• Church Life,  Scripture

    The Seed of the Word

    It can be tempting for us as Catholics to consider that the Word of God is simply that first part of the Mass, which we listen to every Sunday. We may well be listening with attention, but I think we often do so with more than a degree of passivity – listening, if it goes no further than mere listening, is indeed a passive activity.  Now, this is not the intention of the Church; our Mass is comprised of two broad parts, each one given the title of ‘liturgy’ – the ‘liturgy of the Word’ and the ‘liturgy of the Eucharist’. This tells us very clearly that an equal dignity…

  • Faith and Life,  Scripture

    The Book of Counter-Culture

    Books have a way of changing things. They can reflect the spirit of a particular age and they can in some inexplicable way capture something of the zeitgeist of an era. They can change us, either by bringing out something already present but dormant within us – or they can play a part in re-shaping us entirely, changing the way we think or see or respond. Books have power. For the most part, books are considered to be cultural;  indeed, we refer to the reading of books as a ‘cultural pursuit’. But it isn’t always like that. In fact, some books are very different – and one book in particular…