Sunday, May 27, 2012

Thoughts on Pentecost

Went for Mass with Tien at SFX this morning. I think the last time I went for Mass was in Hawai'i, in May/June 2010.

I was very impressed with the church building: no air-conditioning, only fans; lots of natural light, and minimal ceiling lighting; trees all over the church compound. Things you no longer see in modern 'concert hall' church auditoriums. Yet these things live on in that great Catholic tradition.

This, to me, is what a church should physically be—a living space that nourishes the soul.

* * *

Agnus Dei, qui tollis peccata mundi, miserere nobis.
Agnus Dei, qui tollis peccata mundi, miserere nobis.
Agnus Dei, qui tollis peccata mundi, dona nobis pacem.

* * *

"What defines post-colonial and Independence-era buildingse is the usage of relatively inexpensive materials to come up with novel designs that are practical in our tropical climate."

— Ben, after Mass, talking about the new Chancellery vs the old

* * *

The dove descending breaks the air
With flame of incandescent terror
Of which the tongues declare
The one dischage from sin and error.
The only hope, or else despair
Lies in the choice of pyre of pyre—
To be redeemed from fire by fire.

Who then devised the torment? Love.
Love is the unfamiliar Name
Behind the hands that wove
The intolerable shirt of flame
Which human power cannot remove.
We only live, only suspire
Consumed by either fire or fire.

— T.S. Eliot, 'Little Gidding'

* * *

Fake your death and only tell your closest friends

Oh my God
Can I complain?
You take away my firm belief
And graft my soul upon your grief

— Jars of Clay, 'Oh My God'

* * *

And there, just outside that trinket shop where Tien said, "This is what I miss about Malaysia—finding books in random shops," there we walked past Captain America and Michael Jackson.

Amcorp Mall is probably the only place where superheroes can look normal.

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