Enter your email address to receive updates by email:

subscribe in a reader like my facebook page follow me on twitter Image Map
Podcast Message Line: 512-222-3389
Logos Catholic Bible Software

« Xenocide | Main | Brideshead Deconstructed »

August 14, 2008

Comments

Tim J.

As I said earlier, I'm in the middle of Speaker for the Dead right now. I don't really have a lot of time to read, and so I have to be pretty picky about which books are likely worth the effort and which aren't.

I doubt I'll read Xenocide.

I have to say, I really enjoy your reviews of the books, Jimmy, even the ones I haven't read. They are pretty entertaining in themselves.

Dale Price

Ender's Shadow is a remarkably good book. The concept seemed gimmicky, but Card pulled it off very well, and much better than I expected.

Dan Hunter

Tomorrow is the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Mother of God.
Here is a wonderful prayer to Her, written by the Holy Father Pope Pius XII:


O Mary, Mother of Mercy and Refuge of Sinners! We beseech thee to look with pitying eyes on poor heretics and schismatics. Do thou, who art the Seat of Wisdom, enlighten the minds wretchedly enfolded in the darkness of ignorance and sin, that they may clearly recognize the Holy, Catholic, Apostolic, Roman Church to be the only true Church of Jesus Christ, outside of which neither sanctity nor salvation can be found. Call them to the unity of the one fold, granting them the grace to believe every truth of our holy faith and to submit themselves to the Supreme Roman Pontiff, the Vicar of Jesus Christ on earth, that, thus being united with us by the sweet chains divine charity, there may soon be but one fold under one and the same Shepherd; and may we all thus, O Glorious Virgin, exultantly sing forever: “Rejoice, O Virgin Mary! Thou alone hast destroyed all heresies in the whole world!” Amen.

God bless you all.

SteveL

Jimmy a very good novel is called Spin. It is sci-fi and well written. Someone closes Earth off in a membrane and the rest of the universe sees time speed up.

SteveL

Oh! One other is "Old Man's War". A great series of thee novels. Good plot, well written and excellent humor.

Mike

Read the first 3 before "Children of the Mind" was written, while I was at High School. I think he falls into the same traps as many Sci-Fi/Fantasy authors. He starts with a great story that has a certain philosophy behind it. The philosophy is gradually revealed until it takes over, and the great story is eventually left behind.

David Eddings did the same with the Belgariad. At the beginning there was some mystery, some excitement. By the time he got on to Belgarath the Sorcerer, there was a philosophy and a set of rules, and the characters knew all the rules and were just going through the motions, following the pattern bit by bit.


Katolicos

Someone closes Earth off in a membrane and the rest of the universe sees time speed up.

Sounds like the Japanese story "Rahxephon" -- except that it was Tokyo that was closed off and time for the rest of the world sped up.

Nothing original anymore -- everything is recycled!

Yuck!

ASimpleSinner

This blog has taken a FAR different direction lately than it used to have... Things change (of course), but...

Katolicos

This blog has taken a FAR different direction lately than it used to have... Things change (of course), but...

I think J.R. Stoodley's initial suspicion was right; I believe Jimmy did/does have a crisis of faith.

Hence, one can observe YTD the incredibly diminished number of Catholic apologetics/themed articles on the blog since the last time he posted something substantive (as opposed to a recycled C.A. post; e.g., "Prayer to the Dead").

Of course, can't blame Jimmy for not making his crisis of faith public; after all, it would damage his livelihood.

Miss the former JA.O blog, including the ole jimmy -- complete with cowboy hat.

Matheus F. Ticiani
I think J.R. Stoodley's initial suspicion was right; I believe Jimmy did/does have a crisis of faith.

Dear Katolicos

If you go back to that comment from JR, you'll see that Jimmy posted a comment denying that his absence from the blog is due to any kind of personal problem.

Dear ASS (no pun intended!)

This blog has taken a FAR different direction lately than it used to have... Things change (of course), but...

