Fri 11 Mar 2011
An eclectic collection of news and views from the past week on faith, language, and literature, as well as other topics of interest. The first of what is to become a regular Friday feature.
Repentance taking too much time? Not a problem. The Moniter reports that a United Methodist church in Texas has taken to offering a Drive-Thru Ash Wednesday service. No word if you can get fries with that.
“As soon as the catastrophe came to be known / The alarm from mouth to mouth was blown, / And the cry rang out all o’er the town, / Good Heavens! the Tay Bridge is blown down.” It’s poetic gems like that which lead many to dub William McGonagall the worst poet of the English language ever. The Guardian reports that at the Ig Noble awards later this month, several previously unpublished poems by McGonagall will be read for the edification of all gathered. At the end of the event, all will rise and solemnly recite McGonagall’s most famous poem, the Tay Bridge Disaster. The date is set as March tenth greater by nine… “which will be remembered for a very long time.”
The Business Insider reports on the “10 Most Endangered Languages in the World.” It’s very likely at least some of the languages they list (with one speaker) are already extinct without linguists knowing. In any event these languages are a little beyond “endangered.” “Moribund” is the better term.
“The Holy Post” (religion blog of The National Post) reports that Canadian Anglicans (ACC) will be debating this summer whether to allow non-baptized to take part in Communion.
BBC News reports that a rare first edition of the King James Bible has been found in a village church in England. The discovery is all the more significant considering this year is the 400th anniversary since the translation was first published in 1611.
Finally, The Atlantic presents a brief commentary on Alexander Graham Bell’s notebooks, with plenty of “delightfully weird” sketches for your enjoyment. It’s fair to say that the artistic ability of inventors seems to have declined a bit since Da Vinci’s day.