Thursday, September 13, 2007

Tangentially related...

I'm a little surprised at the momentary flap the chattering classes are in re: Mother Theresa's letters. You'd think there was something new revealed in their contents. Hardly: first of all, their contents have been common knowledge among Catholics for some time (I first encountered them here). Secondly, the Dark Night of the Soul and the Absent God are in fact hallowed institutions within the Catholic scheme of things, and have been for centuries.

Preoccupation with this woman's tenacious service, despite the sudden and irreversible truncation of her ecstasies, strikes me as a uniquely Protestant American fixation. There is no shortage of African, South American and Asian Christians who know exactly why she did what she did, and was who she was. In fact, there are probably any number of people in North America who know, too: we're just not in the habit of listening to them.

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