Friday, March 6, 2009

"That mingled pattern"

A view of Oxford
(where Dorothy Sayers was born and where she studied)

Today, for some odd reason, the name Dorothy Sayers came to mind. And so I offer a few things she said that seem appropriate for Lent:

None of us feels the true love of God till we realize how wicked we are. But you can't teach people that - they have to learn by experience.
While time lasts there will always be a future, and that future will hold both good and evil, since the world is made to that mingled pattern.
Paradoxical as it may seem, to believe in youth is to look backward; to look forward we must believe in age.
The Church's approach to an intelligent carpenter is usually confined to exhorting him not to be drunk and disorderly in his leisure hours, and to come to church on Sundays. What the Church should be telling him is this: that the very first demand that his religion makes upon him is that he should make good tables. Church by all means, and decent forms of amusement, certainly—but what use is all that if in the very center of his life and occupation he is insulting God with bad carpentry?
If you've never read her detective novels, you've missed one of life's true pleasures. (And her theological outlook is embedded in them in a seemingly effortless way.)


  1. I LOVE her mysteries with Lord Peter Wimsey! Maybe I should re-read them?

    BTW, have you read any Maisie Dobbs' mysteries, by Jacqueline Winspear? Set in WWI England. Excellent.

  2. No, I haven't, Jan. Thanks for the tip.

    I just LOVE good detective fiction!!!

    I'm with you; I'm thinking of re-reading the Sayers mysteries. My favorite of all time was Gaudy Night. I think I read most of them when I was a teenager - maybe some in my 20s.

  3. I love that last quote. The idea seems so simple, yet we so often forget that how we live and what we do are also our religion (or should be). Gives me something to ponder when deciding the next step in grad school.

  4. I'm glad you liked it, Maggie. I agree. It's a seemingly simple idea that is generally overlooked.


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