Dorothy Sayers

Dorothy Sayers (June 13, 1893-December 17, 1957) was an English crime writer of fiction, poetry, playwright, and Christian Apologist. She was a contemporary and friend of the great C.S. Lewis. Many of Lewis’ works actually refer to many of her Christian writings and plays. She was a Roman Catholic, but like Lewis, she stuck to mainly the essentials of the faith. This is something Lewis called “being in the hallway,” or being a “Mere Christian.” In my opinon her defense of Christian Orthodoxy stands the test of time. Some of her most famous writings and plays are the following:

  • A Man Born to be King (play)
  • The Zeal of Thy House (play)
  • Creed or Chaos?
  • Letters to a Diminished Church
  • The Lord Peter Wimsey Series of book

 

Quotes

“Here we have a man of Divine character walking and talking among us – and what did you find to do with Him? The Common People, indeed, heard him gladly, but our leading authorities and church and state considered that he talk too much and other too many disconcerting truths. So we bribed one of his friends to hand them over quietly to the police, and we tried him on a rather vague charge of creating a disturbance, and had him publicly flogged and hang on the common gallows, thanking God ‘we are rid of a knave’.” – Dorothy Sayers (Creed or Chaos?)

“That God should play the tyrant over man is a dismal story of unrelieved oppression; that man should play the tyrant over man is the usual dreary record of human futility; but that man should play the tyrant over God and find Him a better man than himself is an astonishing drama indeed.” – Dorothy Sayers (Creed or Chaos?)

“The church asserts that there is a Mind which made the universe, that He made it because He is the sort of Mind that takes pleasure in creation, and that if we want to know what the Mind if the Creator is, we must look at Christ. In Him, we shall discover a Mind that loved His own creation so completely that He became part of it, suffered with it and for it, and made it a sharer in His own glory and a fellow worker with Himself in the working out of His own design for it.” – Dorothy Sayers (Creed or Chaos?)

“So long as we are aware that we are wicked, we are not corrupt beyond all hope. Our present dissatisfaction with ourselves is a good sign.” – Dorothy Sayers (Creed or Chaos?)

“The proper question to be asked about any creed is not, “Is it pleasant?” but, “is it true?” Christianity has compelled the mind of man not because it is the most cheering view of man’s existence but because it is truest to the facts.” It is unpleasant to be called sinners, and much nicer to think that we all have hearts of gold—but have we? It is agreeable to suppose that the more scientific knowledge we acquire the happier we shall be—but does it look like it? It is encouraging to feel that progress is making us automatically every day and in every way better and better and better—but does history support that view? “We hold these truths to be self–evident: that all men were created equal” —but does the external evidence support this a priori assertion? Or does experience rather suggest that man is “very far gone from original righteousness and is of his own nature inclined to evil?” – Dorothy Sayers (The Mind of the Maker)

“The disastrous and widening cleavage between the Church and the Arts on the one hand and between the State and the Arts on the other leaves the common man with the impression that the artist is something of little account, either in this world or the next; and this has had a bad effect on the artist, since it has left him in a curious spiritual isolation. Yet with all his faults, he remains the person who can throw most light on that “creative attitude to life” to which bewildered leaders of thought are now belatedly exhorting a no less bewildered humanity.” – Dorothy Sayers (The Mind of the Maker)

“…particularly in the matter of Christian doctrine, a great part of the nation subsists in an ignorance more barbarous than that of the dark ages, owing to this slatternly habit of illiterate reading.” – Dorothy Sayers (The Mind of the Maker)

“There is a difference between saying: “If you hold your finger in the fire you will get burned”and saying, “if you whistle at your work I shall beat you, because the noise gets on my nerves”. The God of the Christians is too often looked upon as an old gentleman of irritable nerves who beats people for whistling. This is the result of a confusion between arbitrary “law”and the “laws”which are statements of fact. Breach of the first is “punished”by edict; but breach of the second, by judgment.” – Dorothy Sayers (The Mind of the Maker)

“The proper question to be asked about any creed is not, “Is it pleasant?” but, “is it true?“ Christianity has compelled the mind of man not because it is the most cheering view of man’s existence but because it is truest to the facts.” It is unpleasant to be called sinners, and much nicer to think that we all have hearts of gold—but have we? It is agreeable to suppose that the more scientific knowledge we acquire the happier we shall be—but does it look like it? It is encouraging to feel that progress is making us automatically every day and in every way better and better and better—but does history support that view? “We hold these truths to be self–evident: that all men were created equal” —but does the external evidence support this a priori assertion? Or does experience rather suggest that man is “very far gone from original righteousness and is of his own nature inclined to evil”?” – Dorothy Sayers (The Mind of the Maker)

