Tag Archives: quote

Two Quotes from Jerome

On the benefit of obeying Jesus’ words to the rich young man in Matthew 19:

“It is an act of apostolic perfection and of perfect virtue to sell all one has and to give to the poor—thus becoming weightless and unimpeded and flying up with Christ toward heavenly delights.”-Jerome, in Bonaventure, Defense of the Mecidants, ch.7.

And on preaching what we ourselves have not done:

“I exalt virginity to heaven, not because it is mine, but because I more greatly admire what I do not have. Preaching to others a quality lacking in oneself, this indeed amounts to a frank and embarrassing confession. But if I am held down to earth by the weight of my body, is this reason enough not to admire the flight of birds?” (Jerome in letter to Pammachius, qtd in Bonaventure ch.7, p.141)

Source: Bonaventure, Defense of the Mendicants, in The Works of Bonaventure,
trans. José de Vinck, v. 4: Defense of the Mendicants.

As much as I love books and literature, the books in my library are not eternal. Every physical book I own is in the process of returning to dust—“For you are paper pulp and to paper pulp you shall return.” I keep this in mind when I uncap a pen and begin scrawling my notes into the pages of a book. My books are not fragile museum pieces to archive behind a glass display; my books are well-worn hand tools—hammers, tin snips, measuring tapes, and vice grips—to help me remodel my brain.

-Tony Reinke in Lit!: A Christian Guide to Reading Books