Contemplata aliis Tradere

A meagre contribution to the mission and work of the Order of Preachers: my reflections, thoughts, ideas and the occasional rant on matters mainly theological, philosophical and ecclesiastical, drawn primarily from my reading and experience of life and the world. Striving to be always Catholic, firmly Christian and essentially Dominican, flavoured with dashes of Von Balthasar.

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Location: Oxford, United Kingdom

A son of the English Province of the Order of Friars Preachers (Dominicans); born in Malaysia but have lived in the USA, Singapore, the UK & the Philippines for varying durations. A pilgrim and way-farer, a searcher for Truth on the journey of Life... "Wherever the Catholic sun doth shine, There’s always laughter and good red wine. At least I’ve always found it so. Benedicamus Domino!" - Hilaire Belloc

Friday, May 05, 2006

A Latin Aphorism

Said the Capuchin to the Dominican friar:

"Fratres novitii videntur sancti non sunt;
Fratres studentes nec videntur sancti nec sunt;
Patres non videntur sancti, sunt;
Fratres vero laici videntur sancti et sunt"!

Translation and anecdotes anyone?


Anonymous Jeff said...

Novice brothers appear to be holy, but are not.
Student brothers neither appear to be holy, nor are they holy.
Fathers do not appear to be holy, but indeed are holy.
Lay brothers, however, both appear to be holy and are holy!

1:53 pm  
Blogger Br Lawrence, O.P. said...

Excellent! But is it a fair saying?!

7:27 pm  
Anonymous TheresaMF said...

Anecdotes? I've heard the saying before--a young priest was using it to josh a student brother. I can think of incedents that go either way though--novices praying devoutly after Mass, novices reprimanded for swing dancing at a Youth 2000; student brothers praying the rosary at WYD while kneeling in the rain, student brothers rumored to be human after all; priests devout and priests distracted.

But then, what does it mean to "appear holy"? To look all pious and devout, praying with eyes cast down and hands under one's scapular? To genuflect with heartfelt devotion, not haphazardly? What is it not to appear holy--to be distracted, sloppy, cross? Surely not blatently immoral, or that would go beyond semblance.

One time a student brother stopped me and a friend as we walked through the parish center at a reception. "Wait! I have this gift--I can tell your vocation!" We were all hyped anyway, and we knew this brother, so we stopped eagerly. He very dramatically held his hands over us, closed his eyes, and declared: "Your vocation is--to do what God wants you to!!"

Hilarious at the time, and good to remember, but it doesn't help me a lot in determining semblance vs. reality of holiness. So I can't tell if it's a fair saying or not!

7:00 pm  
Blogger Tom said...

...good to remember, but it doesn't help me a lot....

That was a Dominican student brother, then?

2:51 pm  
Anonymous TheresaMF said...

As in, the anecdote thus fulfills the criteria?

But yes, a student brother.

12:13 am  

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