to understand. In fact, that's precisely why I favor an interpretation of the atonement based upon this understanding of the Trinity: "The three Persons of the holy Trinity are one in being and yet really distinct in their relations of origin." And for Christology I take this: "Christ is one person in two natures unmixed, untransformed, undivided, unseparated." What "self-donation" and kenosis mean in the inner life of the Trinity, and how these would be mirrored in the human life and actions of Christ, are far less certain.
(2) The only thing that I am trying to "explain away" is the theory of penal substitution. If it contradicts firmly clearly truths about the Trinity and/or Christ Himself, then its problems must be "explained" so as to make it go "away." If there is something that you think I'm inappropriately explaining away, I'd like to know, but maybe I'd need to hear more specificly what you don't want "away".
20 November 2008
Joyous news: this morning at 7:00 was offered for the first time this semester the traditional Latin Low Mass. One of the priests here, never having said or even seen a traditional Latin Mass before, generously agreed to learn how to offer it at our request. This morning was his very first time, and he did a fine job. About a dozen of us were present - enough to completely fill up the small upper chapel, which still has an altar against the East wall. Everything looks promising that this will be a regular Thursday morning offering. Deo gratias!
(Statue of Ss. Felix of Valois and John of Matha on the Charles Bridge, Prague)
19 November 2008
18 November 2008
Maria likes very much to read her Wörterbilderbuch.
17 November 2008
The doctrine of the atonement merits close attention for two reasons, one speculative, the other practical. Firstly, the sacrifice of Christ upon the altar of the Cross is at the very center of Revelation and therefore also of theology, and yet the inner working, so to speak, of the atonement remains open to speculation. Secondly, it has great practical consequences: the doctrine of the atonement stands at the heart of the sacred Liturgy, which shapes to a great degree the faith and therefore also the lives of those who participate in it.
The traditional Catholic theory of the atonement was first formulated by St. Anselm (d. 1109). Its basic lines are these: Christ offers to the Father, in the place of sinful mankind, an infinite satisfaction. The value of his sacrifice more than counter-balances the offense of sin. With the order of justice thus restored, and the Father’s wrath appeased, God is pleased to forgive man his sins. Classical Protestantism retained much of the Catholic understanding of the atonement, but with the mistaken tendency to treat Christ’s sacrifice as a case of penal substitution, i.e., as if Christ’s death were a case of our just punishment being reassigned to him – God’s just anger redirected at him. In the modern era this notion of penal substitution has increasingly crept into Catholic theology, especially in the theology of Hans Urs von Balthasar.
Ratzinger’s theology of the atonement is especially interesting along the same two lines outlined above. In regards to speculation upon the atonement, Ratzinger makes an excellent contribution to the discussion through the example of his hierarchical method, wherein he allows his soteriology to be shaped and guided by Christology, as also through his development of a line of thought taken from Romano Guardini that seeks to understand Christ’s “suffering through” evil as a process of healing mankind’s guilt from within. Secondly, in regards to the practical importance of the doctrine of the atonement, Ratzinger expresses both the importance of the liturgy in shaping the faith and therefore also the lives of the faithful, and the importance of the doctrine of the atonement in shaping one’s approach to the liturgy.
The main lines along which my thesis will develop are these: first, a consideration of the practical importance of the doctrine of the atonement according to the axiom lex orandi, lex credendi, lex vivendi. Second, a discussion of the method employed (rightly) by Ratzinger in interpreting Christ’s sacrifice. His method, in brief, is to respect the hierarchy of truths: he allows his soteriology to be illumined by Christology, which is illumined in turn by the mystery of the Trinity. Third, then, it will be necessary to turn to the basic datum of Christology that Ratzinger applies to his soteriological speculation, i.e., that Christ is the Son of the Father: an obvious statement with great implications for the doctrine of the atonement.
My fourth task will then be to turn to Ratzinger’s theology of the atonement itself: and in this regard he offers a negative critique of “mechanistic” theories of the atonement (here it will be necessary to counter objections put forward by proponents of the penal substitution theory in regards to Christ’s “cup” of suffering, his cry from the Cross, and especially his descent into hell), positing instead that Christ’s death is a great transformation of death into love. It is here that Ratzinger develops his favorite theme of “suffering through” evil and sin, for if Christ’s suffering is not part of some mechanized legal process in which he is punished for our sins, then why the intensity of his suffering? Ratzinger’s answer is that suffering is simply the form that love takes in a broken world; it is a necessary part of the process of healing guilt from within.
Fifthly, I will be to take stock of Ratzinger’s theology of the atonement within the wider field of Catholic tradition: his interpretation of Christ’s death as essentially an act of love (rather than punishment) fits easily into St. Thomas’ doctrine of the fourfold salvific causality of Christ’s Passion (by way of sacrifice, satisfaction, redemption, and merit). His emphasis on love, however, over and against St. Anselm’s emphasis on justice, must in turn be counter-balanced by the latter. In conclusion, I propose to return to the practical importance of the question of the atonement to see what connections can be drawn between Ratzinger’s soteriology and liturgical theology.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1: Hierarchical Theology
Chapter 2: Ratzinger’s Christology
Chapter 3: Ratzinger’s Soteriology
Chapter 4: The Balance between Love and Justice
Conclusion: Liturgical Implications
16 November 2008
15 November 2008
Happy 25th Birthday, John!
We began the celebrations yesterday. I had a doctor's appointment in a town about 30 minutes away, where there is also a large shopping center. John picked up several new, fun kinds of beer. Last night after dinner he opened his presents, which was a tradition the Joys started for John when he was young. Because John could not decide if he wanted beer food or wine food for dinner, we had spicy chicken wings for lunch with his beer, and wine, cheese and hors d'oeuvres for dinner with three friends, with carrot cake and ice-cream for dessert. I was going to take pictures of the festivities, but the conversation was so riveting I forgot. So this one will have to do, it was taken before we began dinner.
P.S. We opted not to find out if I'm having a boy or girl, but everything looks good so far.
14 November 2008
Speaking of books, I also finished a few weeks ago Characters of the Inquisition by William Thomas Walsh, which succeeds quite admirably in refuting "the many lies about the Inquisition raised by the enemies of the Church." It's rather a shame that Torquemada hasn't been canonized.