Monday, December 15, 2008

Two Rips From My News Feed

1. Jeffrey Overstreet posts a quote from Dietrich Bonhoeffer on Advent:

"A prison cell, in which one waits, hopes ... and is completely dependent on the fact that the door of freedom has to be opened from the outside, is not a bad picture of Advent."

See Jeffrey's journal, his most excellent movie reviews and buy his books here.

2. The Bishop of Little Rock, Most Rev. Anthony Basil Taylor posts a recent confirmation homily in which he explains the gifts of the Holy Spirit and why youth need them, excerpt:

Wisdom which helps us value the things of heaven regardless of what our friends think, which is certainly a big issue in adolescence,

Understanding which enables us to grasp the truths of religion like in
Dignitas Personae, or for that matter, my pastoral letter on the human rights of immigrants,

Counsel which helps us see the best practical way to serve God in our own particular life, seeking the common good and not just our own perceived self-interest,

Fortitude which strengthens our resolve to resist temptation, including the temptations of the flesh which are so difficult during adolescence…and beyond, and the fortitude to overcome other obstacles as well,

Knowledge which helps us see the path to follow and recognize dangers to our faith,

Piety which leads us to a deeper prayer life that fills us with more and more love and affection for God, and confident eagerness to serve him, and

Fear of the Lord which means always seeking God’s approval, not human approval, obeying God’s law especially when to do so is difficult, for instance when God’s law conflicts with unjust human laws, fear of God rather than fear of man.

Lots more in that homily, including particularly interesting thoughts on John the Baptist. Facebook users can "friend him" and get all his homilies in English and Spanish.