“It is the artist who, more than other men, is able to create something out of nothing. A whole artistic work is immeasurably more than the sum of its parts.” – Dorothy Sayers (The Mind of the Maker)

“This kind of grasping at equality with God really does do untold damage. It reduces a noble work of creation to nonsense…” – Dorothy Sayers (The Mind of the Maker)

“Perhaps the first thing that he can learn from the artist is that the only way of “mastering”one’s material is to abandon the whole conception of mastery and to co–operate with it in love: whosoever will be a lord of life, let him be its servant. If he tries to wrest life out of its true nature, it will revenge itself in judgment, as the work revenges itself upon the domineering artist.” – Dorothy Sayers (The Mind of the Maker)

“We are constantly assured that the churches are empty because preachers insist too much upon doctrine—dull dogma as people call it. The fact is the precise opposite. It is the neglect of dogma that makes for dullness. The Christian faith is the most exciting drama that ever staggered the imagination of man—and the dogma is the drama.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“That drama is summarized quite clearly in the creeds of the Church, and if we think it dull it is because we either have never really read those amazing documents or have recited them so often and so mechanically as to have lost all sense of their meaning. The plot pivots upon a single character, and the whole action is the answer to a single central problem: What think ye of Christ?” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“What does the Church think of Christ? The Church’s answer is categorical and uncompromising, and it is this: that Jesus Bar-Joseph, the carpenter of Nazareth, was in fact and in truth, and in the most exact and literal sense of the words, the God “by whom all things were made.” His body and brain were those of a common man; his personality was the personality of God, so far as that personality could be expressed in human terms. He was not a kind of demon pretending to be human; he was in every respect a genuine living man. He was not merely a man so good as to be “like God”— he was God.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“…he [God] had the honesty and the courage to take his own medicine. Whatever game he is playing with his creation, he has kept his own rules and played fair. He can exact nothing from man that he has not exacted from himself. He has himself gone through the whole of human experience, from the trivial irritations of family life and the cramping restrictions of hard work and lack of money to the worst horrors of pain and humiliation, defeat, despair, and death. When he was a man, he played the man. He was born in poverty and died in disgrace and though it well worthwhile.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“Possibly we might prefer not to take this tale too seriously— there are disquieting points about it. Here we had a man of divine character walking and talking among us—and what did we find to do with him? The common people, indeed, “heard him gladly”; but our leading authorities in Church and State considered that he talked too much and uttered too many disconcerting truths. So we bribed one of his friends to hand him over quietly to the police, and we tried him on a rather vague charge of creating a disturbance, and had him publicly flogged and hanged on the common gallows, “thanking God we were rid of a knave.” All this was not very creditable to us, even if he was (as many people thought and think) only a harmless, crazy preacher. But if the Church is right about him, it was more discreditable still, for the man we hanged was God Almighty.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“This is the dogma we find so dull— this terrifying drama of which God is the victim and hero.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“The people who hanged Christ never, to do them justice, accused him of being a bore—on the contrary, they thought him too dynamic to be safe. It has been left for later generations to muffle up that shattering personality and surround him with an atmosphere of tedium. We have very efficiently pared the claws of the Lion of Judah, certified him “meek and mild,” and recommended him as a fitting household pet for pale curates and pious old ladies. To those who knew him, however, he in no way suggests a milk-and-water person; they objected to him as a dangerous firebrand. True, he was tender to the unfortunate, patient with honest inquirers, and humble before heaven; but he insulted respectable clergymen by calling them hypocrites. He referred to King Herod as “that fox”; he went to parties in disreputable company and was looked upon as a “gluttonous man and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners”; he assaulted indignant tradesmen and threw them and their belongings out of the temple; he drove a coach- and-horses through a number of sacrosanct and hoary regulations; he cured diseases by any means that came handy, with a shocking casualness in the matter of other people’s pigs and property; he showed no proper deference for wealth or social position; when confronted with neat dialectical traps, he displayed a paradoxical humor that affronted serious-minded people, and he retorted by asking disagreeably searching questions that could not be answered by rule of thumb. He was emphatically not a dull man in his human lifetime, and if he was God, there can be nothing dull about God either. But he had “a daily beauty in his life that made us ugly,” and officialdom felt that the established order of things would be more secure without him. So they did away with God in the name of peace and quietness.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“…those who saw the risen Christ remained persuaded that life was worth living and death a triviality—and attitude curiously unlike that of the modern defeatist, who is firmly persuaded that life is a disaster and death (rather inconsistently) a major catastrophe.”  – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“That God should play the tyrant over man is a dismal story of unrelieved oppression; that man should play the tyrant over man is the usual dreary record of human futility; but that man should play the tyrant over God and find him a better man than himself is an astonishing drama indeed. Any journalist, hearing of it for the first time, would recognize it as news; those who did hear it for the first time actually called it news, and good news at that; though we are likely to forget that the word Gospel ever meant anything so sensational.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“Thus we build up a defense mechanism against self-questioning because, to tell the truth, we are very much afraid of ourselves.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“What we in fact believe is not necessarily the theory we most desire or admire. It is the thing that, consciously or unconsciously, we take for granted and act on.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“He is God the Father and Maker. And, by implication, man is most god-like and most himself when he is occupied in creation.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“Our worst trouble today is our feeble hold on creation. To sit down and let ourselves be spoon-fed with the ready-made is to lose our grip on our only true life and our only real selves.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“When one really cares, the self is forgotten, and the sacrifice becomes only a part of the activity.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

