Monday, February 15, 2010

I Don’t Want To Establish Another Barrier

According to Fr. Vincent Genovesi, S.J., students are typically of the opinion that Genovesi’s position presents them with an advantage that other professors simply could not offer. Rebecca Groeschen, ’10, a student in Genovesi’s “Sexuality” class, agreed with the common consensus and said that the opportunity was valuable.

“I think it’s kind of good. When else would I be able to talk about stuff like this with a priest?

I think it’s pretty cool. It was just kind of luck of the draw that I landed with Sexuality and Morality,”
she said. “But the real reason besides the GER is that it’s being taught by a priest, so there is a different perspective there and just the age generation, like a different generation’s perspective, so I thought it would be really fascinating.”

The class, currently pushing its capacity, is consistently a popular course selection each spring.

“By and large, you don’t get students at 8:30 a.m. unless there is some level of interest. It’s always full, so it’s very popular. Mostly women take it, not many guys take it,” Genovesi said.

Although Genovesi does not believe that his religious beliefs inhibit class discussion, he insists on dressing casually during lessons and regards his traditional clerical garb as another barrier between himself and his students.

“I told the students years ago, because of experiences they may have had between with priests or sisters in the past, I don’t want to establish another barrier between the student and me so I’m not going to wear a collar,”
Genovesi said. “But I begin every class with a prayer and I tell them that the proper way to address me is ‘Father.’”

Groeschen said that she would feel less comfortable in the class if it were taught by a non-celibate professor.

“I guess people think, because it’s a priest, what’s he going to know about sex. But I think it would be more uncomfortable with a someone who is a lay person,” she said. “Just because, not that people get mental images in their head, but at the same time you know the priest is never doing any of those.”

Link (here) to The Hawk

The Monk's Hobbit has great piece on the subject (here).

Read the Churches position (here) contained in Pope Paul VI's Humanae Vitae

44 comments:

Anonymous said...

Dulce coitus inexpertis.

I am referring to both the priest and the college kids.

Anonymous said...

Is there something wrong or inaccurate about what Fr. Genovesi is doing? This sounds like a perfectly fine course taught by a professor interested in true education.

Anonymous said...

Although Genovesi does not believe that his religious beliefs inhibit class discussion, he insists on dressing casually during lessons and regards his traditional clerical garb as another barrier between himself and his students. “I told the students years ago, because of experiences they may have had between with priests or sisters in the past, I don’t want to establish another barrier between the student and me so I’m not going to wear a collar,”

What if Father Genovesi had said something like this,

"I am going to wear a collar, because I want the students to think in a way that is not secular, to challenge the MTV culture and to value the dignity Christ intended for their bodies. My collar signifies the virtues of chastity and celibacy, ideas that are foreign to the Lady GaGa society. I wear my collar because I want my students to know that I am persona Christi. I wear my collar so that I can reconcile my Catholic students and others to return to Christ. I wear my collar because I want my non-Catholic students to ask me questions about my religion. I wear my collar because I earned it by studying my rear end off for 13 years. I wear my collar as a repayment for all the prayers and support I have received these so many years. I wear a collar because St. Ignatius wore clerical wear of his era, I want to imitate the founder of my religious order. I wear a collar because I am not embarrassed of my calling, nor my faith. If I have to suffer a few insults because of it, so be it. I wear my collar because I am a Jesuit!


Florian from Buffalo

Maria said...

God Bless You Anonymous # 3!!!!

John Brown SJ said...

"I wear a collar because St. Ignatius wore clerical wear of his era, I want to imitate the founder of my religious order."

I agree with just about everything you've written. But the Jesuits were also founded by Saint Francis Xavier who ditched his clerical garb for the robes of the intellectual classes in Asia when he was in Asia as a missionary. I give Padre G the benefit of the doubt that he knows how to reach more of the lost sheep that he encounters best, in imitation of Saint Francis Xavier - one of the founders of the Jesuits.

And then, like most days, I put on my collar when I head out the door...

Anonymous said...

Thanks to John Brown S.J.--there's a lot of fuss about a priest trying to be an effective teacher. Why second-guess him about his practical approach?

Anonymous said...

"Saint Francis Xavier...ditched his clerical garb for the robes of the intellectual classes in Asia..."

So? That does not make it a good idea today. Generalizing from particulars is a philosophical fallacy.

Did Catholics back then have a problem with priests leading double lives?

