Issues

The World’s a Stage: The Drama of Faith
May June 2017 COVER

The World’s a Stage: The Drama of Faith

May/June 2017: The World’s a Stage: The Drama of Faith

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May/June 2017 Table of Contents

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“Reverence for the Gods in Antigone: Beyond Greek Humanism” – by Veronica A. Arntz

“Give me glory! What greater glory could I win than to give my own brother decent burial? These citizens here would all agree, they would praise me too if their lips weren’t locked in fear.”1 Sophocles’ Antigone boldly argues against her tyrant uncle, Creon, who, after assuming the throne of her father, Oedipus, proceeds to give a proper burial to only one of her brothers who fought in the war. Creon’s reasoning is that Eteocles died fighting for him, while Polynices fought on the opposite side, making him a traitor. Creon goes further and forbids anyone from burying the body of Polynices, but Antigone, bolder than her sister Ismene, proceeds to bury her brother despite the law. After disobeying Creon’s law, Antigone fearlessly faces her uncle’s anger and his threat of death.

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Wounded Beauty: Suffering & the Arts
March April 2017_Cover

Wounded Beauty: Suffering & the Arts

March/April 2017: Wounded Beauty: Suffering & the Arts

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March/April 2017 Table of Contents

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“A Note on the Problem of Evil” by John Beaumont

“The recent air crash in Colombia that resulted in the death of seventy-five people, including most of the Brazilian football team, Chapecoense, was a terrible tragedy. There was a little team triumphing against the major clubs and reaching the final of a continent wide competition for the first time. Now, such understandably great joy has been wiped out at a stroke. I watched a television news program dealing with the crash and its aftermath. There in the center of the screen was a young man, a supporter of the team, his arms raised skyward in supplication. The words he spoke, undoubtedly from the heart, were, “How could God allow this to happen?” He was voicing what is probably the most commonly raised objection to the existence of God, namely what is usually referred to as the problem of evil. Even more recently there has been the loss of life resulting from the crash of the Russian military plane carrying members of an army orchestra. Many people will be voicing similar sentiments at this time to the one reported above. Nevertheless, it is important to contest the implication behind them, which is that God does not exist.”

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The Baptized Imagination
jan-feb-2017-cover

The Baptized Imagination

January/February 2017: The Baptized Imagination

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“The Narrow Way of the Catholic Writer” by Kevin Bezner

“For the many who consider themselves a Catholic writer today, Catholic and writer is a duality when what is required is a unity. The Church and the world needs writers who make the great effort it takes to seek the spiritual unity pursued by the Church Fathers as described by Irénée Hausherr in his classic work Penthos: “As long as they had not arrived at total peace through unification of instincts with will, of imagination with mind, then of will and mind with the divine will and truth, they persisted in blaming themselves and feeling themselves far from the health at which they aimed.”1 If you think this is only a path for clergy, religious, or monastics, consider also these words from Hausherr: “The monk . . . is not a special person. He merely claims to be taking Christianity seriously.”2 The health of Catholic writing and writers will not be restored until writers take their Catholicism as seriously as Hausherr’s monk.”

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Laughter & the Love of Friends
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Laughter & the Love of Friends

November/December 2016: Laughter & the Love of Friends

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“A New Head and a New Heart: Laughter in Life and Literature” by Maria Devlin

“In the film Sherlock Holmes, Holmes is hurt that his best friend Dr. Watson is moving out to get married. When he meets Watson’s fiancée, Mary, he deliberately insults her. Perhaps as he’d hoped, Mary immediately walks out. Unfortunately, so does Watson. The next day, during a sullen carriage ride, Watson demands that Holmes return the waistcoat he once gave him. It looks for a moment as though the bridges are burned—until Watson tosses the waist- coat out the window and, with a faint smirk, catches Holmes’s eye. His repaying Holmes with a joke tells us that their friend- ship is still intact.”

