Archive for September, 2015

Don’t know what to say

September 16, 2015

My copy of last week’s New Yorker magazine did not arrive in the mail until Saturday.  And I didn’t get to page 61 until last night.  Which I would usually not bother to write a blog post to report, except that page 61 includes a quotation from Pope Francis about Communion being “‘not a reward for the perfect but a medicine for the sick.'”  Which I probably also would not have written a blog post about, except that I wrote in a news comment (to a Ross Douthat column) on Saturday, “Maybe receiving communion has nothing to do with those things, but I am hoping it is a means towards spiritual growth and not in the nature of a some kind of prize for already having accomplished that growth.”

When I got to the quote in the New Yorker article (called “Holy Orders,” by Alexander Stille) last night, my mind went, “Bingo!” in a sense of recognition, and dismay, that that’s where I got the idea — but I hadn’t read it yet at the time I wrote the comment, so I didn’t — couldn’t — cite the article.  (And no, I hadn’t read the article online earlier in the week.)  I had the strong sense when I read the quotation that the idea had not been an idea original to me.  Which I can’t say was a huge surprise to me —  when I wrote what I wrote in my comment, I thought it was an interesting idea and a good point, but I was a little surprised that I had come to it and wondered what a Catholic person might think of it (I worry about inadvertently offending).

So I just thought I would put these facts out there.  People can interpret them as they will.  For me it’s less about how to interpret them and more about what I do going forward as a consequence of experiencing this kind of thing.