I think we need to know when a person is a priest. There should not be any doubts about that in anyone's mind.

Anonymous too

Anonymous said...

On the other hand it would be an error to absolutize a requirement for clerical garb. The apostle Paul said it well: "Everything is lawful, but not everything builds up. No one should seek his own advantage, but that of his neighbor."

So we should give the priest the benefit of the doubt.

Anonymous too

Maria said...

@ Anonymous # 1: RE Your statement: "Is there something wrong or inaccurate about what Fr. Genovesi is doing? This sounds like a perfectly fine course taught by a professor interested in true education".

Fr. Genovesi's states:

“Some of [the responses] are frightening in terms of the mentality that they reveal. Now it’s changing. Since I have started doing this course, that’s one issue where I’ve seen a rather noticeable change from very negative to where the students are almost as open to same sex behavior as they would be to heterosexual behavior, and that’s probably the greatest change that I’ve noticed.”

According to Genovesi’s notes, the majority of the class consistently supports or condones the proposed subjects of the class.

Last year, Genovesi’s class of 35 students (only six of which were male) reported a 97 percent approval rate of contraception, 89 percent approval of pre-marital sex, 69 percent approval of gay sex, and 56 percent approval of masturbation.

This is what is wrong. We have a Jesuit at the helm leading others into sin by way of scandal.

Maria said...

Religious garb is not traditionally understood as a "barrier".

Maria said...

Fr. Genilo, S.J., Fr. Tanseco, S.J. and Bishop Bacani are not alone in their dissent from Church teaching on contraception. DISSENTERS who DENY that the CHURCH'S DOCTRINE on CONTRACEPTION has been taught infallibly by the universal ordinary magisterium are legion. These dissenters include Charles E. Curran, Louis Janssens, Karl Rahner, S.J. Bernard Häring, Franz Böckle, Franz Scholz, Bruno Schüller, Timothy E. O’Connell, Daniel Maguire, Peter Chirico, Richard Gula, Richard McCormick, S.J., Francis Sullivan, S.J., Garth Hallett, S.J. and Vincent Genovesi, S.J. These dissenters maintain that the Magisterium’s TEACHING ON CONTRACEPTION IS NOT INFALLIBLE, IS WRONG, and MUST BE REVERSED.

One paragraph alone from this article--that is 6 Jesuit dissenters, right??

Maria said...

Whoops. Sorry. That is 7 Jesuit Dissenters. Not all w/ us.

John Brown SJ said...

Maria,

I am sure you and I are on the same team here. But I am left a little confused as to how you draw the conclusion that Fr. G. is "at the helm leading others into sin by way of scandal."

Why do you assume he supports or teaches anything other than what our Church teaches? It is true, the article is a bit ambiguous in places, but I don't think we have any real report that Fr. G. encourages his students to sin. Did I miss something?

Fr. G. can't be that hard to track down. I wonder if you just respectfully emailed him if he could clear this up for you if this is really a concern.

And not to challenge you beyond what is due, I'd always check with someone to make sure I knew the situation before I made serious claims on the internet like you have made. It seems like the charitable thing to do.

Anyway, I hope you don't take this the wrong way. I just think there is some confusion here.

Maria said...

Father Brown SJ:

"Fr. Genilo, S.J., Fr. Tanseco, S.J. and Bishop Bacani are not alone in their dissent from Church teaching on contraception. DISSENTERS who DENY that the CHURCH'S DOCTRINE on CONTRACEPTION has been taught infallibly by the universal ordinary magisterium are legion. These dissenters include Charles E. Curran, Louis Janssens, Karl Rahner, S.J. Bernard Häring, Franz Böckle, Franz Scholz, Bruno Schüller, Timothy E. O’Connell, Daniel Maguire, Peter Chirico, Richard Gula, Richard McCormick, S.J., Francis Sullivan, S.J., Garth Hallett, S.J. and

VINCENT GENOVESI SJ

These dissenters maintain that the Magisterium’s TEACHING ON CONTRACEPTION IS NOT INFALLIBLE, IS WRONG, and MUST BE REVERSED". See Link in Joseph's post.

Padre: I think you missed this. He not only denies church doctrine on contraception but assumes the TEACHING ON CONTRACEPTION IS NOT INFALLIBLE, IS WRONG, and MUST BE REVERSED.