““What do you value more than life?” the answer can only be, “Life—the right kind of life, the creative and god-like life.” And life, of any kind, can be had only if we are ready to lose life altogether—a plain observation of fact that we acknowledge every time a child is born, or, indeed, whenever we plunge into a stream of traffic in the hope of attaining a more desirable life on the other side.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“He thus showed himself sadly out of touch with the twentieth-century mind, for the cry today is: “Away with the tedious complexities of dogma—let us have the simple spirit of worship; just worship, no matter of what!” The only drawback to this demand for a generalized and undirected worship is the practical difficulty of arousing any sort of enthusiasm for the worship of nothing in particular.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“It is more startling to discover how many people there are who heartily dislike and despise Christianity without having the faintest notion what it is. If you tell them, they cannot believe you. I do not mean that they cannot believe the doctrine; that would be understandable enough since it takes some believing. I mean that they simply cannot believe that anything so interesting, so exciting, and so dramatic can be the orthodox creed of the Church.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“Let us, in heaven’s name, drag out the divine drama from under the dreadful accumulation of slipshod thinking and trashy sentiment heaped upon it, and set it on an open stage to startle the world into some sort of vigorous reaction. If the pious are the first to be shocked, so much worse for the pious— others will pass into the kingdom of heaven before them. If all men are offended because of Christ, let them be offended; but where is the sense of their being offended at something that is not Christ and is nothing like him? We do him singularly little honor by watering down his personality till it could not offend a fly. Surely it is not the business of the Church to adapt Christ to men, but to adapt men to Christ. It is the dogma that is the drama—not beautiful phrases, nor comforting sentiments, nor vague aspirations to loving-kindness and uplift, nor the promise of something nice after death—but the terrifying assertion that the same God who made the world, lived in the world and passed through the grave and gate of death. Show that to the heathen, and they may not believe it; but at least they may realize that here is something that a man might be glad to believe.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“The characteristic common to God and man is apparently that: the desire and ability to make things.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“To complain that man measures God by his own experience is a waste of time; man measures everything by his own experience; he has no other yardstick.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“Nothing is more intoxicating than a sense of power: the demagogue who can sway crowds, the journalist who can push up the sales of his paper to the two-million mark, the playwright who can plunge an audience into an orgy of facile emotion, the parliamentary candidate who is carried to the top of the poll on a flood of meaningless rhetoric, the ranting preacher, the advertising salesman of material or spiritual commodities, are all playing perilously and irresponsibly with the power of words, and are equally dangerous whether they are cynically unscrupulous or (as frequently happens) have fallen under the spell of their own eloquence and become the victims of their own propaganda.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“It is a lie to say that dogma does not matter; it matters enormously. It is fatal to let people suppose that Christianity is only a mode of feeling; it is vitally necessary to insist that it is first and foremost a rational explanation of the universe. It is hopeless to offer Christianity as a vaguely idealistic aspiration of a simple and consoling kind; it is, on the contrary, a hard, tough, exacting, and complex doctrine, steeped in a drastic and uncompromising realism. And it is fatal to imagine that everybody knows quite well what Christianity is and needs only a little encouragement to practice it. The brutal fact is that in this Christian country not one person in a hundred has the faintest notion what the Church teaches about God or man or society or the person of Jesus Christ.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“But if Christian dogma is irrelevant to life, to what, in Heaven’s name, is it relevant?—since religious dogma is in fact nothing but a statement of doctrines concerning the nature of life and the universe. If Christian ministers really believe it is only an intellectual game for theologians and has no bearing upon human life, it is no wonder that their congregations are ignorant, bored, and bewildered.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“If the average man is going to be interested in Christ at all, it is the dogma that will provide the interest. The trouble is that, in nine cases out of ten, he has never been offered the dogma. What he has been offered is a set of technical theological terms that nobody has taken the trouble to translate into language relevant to ordinary life.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“Of late years, the Church has not succeeded very well in preaching Christ; she has preached Jesus, which is not quite the same thing. I find that the ordinary man simply does not grasp at all the idea that Jesus Christ and God the Creator are held to be literally the same person.