Friday, February 27, 2009
Never will I ever complain about writing one or two term papers, ever again.
I will hold myself to this resolution: My philosophy term paper will be finished by 7 o'clock pm on Saturday, February the 28th. So resolve I, Dernhelm.
"Those who have not swords can still die upon them." - Eowyn
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
"And indeed, we are reborn not only for this life but also for righteousness, because faith acquires Christ’s merit and knows that through Christ’s death we have been set free. From this source our other righteousness has its origin, namely that newness of life through which we are zealous to obey God as we are taught by the Word and aided by the Holy Spirit. But this righteousness has merely its beginning in this life and it cannot attain perfection in this flesh. Nevertheless, it pleases God, not as though it were a perfect righteousness or a payment for sin but because it comes from the heart and depends on its trust in the mercy of God through Christ. Moreover, this also is brought about by the Gospel, that the Holy Spirit is given to us, who offers resistance in us to unbelief, envy, and other vices that we may earnestly strive to glorify the name of the Lord and His Word, etc.
"In this manner this image of the new creature begins to be restored by the Gospel inn this life, but it will not be finished in this life. But when it is finished in the kingdom of the Father, then the will will be truly free and good, the mind truly enlightened, and the memory persistent....Just as in the beginning the heaven and the earth were unfinished masses, so to speak, before the light had been added, so the godly have within themselves that unfinished image which God will on the Last Day bring to perfection in those who have believed His Word.
"Therefore that image of God was something most excellent, in which were included eternal life, everlasting freedom from fear, and everything that is good."
Luther's Lectures on Galations, Chapters 1-5
Monday, February 23, 2009
Sunday, February 22, 2009
On the Freedom of a Christian
Admonition to Peace
Whether Soldiers, Too, Can Be Saved
(and skimmed the other stuff in between Admonition and Soldiers - Something about Murderous Hordes of Peasants.... :D )
I love Luther's sense of humor. And his comment about princes and, I quote, "handsome, blond hair."
Friday, February 20, 2009
I'm sorry if it's too small. I can't make it any larger, or at least, Blogger won't let it be.
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Sunday, February 15, 2009
"The annoying thing about Anglican hymns is that the tunes are just like the tunes I know for these hymns - only changed just enough that I mess up every...."
"Oh, no, no: Anglican hymn settings are the best. I know, I play for both an Anglican and Presbyterian church and Anglican settings are the best."
"Well, I'll grant you that they may be better than Presbyterian settings!"
The third young women interjects; "Better be careful. Sarah's not Presbyterian - she's Lutheran so she's got a pretty good claim to hymns too."
"Oh, well, Anglicans are still better than Lutherans: I don't care for Lutherans in general."
"No, no, you don't understand: Sarah 's not one of the Lutherans you know. She's a real ^kick ass^* Lutheran." *
(Understandably, I grin broadly, evilly, and benevolently at this point. So I have a reputation to uphold now do I? Hmm...)
After a good seven or eight hymns had been sung and Good King Wenceslaus had been inappropriately but very amusingly caricatured, the two older girls donned hats, boots, scarves, and mittens.
"You guys want to come with us to Evensong at St. Barny's?"
"Well, I haven't gotten any school work done today.....Oh, why not? It is Sunday after all. Let me grab my boots."
Seems the other occupants of the room thought the same.
Well, she grabbed more than her boots: also her hat, scarf, purse, mittens and a rather dry hunk of overbaked bread with a few drops of honey. (It was six pm. and she had not had supper.)
Apparently, the young man in black had the same idea - only he had a slice of raspberry cake instead. (Smart fellow)
So it was, that the ^kick ass Lutheran^* found herself on a rather pleasant forty minute walk across the city to Solemn Evensong at St. Barnabas Anglican Church with three other young people. She found it totally worth the trouble.
All the dear, beloved Adiaphora met her - her nose, her ears, her knees, her eyes. Wonderful, familiar hardwood pews filled the nave - with kneelers! Between the nave and the chancel stretched a beam, halfway between the ceiling and floor and on it a massive crucifix stretched with two female saints beneath, the pulpit adjacent. And further back, above the high altar, a gorgeous triptych of Christ in an attitude of solemn benediction, his piercing Byzantine gaze holding her own. He is flanked by two saints, one Moses, the other, perhaps the Baptist? (Yes, indeed, as the link proves.) And vestments? Oh, it was so nice to see vestments again after collarless pastors! Procession with crucifix? Oh, yessss! Incense? Definitely! Chanting? You bet!
mmmhmm. Absolution too? Well, it's the Word, so an Anglican one ^sticks^* just as well as a Lutheran.
And as if that bit of paradise wasn't enough, they followed it up with refreshments after. No kidding. The Anglicans really know how to set out the hors d'oeuvers.
Methinks she may go back. After all, who can resist the High Church? Certainly not the girl who has a reputation of ^kick ass Lutheran^ to uphold. :P
* Introducing ^mitten quotes^. In cold climates where one cannot conveniently form "quotes" with two fingers because of the cold, a new dialect of manual communication emerges. The ^mitten quote^ is made by bending all fingers at the second and third metacarpal joint, twice in quick succession within the confines of a mitten.
**No, I am not acquiring ^new vocabulary.^ I just had to share the eloquence of the recently bestowed status. .
Friday, February 13, 2009
Sarah sighed: turning her face from the keyboard, her glance fell on four research paper assignments. Due in three weeks. Across those shrouded forms, the shadow of another falls.
