Wiseblood Books

An Afterglow Candidate

R.S. Mitchell

“At 03:34:30 UT, the Swift Burst Alert Telescope
(BAT) triggered and located GRB [gamma ray burst]
060218. . . . Swift slewed immediately to the burst. . . .
There is an indication of an afterglow candidate. . . .”

Think of those days of earthly incarnation
as a fixed point in human history
but also a cosmic epiphany,
like a burst of gamma radiation.
[Read more...]

Storytelling, Kill Bill, and the Kingdom of God

Matthew Lickona

Can I tell you something? I get tired of talking about Flannery O’Connor. I get tired of talking about Walker Percy, J.F. Powers and even Evelyn Waugh. I get tired of talking about that remarkable mid-century stretch when books with explicitly religious (sometimes explicitly Catholic) characters and themes were garnering national attention. Take an easy barometer: The National Book Award. Powers—nominated in ’57, won in ’63 for Morte D’Urban. (Edwin O’Connor won the Pulitzer the year before for another book about priestly life, The Edge of Sadness.) Percy—won in ’62 for The Moviegoer, nominated again in ‘73. O’Connor—nominated in ’56, won in ’72 for The Complete Stories. After that? Not so much. [Read more...]

A Man of Culture: Reflections on the Papal Visit

Pope Benedict XVI, the pundits tell us, is not living up to his image as God’s Rottweiler. One almost senses a hint of disappointment in their voice. Admittedly, many recent articles have featured generally positive portrayals of the Holy Father, but they have also given rise to the cliché that Pope Benedict is a “mystery.” This seems to have been the default media position during his recent visit to the United States. How is it, they wonder, that this strict disciplinarian—this former Panzerkardinal—now seems more interested in talking about love and hope—as he has at length in his two first encyclicals—than in hunting down heretics, sinners, and unbelievers? Has he gone soft? Is it a public relations move? So far the media refuse to imagine that the caricature of the pope they themselves created upon his election may have been mistaken in the first place. [Read more...]