Our intrepid journalists bring us terrible news of the earthquake in "Antakia".
My assumption is that this is the ancient Antiochia, the great City where the followers of the Crucified Rabbi were first called Khristianoi.
After the military conquests and death of Alexander the Great, his vast empire was divided up. Seleucus I Nikator got the middle bit; he built a number of cities called either Seleucia or Antiochia; Antiochus having been his Father's name.
I gather the earthquake has damaged Christian sites. Oremus ...
Antioch lies on the river Orontes. The satirist Juvenal condemned the orientalising dirt and corruption of his own Rome by saying that the Orontes had flowed (defluxit) into the Tiber. After Vatican II, a Father Wiltgen wrote a book in which he wittily updated this image, suggesting that the Rhine had discharged its filth into the Tiber.
Anybody know anything about the rivers in Argentina?
Dear Father, how your literary sleight of hand is the perfect antidote for a post-prandial Sexagesima. To start with the tragedy of the earthquakes, and glide via a brief paraphrase of the Vatican Council II into a critique of the present pontificate, without the slightest change of subject, is a masterful delight.
Very elegantly compaosed, Father. Different ideas merge so smoothly.
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