Rome, Open City by Roberto Rossellini (1945)

The evening news has a reputation for blood thirst. “If it bleeds, it leads” they say.  This is almost universally considered bad taste, but the practice continues because it draws an audience, albeit for wrong reasons.  Artists, like filmmakers, for instance, have traditionally let some time pass before depicting horrors. The tragedy of September 11th’s […]

Four Quartets by T.S. Eliot

“We shall not cease from exploration And the end of all our exploring Will be to arrive where we started And know the place for the first time.” Prayer is communication with God, but what does that mean?  Prayer emphasizes God’s mystery, inscrutability, and immanence—God is closer than our very breath. We get to know […]

The Life Of Our Lord Jesus Christ by James Tissot (1896)

Some conversions of faith are quiet events in the stillness of one’s heart.  Others, however, are epiphanies of disquieting thunder.  Such was the case with James Tissot.  Already a successful painter whose playboy reputation was apparently well-earned, Tissot was changed by a vision he experienced during mass.  This single event profoundly altered his course for […]