Quotes

This page contains a few of my favorite quotes. I’m sure I’ll continue to add or revise this page.

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Contemplation ~ Communion ~ Mission

“History is full of men who have claimed that they came from God, or that they were gods, or that they bore messages from God–Buddha, Mohammed, Confucius, Christ, Lao-tze, and thousands of others, right down to the person who founded a new religion this very day. Each of them has a right to be heard and considered. But as a yardstick is external to and outside of whatever is to be measured and needed, so there must be some permanent tests available to all men, all civilizations, and all ages, by which they can decide whether any one of these claimants, or all of them, are justified in their claims. These tests are of two kinds: reason and history. Reason, because everyone has it, even those without faith: history, because everyone lives in it and should know something about it.” ~ Fulton Sheen, Life of Christ

“We cannot assume that we will be immune to the massive apostasy that is taking place in the Western world. Never in human history has there been such a wholesale loss of faith, nor one that has come about with such startling speed. Much of its momentum is due to the unprecedented power of television, film, and video—of the image—to recreate our understanding of the very shape of reality. Thus, large numbers of Christians simply do not realize that they are apostacizing, and still larger numbers do not understand that they are being prepared mentally to follow. This is the power of impressionism; it is also ‘peer pressure’ on a colossal scale. How very difficult it is to resist an entire culture, and especially for children to do so, because it is a right and good thing for children to grow into awareness of being members of a broader community. They need culture in order to grow properly. It is one of their primary means of learning what it is to be a fully human person in a community of fellow human beings. That is why the solution will never be simply a matter of criticizing the false culture surrounding us. The absolutely essential task of parents is to give their children a true culture, a sure foundation on which to stand.” — Michael D. O’Brien, from his book A Landscape with Dragons

“It is impossible to be just to the Catholic Church. The moment men cease to pull against it they feel a tug towards it. The moment they cease to shout it down they begin to listen to it with pleasure. The moment they try to be fair to it they begin to be fond of it. But when that affection has passed a certain point it begins to take on the tragic and menacing grandeur of a great love affair.” – G. K. Chesterton

“And so, when we pray: ‘Anima Christi, sanctifica me’, we are indeed making a very bold and dangerous prayer, a tremendously exacting prayer. We are saying that we want to be emptied out, to experience our own kenosis as Christ experienced his, totally given, totally spent. ‘Soul of Christ, sanctify me.’ It will not be painless. No passion ever was.” — Mother Mary Francis, From her book Anima Christi: Soul of Christ

“Pride robs me of God, envy of my neighbor, anger of myself.” – Hugo

“Any Christian who is intellectually alive and is at the same time obviously convinced of the truth of his religion administers a shock to the confidence of the progressives, the secularists, and the ideologues. He is not likely to convert them, but he shakes their confidence in the inevitability of the secularist outlook and in the stupidity of the religious view of life.” – Christopher Dawson

“I am often struck by the flatness and drabness of the secular world, its downright prurient itch to reduce all human things to easily quantifiable measurements, its incuriosity into the mysteries of human existence, its nervous dismissal of all but the tamest of virtues, and its incapacity for wonder.” – Anthony Esolen

“You can educate ignorance, but there’s no cure for stupidity.” – bumpersticker

“It is idle to talk always of the alternative of reason and faith. Reason is itself a matter of faith. It is an act of faith to assert that our thoughts have any relation to reality at all. If you are merely a sceptic, you must sooner or later ask yourself the question, ‘Why should anything go right; even observation or deduction? Why… should not good logic be as misleading as bad logic? They are both movements in the brain of a bewildered.’ The young sceptic says ‘I have a right to think for myself.’ But the old sceptic, the complete sceptic says, ‘I have no right to think for myself. I have no right to think at all.’ ” ~ G.K. Chesterton from Orthodoxy

“Live well. Sing out, sing loud, and sing often. And God bless the child that’s got a song.” – Nanci Griffith

“That was a memorable day to me, for it made great changes in me. But it is the same with any life. Imagine one selected day struck out of it, and think how different its course would have been. Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation of the first link on one memorable day.” – Charles Dickens – Great Expectations

“Literature and morality. Imaginary evil is romantic and varied; real evil is gloomy, monotonous, barren, boring. Imaginary good is boring; real good is always new, marvelous, intoxicating. Therefore, ‘imaginative literature’ is either boring or immoral (or a mixture of both). It only escapes from this alternative if in some way it passes over to the side of reality through the power of art – and only genius can do that.” – Simone Weil

Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level, then beat you with experience.

“For the modern world will accept no dogmas upon any authority; but it will accept any dogmas on no authority. Say that a thing is so, according to the Pope or the Bible, and it will be dismissed as a superstition without examination. But preface your remark merely with “they say” or “don’t you know that?” or try (and fail) to remember the name of some professor mentioned in some newspaper; and the keen rationalism of the modern mind will accept every word you say.” ~GKC: ‘The Superstition of Divorce.’

“We Catholics hold that man, unique among creatures on earth, finds his fulfillment only in what transcends him. He will not compose symphonies in honor of a good housing market. He does not whistle an air for low inflation. He will pen poetry born of love, but if the object of his love is a Clodia rather than a Beatrice, even his love poetry will degenerate into satire and cynicism. Man is made for God. That marks both his duty and his glory. Therefore any attempt to sever man from his devotion to God is an attack upon man’s soul. It reduces man to a counter in an economic or political game, a consumer of creature comforts, or a competitor for wealth and prestige.” ~ Anthony Esolen

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