December 6, 2006

Well I should be studying but… I don’t feel like it?

I realized something bizarre and very cool for the first time today, I think it was in Science, Medicine, and Faith with none other than the illustrious Dr. John Patrick.  It was that I belong to a 2000 year old tradition.  No, this tradition isn’t Augustine College, it’s the church.  I’d never really thought about it before, I tried thinking of other things I belong to that could even compare.  Genetically speaking I guess my lineage goes longer, though I don’t believe it traces back to monkeys or bacteria, how degrading would that be.  But even then, I don’t have anyone much past my grandfather or great grandfather to look back to.  We’re not even sure if Kinnon is a derivative of McKinnon or Keenen that got changed when my ancestors came to Canada from the british isles.

I’m currently at a school that can trace the origins of its model to the middle ages, however it’s existence has only been for ten years.  The professors here mostly belong or belonged to universities; which trace their inception back to the late middle ages.  So I’m left with the church, the oldest institution I belong to.

It’s kind of weird to think about what this means.  It seems that these days everyone wants to abandon tradition in search of the great new thing, whatever that might be.  However I can now see why the Roman Catholic church is so slow to move on some issues, and may never move on others.  No other institution can claim to speak from history like the Roman Catholic church can.   What I find cool is that though I’m a protestant I still belong to this tradition.  After all if a son leaves home, even in anger, isn’t he still a member of that family.  In terms of the Roman Catholic church it seems a lot of people want to trash it, including members of the protestant community.  However how easily we forget that it was this church that carried western europe, indeed our very culture, through the better part of the last two millennia.  I’ll have more to say about this in the future.

However this Revelation struck home with another point.  I have some views that are pretty traditional or conservative but this is the cool thing about having a conservative view point.  You have the weight of history behind you, especially with some of the topics that are coming up today.  I know that no matter how many people in this day and age look at me as having backward views, I stand with hundreds of millions more who have lived and died through the course of time who would carry similar, but not identical, views to me.  Frankly I’ll take the proof of history over the experiments of modernity any day.



  1. Well said, Liam…I suppose that in many ways, a view point that is based on a legacy of historical successes and failures allows for the ability to construct one’s own principles on the basis of what has been shown to be good and right in the past.

  2. Liam – have to agree with you on your view of the Catholic Church – not to mention the Orthodox and Coptic churches. We (evangelical prodestants) owe them a great deal. Looking forward to reading your other thoughts about this.

    My favourite creed from the Anglican (yes, I read it) prayer book is the Nicene Creed – particularily after learning the context in which it was written.

  3. Hi Alan, Though I’m not yet the great student of history I hope to be, that is my eventual goal, to look at what the past has taught us. I believe it may have been Churchill who said that, “Those who don’t study history are doomed to repeat it”. I’m trying to take that to heart. Thanks for the comment.

    Mr. Budlong (It would just be too weird to call you Chris after being a pupil of yours), thanks for your comment, I am actually just working on finishing an essay for school about that same era in the 4th century, most fascinating stuff. I’m starting to grow in appreciation for the prayerbook, a good thing as I’m also starting to think I may be an Anglican, whatever that means for the days to come.

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