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CS Lewis and Friends
Sept Oct 2016 COVER-page-001

C. S. Lewis & Friends

September/October 2016: C. S. Lewis & Friends

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“Truth in Mythology: Ancient Greece and Narnia” by Paula L. Gallagher

Every legend or myth contains an element of truth—not always historical facts about what happens in the plot, but truths about reality, human nature, or divinity. J. R. R. Tolkien once told C. S. Lewis that “[we] have come from God, and inevitably the myths woven by us, though they contain error, will also reflect a splintered fragment of the true light, the eternal truth that is wit…”

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The Catholic World of J. R. R. Tolkien
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The Catholic World of J. R. R. Tolkien

June/July 2016: The Catholic World of J. R. R. Tolkien

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“A Sacramental View of the World: Tolkien and My Conversion” by Daniel Bennett

I have finally discovered the answer to what
struck me at the time, many months hence,
as an evasive, yet undeniable fact: J. R. R.
Tolkien, without saying one word about the
Catholic Church per se, had played no small
part in my conversion. C. S. Lewis lucidly
describes this method of teaching Christian
doctrines through fairy tales in
a letter to the Anglican nun
Sister Penelope: “Any amount
of theology can now be smuggled
into people’s minds under
cover of romance without their
knowing it.”

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Verse in Adversity: Poetry & Modernity
May June 2016_Cover-page-001

Verse in Adversity: Poetry & Modernity

May/June 2016: Verse in Adversity: Poetry & Modernity

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Following the Light: A Poet’s Journey Back to the Church — by Christopher Lux

Kevin Bezner, a deacon in the Byzantine
rite, based at St. Basil the Great Ukrainian
Catholic Mission in Charlotte, has recently
published his seventh collection of poetry,
Following the Light. The collection reveals a
journey back to God, and a meditation on
God’s creation, forgiveness, and second
chances.

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Shakespeare 1616-2016
March April 2016_Cover

Shakespeare 1616-2016

March/April 2016: Shakespeare 1616-2016

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What Shakespeare’s Editors Don’t Know – by Frank Brownlow

People have been saying that Shakespeare was a Catholic for a long time. Newman thought so, and his contemporary Richard Simpson, St. Edmund Campion’s biogra- pher, was the first scholar to assemble the evidence. In the last twenty-five years or so the sheer pressure of that evidence has lead a fair number of Shakespeare scholars to concede that Shakespeare had a Catholic upbringing. But the idea that, unlike John Donne, he remained Catholic has so far proved unacceptable.

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Evelyn Waugh
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Evelyn Waugh Revisited

January/February 2016: Evelyn Waugh Revisited

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“Waugh Mistaken and Brideshead Unvisited” by Frank Brownlow

Reading Evelyn Waugh’s collected journalism more than fifty years after he wrote it, one realizes how accurately he prophesied the long-range consequences of radical egalitarianism in all the departments of life.

Consider the disappearance of the word “gentleman”. A fight breaks out between two young men in their late twenties in the parking lot of a neighborhood bar in a depressed city. The police arrive, restore order, and ask questions. One of the combatants says, “I don’t know why the gentleman approached me. I don’t know him.”

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Belloc
Belloc and His World

Belloc and His World

November/December 2015: Belloc and His World

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“On Pilgrimage and Sacramentality: Hilaire Belloc’s The Four Men” by Tod Worner.

Recently, upon reading Hilaire Belloc’s classic The Four Men, I came to a new appreciation: the virtue of “re-reading”. The first read, I have learned, always tells you what happened, but each subsequent read tells you what it means. There is no better work to re-read than a book about a pilgrimage. Especially one described by Hilaire Belloc. We care where the pilgrimage takes us. But we care even more what the pilgrimage means.

Belloc opens his extraordinary journey having found himself in a state—a funk—in which we all may find ourselves sooner or later. It is the bittersweet position of taking stock in our life when, in a moment of naked honesty and true poignancy, we find we have strayed from our intended path. Belloc’s moment came on the twenty-ninth of October, 1902 to be exact. He was in an English inn known as the “George” at Robertsbridge. Nursing port and staring at the fire, the intense, brooding Belloc arrived at a harsh conclusion: You are missing what matters.

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