I think our Lord would be so much happier if we did not have to "check" to see if a Jesuit believed in the Doctrine of the Faith, don't you?

Maria said...

Father Brown:

I can see that charity dictates your best inclincations and I do admire this. I really do. I wish the facts spoke otherwise. I appreciate your patience and kindly remarks.

Maria said...

Padre:

Go to bttom of Joe's post. You will see --The Monk's Hobbit has great piece on the subject (*here*).Click where it says *here*.

Anonymous said...

Maria clearly you didn't get Fr Brown remarks.

John Brown SJ said...

Just a quick clarification: I am not "Fr." Brown. I have been a Jesuit since 2000, but our formation is very long and I am not yet ordained. Keep me in your prayers as I progress toward that day.

Anonymous said...

Be forewarned--Maria will ALWAYS have the last word at whatever cost to logic or common decency.

Anonymous said...

"Padre: I think you missed this. He not only denies church doctrine on contraception but assumes the TEACHING ON CONTRACEPTION IS NOT INFALLIBLE, IS WRONG, and MUST BE REVERSED.

I think our Lord would be so much happier if we did not have to "check" to see if a Jesuit believed in the Doctrine of the Faith, don't you?"
_________________________________
MARIA: Thank you for pointing out that Fr. Genovesi opposes the Magisterium on contraception. I had given him the benefit of the doubt. The obvious question now is why is he teaching a course on sex (or anything) in name of the Church?

They could not answer you. Your logic is fine. Thank you.

Anonymous too.

Anonymous said...

Dear Maria:

Another one of your "rushes to judgement." Mr. Brown S.J.'s suggestion seems perfectly reasonable and would avoid all this huffing & puffing.

BTW, you do not have the accurate understanding of infallibility. It has been declared exactly one time,i.e, in 1950 when P.P. XII defined the Assumption of Mary.

AS our Vice President says, "You are entitled to your opinions but not your own facts."

John Brown SJ said...

Maria, Anon etc…

I think there is still a little restraint that should be exercised here. Theologians and philosophers argue all of the time about obscure theological and philosophical points. They argue about these things in obscure (for the average person, at least) philosophical and theological journals. Not that the infallibility of some teaching is meaningless, but that the points they argue are rarely ones in view of the average person. So they argue and then often turn around and teach and preach solid stuff in their classrooms.

The link the blog provided (Monk’s Habit) didn’t seem to have any quotes by Father G from where he might have taught against the infallibility of the Church’s teaching on any particular sexual ethics issue. The link did have some foot notes that I have not looked in to. It may be a safe bet to assume Monk’s Habit isn’t trying to mislead anyone. However that is NOT the same thing as saying “We have a Jesuit at the helm leading others into sin by way of scandal.”

When you have a quote from Fr. G actually teaching in the classroom that some infallible Church teaching is wrong, then your criticisms may be merited. Even then, be very careful that you haven’t misunderstood the statement, as theologians and philosophers often speak in words that can be inaccessible to the masses. And then, when you are really sure you have it, try going first to Fr. G. and see if he can shed some light on the situation.
I’m not being an ostrich with his head in the sand here and imagining that every professor in a Catholic university is doing a good job. I’m just trying to follow the Catechism’s paragraph 2478.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous:

Hurling insults from the obscurity of anonymity seems no more than cowardice, at best. We win no friends for Christ, in this way.

Anonymous said...

I don't know why others sign as " Anonymous" but I do for one reason: some time ago I put in a post at a conservative website and I received a bizarre, unsolicited e-mail.

Anonymous said...

The Catholic Church itself is infallible.

That said, there have been 2 ex Cathedra infallible definitions, not 1: the immaculate conception and the assumption of Mary.
___________________________________
From the Catholic Encyclopedia:

"What teaching is infallible?

"As regards matter, only doctrines of faith and morals, and facts so intimately connected with these as to require infallible determination, fall under the scope of infallible ecclesiastical teaching...

"...But before being bound to give such an assent, the believer has a right to be certain that the teaching in question is definitive (since only definitive teaching is infallible)..."

Source: The Catholic Encyclopedia
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07790a.htm

Maria said...

Joseph: The below excerpt is from "In the Pursuit of Love by Vincent Genovesi SJ

RE: THE BIRTH CONTROL PILL--

" ...Today there seems to be consensus that women who are young and generally healthy can use it with little risk. Recent studies indicates that the combination pill does not increase the risk of breast cancer, and seems, in fact to offer some protection against other forms of breast cancer and seems, in fact, to offer some protection against forms of cancer affecting ovaries and the enodmetrium…Sexually active women, however, in the interest of guarding against the pill’s abortifacient potential, should use, in addition, some form of barrier contraception while taking it”.

