Tagged: Silence

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Going to the Peripheries

When Silence, Martin Scorsese’s epic film adaptation of the 1960s Japanese historical novel of the same title, hit theaters in late 2016, I was a master’s student at a mainline Protestant school of theology attached to a prominent private university. I was also in the process of entering the Catholic Church. I have a longstanding interest in Japan, my bachelor’s degree is in Japanese literature, and I was making a point of studying East Asian...

Best of WPI, Year 1: Book and Film reviews

In our first year, we have been fortunate to review a number of books and films, either directly or tangentially related to Pope Francis and his message. Dan Amiri has done the heavy lifting in this area, while Pedro Gabriel has offered his reflections on two very interesting films. Today, we’d like to highlight them again. Wenders: A Pope for the Fringes   Dan Amiri reviews Wim Wenders’ film on Pope Francis. In his review,...

The Lord Speaks in Silence: A Reflection on Prayer

“Holiness consists in a habitual openness to the transcendent.” When I was younger, I often thought of prayer as more or less a mental exercise. I don’t even think I called it prayer, but it was about the closest thing I came to it. My “prayers” constituted nothing more than self-reflection, with perhaps the Golden Rule and other general godly aphorisms sprinkled in like spice. In the worst times in my life, these “prayers” mimicked...

The Silence Movie: Strength and Weakness

The 2016 Martin Scorcese “Silence” movie, a beautiful depiction of the early missionary work (and persecution) of Japanese Catholics, unfortunately got tangled up in polemics about whether it promoted apostasy as a justifiable choice in the face of persecution. I have to side with critical sources who claim it justifies an intrinsically evil act like apostasy (and therefore, cannot be endorsed on those grounds,) but I also think the movie can teach us very important...

Silence: the shield against Suspicious Man

“Express how you feel, and then be quiet. Because the truth is humble. The truth is silent. The truth isn’t noisy. It’s not easy, what Jesus did. But the dignity of the Christian is anchored in the power of God. With people lacking good will, with people who only seek scandal, who seek only division, who seek only destruction, even within the family: silence, prayer.” — Pope Francis Homily at Casa Santa Marta, Rome, Sept 3rd,...

Silence according to Pope Francis

“Uncrowd my heart, O God, until silence speaks in your still, small voice; turn me from the hearing of words, and the making of words, and the confusion of much speaking, to listening, waiting, stillness, silence.” — Esther de Waal; “Lost in Wonder”; Chapter: “Silence” Silence as a theological challenge: This week, we started my favorite liturgical time: Advent. Advent is a time of waiting. Waiting for Christmas, the birth of Jesus. Waiting for the...