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Posts Tagged ‘New York Times’

From the recent David Brooks’ column in the New York Times (3 Jan 2013):

I don’t give myself high marks on suffering fools. I’m not rude to those I consider foolish, but I strenuously and lamentably evade them. But I do see people who handle fools well. Many members of the clergy do, as do many great teachers. In my experience, Midwesterners are more likely to treat fools well. Natural politicians do so, too. Joe Biden is effective because he loves humanity in all its shapes and sizes.

G. K. Chesterton had the best advice on suffering fools gladly. He put emphasis on the gladly. When you’re with fools, laugh with them and at them simultaneously: “An obvious instance is that of ordinary and happy marriage. A man and a woman cannot live together without having against each other a kind of everlasting joke. Each has discovered that the other is a fool, but a great fool. This largeness, this grossness and gorgeousness of folly is the thing which we all find about those with whom we are in intimate contact; and it is the one enduring basis of affection, and even of respect.”

Libenter enim suffertis insipientes cum sitis ipsi sapientes. (II Cor 11.19)

For you freely suffer the foolish, even though you yourself are wise. (Translation mine)

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The following is a letter I wrote to Samuel G. Freedman, author of “Amid the Ashes, a Statue of Mary Stands as a Symbol of Survival,” (New York Times, 16 Nov 2012). See also my previous post Et ventis et mari.

Mr Freedman,

I want to thank you for your recent piece about the Madonna at Breezy Point. Though brief, the article’s clarity presents a brilliant and sublime event now happening amid the chaos of distaster and loss. Most remarkably, you have hinted to the fact that men and women of faith, particular of Catholic Christian faith, of which I am a part, can make pilgrimage to this site of hope, carry with them their prayers and tears, and so commend the souls of those who are lost to the grave (or even unburied, as in the case of some in Hurricane Sandy and 11 Sept 2001) to God in Heaven. Such a focal point, a place of pilgrimage, is necessary for lives to be lived and to be made intelligible in the blood-soaked world in which we all find ourselves today; that though we have been “crushed” we are “not abandoned.”

Thank you again,

Charles McCants
Raleigh, NC
(Mark Lennihan/Associated Press)

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One example of how Christians are meeting this call [to sustain forms of economy, community, and culture that recognize the universality of the individual person] is Church Supported Agriculture (CSA), which creates a direct link between family farmers and local congregations. Rather than limit their economic activism to demanding that the state intervene in the market, local churches are creating alternative kinds of economic spaces in which they resist the abstractions of globalization by face-to-face encounters between producers and consumers. In the CSA model, family farmers — most of whom farm organically and practice environmentally sustainable methods — sell their produce directly through local congregations. Parishioners either buy individual products or buy a share of a farmer’s produce at the beginning of the season, thus helping share in the risks of farming. The church serves as a drop-off point for produce and a place for farmers and parishioners to meet. In this space, they avoid the middleman and they personalize the food. Food no longer comes from some anonymous distant place; rather, it comes from another particular human being, and the consumer enters into a relationship with that producer. In this encounter, the person is seen as another self and another Christ, the universal in the particular. (87)

William Cavanaugh, Being Consumed

Judson Memorial Church in Manhattan has started a community-supported agriculture program. (New York Times, Sep 20, 2009)

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From this morning’s New York Times:

While the cameras surround the flamboyant fringes, the rest of the country is on a different mission. Quietly and untelegenically, Americans are trying to repair their economic values.

David Brooks, 18 Oct 2011

tel·e·gen·ic
adj.,
Having a physical appearance and exhibiting personal qualities that are deemed highly appealing to television viewers. (cf. photogenic)

[τηλε -, at a distance (here relating to television) + -γενής, producer]

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