Saturday, August 23, 2003

An Update

A few weeks ago I wrote that I am now using an AlphaSmart Dana to do these blog posts. At first the change from the Palm disconcerted me a bit, perhaps that is one reason I haven't done as many posts as I had prior to making this change. One difficulty is that, since the Dana does not have a color screen, at night if the light is not really good it is very hard for me to see anything I try to type. During daylight hours this is no problem whatsoever and I find the Dana an almost perfect tool to write with -- it is light, compact, and the screen is a nice size, even if it is not a color monitor. I have now found a solution to the problem of working at night, I purchased a small, battery powered book light which gives just enough light to make night time typing possible. So, in short, the AlphaSmart is going to be around for a good long time.

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Steven over at Flos Carmeli has been doing a series of posts on Phillip Yancy's book Soul Survior, and is starting another series on another of Yancy's books. I was quite interested in this since Yancy is, I think, a Protestant. The reason I have been following Steven's posts is my own uncertainty about reading Protestant authors. I should explain.

About 6 months or so prior to my reception into the Church, I swore off reading anything Protestant, almost to include C. S. Lewis. This continued until about 3 years after my coming into the Church when I took a philosophy course through Franciscan University at Steubenville. One of the texts was Lewis' The Abolition of Man and also parts of Mere Christianity. I softened and have read some things by a few Protestant authors over the last few years. Then, this summer, the Episcopal Church went through its meltdown, and as I posted a week or two ago, I was reminded of the real problems with Protestantism and thought I should return to strictly Catholic reading and thought.

Then, along comes Steven with his Soul Survivor series. What to make of this? Much of what Steven quoted, and certainly his comments on those passages, was at least interesting, if not thought provoking. My wife made the point, which I think Steven has also made recently, that it is always appropriate to read good writing. So, I went out tonight at bought two Phillip Yancy books -- Soul Survivor and The Jesus I Never Knew. I bought these two because they were the only Yancy books that I could find at our local bookstore. I may offer some comments of my own on these as I read them, not to copy Steven nor to compete with him, but to see if, after reading them, I am convinced one way or the other about the propriety of Catholics reading books by Protestant authors.

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