About this blogger:
Ronda Chervin received a Ph.D. in Philosophy from Fordham University and an MA in Religious Studies from Notre Dame Apostolic Institute. A widow, mother, and grandmother, she currently teaches philosophy at Holy Apostles College and Seminary in Cromwell, Connecticut. Write to her at chervinronda@gmail.com.
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"Since such is the nature of man that he cannot easily without external means be raised to meditation on divine things, on that account holy Mother Church has instituted certain rites, namely that certain things be pronounced in a subdued tone (canon and words of consecration) and others in a louder tone; she has likewise made use of ceremonies such as mystical blessings, lights, incense, vestments, and many other things of this kind in accordance with apostolic teaching and tradition, whereby both the majesty of so great a sacrifice might be commended, and the minds of the faithful excited by these visible signs of religion and piety to the contemplation of the most sublime matters which are hidden in this sacrifice."
— Council of Trent (Session XXII)

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C.S. Lewis and his Revision of the Problem of Pain
published 13 April 2011 by Dr. Ronda Chervin

C.S. Lewis’ book the Problem of Pain is probably the best philosophical and theological answer of the 20th century to the question of how a God of love can allow terrible pain. Just the same, when he went through his worst agony over the death of his wife, Joy, described in A Grief Observed, he was honest enough to admit that his answers in the Problem of Pain didn’t help him at all! He still started thinking, “Maybe there is no God? or God is a sadist!” What finally brought him through was giving up trying to figure it out and just letting God reasssure him on an experiential level.

Just now I have 3 close friends going through unbearable agony for different reasons – one is circumstances where he cannot protect a child from an abusive father. The other is watching a beloved wife suffering physical and emotional pain no amount of medicine can remove.

All my feeble efforts to give fix-it advice failed. What I am saying to them instead now is my last ditch remedy: I lie on the floor in a cruciform position and tell God, “I’m not getting up until you reassure me that it is going to be all right somehow in someway soon.”

When I do that, usually the situation that I find unbearable doesn’t change, but I feel God’s personal love for me enough to make it bearable after all.

Rudolf Otto, a Protestant theologian of the 20th century in his famous book The Idea of the Holy points out in his commentary on the Book of Job that the answers God gives Job are not that different from what the false friends said! What brings Job around is that is the experience of God’s Holy Presence.

Dr. Ronda Chervin has many free e-books and audios on her website rondachervin.com. If you go to her website and read or listen and then want to correspond with her she will be available. Her schedule does not permit, however, responding to comments on the Blog, though she enjoys reading them. Dr. Ronda’s newest project is spiritualityrunningtogod.com.