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Showing posts from August, 2010

On ‘Empathetic Capacity’ in the perspective of Eternity

I recently read about some 17th century Dominican dialogues with Zen Buddhist monks and the many interesting and moving consequences that such cultural openness brought to the men of that age. I am also currently engaged in some research into the work of Matteo Ricci, the Jesuit missionary in China. These men were Christian humanists, engaged in bold cultural outreach in faithfulness to the Gospel injunction to preach to all nations.

Matthew Taylor, Chief Executive of the Royal Society of Arts (of which I am a Fellow) recently gave an illustrated talk, now available online, which calls for a ‘21st century enlightement’, or a new humanism for the new century. This is going to be the RSA’s new ‘strap’ or byword. You can watch his fascinating, entertaining (and short) lecture, complete with cartoons at:

Taylor speaks of progress in the development of ‘empathetic capacity’ and notes what he sees as the decrease in person…

Father's photos

Father Anthony Talbot, our chaplain at Chavagnes, has launched a website featuring his photography. Please do pay him a visit at

Today in the Old Roman Martyrology ...

From the third lesson at Matins:

"On the same day, at Imola, the martyr Cassian was put to a most cruel death. He was a schoolmaster, and was given up to his scholars, with his hands bound behind his back, to be stabbed and torn to death with steel pens. Owing to the weakness of the means, the suffering of his martyrdom was very grievous and long, and his palm all the more glorious."

Scouts de Chavagnes

My colleague, Mr Crawford, has been putting some of his scouting reflections online on the new Scouts de Chavagnes website. Stirring stuff ...