1984 and Sobering Thoughts on Ash Wednesday

This isn’t explicitly religious (the source material is anything but religious in fact), but I thought it more appropriate to post the Weird Wednesday material yesterday, and put this up today.

This is a story about how people who have no values beyond their own desires and sense of mistreatment are easily destroyed by people and organizations who have no values but the will to power. The main character may be the product of his environment, but ultimately, being Winston is a choice.

Don’t be Winston or Julia. Understand what matters to you, do your best to cultivate habits of virtue and live up to whatever code of conduct you’ve managed to discern. Pray. But also, don’t feel smugly superior to Winston. Look at St. Peter the Apostle, virtue signaling about his courage and loyalty on Holy Thursday, and then denying his Lord that very night. We all have the opportunity to rise or fall. What will we do when that opportunity comes?


Weird Science Wednesday: Benedictine Sisters Demonstrate Hydroelectric Power in the Congolese City of Miti

If you have the water and the technology, it’s hard to beat hydroelectricity as a source of power. African-born Sister Alphonsine Ciza, who had studied mechanical engineering, teamed up with the rest of her convent, the Benedictine Sisters of Agnes, and built a small hydroelectric dam to power their facility in Miti. The Democratic Republic of Congo suffers from rolling blackouts, and relying on hydroelectricity allows the sisters to teach computing programming on actual screens instead of just showing their students the underlying principles in a textbook.

I don’t have a lot of use for the National Catholic Register in general, but I liked this article, which links back to the original Reuters account, complete with pictures of Sister Alphonsine, and also to information a similar hydroelectric plant built about thirty years prior by Benedictine monks in Tanzania.

Hat-tip to Caroline Furlong

PSA of a Religious Nature, With Phantom Menace Reference

Recently, I was given a strong reminder of how much of a struggle life can be. How much of a struggle doing the right thing can be. I am Catholic, so I offer prayers of petition to various saints, on the grounds that they were instruments of God on earth, and will continue to be instruments of God in heaven. One saint in particular Continue reading “PSA of a Religious Nature, With Phantom Menace Reference”