A Catholic Monthly Magazine

Readers’ Responses

pencilMike Baird to the the Focus Editorial on Christmas:

I agree whole-heartedly that Advent is the great antidote to “Xmas”. Over the past couple of years I have tried disciplining myself to wring out out all the juice that Advent provides.  It’s a marvellous period of preparing, waiting, expectancy. It’s probably the one period of the year that I most focus on Mary, the embodiment of all those virtues.

It seems the world, and even much of the rest of Christendom, leap-frogs over Advent as though it doesn’t exist and rushes headlong into the orgy of “Xmas”.  When Christmas arrives it is an anticlimax, a disappointment even. When I have a “good” Advent, Christmas is a glorious consummation, much as I would imagine (as a man) giving birth must be.  The Christmas glow can last for days, eight days even. So, thank you again for reminding me again of the richness of Advent. You have got me preparing the way.

Elizabeth Isichei to Bill Farrelly’s antidote to swearing:

Bill Farrelly writes of defusing tension by speaking gibberish. This morning I broke a glass and exclaimed Oh Figs. A friend, in similar circumstances, mutters, Fruit Salad. We are trying, of course, to avoid profanity. At an earlier time in my life, when surrounded by stressors, profanity came only too readily to me. Quite apart from anything else, it gave scandal, as I was, in many ways, devout.  Hence Figs! If this does not seem sufficient, I mutter nonsense- Oh woggletides and pingitudes. If my anger is directed at another- usually in a traffic situation,- I address something  similar to the offender. Of course I mutter this to myself- no one else hears it! Since I wrote this, someone has  very slightly dislodged the plug for the freezer in our garage, which I discovered only after several hundred dollars’ worth of contents were beyond redemption. My first impulse was to try to identify and blame the culprit ( last weekend’s visitors???) My second was to lament the contents, notably the leg of lamb bought for a rapidly approaching festive occasion. In fact I did neither. It has dawned on me far far too late in life that I can make a choice to be silent when things go wrong. I wish I had discovered this in my thirties, not my seventies.

Liz Pearce on Baxter’s poem Inscription on the  wall of  a Power Station: 

I believe that until we see the face of Christ in each person we encounter, then justice is only a throw-away phrase, a politically correct notion. We also need to be mindful of who has has made possible our present lives:

“When you plug in the cord for the electric toaster,

Remember the blood of men is flowing through it.”

We are only a very small part of a very large continuum.May we be grateful for all those who make our comfortable lives possible.May we be grateful that Christ is revealed to us over and over and over throughout each day.   


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