In the final installment (For the Time Being, 1999) of her wide-ranging trilogy that started in 1974 with Pilgrim at Tinker Creek, Annie Dillard asked the reader to consider grains of sand, numbers of stars, and the scope of both universal and human time.
Just a few years ago, people accused religion scholars of ignoring children. Even those who worked in areas likely to require attending to them, such as religious education and pastoral care, often focused on adults instead. But in a relatively short time span, this has changed.
This is a book I should not have liked. It’s a story of a lonely Catholic priest trapped in a bleak little parish in a nowhere Scottish town. Of course the priest is sexually repressed and socially inept, and of course his downfall is a chaste kiss plastered on a teenager under his care. It’s a hackneyed plot that’s no longer news.