I get quite the contrary impression, given that in the last week or so Jimmy posted an apologetics post and a lot of sci-fi stuff, which were pretty much what we used to read here in 2004/05.

Mike Melendez

The hard thing about a blog is that it's so personal that we readers tend to project our own emotions onto it. The other side of that coin is that we are able to empathize and sympathize with the writer. We feel we have a friend, someone who makes us think and laugh. So when they go away for a time without explanation, we can feel abandoned.

But the writer is not likely to have met us, so he doesn't owe us readers an explanation. My guess is that Jimmy's life got very busy for a while. He set his priorities and backed away from the blog. He left us in the good hands of Steven Greydanus and Tim Jones. I find nothing to complain about. I did miss Jimmy's eclectic style from Our Mother Mary to towel animals on a cruise ship with lots of science fiction and fantasy comments, many very funny.

He's back now. Rejoice.

SDG

Katolicos,

Humbly submitted for your consideration: the eighth commandment. Please consider especially this section.

Martin

I was only mildly impressed by Ender's Game. I think I read the sequal but both are far in my past.

Overall I thought Ender was too humble to be a world conquering hero. If he was that bright he should have figured out what the adults were doing before the end of the book.

ASimpleSinner

"I get quite the contrary impression, given that in the last week or so Jimmy posted an apologetics post and a lot of sci-fi stuff, which were pretty much what we used to read here in 2004/05."

Probably why I DID NOT read it in 2004-2005, and am not very interested in it most of the time these days either.

Mary

Lot of variety in the Body of Christ. I hope you find other venues that are more in the type you like.

Katolicos

SDG:

Genuinely submitted for your humble consideration, please do read this section from the Catechism.

SDG

Katolicos,

Thank you for being genuine. In that spirit, let us each earnestly consider some relevant questions:

What am I saying/supposing/suggesting about the other person?
What justification do I have for saying this?
What reason do I have for thinking my suppositions/suggestions true/likely/reasonable?
What are the implications if I am wrong?
What grounds do I have for expressing my views on the subject in public?
What potential good do I hope to achieve?
What potential harm might be done?
What are the potential implications for the person in question?
What are the potential implications for others who may be affected?
Which is ultimately better in this regard, speaking or not speaking?

Such are among the considerations urged by the Eighth Commandment. Let us each take them to heart, I with respect to my communication and you with respect to yours.

Katolicos

What am I saying/supposing/suggesting about the other person?

Jimmy needs help/sympathy.

What justification do I have for saying this?

Other people also suggested Jimmy needs help/sympathy.

What reason do I have for thinking my suppositions/suggestions true/likely/reasonable?

Because with certain human-beings, there are those who usually need help/sympathy but don't actually say they need help/sympathy.

What are the implications if I am wrong?

Somebody makes the rather uncharitable interpretation and throw a bible verse, Catechism or both.

What grounds do I have for expressing my views on the subject in public?

Because to help people in time of need is a Corporal Work of Mercy.

What potential good do I hope to achieve?

These include inter alia:

- Encourage help/sympathy for somebody in need.

- Get a Catholic blog to regain its status as 'Catholic' & get it back to encouraging/promoting the Catholic Faith especially for those who maybe losing their own Faith in the Church and/or Christ given the state of the Church & the World.


What potential harm might be done?

That people might interpret the commenter in the worst light possible.

What are the potential implications for the person in question?

Clarify.

What are the potential implications for others who may be affected?

See above.

Which is ultimately better in this regard, speaking or not speaking?

cf James 2:24


Ok, your turn.

bill912

Perhaps Katolicos ought to read the section he recommended that SDG read, and meditate on it in light of his own comments. Perhaps then he would avoid rash judgment.

