Friday, October 13, 2006

Gregory of Nazianzus on hope

Gregory of Nazianzus (AD 329-389), the fourth-century bishop of Constantinople, preached at the funeral of his brother Caesarius. After considering various possibilities concerning his brother's present state, he bursts out with the real content of his hope:

‘Why am I faint-hearted in my hopes? Why do I behave like a mere creature of the day? I await the voice of the Archangel, the last trumpet, the transformation of the heavens, the transfigurations of the earth, the liberation of the elements, the renovation of the universe. Then I shall see Caesarius himself, no longer in exile, no longer laid upon a bier, no longer the object of mourning and pity, but brilliant, glorious, heavenly, such as in my dreams I have often beheld you, dearest and most loving of brothers, pictured thus by my desire, if not by the very truth.’

- Gregory of Nazianzus, Oration, 7.


Anonymous said...

Now that sounds like something worth hoping for. Much better than angels and clouds, harps and pearly gates.

Justin said...

"It is a serious thing, to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare.

In he spirit of my blog, I quote CS Lewis.

Thanks for posting this, Byron...