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"Oh, you’re a liberal-arts major. What are you going to do, teach?" Liberal-arts degree holders are familiar with contemporary assumptions about the practical value of such an education. But understood in the traditional sense, the liberal arts have very little to do with matching skills to job. Instead they are about fostering the individual’s ability to reason and participate in society. The aim of a genuinely liberal education is freedom.
"The devil finds things for idle hands to do." We’ve all heard that cautionary saying in one form or another. But as it turns out, the Deadly Sin of sloth doesn’t apply merely to hammock-reclining loafers: The achievement-obsessed careerist is just as culpable. We are guilty of sloth whenever we fail to give God the time, attention, and resources he deserves.
In 1992 the Church of England voted to allow the ordination of women. The resultant furor prompted many to cross the Tiber to Catholicism. Among these were a number of Anglican priests (and a few bishops) who were led to pastor new flocks, as well as others who turned their influence to the laity. What do their experiences of the English Church in subsequent years tell us about the future of Christianity in Britain?
We know the story: Jesus transformed a handful of bread and fish into enough food for a multitude . . . didn’t he? A contemporary spin on a miracle described in all four Gospels offers a squishier version: Jesus taught the people—who brought their own food—to share with others. But the story of God’s miraculous intervention in the natural world has endured for 2,000 years. Here’s why.
"We call this young man a dumb ox, but his bellowing in doctrine will one day resound throughout the world."
~ Albertus Magnus, the most learned professor of the period, in wonder at the brilliant defense of a difficult thesis by young Thomas Aquinas, whose humility and reserve had been misinterpreted as signs of dullness.