“The technological ability to build 100-story buildings on every square inch of the face of the earth–whether it be Madison Avenue, Times Square, or the plains of Kansas–is not necessarily a mandate to do so.”
Adele Chatfield-Taylor, founder/former executive director of New York Landmarks Preservation Foundation
(taken from my textbook on Historic Preservation)
…all this sounds… elevated. My own rhetoric begins to approach that of John Henry Newman, or even some of his less reputable Victorian contemporaries: Felicia Hemans, perhaps, or even Robert Browning on a bad day. That’s almost inevitable when writing or thinking about heaven; we begin to sound like a high Victorian Christmas card.
Dr. Paul Griffiths in his lecture The End of Sacraments (lecture 6 of the 2012-2013 Stanton Lectures)
Full audio of this lecture can be found here and the entire collection of lectures can be found here.
“How could one speak properly about love if you were forgotten, you God of love, source of all love in heaven and on earth; you who spared nothing but in love gave everything; you who are love, so that one who loves is what he is only by being in you! How could one speak properly about love if you were forgotten, you who revealed what love is, you our Savior and Redeemer, who gave yourself in order to save all. How could one speak properly of love if you were forgotten, you Spirit of love, who take nothing of your own but remind us of that love-sacrifice, remind the believer to love as he is loved and his neighbor as himself! O Eternal Love, you who are everywhere present and never without witness where you are called upon, be not without witness in what will be said here about love or about works of love. There are indeed only some works that human language specifically and narrowly calls works of love, but in heaven no work can be pleasing unless it is a work of love: sincere in self-renunciation, a need in love itself, and for that very reason without any claim of meritoriousness!”
~ Soren Kierkegaard, Works of Love
“Grace gives an immense scope to our aims and desires and leaves them the freest possible play. At the same time grace has this great advantage: we need only to desire it in order to find it; to receive grace, we need only to love its Donor. By this ardent desire for grace and for heavenly happiness, and by a sincere love for the Father, we acquire and merit all good gifts, and that according to the measure of our love and desire. Why do we not manifest here a holy greediness and importunity? Why do we not, like St. Paul, forget the things that are behind and stretch forth our hand to those that are before us? We should measure the soul’s profit and advantage not by the treasures already in our possession, but by those which are to be acquired. The Apostle ran the course of perfection with rapid stride, but we do not hurry; we often pause in our course, as though the smallest part of the eternal and highest good were already sufficient. The Apostle considers himself as not yet perfect; and yet in his good works, in his countless sufferings and glorious miracles, he has the best pledge and evidence of extraordinary perfection; still, he always seeks something higher and more perfect. That which we still lack is without limit; that which we already possess is little and insignificant. But God, who is most liberal in dispensing His gifts and Himself, ceases to increase our small fortune only when we tire of our progress. Why do we commit such an injustice against God and His grace, and against ourselves? Let us remember the wife of Lot, who instead of looking forward looked behind her and was turned into a statue of salt. Let this example serve to make us prudent and to spur us on to a holy zeal.”
~ Fr. Matthias Scheeben, The Glories of Divine Grace