Empty technique

Transforming Our Days: Spirituality, Community and Liturgy in a Technological Culture. By Richard Gaillardetz. Crossroad, 158 pp., $15.95.

The fan on my 25-year-old gas furnace gave way on Christmas weekend. After scrounging space heaters, trying to explain to toddlers why they were cold, and guessing which pipes might burst without attention, I called a 24-hour repair service. "Don't worry, you don't need a fan right now," said one, "just run the thing and let the heat radiate." Another contradicted him, telling me I risked cracks in the furnace's seams and toxic fumes in the house. The stakes seemed high. The advice givers finally convinced me that technological improvements had rendered my "old" furnace hopelessly obsolete; total replacement was the only option.


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