The light to our path

Psalm 119 is the longest chapter is the Bible. It is 176 verses of love poem to God for the gift of His Word. There are many verses that are memorable and oft quoted. Perhaps at the top of the list is v.105: “Your word is a lamp for my steps and a light for my path.” In today’s mid-morning Divine Office, here is the Psalm Prayer that accompanies this verse:

Let your Word, Father, be a lamp for our feet and light to our path, so that we may understand what you wish to teach us and follow the path your light marks for us.

I hope that each of you are lovers of God’s Word and that His wishes and path have been well illuminated…. and you have the courage to walk where that path may lead.

Being witness

Today is the Feast of St. Lawrence of Rome, one of the early martyrs of the Church who died during the persecution of the Emperor Valerian in 258 AD. Lawrence was one of the seven deacons of Rome, directly serving the pope. Pope Sixtus II had been martyred just four days before. It is not clear what instigated the Valerian persecutions apart from the Roman Empire was beginning to fray at the seams with revolts in the East and the West. Perhaps the Christians were a convenient scapegoat. Continue reading

Things trivial

Always fascinated by the origin of words, today’s fare from the “Word of the Day” by Merriam Webster brought to my attention the word “trivial.” We moderns use the word to describe something barely worth mentioning. We adopted the word trivial from Latin trivialis in the 16th century. Then the meaning was just what its Latin ancestor meant: “found everywhere, commonplace.” But the source of trivialis is about something more specific: trivium, from tri- (three) and via (way), meaning “crossroads; place where three roads meet.” The link between the two presumably has to do with the commonplace sorts of things a person is likely to encounter at a busy crossroads. If we returned to the original meaning then Starbucks would become trivial – no less important to modern life – but “trivial” all the same.

Image credit: Dom J @


This coming Sunday is the 20th Sunday in Ordinary Time for Lectionary Cycle C. In yesterday’ post we discussed the biblical and Lucan use of the imagery of fire. Today we will consider the imagery of baptism. “There is a baptism with which I must be baptized, and how great is my anguish until it is accomplished!” (v.50) The word baptizō used here is the same as that used for water baptism elsewhere in the NT. However, clearly Jesus is not referring to a water baptism (Luke 3:21-22) as that has already occurred. Continue reading