CT

I noticed that SDG mentioned in the earlier thread that Francis de Sales had a "crisis of faith" (or however he put it). If SDG would be so kind, I would love a reference, either online or in print that I could read regarding said crisis. I ask because I find it fascinating that the church would canonize him despite his having had such a crisis and would be curious to read more about it (the examples of Mother Teresa and Therese of Lisieux don't fascinate me as they were canonized/beatified in an era where an unusual number were canonized)

FWIW, I don't see having a crisis of faith as a negative thing. However I understand how that may be negative in the context Katolicos alluded to. I have no comment on your quarrel amongst yourselves except to say that crisis or not, I don't think it is healthy from any point of view or angle to ascribe some form of super-human status to Catholic apologists.

Also, FWIW, I very much appreciate JA's posts that are not wholly of a religious nature such as his posts on science fiction. From a Christian perspective, if our relations with created things constitute the formation of some kind of relation with God, I don't see why that would be a problem (prescinding from any problems the Christian perspective itself creates of course).

I think also that Catholic blogs that write only about specifically or wholly Catholic matters would serve to repel people from Catholicism -- which I think is a good result but as I am in a generous mood I thought I'd give you my two cents ;) The reason is that some may get the impression from such blogs that to be Catholic or to be very Catholic involves being very religious to the exclusion of other, more profane*, interests.

*As always use a dictionary if unfamiliar with this usage.

Katolicos

CT said: I ask because I find it fascinating that the church would canonize him despite his having had such a crisis...

Personally, I find it fascinating that St. Peter was 'canonized'; after all, he denied Christ himself 3 times!


I don't think it is healthy from any point of view or angle to ascribe some form of super-human status to Catholic apologists.

I see, so when Christ said to Peter "strengthen your brothers", he meant that he should become "Superman"!


I think also that Catholic blogs that write only about specifically or wholly Catholic matters...

If a Catholic blog does not serve to promote and strengthen the Faith of the brethren; then it should not be called "Catholic". Rather, it should simply be that person's blog.

Life is a continuous trial.

As Matthew 24:13 says: "But the person who endures to the end will be saved."

In other words, it ain't over until it's over.

There are multitudes of Christians (be they Catholic/non-Catholic) who are suffering great trials and losing Faith in Christ wherein those who have been given a Talent by the Lord can do good by simply writing articles concerning the Faith for their benefit and, most importantly, their Salvation.

What is so vile about a Catholic blog living up to the label 'Catholic' and fostering the Faith of others in such a manner?

What is so vile about an apologist who had been bestowed with such a talent by the Lord to utilize that talent for the benefit of the Faithful and the Salvation of the many?

SDG

CT: I've read that Francis de Sales carried a printed copy of the Nicene Creed at his breast, and when he felt no faith he would touch the card and pray to God to accept this as an act of faith.

Katolicos: We are not conducting a public inquiry here. I wrote to you publicly because you are anonymous and otherwise unreachable, whereas both Jimmy and I post under our public identities, which means that (a) anyone can write to either of us privately if he has concerns and (b) we are potentially vulnerable to the malicious or ill-considered public speech of others. That is a choice we made, just as you made the choice you have. If you want to write to me privately at Decent Films and give me an email address, I will provide you with a full and honest catalogue of what I see as the moral implications of my communication and your communication.

FWIW, let me remind you that the apologist of whom you speak devotes his full-time career, including weekly spots on Catholic Answers Live, to the benefit of the faithful and the salvation of many. Who are you to tell him he needs to devote his off hours to the same enterprise? Who are you to judge the servant of another? To his own master he stands or falls.

As a co-moderator for the blog, I am asking you to drop the subject now. If you feel there is more to be said, please write to me privately.

Mary
I've read that Francis de Sales carried a printed copy of the Nicene Creed at his breast, and when he felt no faith he would touch the card and pray to God to accept this as an act of faith.

That's not a crisis of faith, that's just being dry. It is not what you feel that matters.

SDG

That's not a crisis of faith, that's just being dry. It is not what you feel that matters.

