Tuesday, May 26, 2009

A Responsibility for Joy

The last few days I've been struggling with a case of the funk. Some of it has been due to recent reading - Emma's War's lack of heroes and positive outcomes has been pretty typical for the non-fiction I've been reading lately.

World news hasn't exactly been a fount of hope and joy, either. (North Korea, what are you thinking?) Memorial Day is a downer of its own - either I'm thinking of people gone, or wishing I was celebrating the day in a more traditional fashion (ie, beer and BBQ), or getting grumpy with people who are enjoying themselves this last weekend -

- and seriously, while I don't want to speak for anyone else, I would like to think that the veterans we honor on Memorial Day would want people to be celebrating and happy. I don't think they'd hold it against us -

- which is truly not the best way to look at things.

I've started and abandoned a handful of posts on this theme - about how everything is horrid and miserable and I'm going to go out into the garden and eat worms.

I even had a list of worms I was going to eat - links to all sorts of things that made me sad and unhappy.

Then I went to Mass this evening.

Today is the feast day of St Phillip Neri - a man who abandoned his studies for ordination and became a lay leader of the church. His attributes were humility and gaeity, and he, like St Francis of Assisi, was one who delighted in God.

In that spirit - in the spirit of Christ who is ever willing to look past our failures, our anger, our laziness and our indifference, and passionately pour out his love on us all, a short list of things which are more butterfly than worm:

Amy Deanne at 160acrewoods posted book review of Faith to Faith - about conversations and commonalities between Christians and non-Christians.

Another book - Shop Class as Soul Craft: An Inquiry Into the Value of Work - which might have implications for those who are trying to find a balance between work and prayer. (Or it might be something else - haven't read it yet.)

Some others may also remember Sister Wendy (the art nun) judging the Jesus 2000 painting contest, and the controversy surrounding the winning portrat. I managed to come back across the painter's web site: Jesus of the People painter. I think it really is a glorious piece of work.

A Happiness Project

And if all that is insufficent: I Can Haz Cheeseburger - I find the ongoing references to Ceiling Cat and Basement Cat funny and frequently (if accidently) profound.

Finally: Where the hell is Matt? - out in the world. Dancing.

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