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Two weeks ago you shared with us your favorite villains; last week we asked about your least favorite heroes. Some protagonists you find unlikeable or unsympathetic are Superman, Luke Skywalker, Holden Caufield, Tony Stark, Odysseus, Harry Potter, Lucy Snowe, Farebrother from Middlemarch, Frodo Baggins, Ron Weasley, James Bond, Lord Peter Wimsey, Dr. Zhivago, Hector, Prince Paris of Troy, Little Nell, Natasha Rostov, Scarlett O’Hara, Hamlet, Ariel from Disney’s Little Mermaid, Ferris Bueller, Aeneas, Achilles, Stephen Dedalus, The Duke of Buckingham, Mr. Rochester, Dante, Lyndall from Story of an African Farm, William of Baskerville, Emma Woodhouse, Remy from Ratatouille, Emma Bovary, Lady Chatterley, Lorelai Gilmore, and Father Christmas (at least as he is in Narnia).
This week’s poll can be found here.
Forty percent of you weep everyone so often; forty percent weep on rare occasion; fourteen percent of you cry once a week or more; six percent cry never.
• Drinking tea three or more times a week may extend your life expectancy.
• Taco Bell will begin paying salaries of one-hundred thousand dollars to the general managers of some of its locations.
• A Japanese billionaire is conducting an experiment on social media by giving away nine million dollars to his Twitter followers.
• Amazon has fired four employees who were found using the cameras on Amazon’s home security devices to spy on customers.
• Puerto Rico has experienced several serious earthquakes this week, which have killed at least one person and destroyed one church.
• The Supreme Court of the Philippines has upheld a ruling that rejects calls to adopt same-sex marriage in that country.
• A judge in Brazil has ordered Netflix to cease broadcasting an unspeakably blasphemous film.
• NASA is building a rocket that will bring the first woman to the moon in late 2020 or 2021.
• Americans are patronizing departments stores such as Kohl’s, Macy’s, and JCPenney less than ever before.
• A new Girl Scout cookie is being sold this year: the Lemon-Up.
Lines (prose and verse):
What can I give Him, poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb;
If I were a Wise Man, I would do my part;
Yet what I can I give Him: give my heart.
— C. Rᴏssᴇᴛᴛɪ
The Epiphany is a season especially set apart for adoring the glory of Christ. The word may be taken to mean the manifestation of His glory, and leads us to the contemplation of Him as a King upon His throne in the midst of His court, with His servants around Him, and His guards in attendance. At Christmas we commemorate His grace; and in Lent His temptation; and on Good Friday His sufferings and death; and on Easter Day His victory; and on Holy Thursday His return to the Father; and in Advent we anticipate His second coming. And in all of these seasons He does something, or suffers something: but in the Epiphany and the weeks after it, we celebrate Him, not as on His field of battle, or in His solitary retreat, but as an august and glorious King; we view Him as the Object of our worship. Then only, during His whole earthly history, did He fulfil the type of Solomon, and held (as I may say) a court, and received the homage of His subjects; viz. when He was an infant. His throne was His undefiled Mother’s arms; His chamber of state was a cottage or a cave; the worshippers were the wise men of the East, and they brought presents, gold, frankincense, and myrrh. All around and about Him seemed of earth, except to the eye of faith; one note alone had He of Divinity. As great men of this world are often plainly dressed, and look like other men, all but as having some one costly ornament on their breast or on their brow; so the Son of Mary in His lowly dwelling, and in an infant’s form, was declared to be the Son of God Most High, the Father of Ages, and the Prince of Peace, by His star; a wonderful appearance which had guided the wise men all the way from the East, even unto Bethlehem.
— Sᴛ. Jᴏʜɴ Hᴇɴʀʏ Nᴇᴡᴍᴀɴ
Some say he bid his Angels turne ascanse
The Poles of Earth twice ten degrees and more
From the Suns Axle; they with labour push’d
Oblique the Centric Globe: Som say the Sun
Was bid turn Reines from th’ Equinoctial Rode
Like distant breadth to Taurus with the Seav’n
Atlantick Sisters, and the Spartan Twins
Up to the Tropic Crab; thence down amaine
By Leo and the Virgin and the Scales,
As deep as Capricorne, to bring in change
Of Seasons to each Clime; else had the Spring
Perpetual smil’d on Earth with vernant Flours,
Equal in Days and Nights, except to those
Beyond the Polar Circles; to them Day
Had unbenighted shon, while the low Sun
To recompence his distance, in thir sight
Had rounded still th’ Horizon, and not known
Or East or West, which had forbid the Snow
From cold Estotiland, and South as farr
Beneath Magellan. At that tasted Fruit
The Sun, as from Thyestean Banquet, turn’d
His course intended; else how had the World
Inhabited, though sinless, more then now,
Avoided pinching cold and scorching heate?
These changes in the Heav’ns, though slow, produc’d
Like change on Sea and Land, sideral blast,
Vapour, and Mist, and Exhalation hot,
Corrupt and Pestilent: Now from the North
Of Norumbega, and the Samoed shoar
Bursting thir brazen Dungeon, armd with ice
And snow and haile and stormie gust and flaw,
Boreas and Caecias and Argestes loud
And Thrascias rend the Woods and Seas upturn;
With adverse blast up-turns them from the South
Notus and Afer black with thundrous Clouds
From Serraliona; thwart of these as fierce
Forth rush the Levant and the Ponent VVindes
Eurus and Zephir with thir lateral noise,
Sirocco, and Libecchio. Thus began
Outrage from liveless things
We ask readers to pray for the people of Iraq, Iran, and Puerto Rico; for all women religious; for church musicians; for expectant mothers; and for the intentions of the Holy Father.
— W.B., M.W.