The goal of this site is to make various important Catholic texts and teachings available to anyone who is interested in them.  The primary content will be my own compilation and translation of excerpts from the Biblical commentaries (and other texts relevant to Biblical exegesis) of the Fathers, Doctors, Popes and other Catholic scholars.  This will take a while, but I hope I’ll be able to update fairly regularly.

I will also include reviews (or recommendations) of books I have found particularly valuable.  Finally, I will include some of my own observations and opinions, to which I would like to apply the following caveat of Hilare Belloc, in prefacing his collection Essays of a Catholic: “I must apologize for the personal tone in each of the papers here printed: I can write in no other way, and, indeed, I prefer in reading the writings of others to discover a similar note myself.  It has the advantage in the present case of disengaging anyone else of my communion from views I may express … I have not put forward this book as the Essays of a Catholic in general, which would be presumptuous, but only as the Essays of one chance Catholic, who is but a layman …” (Essays of a Catholic, repr. TAN Books 1992, pp ix-x).  This distinction is particularly important when I am putting forward my own observations in the same place as I am putting forward the commentaries of the Fathers and Doctors of the Church.

To conclude, a word about the title and username.  I am a recent graduate of Harvard College, whose motto is of course “Veritas” (truth).  During my time there I realized that, despite that promising motto, there was only a very limited amount of truth that the classes at Harvard could offer, because they ignored the words of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ: “Ego sum via, et veritas, et vita” (I am the way, the truth, and the life: St. John xiv. 6); and elsewhere, “sine me nihil potestis facere” (without me you can do nothing: St. John xv. 5).  I write in the hope of bringing the Truth, Jesus Christ, to as many people as I can by the grace of God and the assistance of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

And about the username.  Our Lady called herself the “handmaid of the Lord” (ancilla Domini: St. Luke i. 38).  I do not know whether this application has been made before, but it has always seemed to me that the words of Psalm 115 refer to her and to her spiritual children: “O Domine, quia ego servus tuus; ego servus tuus, et filius ancillae tuae” (O Lord, for I am thy servant; I am thy servant, and the son of thy handmaid: Ps. cxv. 7).  I therefore write as “Filius ancillae,” a “son of the handmaid of the Lord,” and place all I write under her loving patronage and protection.

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