Some Lighter Reading from “The City of God”

As the winter semester heads into the home stretch, the students in my “Reading with the Fathers” course will be turning their attention to the towering figure of St. Augustine of Hippo.  The influence of Augustine upon the Western theological tradition, through his copious written output, is unfathomableWhile a strong case could be made for assigning Augstine’s Confessions, I have opted to have the students read significant chapters from his massive City of God.  With the end of semester and graduation fast approaching, I don’t have a lot of time for extensive blogging, but I did think I could in the days ahead share some of the stimulating and provocative quotes from The City of God against the Pagans. Continue reading Some Lighter Reading from “The City of God”

Gregory Nazianzus on the Pursuit of Wisdom

A rich, but very busy semester has cut into the frequency of my blog postings this year.  However, a spring “snow day” here in Manitoba has provided me with the opportunity to share a quote from the 4th century Church Father Gregory Nazianzus.  I was lecturing on the Cappadocian Fathers last week in my “Reading with the Fathers” class and we will be discussing Gregory’s “Defense of His Flight to Pontus,” as well as his “Last Farewell” (delivered at the Council of Constantinople in 381 A.D.) this coming week. Continue reading Gregory Nazianzus on the Pursuit of Wisdom

Griffiths on The Lure of the Void

“This language of loss and diminuition clearly suggests the possibility of coming to nothing, of annihilation stricto sensu.  That is what gives it the undeniable power it has.  For Augustine, as for most of the fathers of the church, the possibility of self-annihilation is suggested by a grammar of participation and gift.  On this view, the fact that you are is sheer unmerited gift, and what you are is a participant in the LORD. Continue reading Griffiths on The Lure of the Void