Just a few clippings and items of note:
– Last evening’s Christmas Poetry party at the Catholic Information Center here in the Nation’s Capital, co-sponsored by the Thomas More Society of America, was a terrific success: great turnout, great food, and a great selection of poems. If you were not able to attend and find yourself in the Washington area next December, make sure to put this event on your calendar. I was asked to present a poem for the evening, and read a humorous piece by an anonymous author known as “The Lawyer’s Night Before Christmas” which was well-received. My thanks again to the CIC and the Thomas More Society for a terrific evening.
– On a related note, I would draw the reader’s attention to a new section of the CIC website, known as CIC Kids, run by my dear friend Miss Margaret Perry of Ten Thousand Places. CIC Kids selects and reviews some of the best children’s books available today, in a wide variety of genres from picture books to tales of adventure to well-loved classics. As an example, take a look at the picks for the Top 10 Children’s Books of 2013. Whether you have kids yourself, work with children, or just want to give the little ones of your acquaintance good things to read, this is a terrific resource for sifting through the enormous number of choices in children’s books to find worthwhile reading material.
– Tomorrow on the Catholic Weekend show our special guests will be Father Benedict Croell, O.P., who is the Vocations Director for the Eastern Province of the Dominicans, and author Elizabeth Scalia, a.k.a. “The Anchoress”, Managing Editor of the Catholic portal at Patheos. Among other topics we will be discussing religious orders, since many people both Catholic and non-Catholic do not understand exactly what they are, and how being a member of an order fits into the Christian life. Join us beginning around 10am Eastern for the recording of the show over on the Catholic Weekend channel on the SQPN site, where you can not only watch us live, but participate in the chat room with other viewers of the show. If you cannot join us for the live recording, episodes are edited usually later the same day, and then made available to download on iTunes or directly on the SQPN site.
– Finally, another reason to visit Washington albeit in the more near term arises as part of the Year of Italian Culture here in the U.S. Now through March 16, 2014, the National Gallery of Art here in Washington has arranged with the Capitoline Museum in Rome to exhibit one of the most famous statues from antiquity, the 1st-2nd Century A.D. Roman marble sculpture known as “The Dying Gaul”. The sculpture is thought to be a copy of a lost Greek bronze from around 230 B.C., and was rediscovered in Rome in the 1600’s. It subsequently had a tremendous influence on both sculptors and painters, and copies of it were made for museums and private collections all over Europe. Not content with a copy, Napoleon briefly stole it and placed it in the Louvre, but it was later returned to the Capitoline after his fall from power. This is the first time the statue has left Italy for two centuries, so if you find yourself in D.C. in the coming months, make a point of going to see it.