Twelve Years a Slave pulls no punches. As a white southerner, I found myself objecting that it couldn't have been as bad as this all the time. But these horrors happened, and we have yet to face them squarely.
Dec 13, 2013
Art selection and comment by Lil Copan
It was a simple oak table adorned with plain dishes and a bounty of fresh fruits and vegetables.” So begins Roger Hutchison’s book The Painting Table: A Journal of Loss and Joy, a combination storybook and guide, inspired by a table left to him by his grandmother. Readers are invited to paint while they explore grief, loss and relationships. The gift of the table is one that Hutchison, canon for children’s ministries at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in Columbia, South Carolina, passes on to people of all ages in schools, churches and community groups. In response to his work, painting table groups have formed across the country.
How many gadgets are de rigueur these days? I’m considering upgrading from my “dumb phone” to a smart phone, and I’m tempted to try an e-reader. At the same time, I’m troubled by the unspoken reality: we gadget people are an elite minority, a society of first-world people who have access to a network and its benefits that others don’t have. Or do we really believe that the entire world will soon be “like us,” connected into one happy progressively social network?
The adoration of the shepherds was a very popular theme north of the Alps in the 15th century. Domenico Ghirlandaio learned about the subject in 1483 when Thomas Portinari, a Medici representative working in Flanders, brought a work by Hugo van der Goes to Florence. The Florentines favored the Epiphany scene of the Adoration of the Magi because in medieval Florence Epiphany was celebrated on the same day (January 6) as the baptism of Christ, and John the Baptist was the patron saint of Florence. The birth of the Messiah, according to Luke, has the power to lift up the lowly, the despised and the violent (1:52). The occupation of shepherds may have conjured up an image of a despised and potentially violent group (see Josephus, The Jewish War). However, by their actions these rustic shepherds align themselves with a more positive portrait of the good shepherd—an image already evoked by the mention of the city of David, for David, of course, was himself a shepherd before becoming king. The Christ Child lies before a prominently placed Roman sarcophagus that foreshadows his death and that bears an inscription foretelling his birth.
Be present with your want of a Deity and you shall be present with the Deity. Thomas Traherne
Sometimes I lose you. Say you are a puppy and I’ve left the door ajar. Or I’m due someplace and can’t remember where. In my sticky-uppy hair and ripped work shirt, I ransack the place to find my datebook. Gone. Or I’ve dropped my glasses and I’m crawling on all fours to swab the floor with outstretched hands. I mop blindly, my heart stuttering with fear.
Don’t tell me you are not a puppy. I know. You’re not some destination. But I want to tell you what it’s like to hunt, although the words are clumsy. Vapor. What it comes to: You are the sky, the boat, the oars, the water. You are the soul that longs to row and you’re the rower.
The Annenberg Foundation has paid $530,000 for 24 sacred Native American artifacts for the sole purpose of returning them to the two tribes that tried but failed to keep them from being auctioned off at a Paris auction house. A lawyer for the Hopi and San Carlos Apache tribes had argued before a French court that as sacred objects, used in religious ceremonies, the artifacts should not be sold. A U.S. law that limits trafficking in Native American items holds no force abroad (RNS).