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Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Happy New Year!


Unknown said...

What does the skull mean?

Roman Catholic Vocations said...

Short answer: death

Long answer the whole painting is a reference to memento mori - remember death. The beauty of life is fleeting like a flower, death comes for us all with time. While some might find it morbid or depressing, I find it a challenge to live life to the fullest. "The glory of God, is man fully alive" - St. Irenaus.

Many people who know me, know that I am fond of memento mori. No matter how great we might become in earthly terms, we can not prevent aging, suffering, and physical death. Nor can we assure some kind of worldly glory that will remain long after we are gone - except perhaps for some canonized saints. Many of the greatest people in the world have long since been forgotten by the common man. We can however live our lives to store up our treasure in heaven.

I posted the image as a reminder that with the blessing of a new year, we are also one year closer to our death. What are we doing to prepare? With all of the New Year's "resolutions" people are making, how many of them are aimed at deeper conversion and truly living the life of holiness to which we are called?

In a culutre obsessed with trying to stay forever young and avoid death at all costs (unless they're talking about the unborn and the infirm)I don't think it's a bad idea to remind people about their own mortality. Especially in an western culture obsessed with physical beauty! How about spiritualy beauty?

Unknown said...

thanks for that explanation!

Unknown said...

Death is only closer! The struggle is a little shorter, more temprations behind then ahead!

To a Catholic that is comforting.

In Polish on one's birthday friends and family sing "100 years, 100 years! May you live 100 years."

30 years into the 100 I have been wished, I would settle for half that if they were lived out in peace and repentence.

Karen said...

I love it. I also love your blog, which I will put on my sidebar as soon as I have the time to sit down and do it. (I want to alert my readers to it in the process.)

Roman Catholic Vocations said...


Thank you. Hopefully some of your readers may find their way over here, and by God's grace this blog might help them in their discernment of the vocation He is calling them to.

I also noticed in your profile your fondness for Black Robe and Robert Duvall - two of my very favorites!