Wednesday, January 23, 2008

I'm Baaack!

It's been a long hiatus, I know, but the dissertation is LARGELY done, with one-and-a-half more chapters to go. I am editing the introductory chapter, getting ready to send it out to my doctoral committee, and while finishing the chapters I need to finish, I will go on with editing what is finished. I am hoping to defend some time in April.

In May I will be flying out to Michigan for the annual International Medieval Congress at the University of Michigan in Kalamazoo (yes, I know, that catchy ditty by Glen Miller). This is often called a "summer camp for medievalists." I won't be giving a paper this time around, but will be attending a number of conferences on monastic history and spirituality, and a few on Tolkien and the Middle Ages!

Last year at the Congress, I met this man
His name? Diego Poole, who is now professor of law at the King Juan Carlos University in Madrid. As a university student in the late 80's, he was Pope John Paul II's "unofficial jester," if you will, entertaining him, and thousands of college students from around the world during a world student congress at the Vatican every on Holy Week. He is known as the man who made the Pope laugh so hard, he alomost fell out of his seat!

He is a member of Opus Dei, and as a university faculty, his main research is on the how Christian natural law tradition (especially in its Thomistic variety) can inform moral and ethical questions that arise in modern jurisprudence.

I had the pleasure of having served as his translator during the presentation of his paper. My job was simply to explain some questions from the Q and A period that he might have some trouble understanding due to his still growing grasp of English. He did fine, only needing my services once. We have since then kept up e-mail correspondence, and will likely see each other again this year in Kalamazoo (or "The Zoo" as it is oftimes called).

I hope you, whatever reading public I have, have had a blessed Christmas feast and Holy Epihany/Theophany season.

I will be posting moderately again, given my many commitments, but will blog more once the dissertation is done, defended and approved!

Pax Vobiscum!

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