FWIW, I don't think "crisis of faith" was my phrase. Not having a source in front of me, I'm trying not to overstate matters. Assuming I've got the story right, my impression is that Francis did wrestle with doubt. If it were only a matter of feeling, he could have made an ordinary act of faith; he wouldn't need to ask God to accept the gesture of touching the printed Creed. That seems to me the act of a man struggling to hold fast to faith, not just laboring under dryness.

CT

Thank you SDG.

I find it puzzling to say the least that a man who "wrestled with doubt" would have if you will the boldness to if legend is accurate attempt to and largely succeed in converting a whole town of thousands of people back to the Catholic fold. If I was uncertain or uncertain at times about something, I don't think I would commit that great an effort to sway such a mass of people without expressing my internal doubts to them.

Jimmy Akin

Katholikos,

I appreciate your concern, but you do not know what you are talking about. As I have said before, I am not having a crisis of faith. I am a devout Catholic, I am secure in my faith, and I rejoice in the grace that God has shown me.

As I think I've explained before, my life has simply gotten busy, and I do not have as much time to devote to blogging as I formerly did, though I have been making greater efforts of late.

As to why the mix of topics may have been different of late, well, one reason is that I accidentally changed the email address that is listed on this web site so that it's not my primary email address. I intended to redirect the combox comments to another account because they were filling up my main account's capacity, but the way Typepad's software works, this redirected all e-mail from the site to the new address, so I now have to make a special effort to check the account and get the theology-oriented questions that have historically driven the religious content of this blog.

This is a technical problem that can be fixed, and--in fact--I recently set my phone to check this account, so now I'm seeing these questions more regularly again.

While I appreciate the concern you have expressed, I am being honest that there is no crisis of faith, and I would appreciate it if you honor my word--as previously expressed--and not engage in contrary speculation, which runs the very real risks of rash judgment and calumny.

Katholicos

Jimmy:

Thanks for responding.

I guess I had somehow projected a personal tragedy that had happened relatively recently wherein a close relative of mine had committed suicide.

No less, neck on a rope at the entrance of her room, with my cousins having discovered her just after coming home from work. (I would very much appreciate your prayers for her as I really don't know what salvation is possible in light of such a death.)

Also, there are hardly any Catholic blogs on the Net. Because of this, it becomes a really rare commodity.

Yes, there are certain few Catholic blogs out there; but not those that handle real-life topics to the extent you had in the past and strengthens/promotes/defends the Catholic Faith in such a manner.

Thanks.

SDG

CT: I don't think Francis de Sales had any doubt about the merits of Calvinism vs. Catholicism.

Zaffiro

I was happy to see something about the Ender series at a Catholic site. I read it a long time ago and my memory was vague but I remember being more and more disappointed as I went along. I know I enjoyed Enders Game but a lot but was fuzzy on the details about the rest. Jimmy's review brought back the details of each book and my disappointment with them. The series sort of stands out for me since my SIL was really impressed with the whole thing not just the first book. I got all the books through the Sci-Fi book club (never could remember to send in the I don't want it form) so when I was done I'd give them to her. Speaker for the Dead was her favorite, and she was I thought a firm Catholic (unlike me who was a doubtful Catholic but wasn't going to listen to any non-Catholic having been badly treated by many of them). Long story short my SIL (and her family) are no longer Catholic, not Mormon but EV. How much influence Card had I don't know. I do wonder, from (my memory of)our conversations if maybe I should have paid more attention to the way Catholics were portrayed in the book and talked about it with her. So I do think it's important to discuss fiction and the message it sends about Catholicism and other religions. Card puts his view point in his books and like Jimmy said that's okay. On the other hand I've got kids and I can't beat them to all the books they'll read so I like to hear about the themes that authors incorporate in their stories. Enders Game has kid appeal like the Harry Potter books, but it will lead to the rest of the series. These are books I wouldn't want my kids to read without my input.

Justin West

http://www.rinkworks.com/bookaminute/b/card.xenochild.shtml

The comments to this entry are closed.

January 2012

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31