It's not all that bad. A little drama puts it all in perspective. Kind of. I had looked forward to Reading Week (our equivalent of Spring Break) this coming week. Now I'm pretty much saying goodbye to my leisure plans. There is absolutely no way I'm going to have a Music Paper, a Philosophy Paper, a Scripture Paper, an Art Paper, and a Science Paper done in just a few weeks - even a month - if I don't devote my reading week to them. Sigh!
Thursday, February 12, 2009
As she grew, so did her beauty: her jet black curls quickly gave way to golden locks, and these to a golden brown and this to a rich oaken river sparkling with red gold loveliness. As her stature rose, so did her sweetness; though it must be confessed that in very early times her charm lay dormant under the crust of less amiable mannerisms, but the true personality burst forth in due time.
As yet the young fairy had neither suitor nor matrimonial offer, for the young knights had been duly barred from glimpse of her enchanting face. Yet all were eager to make her acquaintance on account of the whole wheat potato rolls which were regularly delivered to all with the Lady's compliments, wrought, it was said, by her own white hand.
On the night of her sixteenth birthday, however, all was about to change.....
Saturday, February 7, 2009
I love contra dance. It's simpler than Scottish country dance because there's no footwork, but it has that same group style. Except, you stay with your partner (generally) throughout and are grouped by pairs, in squares, within lines.
Though I've contra-danced before, I've never been to an open (public) contra-dance. Granted, it's not quite as fun when you don't know all the people (but in a way, it's more freeing). One of the guys in my class invited us girls, but none of the others ended up coming. I couldn't resist. It's been so long since I danced and there is something in me which delights to dance with groups, to be absorbed into the flow and swirl of syncronized human beings catching, twirling, and swinging each other.
I had worked all day (strange how my Saturdays are becoming homework days) looking forward to this evening's reward. I must confess that I did spend twenty minutes engaging in feminine peacockery, picking clothes, doing hair, and (don't anybody laugh) putting on a bit of makeup to cover the acne outbreak and the healing scars. My togs were simple, but, I thought, quite nice; riding boots, green skirt, light pink blouse, jean jacket, two French braids tied about an inch from the head so that the rest fell free. I wasn't sure how "dressed up" people got for these functions, and as things turned out, I was right in the middle of the spectrum.
Zach and I walked over for the brief instruction period before the dance started, which proved immensely helpful in cleaning the rust off my memory. The dances, themselves whirled their way as the biggest blast of the past month. The experienced dancers guided our movements, and after a few minutes with one of them for a partner, clumsiness melted, at least partially, away.
Talk about sweat! I shed my jean jacket after the first dance, but soon was completely drenched anyway.
It was a gathering of diverse nationalities. I was mistaken by two gentlemen for Eastern European, and by one for having French origins. In addition I was paid the honor of a bow and a kiss upon introduction ... on the hand of course! Maybe our young men should be taken to dances to learn manners from their elders, no?
Sadly, I had to turn down a dance with the said gentleman as I had need to take some rest before church tomorrow.
One quickly learns to let herself be guided while paying close attention so as to render the gentleman's task as easy as possible. One also learns to synchronize her "bounces" with her partner when swung (if the gentleman chooses to bounce). The gentleman does best to have a firm grasp so that the lady can have both support as she balances in the spin and resistance to move.
I need sleep so I should wrap up the post. But I'm looking forward to contra-dances often in the next few months.
Oh, one thing more. Zach had gone back to the college while I stayed for one last dance. But to my surprise, when I finally left, he was waiting to walk me home. Apparently, he had been to the college and back. He didn't have to do that and it was kindly thought of. Marvellous night.
Thursday, February 5, 2009
I also made doughnuts, which are delicious, with the aid of my friend, Samantha. While doing so, we discovered a mutual appreciation of Michael Card and spent the next few hours while the doughnuts were frying and we were cleaning listening to his songs. And what do you know? One of our RA's walked into the kitchen. "Is that Michael Card?" she said. "Wow! I can't believe I'd forgotten about him." And she joined us singing.
It was great, but now it's late, and I must go to bed.
The doughnut's fate - for me must wait; until I rest my head.
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
Yet because they have personality, they are, in a sense, ideals. Caravaggio's figures are ideals of human personality. They stand at moments where we have been, they react to experiences as we would. They look like us in all our reality of both beauty and ugliness.
...and the startled, incredulous look on the tax collector's face when the Lord points him out with singleness of purpose.
Or his inspiration as he writes the Holy Gospel (though I prefer Caravaggio's original, but rejected, painting of this subject where the angel guides the Evangelist's hand.)
Dare I even comment on this painting? It speaks for itself.
Just one more before I make my point.... The Crucifixion of St. Peter.
He is calm, unafraid, though his hands and feet have been pierced and even at the moment he is being lifted to die. He looks both at his cloak and at you. He seems to be saying, "When I was young like you, I dressed myself and went where I pleased. But now I am old I have stretched out my hands and someone else has dressed me and carried me where I did not wish to go. Yet I am glad for my Savior is at hand."
But I did not bring you, dear reader, through a brief sample of Caravaggio for the sake of these paintings. I wanted to introduce a bit of his style for the sake of comparison. For among all his paintings, this one grabbed my attention and held it. And when I was shown a painting by the daughter of one of his students treating the same subject, I must confess, I was more than a little intrigued.
If you know your Apocrypha, you could probably guess that this is indeed "Judith Decapitating Holofernes." The young, beautiful Judith divinely assisted to slay the pagan king who attacks Jerusalem.
I'm not certain I completely buy into the whole "gender roles" theory, but the distinctions between the two paintings definitely seem to hold. (I'm more inclined to attribute the revenge to Artemisia's own painful youth and the reverberations from that incident. At least, several of her other paintings seem to reflect a sort of inward struggle with these sort of situations.)