Bookmark, Benedict Edition

From today’s reading in Benedictus:

“Human beings are such that they cannot stand the person who is wholly good, truly upright, truly loving, the person who does evil to no one. It seems that in this world only momentarily is trust met with trust, justice with justice, love with love. The person who exemplifies all these virtues quickly becomes insupportable to others. People will crucify anyone who is really and fully human. Such is man. And such am I – that is the terrifying insight that comes to me from the crucified Christ. Along with this insight, however, goes another: Man is the being who is capable of expressing God himself. Man is so made that God can enter into union with him. The human person, who seems at first sight to be a kind of unfortunate monster produced by evolution, at the same time represents the highest possibility the created order can attain.”


  1. Ernesto Pinamonti says

    Well, that was light and breezy. “Unfortunate monster,” indeed. But the first point about man not standing the truly virtuous is dead on. My sister-in-law told my wife, “I hate the Saints.” She was only half joking. She went on to explain that the saints were all either “super virtuous” or “huge sinners who converted.” She’s looking for a Saint who is “like me.” And isn’t that B16’s point exactly. We like people who have the same collection of virtues and vices that we have.

  2. AnotherCoward says

    What of Saint John? He is the first of fallen man that comes to my mind who never rejected Jesus.

  3. i relate, at least somewhat, to the apostles. it seems to me, they were pretty regular guys. st. peter, after being so close to christ, goes on to deny his friendship with him over and over. this has always struck me as so normal. a normal, self preservationist fear. we don’t know alot about the apostles…but they seem pretty relatable. however, i don’t know if i entirely agree with this statement. i think it’s good to think there are people better than us…doesn’t this help us feel like we should and could be better ourselves? i don’t know.

  4. Ernesto Pinamonti says

    I think Il Papa’s point is psychologically and theoligically profound. Look at your closest friends. They’re likely to be 75% mirror images of yourself. The virtuous seek the virtuous. Thugs hang out with thugs. It’s the human condition. Those inbetween find people near the same place on the sliding scale of virtue. Our challenge as men of faith is to seek out men of higher virtue so that we can progress by their examples, but also to seek out men of lesser virtue so that we can be an example to them.

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