Month: May 2019

The Sullivan Home and the Moral Imagination

We’re delighted to share with you a new addition to our Meaningful Home Series — a reflection and blessing for a house from our poet friend Helena Nellie Sullivan. Nellie is a former English and poetry teacher who lives in Carson City, Michigan with her husband and two children (they actually live in a funeral home, where her husband works). She begins by interacting with this quote from G.K. Chesterton, the inspiration for this series: “It is the main earthly business of a human being to make his home, and the immediate surroundings of his home, as symbolic and significant to his own imagination as he can.” I depart from Chesterton on this slightly, in that I do not believe that our own imagination should guide so much as a moral imagination *—an imagination beholden to creeds. To keep a home, then, that fosters moral imagination means that the homemaker will uphold certain “enduring standards”** (as Russell Kirk puts it) in a variety of ways. For us, this means that we hang richly symbolic pictures …

The Fourth Sunday After Easter

Collect: O Almighty God, who alone canst order the unruly wills and affections of sinful men; Grant unto thy people, that they may love the thing which thou commandest, and desire that which thou dost promise; that so, among the sundry and manifold changes of the world, our hearts may surely there be fixed, where true joys are to be found; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. Saints & Blesseds Monday, May 20: St. Alcuin Born around the year 730 to a noble family in York, at an early age, St. Alcuin entered the cathedral school at York (the western European center for Christian and classical education). After finishing his education, Alcuin entered the monastery at York Minster. In 780, he was sent on an ecclesiastical errand to Rome and while traveling through Italy, he encountered Charlemagne, the king of the Franks. Impressed by Alcuin, Charlemagne wanted to him to stay at his court and eventually prevailed so that Alcuin spent the majority of his life with Charlemagne in Aachen. He was made effectively “Prime …

A Window Into Meghan’s Home

This post is part of our series on making meaningful homes, following G.K. Chesterton’s advice: “It is the main earthly business of a human being to make his home, and the immediate surroundings of his home, as symbolic and significant to his own imagination as he can.”  If you’d like to contribute, email thehomelyhours@gmail.com with your guest post! Thanks to Meghan Tarsitano for her contribution and be on the lookout for more “windows into meaningful homes” as we continue this series.  Isn’t it marvelous when things material and temporal point toward truths eternal and unchanging?  Even in small ways, it is better than it simply being a “thing.”  A chair has a purpose; a table has a purpose;  decorative items are best when they have a purpose too.  Certainly, beauty is a purpose in this context, and beauty itself can point toward our Creator.  This is partly why in addition to our more explicitly religious decorations, we frequently have fresh flowers.  God designed those flowers; He called them good; He delighted in his creation, and He wants …

The Third Week After Easter

Collect: Almighty God, who showest to those who are in error the light of thy truth, to the intent that they may return into the way or righteousness; Grant unto all those who are admitted into the fellowship of Christ’s Religion, that they may avoid those things that are contrary to their profession, and follow all such things as are agreeable to the same; through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen. (There are no saints on the Ordo Calendar this week). Homely Links Mother’s Day Coloring Page Michelle Abernathy has created a Mother’s Day coloring page from a larger painting she is working on. She explained to me that the “Woman of Perpetual Motherhood” is meant to encompass all senses of motherhood: biological, adoptive, spiritual. When she spoke about it to me, it reminded me of the prayer our priest, Fr. Wayne, prays on Mother’s Day (which I am always thankful for, in light of my friends dealing with infertility or who struggle with Mother’s Day for any other reason). Prayer for Mothers Our gracious and loving …

A Window into Amy’s Home

This post is part of our new series on making meaningful homes, following G.K. Chesterton’s advice: “It is the main earthly business of a human being to make his home, and the immediate surroundings of his home, as symbolic and significant to his own imagination as he can.”  If you’d like to contribute, email thehomelyhours@gmail.com with your guest post! Thanks to Amy Rogers Hays for her contribution and be on the lookout for more “windows into meaningful homes” as we continue this series.  Above our kitchen table on a 45 inch Mosslanda Ikea picture ledge sits our version of a little oratory. We have very small children (3 and 11 months) and a very small house (728 sq. ft). Our kitchen table, a handmade counter height butcher block table, is both kitchen prep space and our only eating space in our 9 x 12 kitchen. We have icons scattered across the house, in a cube in our 25 square Ikea Kallax bookcase in our living room, in bedrooms, and above desks in the basement. But …

The Second Week after Easter

Collect: Almighty God, who hast given thine only Son to be unto us both a sacrifice for sin, and also an ensample of godly life; Give us grace that we may always most thankfully receive that his inestimable benefit, and also daily endeavour ourselves to follow the blessed steps of his most holy life; through the same thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. Saints of the Week Monday, May 6: St. Alphege (transferred from April 19) Born around 934, St. Alphege became monk in Gloucestershire at an early age, but then withdrew from monastic life to be a hermit. Because of his holy reputation, he was eventually called out of the hermetic life to be Abbot of Bath and then Bishop of Winchester in 984. In 1005, he became Archbishop of Canterbury. As Archbishop, he was deeply loved and respected for his devout life, asceticism, and his unmatched generosity toward the poor. In 1011, the Danes overran Southern England, besieging and eventually conquering Canterbury. Alphege was taken prison, but held for an exorbitant ransom. He …