The Thunderer: Jerome

Good comments came from the entry about St. Jerome’s dim view of St. Ambrose, whom he likened to a croaking black raven and an upstart.  Among them was a reminder from fellow patristiblogger and charter member of NAPALM Mike Aquilina of The Way of the Fathers fame.  He brought back to the surface of my over taxed mind a poem about Jerome by Phyllis McGinley.

Penitent Jerome - El GrecoTHE THUNDERER
God’s angry man, His crotchety scholar
Was Saint Jerome,
The great name-caller
Who cared not a dime
For the laws of Libel
And in his spare time
Translated the Bible.
Quick to disparage
All joys but learning
Jerome thought marriage
Better than burning;
But didn’t like woman’s
Painted cheeks;
Didn’t like Romans,
Didn’t like Greeks,
Hated Pagans
For their Pagan ways,
Yet doted on Cicero all of his days.
A born reformer, cross and gifted,
He scolded mankind
Sterner than Swift did;
Worked to save
The world from the heathen;
Fled to a cave
For peace to breathe in,
Promptly wherewith
For miles around
He filled the air with
Fury and sound.
In a mighty prose
For Almighty ends,
He thrust at his foes,
Quarreled with his friends,
And served his Master,
Though with complaint.
He wasn’t a plaster sort of a saint.
But he swelled men’s minds
With a Christian leaven.
It takes all kinds
to make a heaven.

I really like that line: He wasn’t a plaster sort of a saint.

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About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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One Response to The Thunderer: Jerome

  1. CaesarMagnus says:

    I find Saint Jerome refreshing in todays politically fueled hierarchy.
    I have often wished that bishops would openly argue a bit more. I think some
    finger pointing would do some good once in a while. When bishops and cardinals
    say stupid things, they need to get called to the carpet by their more orthodox peers.
    Just my two cents.