Stating the Obvious

Lake Philpott and the Blue Ridge

Do not worry about how you are to speak or what you are to say. (Matthew 10:19)

The Lord instructed His Apostles, “Proclaim that the Kingdom of God is at hand.”

The kingdom of God is at hand. Admittedly, this is a challenging and mysterious thing to proclaim. Mysterious because God altogether transcends our understanding. Challenging because, if the altogether transcendent One is asserting His authority, then we all certainly need to take a long, hard look at what we are doing and clean things up a bit.

Granted, then: The apostolic proclamation of the coming of God’s Kingdom is mysterious and challenging. But can it be called offensive, or even surprising?

Can it surprise any reasonable person to hear that Almighty God reigns? Quite the contrary, it is an obvious fact. Almighty God certainly reigns. If there is any question whatsoever about whether or not Almighty God reigns, all you need to do is drive up to the Philpott Dam overlook at closing time and watch the sun set. Almighty God reigns.

Is it offensive to declare that Almighty God reigns? Apparently it is, because the Lord warns us that we will be handed over to courts and even put to death for stating forthrightly such a simple and obvious fact. Then He tells us not to worry about what to say when the crisis comes.

The Lord Jesus promises that the Spirit of the Father will speak in us.

We can be confident of this because the Holy Spirit can and will inspire whomever He wills to inspire.

And we can be confident, and not worry about our speeches in defense of the Gospel, because, after all, it really is not complicated.

God is God. He is not a little pet or a pile of dirty laundry you can shove in the closet. He makes all that exists exist. His Kingdom is at hand; He reigns. No duh.

It did not take a rocket scientist to explain the meaning of life to the human race.

It just took the meek and humble carpenter Who did not clamor in the streets but went quietly, like a lamb, to His destiny.

Hall of Famers and the Holy Name

Many art historians say: El Greco was a pioneer Modern painter.

I have no interest in this thesis. El Greco is an L.R.S. Hall-of-Famer by his own merits. He is the greatest painter ever. He is in a class by himself.

I have to admit that I never noticed that St. Mary Magdalene is in El Greco’s Saint Peter in Penitence. She is rushing from the empty tomb, with the angel behind her. (Just to the left of St. Peter’s right elbow.)

(FYI: El Greco painted this subject at least six times. The Phillips Collection houses one.)

…Had enough Christmas sentimentality? Check out this hard-nosed Epiphany poem by another L.R.S. Hall-of-Famer…

…Speaking of Epiphany, it is a good day to mark your calendars with the most important days of the year. Click here, and scroll down to page 3.

Also, here is a homily for the Solemnity, with a little something thrown in for the Feast of the Holy Name:

When the wise men arrived in Bethlehem, they learned something they did not yet know.

Continue reading “Hall of Famers and the Holy Name”

20 + C + M + B + 09

Here is this year’s Epiphany Proclamation, so you can mark your ’09 calendars.


Dear brothers and sisters, the glory of the Lord has shone upon us,
and shall ever be manifest among us, until the day of his return.

Through the rhythms of times and seasons let us celebrate the mysteries of salvation.

Let us recall the year’s culmination, the Easter Triduum of the Lord:
his last supper, his crucifixion, his burial and his rising, celebrated between the evening of the 9th of April and the evening of the 12th of April.

Each Easter—as on each Sunday—the Holy Church makes present the great and saving deed by which Christ has forever conquered sin and death.

From Easter are reckoned all the days we keep holy.

Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent, will occur on the 25th of February.

The Ascension of the Lord will be commemorated on the 24th of May.

Pentecost, the joyful conclusion of the season of Easter, will be celebrated on the 31st of May.

And this year the First Sunday of Advent will be on the 29th of November.

Likewise the pilgrim Church proclaims the Passover of Christ in the feasts of the holy Mother of God, in the feasts of the Apostles and Saints, and in the commemoration of the faithful departed.

To Jesus Christ, who was, who is, and who is to come, Lord of time and history, be endless praise, for ever and ever. Amen.