Bloggerhood Etc. 2/2//15

Cornelia Seigneur at home.

Cornelia Becker Seigneur (Photo: Vern Uyetake/West Linn Tidings)

Best News.Walking On: Longtime (West Linn) Residents Working to Get Back on Their Feet After Serious Accident” by Patrick Malee at West Linn Tidings.

Best Parenting Post.Sympathetic Pregnancy Hits the Chaos Team” by Evelyn Shoop at Momsicle.

Bravest.Good Girls Don’t Get Depressed” by Cara Strickland at Tanya Marlow’s Thorns and Gold.

Best Special Needs Post.Sharing in the Sorrow of Others” by Sandra Peoples at Not Alone.

Best Answer to a Stupid Question.Pope Francis, Radical Leftist?” by Elizabeth Stoker Bruenig at The New Republic.

Best Rant.If Any of You Mention Oils, I Will Punch You in the Face” by Melanie Dale at Coffee + Crumbs.

Best Essay.What the World Will Speak in 2115” by John H. McWhorter at The Wall Street Journal.

Best Reminder.The Holocaust’s Forgotten Victims: The 5 Million Non-Jewish People Killed By The Nazis” by Louise Ridley at Huff Post UK.

Best Literary Analysis.‘I am No Man’ Doesn’t Cut It: The Story of Eowyn” by Mariah Huehner at The Mary Sue.

Best Book Review.Apraxia Monday: A Meditation on Play” a review of Savage Park by Leslie Lindsay at Speaking of Apraxia.

Best Interview.Cardinal Marx on Francis, the Synod, Women in the Church and Gay Relationships” by Luke Hansen S.J. at America.

Best Video.I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” by Peter Hollens, featuring Sabrina Carpenter. (via YouTube).

Bloggerhood Etc. 5/5/2014

The Hagia Sophia

Image: Dylan Lathrop/SB Nation

Happy Cinco de Mayo! What does a beautiful artistic rendition of the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul have to do with a popular Mexican holiday? Absolutely nothing! Here’s the best of the week.

Best Essay.The Istanbul Derby” by Spencer Hall at SB Nation.

Best Satire.What I Wish Women Knew About Men” by Micah J. Murray at the Redemption Pictures blog.

Best Parody.If Coaches Coached Their Teams the Way We Do Church” by Tyler Franke at Venn Magazine.

Most Honest.Open Letter to the Child I Hit at the Park” by Bunmi Latidan at Honest Toddler.

Best Advice.The Golden Hour” by Johanna Harness.

Best Commentary.Donald Sterling: Facade, Fiction, and Forgiveness” by Lisa Sharon Harper at Huff Post Religion.

Best Question.God Has a Body” by Emily Maynard at A Deeper Story.

Best Special Needs Post.How to Make Others Understand” by Jared Buckley at Not Alone.

Best Guest Post.(De)tales: the Bra Thief” by Natalie Trust, posting at Cara Strickland’s blog Little Did She Know.

Best Dad Post.The Tears of Saint Joseph” by Bill Peebles at ihopeiwinatoaster.

Funniest.Recipes for Gourmet Ingredients, Written by 20-Year-Olds” by Jon Bois at SB Nation.

Best Facebook Status.You Won’t Believe What My 14 Year Old Posted on Facebook” by Carl Wilke at Big Cheese Dad.

Best Photoblog.The Force is Strong With These 35 ‘Star Wars’ Fan Families” by Mandy Velez at Huff Post Parents.

Best Video.Honest Trailers: The Spider-Man Trilogy” by Screen Junkies (via YouTube).

Behold His Mighty Hand

Moses

Charlton Heston as Moses in The Ten Commandments

The Ten Commandments is a very long, and very cheesy, Cecil B. DeMille epic. But there is one scene that awes me no matter how many times I see it. Moses raises his arms to part the Red Sea. The Israelites pass through and the Egyptian charioteers follow. The Israelites start to panic as the Egyptians race between the walls of water, drawing ever nearer. But Moses knows that the Lord will deliver Israel on that day, and he delivers the climactic line …

“Behold his mighty hand!”

A brief silence as all Israel holds its breath, and then the sound of rushing water and the screams.

The water rushes in on the Egyptiians

The Hand of God.

The walls of water collapse upon the Egyptians and in the words of Exodus “horse and rider are thrown into the sea.”

This is God at his cinematic best. But outside of Exodus, and Cecil B. DeMille movies, this isn’t the way we usually encounter God.

God usually comes to us the way he came to Elijah on Mount Horeb.

And he said, “Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the Lord.” And behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and broke in pieces the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake; and after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice. (1 Kings 19:11-12, RSV)

In a still small voice. In everyday acts of love, mercy, and compassion, God is visible through you and through me when we love our neighbor as ourselves.

Pope Francis washing the feet of a young offender during a mass at the church of the Casal del Marmo youth prison

Photo: AFP/Getty

Behold his mighty hand.

Five Minute Friday

Reflection

Kundun theatrical release poster

Kundun (1997) is a haunting, beautiful portrait of the early life of the Dalai Lama and perhaps Martin Scorsese’s most underrated film. In the last scene, the Dalai Lama escapes his palace in Lhasa in the middle of the night, and flees to India pursued by Chinese soldiers under orders to kill him. He falls ill and has to be helped by his attendants as he walks the last few yards to the border checkpoint.

At his post, the Indian guard salutes him and asks him his name. The Dalai Lama replies “a man. A simple monk.” The guard then asks him “Are you the Lord Buddha?” And he replies with the film’s final line.

“I think that I am a reflection, like the moon on water. When you see me, and I try to be a good man, you see yourself.”

Another iconic figure, another one who “(tried) to be a good man,” left us yesterday. Nelson Mandela died at the age of 95. Mandela hadn’t always followed the non-violent path the the Dalai Lama committed his life to. He was a revolutionary and a political prisoner. But when he walked out of prison in 1990, after 27 years, he was able to forgive his captors, unite a country, and reconcile two peoples to one another.

We turn people like Nelson Mandela and the Dalai Lama into figurative saints. We acclaim others like Mother Teresa and Pope John Paul II as actual saints. In the process, we mythologize them beyond all recognition. We forget that they are no different from us, and that we are all called to that same goal. To be a reflection of the Image of God that is in each of us.

For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.” —1 Cortinthians 13:12.

Five Minute Friday