Friday, March 09, 2012

be prepared for him who knows how to ask questions

When the Stranger says: "What is the meaning of this city?"

"Do you huddle close together because you love each other?"
What will you answer?
"We all dwell together to make money from each other"? 
or "This is a community"?

And the Stranger will depart and return to the desert.
O my soul, be prepared for the coming of the Stranger,
Be prepared for him who knows how to ask questions.

If humility and purity be not in the heart,
they are not in the home:
and if they are not in the home, they are not in the City.

 Why should men love the Church? Why should they love her laws?

She tells them of Life and Death, and of all that they would forget.
She is tender where they would be hard, and hard where they like to be soft.
She tells them of Evil and Sin, and other unpleasant facts.

O Father we welcome your words,
And we will take heart for the future,
Remembering the past.

Our age is an age of moderate virtue
And of moderate vice

When men will not lay down the Cross
Because they will never assume it.

Yet nothing is impossible, nothing,
To men of faith and conviction.
Let us therefore make perfect our will.
O God, help us.

[from "Choruses from 'The Rock'" by T.S. Eliot]

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