Salt and Light

If it’s Saturday you’ll find Father at Home Depot, another reason to love the free market, which would be impossible with too much government regulation.


Today Father and I are attending to our salt and light.



Home Depot and a Solemn Mass. It’s a great day in a great country.

Speaking of Mass (St Thomas the Apostle bumps the Ember Day), here is a great text. I must share the Latin.

St Gregory the Great said:

Plus enim nobis Thomae infidelitas ad fidem, quam fides credentium discipulorum profuit: quia dum ille ad fidem palpando reducitur, nostra mens, omni dubitatione postposita, in fide solidatur.

The doubts of Thomas have done us more good than the faith of all the disciples that believed. While he feeleth his way to faith, our minds are freed from doubt, and settled in faith.

Not my translation. I’ll bet you can do a little better.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in SESSIUNCULA and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. yatzer says:

    I hope you had an easy time buying light bulbs. I have a recessed kitchen light that takes a bulb which used to be easily available everywhere, so when it went out I figured I’d just pick one up somewhere when shopping. But noooo, now all has changed and I’m having to carry the silly burned out bulb everywhere looking for what is supposed to replace it. There is some kind of chart in one place, but it did not seem to correspond with what they were selling. Good grief, I just want a replacement light bulb.

  2. We brought the bulbs along so that we could get the right replacements.

  3. Priam1184 says:

    Lol nice Father. Is this trip going to be in tomorrow’s homily?

  4. Phil_NL says:

    Are those good old incandescent lightbulbs, or has the crazy enforced-greenness reached the USA as well now?
    Over here, we’re stuck with other types, and my old stock is slowly running out. (Though the new LEDs, while very expensive to buy, at least provides half-decent light without being a health-hazard, so nowadays we at least aren’t forced to buy those mercury-bombs)

  5. Ted says:

    Fluorescents have been around for a long time, and very few folks ojected to them until recently. Yet the newer compacts use a lot less mercury than the old style ones that still light many stores.
    Also, the older incandescents used a lot of lead for their big solder joints and no one objected until recently; who knows if some of the cheap ones today still do.
    I see here that an unbridled marketplace is not the best for human civilisation. Incandescents are hugely inefficient just wasting the world’s energy resources. The government should move in here to heavily tax these. It should also apply a special tax on fluorescents to fund a toxic recyling system, which the greedy marketplace will never do if left to itself.
    I agree that LEDs have come a long way, and are now quite acceptable in their colour index (CRI). They are expensive in comparison but are actually more economical in the long run. The government should use its taxation power to remind folks of all this. The Philips LED lamps are marvelous.

  6. Robertus Pittsburghensis says:

    The unfaithfulness of Thomas has profited us toward faith more than the the faith of the believing disciples: because while he is led back toward faith by touching, our mind is strengthened in faith after putting every doubt behind.

  7. Tom in NY says:

    “Thomas’ lack of faith meant more to us than the faith of the believing disciples; because while he was brought back to faith by touching, our conviction is more certain, since doubt has been removed.”
    Gratias S. Gregorio persolvo. .
    As to your trip to the store, may the φως be with you. With apologies to St. Matthew: “… quod si sal evanuerit, et in via et pavimento, in quo salietur?”
    Salutationes omnibus.

  8. Andrew says:

    For the infidelity of Thomas was of greater benefits to our faith than the faith of the believing disciples: since while he is led to faith by the sense of touch, our mind, dismissing all doubt, is cemented in faith.

  9. JohnE says:

    We have not found the CFLs to last any longer than the incandescents, so we’ve switched back to those. I do admit that there are some advantages to CFL’s:
    1: You don’t have to worry about buttinskis telling you what sort of light bulb you should use.
    2. They make great conversation pieces on your countertops and coffee tables until you collect enough dead ones to take to a store for disposal.
    3. The higher price makes it feel like you at least bought them for some good reason.
    4. You save even more electricity when they go out and you just sit in the dark.

  10. Phil_NL says:


    First of all, I believe the government has no business in prescribing what kind of lightbulbs I use, as a matter of principle.
    Secondly, if I want to get some heating out of my lighting fixtures, that’s hardly a waste of energy, everyone tends to forget that 9 months out of 12 (at least in my climate) I’m perfectly happy with extra heat as well, saves just that tiny bit of energy from other heating sources. And it’s my energy bill to begin with – which in my country is taxed to the hilt already for ‘green’ reasons – even without any global warming for 17 years and counting…
    Thirdly, sometimes it becomes known later on that materials (or technologies, the mini-cracks in fluorescent-type lamps appear to spread quite a bit of UV as well). Tant pis, or in english: shit happens. As long as the public is informed, that need not be a problem – unless you outlaw any alternatives, as the EU did for a while. That hurts much more than a free market’s (partial) failure to deal with hazardous materials.
    Lastly, as a Dutchman I can at least agree on the Philips part ;)

  11. Scott W. says:

    Isn’t Lowes’ the better choice because Home Depot has been drinking the rainbow poison?