I am not a moral theologian; however, sounds like Jesuit speak for BCP should use in conjunction with another form of birth control.Not only is BCP advocated, we are introduced to its meritorious and efficacious benefits.

I am not a moral theologian; however, sounds like Jesuit speak for BCP should be used in conjunction with another form of birth control.

You ask whether we should offer the benefit of the doubt. I think that this is a good question and I have given this some thought. Let us suppose for the purposes of arguments that a a group of men who belong to a "ring" of criminals have been repeatedly found guilty of robbery. The majority of them have been tried and found guilty. The majority have been to prison, have been on parole and probation, have been affored all manner of rehabilitation, have been provided placement in halfway houses, have been provided education and training, over many, many decades. Now let us suppose that, one of their band, has been arrested for robbery, yet, again. The evidence is is not air tight. Does the reasonable man affod him the benefit of the doubt? He does not. Why? He has lost the good will of the courts. The robber has lost his claim to moral standing in the community by virtue of his past behavior. It is no longer "reasonable" to assume that the evidence tells us that he is not guilty. We know his record.

While I am, quite obviously, not likening Jesuits to criminals, I am saying the the record on abortion and birth control in the Society does not lead lead this reader to "good faith".

Thank you Joesph for entering into this conversation. I appreciate all of your commentary.

Peace, Maria

Maria said...

Joseph: The below excerpt is from "In the Pursuit of Love by Vincent Genovesi SJ

RE: THE BIRTH CONTROL PILL--

" ...Today there seems to be consensus that women who are young and generally healthy can use it with little risk. Recent studies indicates that the combination pill does not increase the risk of breast cancer, and seems, in fact to offer some protection against other forms of breast cancer and seems, in fact, to offer some protection against forms of cancer affecting ovaries and the enodmetrium…Sexually active women, however, in the interest of guarding against the pill’s abortifacient potential, should use, in addition, some form of barrier contraception while taking it”.

I am not a moral theologian; however, sounds like Jesuit speak for BCP should use in conjunction with another form of birth control.Not only is BCP advocated, we are introduced to its meritorious and efficacious benefits.

I am not a moral theologian; however, sounds like Jesuit speak for BCP should be used in conjunction with another form of birth control.

You ask whether we should offer the benefit of the doubt. I think that this is a good question and I have given this some thought. Let us suppose for the purposes of arguments that a a group of men who belong to a "ring" of criminals have been repeatedly found guilty of robbery. The majority of them have been tried and found guilty. The majority have been to prison, have been on parole and probation, have been affored all manner of rehabilitation, have been provided placement in halfway houses, have been provided education and training, over many, many decades. Now let us suppose that, one of their band, has been arrested for robbery, yet, again. The evidence is is not air tight. Does the reasonable man affod him the benefit of the doubt? He does not. Why? He has lost the good will of the courts. The robber has lost his claim to moral standing in the community by virtue of his past behavior. It is no longer "reasonable" to assume that the evidence tells us that he is not guilty. We know his record.

While I am, quite obviously, not likening Jesuits to criminals, I am saying the the record on abortion and birth control in the Society does not lead lead this reader to "good faith".

Thank you Joesph for entering into this conversation. I appreciate all of your commentary.

Peace, Maria

Anonymous said...

I'm please that you concur with the fact that there has been only one (or two?) times that the Pope has spoken ex cathedra.

But you Sneaky Pete! Are you trying to introduce a kind of super-duper infallibility with your first sentence? Fun stuff to read. Creative.

Anonymous said...

"Not only is BCP advocated, we are introduced to its meritorious and efficacious benefits."

This is a serious misrepresentation of the book. Have you actually read it or just done a keyword search on Google?

Maria said...

I am more pesuaded to listen, with an open ear, to the thoughts of those who have the moral courage of signing their name. I am less inclined to enagage in debate with those who do not; however, I read what I entered.

John Brown SJ said...

Maria,
Benefit of the doubt is one thing. Restraint is another thing. I am asking for both - and so does our Church. You have done more homework on Fr. G. than I have, but I remain unconvinced that it is enough to be justified in posting accusations on blogs.

