Friday, August 10, 2007

Boring or interesting?

This will be of little interest to anyone but other librarians, but according to an email I received today from ALIA, apparently librarians, libraries, and archivists have their own patron saint, Saint Lawrence, a deacon of the Roman church, who died in 258. August 10 is his memorial day, but I don't plan to put up an icon of him in my office to mark the occasion or to honour his memory. Coming from a Churches of Christ and Baptist background, the veneration or commemoration of saints has never been a part of my Christian heritage.

Having said that, we can learn much from our Christian forebears, who to the extent that I know about them, are an example to me with their boldness and courage in being willing to die for their faith if necessary. These characteristics should be recognised where appropriate, and Christian martyrs should be given the respect due to them. In the year 258, the Roman Emperor Valerian issued a decree ordering the execution of all bishops, deacons, and priests. Such was the fate of Lawrence and many of his peers. For his part, Lawrence suffered the rather unpleasant fate of being cooked alive on a gridiron.

7 comments:

Shannon said...

BBQ Anyone? Sorry Ross that was too good to let it pass.

I also find it weird they not only burnt books in that eara, the burned there librians too. (I am twistered I know).

I wonder if they have a patron saint for Theology students? Another thing is, how do they decide who is a paticular saint for a certain area

Ross McPhee said...

Shannon,

St. Ambrose, Bishop of Milan is the patron saint of learning. Will he do?
Part of my job as a librarian is to encourage my patrons to find the answers to questions themselves, so I encourage you to look into this, if you feel so inclined.

lgarth said...

I'd like to have Sir Curtley of Ambrose as my Patron Saint. I recall he was a fast and furious worker but a man of little words. Particularly when Lord Stephen went to Waugh with him. But I digress...

As a Monash Man myself the inscription (I think in Italian not Latin but don't quote me) is translated as "I am still learning"

Now as for there being a patron saint of IT workers I don't think I've been able to find one.

I think it is noble though to look at some of the different Christians whose impact has lasted through the centuries.

Currently I'm looking at the lives of Ignatius of Loyola (partiucularly in the area of prayer - quite interesting), and also Brother Lawrence - a Catholic after the Reformation, and a French one at that, but a bloke with much good to talk about in terms of worship (Practicing the Presence of God) in everyday terms that people without photogenic Hill$ong looks can engage in.

Ross McPhee said...

Lucas, I know Aussies are given to adulation of sporting figures, but that's taking it too far. Then again, Warwick Capper is always looking for more publicity, so how about we mount a campaign to have him canonized? One of the criterion for sainthood is to have performed a miracle.

La Trobe's motto is, "Qui cherche trouve," which means "Whoever seeks shall find," Deakin's is "Doctrina Perpetua" which means "Forever learning" (Sounds like me), and RMIT's is "Perita manus, mens exculta" ("The skilled hand, the civilised mind").

Did you spell Hillsong with a dollar sign? If so, was it deliberate or a typo?

Glen O'Brien said...

Look out Ross, you lapsed Baptist you! You have just commemmorated a saint by posting his image and reflecting on his example of Christian conduct to be emulated. This is after all essentially what the "calendar of saints" is all about. I reckon it's a pretty good idea myself. Apparently Lawrence famously said to his barbecuers, "I'm done on that side you can turn me over now."

Ross McPhee said...

Glen, I hope that's a good-natured ribbing...

Glen O'Brien said...

Yes, a good natured ribbing. Perhaps I should have added a smiley face:)