1. Can I talk about the Benedict Option if I haven't read the book?
In case you haven't heard, the Benedict Option has been a main discussion in many Catholic circles on the Internet over the past several months. A lot of this talk circles around Rod Dreher's book, The Benedict Option, which was published quite recently. People have been getting riled up, inspired, and/or frustrated as Dreher's controversial approaches are thrown around in conversation. I have not read Dreher's book yet, but I have requested it through my library, so eventually I will be able to read it. Anyways, I've read articles about it and joined in conversations, and there's been a lot of good food for thought, discussion, and disagreement.
2. I'm wondering what the big deal about the Benedict Option is, though.
Things will probably make more sense to me when I actually read Dreher's book, but seriously. I know that our secular is not a healthy atmosphere for Christians. I know that religious freedom is being attacked nationwide. But, I also know that-historically speaking-from the beginning of this nation, anti-Catholicism has been present. Also, the "good old days" (no matter what time period we're referring to) had huge problems as well. So yes, things are bad now, but this hasn't come out of nowhere. So what's the big deal about right now being the perfect time to be alarmists and pull out of the culture? Also, instead of making this big fuss about the Benedict Option, shouldn't we focus our time and energies on the domestic church of the family, since the family is the cell unit of society? I just need to read Dreher's book to help me flesh out my thoughts, so if you're reading this and are currently holding one of these books from the local library system, please return it so I can read it soon. Thank you kindly!
3. Can we please stop being extreme alarmists with the Benedict Option?
For real, I know that not everyone who desires the Benedict Option is a fanatic bemoaning doom and gloom, but there are people out there who are getting a little extreme. Remember: "There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear because fear has to do with punishment, and so one who fears is not yet perfect in love (1 Jn 4:18)." Yes, we can be shocked and outraged at the state of our country, but I don't think it's helpful to anyone if we're being fearful alarmists. I was so happy to listen to Bishop Robert Barron's recent podcast episode about this topic, because it was informative and I thought he gave a nice, non-alarmist perspective.
4. All right, enough about the Benedict Option. It's Easter, which means...donuts!
The season of Easter lasts until Pentecost, which isn't until June, so our celebrations have been continuing over here. Since, a few weeks ago, a couple of different people blogged about donuts, donuts have been on my mind. So, I decided that I would make different kinds of donuts during this Easter season. A couple days ago, I made apple fritters, which were pretty tasty. I'm planning to make some deep-fried cake donuts (I'll do either chocolate or blueberry, I still haven't decided!) next week, which should be delightful.
5. I didn't give up "Netflixing" (my term for watching shows on Amazon Prime or Netflix) for Lent, but I did pull away from technology a bit more-but it's Easter, so I've been enjoying some shows.
Since Easter began, I have watched season one of Home Fires, and seasons one and two of Mercy Street. Both shows are so, so good. I'm excited to eventually watch season two of Home Fires, though I did like Mercy Street better. I don't often watch movies or shows that are set during the Civil War, and I like how Mercy Street brings in a lot of the complexities from that time period. I recommend it!
6. I get very indecisive when buying things.
See, I rarely spend money, 'cause I'm pretty frugal. So when I do need or want to spend money to buy something, I want to take my time and be absolutely certain that I'm spending my money in the best possible way. I currently need/want to buy both a deep fry/candy thermometer and a slow cooker. But, no matter how long I take comparing and contrasting different products on Amazon, I can't decide what the best possible option is. Maybe I should just close my eyes and pick one!
7. I love to read, and I've read some very fascinating books lately.
There's been a good mix of fiction and nonfiction, and I will be posting some reviews and a book roundup in the next couple of weeks. So get excited for some book talk!