Again, I think we are on the same team here. I just think it doesn't help much (and can cause much harm if incorrect) to claim what you claim on the internet for the world to google. Maybe I am wrong...

I have never met Fr. G. nor read his works nor have I been to the university where he teaches... I am content to just let the article stand and be glad this blog keeps me up on what's out there concerning the order I belong to.

Christ's Peace,
John Brown SJ

P.S. It doesn't do much for the moral of Jesuits who agree with the Church's teaching when you write things like, "I am saying the the record on abortion and birth control in the Society does not lead lead this reader to 'good faith'."

Maria said...

Joesph:

Thank you for you response. I have posted Fr. Genovesi's own words. Should we dismiss them as misreperesenting his own views? Maybe I am wrong. Maybe I should disbelive the printed word; however, that argument does not, on its face, make any logical sense.

You state: "It doesn't do much for the morale of Jesuits who agree with the Church's teaching when you write things like, "I am saying the the record on abortion and birth control in the Society does not lead this reader to "good faith." I am certain that it must be a crucible for those Jesuits who subscribe, with a faithful heart, to the Desposit of the Faith. (For what it is worth, I literally pray for the Society on a daily basis). I do not know how old you are, Joseph, but I am of a generation who has been severely damaged by dissenting theologians, whose views have infiltrated the Church. Theologians who no loger believe in transubstantiation/transfinalization, who no longer believe that Christ instituted the scaraments, who no longer no believe Confession is necessary, who would have us all believe in a "gay sensitive Jesus", who would have our compassion for homosexuals supercede the Catechism of the Catholic Church, in moral importance. Until no one believes anything anymore. What was once deemed "sin" is now eveybody's "rights".Spend a couple of days at America Magazine and see what it does for your morale. Defend the Church and her teachings on homosexuality and you will be called an uncharitale bigot, a homophobe. When in the world did we need to need to use "priest" and "gay" in the same sentence? And yet,we are treated to articles on the same topic. This seem someone akin to "Catholic" "abortionists". Now we have conversataions about the *virtue* of homosexual priests who are celibate. Has everyone lost their minds??

Look at any Jesuit university in this country and examine their positions on abortion and contraception and convince me that these universities are faithful.

I know that there are good and holy Jesuits. Please do not misundertand me. Three generations in my famliy have been educated by the Jesuits. I would like to give you a very real example of the "damage" to which I earlier referred. I want to go tthrough the Spiritual Exercies. My Jesuit confessor, who has not been corrupted--he must be 75-- has recommned someone in the Society, in Maryland. I will not call this Jesuit becuase I am afraid that I cannot trust him. I fear for my soul. I do not know how to make my position any clearer than this.

Peace,

Maria

Anonymous said...

Maria:

When someone presents a cut & paste selection of a 200-page book and draws a fairly damning conclusion then, yes, that is not compelling.

Curious about it, I signed the book out after your post and have started to read the book. Your take on it is inaccurate. What is his book about? What is his thesis?

Maria said...

Again, I am more persuaded to enage in debate with those who have the courage of their moral convictions by signing their name.

Anonymous said...

"But you Sneaky Pete! Are you trying to introduce a kind of super-duper infallibility with your first sentence?" ________________________________

No I am not. The Catholic church is divine, infallible and the one true faith. If you don't believe that you are not a Catholic.

"That the Church is infallible in her definitions on faith and morals is itself a Catholic dogma, which, although it was formulated ecumenically for the first time in the Vatican Council, had been explicitly taught long before and had been assumed from the very beginning without question down to the time of the Protestant Reformation."

Further: "...only in the episcopal body which has succeeded to the college of Apostles that infallible authority resides, and that it is possible for the authority to be effectively exercised by this body, dispersed throughout the world, but united in bonds of communion with Peter's successor, who is its visible head and centre."

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07790a.htm#III

Maria said...

It doesn't do much for the morale of Jesuits who agree with the Church's teaching when you write things like, "I am saying the the record on abortion and birth control in the Society does not lead this reader to "good faith."

Is it the morale of the Jesuits, or the souls of its flock, about which the Society should be concerned...When did saving souls take a back seat to "your morale"?

Anonymous said...

"....be very careful that you haven’t misunderstood the statement, as theologians and philosophers often speak in words that can be inaccessible to the masses. And then, when you are really sure you have it, try going first to Fr. G. and see if he can shed some light on the situation...."

