After a long time out of the loop and hitting the books, it seems that a little resurrection may be in order. I miss writing here, and having forayed a bit into uncharted waters outside this little haven of mine, I think there's something to be said for regular readers, familiar topics and concise, to-the-point posts.

This time off has given me the opportunity to reflect on a few things, which I'd like to mention.

1) First, having the chance to focus intently on my philosophical studies has opened a door that I never even realized existed. I'm coming to realize that philosophy, far from being the nit-picky and uneventful discipline most take it to be, is actually much more along the lines of what St. Augustine said of it: the "true religion." In fact, this view has been expressed by many great saints and theologians throughout the ages, including our own Holy Father, Pope Benedict, who writes of it in his book, The Nature and Mission of Theology.

[The theologian] carries in his hand the Gospel, from which he learns, not words, but facts. He is the true philosopher, because he has knowledge of the mystery of death.
Studying philosophy is something more than groping at reality. It is groping at the Reality. And it is one of the most important and engaging responses Christians can give in a modern world that so often seeks to extinguish this Reality.

2) Secondly, in the last months, having some time to myself and my books has also given me a wonderful opportunity to focus more on the vocation that the Lord seems to be showing to me in marriage. I am confident (partly because of my prayer, and party because of my studies) that marriage is a good thing, and am entirely sure that it is beautiful, since I see that beauty each day when I approach it. A vocational decision is something rooted in peace and joyfulness, and I can honestly say that I am filled with both of these as I more closely consider God's design of marriage, and how that plays into my own longing for fulfillment and union with another.

In particular, I think that 'going through' this intense (and radical) spiritual shift has been made easier by the people God has given to me, and by the desire he has placed in me to continue my studies. Together, they have made eminently clear what before was simply obscure and far-off. I am sincerely grateful for that.

So, all that being said, here's to a new incarnation of In Umbris Sancti Petri. I hope you will enjoy it once more; and I look forward to hearing from you all, whom I've lost touch with!

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    # by Suzanne - May 13, 2009 at 8:58 AM

    I'm one of the lucky ones who has not lost touch with you, Andrew. Soldier on!