Skip to Content
Search Icon
Issue 03 – Christ the King 2020



Odds and ends from the staff of the Lamp.


❖ A paragraph toward the end of the Holy Father’s recent apostolic letter on the sixteen-hundredth anniversary of the death of Saint Jerome caught our attention. Papa Franciscus asks us to consider

the experience a young person can have today entering a bookshop in his or her city, or visiting an Internet site, to look for the section on religious books. In most cases, this section, when it exists, is not only marginal but poorly stocked with works of substance. Looking at those bookshelves or webpages, it is difficult for a young person to understand how the quest of religious truth can be a passionate adventure that unites heart and mind; how the thirst for God has inflamed great minds throughout the centuries up to the present time; how growth in the spiritual life has influenced theologians and philosophers, artists and poets, historians and scientists. One of the problems we face today, not only in religion, is illiteracy: the hermeneutic skills that make us credible interpreters and translators of our own cultural tradition are in short supply. I would like to pose a challenge to young people in particular: begin exploring your heritage. Christianity makes you heirs of an unsurpassed cultural patrimony of which you must take ownership. Be passionate about this history which is yours.

This, in short, if we may be so bold as to claim it, is the mission of THE LAMP. And so it ought to be of all educated Catholics looking to understand and pass on their faith. Saint Jerome’s sixtieth letter, consoling his friend Bishop Heliodorus on the death of his nephew, Nepotian, is worth reading in full; but in this space we can only allow him to speak in fragments to our fragmented age:

You must or subscribe to read the rest of the article.