SCAPC Sunday School Classes
SPECIAL ADULT CLASS FOR EASTER SUNDAY:
“No Man Is an Island: The Timely Wisdom of John Donne”
led by Michael Jinkins
Join meeting by phone (audio only)
Meeting ID: 447 964 858
The metaphor “Lenten Lands” has taken on new significance as the COVID-19 pandemic rages on every populated continent. The word quarantine comes from the Italian quaranta meaning forty. It is a direct reference to the biblical idea that somehow forty, as in the forty days of Lent, is the appropriate length of time for purification. Thus, originally, a quarantine was enforced for forty days. A person suspected of illness still is quarantined from the public (though now the length of time is determined by medical science) so as not to infect others. In plagues past and present, some in quarantine got well, and others perished.
Whether because of pestilence or other causes, the ever-present threat of death formed the backdrop for the thought and writings of some of history’s greatest poets. Anyone familiar with William Shakespeare knows of the Bard’s meditations on life’s “sound and fury” in our brief “strut upon the stage.” But it was a contemporary of Shakespeare’s who bequeathed to us some of the most memorable passages regarding life’s final and ultimate boundary, John Donne. A former libertine, a chancer and a rake, an apostate from his family’s English Catholicism, and finally a Saint in the Anglican tradition, Donne’s writings both remind us of the interconnectedness of all human life and proclaim the Easter message of God’s triumph over death. His writings provide a bracing and comforting word to us in this difficult season.
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