Feast of the Circumcision

Symbols, Circumcision & The Shadow of The Cross

We are a symbol-minded species. We create symbols and live by them. They pervade our assumptions and suggest to us ways to express and apply them. In religion—as in mathematics—symbols enable us to consider and reflect. In that sense, the Nativity crèche both charms and instructs. It is a conventional way to symbolize the Incarnation. Every year while my children were young, the traditional tableau spread out under the Christmas tree. Mary and Joseph waited for midnight when the infant would be placed in a manger filled with real straw. Continue Reading
Of Calendars And Memory

The sixties were generous with gifts that keep on taking. I cannot help thinking that one of them was the Church’s 1969 calendar revision for January 1. / /The Church began withdrawing recognition from the circumcision of Jesus in the sixties. Today, circumcision itself is under threat once-Christian Europe, from Switzerland to Scandinavia. Because it is practiced by both Jews and Muslims, it is tempting to see moves against the ritual as the sour fruit of secularist ideology. And there is partial truth to that. Continue Reading