Now let's restate this:

"....ALL JESUITS SHOULD be very careful that THEY haven’t misunderstood ...as theologians and philosophers often speak in words that can be inaccessible to the masses. And then, when THEY are really sure THEY have it, THEY MUST GO first to THE CONGREGATION FOR THE DOCTRINE OF THE FAITH TO INSURE ORTHODOXY."

If they do not accept its authority, they shouldn't be in the Catholic church, let alone speak for it.

Anonymous said...

"The Catholic church is divine, infallible and the one true faith."

Okay, so it is--but you were confusing this with the papal notion of infallibility. Its use here is much more "meta"--it's about faith, salvation, and sacraments not specific issues.

This is your initial claim: "These dissenters maintain that the Magisterium’s TEACHING ON CONTRACEPTION IS NOT INFALLIBLE, IS WRONG, and MUST BE REVERSED."

You are incorrect to write that the contraception teaching is infallible.

John Brown SJ said...

Dear Anon that restated my blog comment to turn it around so as to make it say that theologians and philosophers should be more careful. I totally agree. But I doubt many philosophers and theologians are following the comments in this blog so I didn't bother to offer them advice.

Dear Anon that said "When did saving souls take a back seat to 'your morale'?" I am lost as to how you arrived at that idea. I tried to offer Maria a gentle reminder that lumping all Jesuits together as being untrustable has certain unintended and unhelpful consequences. I would never suggest that as a Jesuit I am more concerned with morale (my own or that of other Jesuits) than the salvation of souls. That certainly doesn't follow from anything I have written or believe.

I fear these comments have gotten so strange that I am better off spending time elsewhere.

Please don't address any future comments to me here. I wont read them. You can always email me if there is some way I can help.

Anonymous said...

Congrats GJBJ bloggers: All of the nuttiness scared another reader away.

Maria said...

736 By this power of the Spirit, God's children can bear much fruit. He who has grafted us onto the true vine will make us bear "the fruit of the Spirit: . . . love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control."129 "We live by the Spirit"; the more we renounce ourselves, the more we "walk by the Spirit."130

Through the Holy Spirit we are restored to paradise, led back to the Kingdom of heaven, and adopted as children, given confidence to call God "Father" and to share in Christ's grace, called children of light and given a share in eternal glory.131

Anonymous said...

"Okay, so it is--but you were confusing this with the papal notion of infallibility. Its use here is much more "meta"--it's about faith, salvation, and sacraments not specific issues.¨

You can`t separate ´faith and salvation´from concrete specific issues. I don´t think Jesus did.

I would add that papal infallibility is an instance of the Church´s infallibility, because it is divine.

'''''''''''''''''''''''''''

Calling someone nuts doesn´t prove anything except that the calling party wants to offend others. They called Jesus nuts too.

Maria said...

"Be forewarned--Maria will ALWAYS have the last word at whatever cost to logic or common decency".

Hardon SJ on De Sales

'You remember that passage in the Gospels where Christ tells us to learn from Him. How does that go? ‘Learn of me for I am meek or gentle and humble of heart.’ Meekness being gentleness. Those two virtues go together; they are inseparable. Humility and gentleness. Only humble people are gentle. Proud people are always, memorize the adverb, they are always harsh. Oh they may be sweet externally but there is a coldness, there’s a sharpness, there is a thoughtlessness about pride, for the best of reasons, because what is pride, except preoccupation with self? I notice what Frances does, he distinguishes these two virtues profoundly by saying that humility belongs to our relationship towards God and gentleness to our relationship with our neighbor. So the more genuinely humble I am before God, the more gentle I’ll be in dealing with others. And of all people, both in his own life, and in his teachings who could teach this it was he, Frances de Sales, who was masculine to the last hormone in his body, nothing effeminate about de Sales – strong, firm, constant. The only mistake that people can make is to suppose that gentleness means softness – just the opposite. Only strong people can be gentle because among my definitions of gentleness, it is power restrained by love. Some people seem to be gentle but they are sentimental. It takes a person who you know could crush you, I don’t mean physically, but say intellectually, who allows you to make mistakes and doesn’t laugh at your mistakes".

I think I would do well to pray for more gentleness in my dealing with others. We all prepare for penance right now, don't we?

Thompsonudpq said...

Congrats GJBJ bloggers: All of the nuttiness scared another reader away.