Wonder & Whimsy: prayers, arrested development & greatness

A weekly curation of quotations I come across in my reading life (or on random condiment jars) — from the inspirational to the miscellaneous. Perhaps one inspires you or catches your fancy too…

A prayer of St. Benedict…

“Give us grace that our way of life may be pleasing to you, that we may have the patience to wait for you and the perseverance to look for you.”

A prayer of St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross (Edith Stein)…

“O my God, fill my soul with holy joy, courage and strength to serve you. Enkindle Your love in me and then walk with me along the next stretch of road before me. I do not see very far ahead, but when I have arrived where the horizon now closes down, a new prospect will open before me, and I shall meet it with peace.”

Arrested development…

“Extended life expectancy has made extended adolescence possible.” – Tyler Blanski, An Immovable Feast

Perfecting our nature…

“Grace does not destroy nature, but rather perfects it.” – Thomas Aquinas, (Summa Theologica, I. I. 82)

Made for greatness…

“The world offers you comfort. But you were not made for comfort. You were made for greatness.” – Pope Benedict XVI

My Reading Challenge Pick for…A Book by Pope Benedict XVI

I’ve been sharing what I’m reading throughout the year for the 2017 Catholic Reading Challenge, and we are down to the last few.  

Category: A Book by Pope Benedict XVI (a.k.a. Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger)

My Pick: Daughter Zion: Meditations on the Church’s Marian Belief

This book is a really quick read; I got through it in under two hours. It provides an excellent introduction to the most significant biblical roots of the Catholic Church’s teaching on Mary and how her role is woven into the fabric of our faith. (Since this book was written before Cardinal Ratzinger became pope, I will refer to his authorship here by that name.)

The book is basically divided into two parts. In the first section, Ratzinger states that “the image of Mary in the New Testament is woven entirely of Old Testament threads,” and he identifies three main “strands” (p.12):

  1. Mary resembles the “great mothers” of the old testament — like Sarah and Hannah.
  2. Mary is a picture of “daughter zion” — the people of Israel — with whom God has established his everlasting covenant.
  3. Mary is the “New Eve” — a woman whose “yes” birthed life, where the disobedience of the first woman had birthed death to mankind.

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