The Light of Eventide

Thomas Howard on Facing Senescence in Our Own Blithe Era

Senescence: That is not a word that springs to one’s lips in this epoch of Senior Citizens, Golden Agers, and other plucky euphemisms. If one has any tag-ends of information left over from grammar-school days in the 1940s, one might remember the Latin senex. The trouble is, it means old man. I myself arrived in this questionable category some years ago.

The topic is one that may be hurriedly swept under the rug, of course. Or it may be smothered under gay garlands of cosmetics, spas, cruises, bonhomie, exercise classes (I swim), party hats, and so forth. The stark actuality . . .

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Thomas Howard taught for many years at St. John's Seminary College, the Roman Catholic seminary of the archdiocese of Boston. Among his many works are the books Christ the tiger, Evangelical Is Not Enough, Lead Kindly Light, On Being Catholic, and The Secret of New York Revealed, and a videotape series of 13 lectures on "The Treasures of Catholicism" (all from Ignatius Press).

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