  12. frjim4321 says:

    “Home Depot and a Solemn Mass. It’s a great day in a great country.”


  13. OrthodoxChick says:

    Phil_NL & Ted,

    Here in the U.S., incandescent 40 & 60 watt lightbulbs become illegal to manufacture as of 1-1-2014.

  14. frjim4321 says:

    What really stinks about this is I need 175W or a 175W equivalent for my ceiling fixtures.

    The 175W equivalent CFL’s require base-down installation and that won’t work in my circa 1964 fixtures, so I’m out of luck.

  15. Charivari Rob says:

    Phil_NL, I’ll disagree with Ted on a point or two.

    LOTS of folks here in the USA objected to compact fluorescent bulbs before “recently”. They were so expensive as to negate cost benefits of long life and low energy consumption, they gave inferior light (to put it kindly), and all the touting of environmental benefits conveniently omitted the mercury/disposal concerns. The difference then was that we did have a free marketplace, and people could vote with their wallets. The vocal objections really kicked in when government mandated the removal of one class of product from the marketplace.

    The last year or two, the alternative products – some of the CFLs and LEDs – have started to catch up in quality.

  16. Priam1184 says:

    Thomas’ unbelief was more benefit to our faith than the faith of the believing disciples: since while he was led back to belief by coaxing, our mind, any doubt put away, is made firm in faith.

  17. LadyMarchmain says:

    Thomas’ skepticism has done more to bring us to faith, than the faith of all the believing disciples has profited us: through his tangible restoration of belief, our minds, all doubts behind us, are made secure in faith.

  18. Mariana2 says:

    We (here in Scandinavia) have stocked up with years’ supplies of the old bulbs as they, of course, get warm, which is what we want. No warmth from the bulbs = the heating will have to be turned up. But no, the Govt says the new type is more environment friendly, sigh.

    “While he feeleth his way to faith, our minds are freed from doubt”
    I often fell grateful that I don’t have to think and worry about whether the man I thought was the Messiah in fact isn’t, when he started talking about his body and blood being food and drink indeed. The Church has found this to be true and my mind is freed from doubt!

  19. danhorse says:

    I thought the same thing, Scott W. If Starbucks is a no-no (and we’re directed to Mystic Monk, which is good stuff by the way), then Home Depot is too.

  20. Joe in Canada says:

    Phil_NL – in general I agree that the government shouldn’t tell us what light bulbs to buy. The next battle apparently is over banning door knobs (Vancouver is doing it) – ridiculous. But I think that government does have a role to play in ensuring we know and pay the full cost of what we are doing. In other words, if incandescent bulbs have ‘hidden costs’ that we are transferring to other places (which perhaps can’t defend themselves) or other times (eg piling up problems for the future), we are not paying the true cost of having them.

    But that seems only part of why governments get involved. Mostly it is for increasing state power. Here in Quebec incandescent bulbs do not harm the environment at all by their operation, since we have more than enough hydro power to satisfy our needs. But the government wants to make more money off hydroelectricity, so it sells it abroad, and builds more environmentally destructive dam projects. So when we get rid of all our incandescent bulbs, the environment will not be any better off, and the destruction of our environment will continue.

  21. Kerry says:

    Phil, I have been looking in vain for some governmental entity to tell me in which paradise I ought to vacation this year. Do you know anything about the skiing conditions in North Korea? Thanks.

  22. Phil_NL says:

    Joe in Canada,

    Even if I were to subscribe to the idea that human Co2 emissions cause climate change – which I don’t seeing that CO2 merely rises, but global warming hasnt been observed for well over a decade now – and if I were to subscribe to the idea government should do something about it, then it still doesn’t hold: the Dutch government taxes your energy consumption to deter ‘overconsumption’. And taxes it severely. The result is philosophically inconsistent: I should make energy-saving decisions due to the tax, but there is a ban on incandescent bulbs because I won’t make those energy saving decisions, apparently.

    Sad thing is that, for once, I might by the story that certain big companies tried to impose this ban on us for the sake of their own bottom lines. Philips, for example, made hardly anything on bulbs. They do make a nice return on fluorescents and now LEDs.

    I have no clue what you mean. But don’t shout that you apparently are allowed to vacation at all, it’s bad for the enviroment, where-ever you go.

  23. Phil_NL says:

    merely = merrily*

Comments are closed.