Tuesday, July 29, 2014

digital revolution

Fr. Denis Lemieux's book on technology, philosophy, + theology, 2013
you say you want a [digital] revolution
well, you know
we all want to change the world
you tell me that it's evolution
well, you know
we all want to change the world (The Beatles - Revolution, 1968)
as we celebrate the feast of St. Martha today, i thought i would post my book review of Fr. Denis Lemieux's latest book, on technology and staying human, staying Christian.  as Martha was worried and distracted by many things, we too can understand what she was going through!  indeed, we are in the middle of a digital revolution.  how do we choose the better part?  of course, we do not turn our back on our responsibilities, on our ministries, our work, etc., but we need to find balance!  i enjoyed his book.  indeed, i think it is a commentary on Martha and Mary, from a technological, Christian point of view.
I always enjoyed technology – indeed, I spent five years of my life as a computer programmer staring at the blue screen of death. It was the light I needed to come to know God in Our Lord Jesus Christ. I had lost my balance and started believing that I was made for technology. However, as the Gospel of Mark reminds us, “the Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.” (Mk 2:27) Technology is made for man, not man for technology. I guess how we use this technology is always the question. 
Last year a friend of mine bought me the book from one of my seminary classmates, “The I-Choice: Staying Human in a Digital Age”, by Fr. Denis Lemieux (Justin Press, 2013).

I finished it within the week. A short book, eleven chapters helping us regain that balance à la Martha and Mary (Lc 10:38-42). I love my digital family, and the Archdiocese of the Internet is growing each and every day! But it is difficult not to get lost sometimes! Like Martha, I get distracted and worried by many things: Instagram, Twitter, facetubing, and youbooking, blogging, etc.! There are many things that push for our attention, and Fr. Denis invites us to choose the better part, an invitation at staying human! 
The book helps us realize our need to choose like Mary, to find that time of silence during the day, a silence which speaks to the heart. I enjoyed Fr. Denis' use of philosophy and theology to introduce the topic. His pop culture references often made me laugh! Like Martha we all have responsibilities, and in this context, must use technology wisely. Fr. Denis reminds us that technology is made for us. We should take time and reflect on how these technologies help us. Our choices should lead us to grow in our relationship with God, with neighbour, with self.
I recommend this book because it does help us review our use of technology, thereby allowing us to stay human. Fr. Denis Lemieux has been a member of Madonna House since 1991, and was ordained a priest in 2004. He has a licentiate in sacred theology and has written two books on Marian spirituality and theology. He currently resides in Combermere, Ontario where he divides his time between teaching, writing, and spiritual direction. 
you know Fr. Denis has a blog !!!  go check it out!  St. Martha, Martha, Martha, pray for us!  : )  peace!

Saturday, July 05, 2014

another love

(Rocky Balboa, 1976)

"i wanna cry and i wanna learn to love
but all my tears have been used up
another love, another love
all my tears have been used up."
(Tom Odell - Another Love, 2012)
what's this 'another love' which we seek?  what's wrong with the love the world has to offer?  trying to kick it up a notch in my ministry, next week i'm off to the International Conference on the Theology of the Body, in Philidelphia, PA.

as someone mentioned to me the other day, i will also seek out and eat a few Philly Cheesesteaks.  and, as Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassatti (yesterday) always encourages to do, verso l'alto, always higher, i look forward in running up the Rocky stairs with Ted Hurley (who will win this race?)!

so, what is Theology of the Body?
"... Broken families, abortion, contraception, Internet pornography, clergy abuse, homosexual marriage - our Church and world is in the midst of a profound sexual crisis.  Is there a way out?" (West, 2004)
as we prepare to underline the family in a new way this year - Synod of Bishops in October on the Family -, on how to build strong families today, to support and encourage them with God in Our Lord Jesus Christ, i very much look foward in this conference!  though i lived in Pittsburgh for about 1.5 years, i have never visited Philly yet.  so, in his book (my prep for next week) - Theology of the Body for Beginners:  A Basic Introduction to Pope John Paul II's Sexual Revolution - Christopher West is helping us understand, is helping me understand another Love (our union with God in Our Lord Jesus Christ).  In it he explores the profound  interconnections between sex and the deepest questions of human existence, including:
  • what is the meaning of life?
  • why did God create us male and female?
  • how de we attain true happiness on earth?
  • what kind of joys await us in heaven?
  • why is there evil in the world and how do we overcome it?
  • how can we experience the love ( = another love) we long for in the depth of our hearts?
pray for us who will be attending the conference.  follow the conference via @2014TOBCongress, and, of course, stay tuned to a few pictures, and possibly some real-time tweeting (@jsblake) during the talks.


ps:  q? blogging again?  a! i hope so!  see you soon.

pss:  another love is "a song about an individual’s turmoil; wishing to show their affection to their partner, yet weighed down by lingering feelings of distrust and sadness from a previous relationship. It is implied that the relationship suffers from this constant comparison through both the rhyming couplets of the song and the building atmosphere of the music (wikipedia.org)!"  i like the Zwette remix, and there is also the American release version (2013), but the original (2012) is better.  both videos offer a different interpretation to the song.  here's the original:

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

God must have spent a little more time on you

(William Adolphe Bouguereau - Innocence, 1893)
"in all of creation, all things great and small
you are the one that surpasses them all
more precious than any diamond or pearl
they broke the mold when you came in this world

and then i'm trying hard to figure out
just how i ever did without
the warmth of your smile, the heart of a child
that's deep inside, it leaves me purified."
(*NSync - God Must Have Spent A Little More Time on You, 1997)
who knew *NSync were theologians.  wow, right, i know eh?! #bestsongevah they dedicated this song to their moms, and today, i, we, dedicate to Our Lady, the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God!

happy holy New Year!  peace.

ps.  the video: