Fear and Hope: Confutatis and Lacrimosa from Mozart’s Requiem

Fear and Hope

Fear and Hope are the twin themes of the “Confutatis and Lacrimosa” from Mozart’s Requiem. If thou, O LORD, shouldst mark iniquities, Lord, who could stand? But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared. I wait for the LORD, my soul waits, and in his word I hope . . . (Psalm […]

The Drama of Sin and Repentance (or not) From Mozart’s Don Giovanni (Music Monday)

Hell is a real possibility for all of us.  It’s not a happy thought, but it’s an appropriate introduction to today’s Music Monday selection, our last musical offering before Ash Wednesday.  It’s not really sacred music, but it is very relevant indeed to the Lenten themes of sin, repentance (or not), and damnation.  This is the finale* of Mozart’s opera Don Giovanni (a.k.a. Don Juan), one of the most powerful scenes in the history of musical drama.

A Sin is a Sin: St. Thomas and Conscience

St. Thomas by Francesco Gessi

     “What is truth?” I seem to remember someone raising the question somewhere.  For the idealogue, “truth” is whatever promotes the ideology, and if it happens to correspond with reality that’s fine; if it doesn’t, no problem, we’ll make something up. Followers of  Him who is “The Way, The Truth, and The Life” (John 14:6) know better . . […]

Why did Jesus ‘Take the Form of a Slave’?

     Christ has broken our chains, but here’s the catch: we need to be willing to shake them off, get up, and follow him. “If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.” (Matthew 16:24) . . .

St. Patrick, Julius Caesar, and Slavery to Sin

St. Patrick is, of course, the Patron Saint of Ireland, but he wasn’t originally Irish. He was Romano-British, probably born in what is now southern Scotland, or possibly Wales. His first introduction to the Emerald Isle was as a slave, after he had been kidnapped as a youth by Irish raiders . . .