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Showing posts from August, 2012

Some Thoughts on the Church - Carretto

I found this modern "desert father" about seven or eight years ago. He just keeps on pushing me to love and to understand and to grow. Enjoy! Jon

“How baffling you are, oh Church, and yet how I love you! How you have made me suffer, and yet how much I owe you! I would like to see you destroyed, and yet I need your presence. You have given me so much scandal and yet you have made me understand what sanctity is. I have seen nothing in the world more devoted to obscurity, more compromised, more false, and yet I have touched nothing more pure, more generous, more beautiful. How often I have wanted to shut the doors of my soul in your face, and how often I have prayed to die in the safety of your arms.

No, I cannot free myself from you, because I am you, though not completely. And besides, where would I go? Would I establish another? I would not be able to establish it without the same faults, for they are the same faults I carry in me. And if I did establish another, it would be…

Yes, We Might Question Technology….

Neil Postman was one of those writers/educators that I ran into at the right time…at just the time I needed some influencing. I didn’t run into him literally; I ran into him literarily—I found his books: Amusing Ourselves to Death, Teaching as a Subversive Activity, The End of Education, and others. I was a young grad student at U of L…passionate to be a good teacher, a life-changing teacher. Postman gave me a lot to think about. I didn’t buy everything he was selling, but I bought enough to know that he and I were kindred spirits in a way—we were going to question everything.
In March 1998, Postman presented “Five Things We Need to Know About Technological Change” at a conference in Colorado. I wasn’t there…but I was with him all the way. Even though he penned and voiced these words some 14 years ago, we need to hear them again. Below, I’ve pulled out his five main ideas, in his own words. At the end, there is a link to the full text of his presentation…in case you want to go deeper,…

Sweet Relief...

I’m reading Carlo Carretto again (Letters from the Desert), an intimate work that follows Carretto’s feet and mind into the desert of North Africa. 
He had been very active in the Church for many years, and quite suddenly he hears God call him to leave it all behind in his homeland of Italy and follow God into the desert.
At one point towards the beginning of the book, he is contemplating his earnest, dedicated labors and activity in the church back home, his practice of running “continually from one project to another, from one meeting to another, from one city to another”.  While involved in all of that, he had been operating on a worldview that went something like this:  God created the world and then stepped aside to rest; Christ founded the Church and then disappeared in to heaven to let the Church save the world.  Carretto says he imagined that his frenzied life and work were somehow part of the column that was holding everything up and everything together.
I drew back suddenly…