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“Humanly speaking, it is not true at all that “truly to know the good is to do the good”; it is far truer to say with St. Paul that “the evil I would not, that I do”; so that the mere increase of knowledge is of very little help in the struggle to outlaw evil. The delusion of the mechanical perfectibility of mankind through a combined process of scientific knowledge and unconscious evolution has been responsible for a great deal of heartbreak. It is, at bottom, far more pessimistic than Christian pessimism because, if science and progress break down, there is nothing to fall back upon. Humanism is self-contained—it provides for man no resources outside himself. The Christian dogma of the double nature in man—which asserts that man is disintegrated and necessarily imperfect in himself and all his works, yet closely related by a real unity of substance with an eternal perfection within and beyond him—makes the present parlous state of human society seem both less hopeless and less irrational.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“Today, if we could really be persuaded that we are miserable sinners—that the trouble is not outside us but inside us, and that therefore, by the grace of God, we can do something to put it right—we should receive that message as the most hopeful and heartening thing that can be imagined.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“One must not only die daily, but every day one must be born again.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“In contending with the problem of evil, it is useless to try to escape either from the bad past or into the good past. The only way to deal with the past is to accept the whole past.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“The story of Passiontide and Easter is the story of the winning of that freedom and of that victory over the evils of time. The burden of the guilt is accepted (“He was made Sin”), the last agony of alienation from God is passed through (Eloi, lama sabachthani); the temporal body is broken and remade; and time and eternity are reconciled in a single person. There is no retreat here to the paradise of primal ignorance; the new kingdom of God is built upon the foundations of spiritual experience. Time is not denied; it is fulfilled.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“There is said to be a revival just now of what is called interest in religion. Even governments are inclined to allot broadcasting time to religious propaganda, and to order National Days of Prayer. However admirable these activities may be, one has a haunting feeling that God’s acquaintance is being cultivated because he might come in useful. But God is quite shrewd enough to see through that particular kind of commercial fraud.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“…let us be very careful how we preach that Christianity is necessary for the building of a free and prosperous postwar world. The proposition is strictly true, but to put it that way may be misleading, for it sounds as though we proposed to make God an instrument in the service of man. But God is nobody’s instrument. If we say that the denial of God was the cause of our present disasters, well and good; it is of the essence of pride to suppose that we can do without God. But it will not do to let the same sin creep back in a subtler and more virtuous-seeking form by suggesting that the service of God is necessary as a means to the service of man. That is a blasphemous hypocrisy, which would end by degrading God to the status of a heathen fetish, bound to the service of a tribe, and likely to be dumped head-downwards in the water butt if he failed to produce good harvest weather in return for services rendered.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“For nineteen and a half centuries, the Christian churches have labored, not without success, to remove this unfortunate impression made by their Lord and Master. They have hustled the Magdalens from the communion table, founded total abstinence societies in the name of him who made the water wine, and added improvements of their own, such as various bans and anathemas upon dancing and theatergoing. They have transferred the Sabbath from Saturday to Sunday, and, feeling that the original commandment “Thou shalt not work” was rather half hearted, have added to it a new commandment, “Thou shalt not play.”” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“Now, if we look at the Gospels with the firm intention to discover the emphasis of Christ’s morality, we shall find that it did not lie at all along the lines laid down by the opinion of highly placed and influential people. Disreputable people who knew they were disreputable were gently told to go and sin no more; the really unparliamentary language was reserved for those thrifty, respectable, and sabbatarian citizens who enjoyed Caesar’s approval and their own. And the one and only thing that ever seems to have roused the meek and mild Son of God to a display of outright physical violence was precisely the assumption that “business was business.” The moneychangers in Jerusalem drove a very thriving trade and made as shrewd a profit as any other set of brokers who traffic in foreign exchange; but the only use Christ had for these financiers was to throw their property down the front steps of the temple.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“‘Why doesn’t God smite this dictator dead?’ is a question a little remote from us. Why, madam, did He not strike you dumb and imbecile before you uttered that baseless and unkind slander the day before yesterday? Or me, before I behaved with such cruel lack of consideration to that well-meaning friend? And why, sir, did He not cause your hand to rot off at the wrist before you signed your name to that dirty little bit of financial trickery? You did not quite mean that? But why not? Your misdeeds and mine are nonetheless repellent because our opportunities for doing damage are less spectacular than those of some other people. Do you suggest that your doings and mine are too trivial for God to bother about? That cuts both ways; for, in that case, it would make precious little difference to His creation if He wiped us both out tomorrow.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“The Church asserts that there is a Mind which made the universe, that He made it because He is the sort of Mind that takes pleasure in creation, and that if we want to know what the Mind of the Creator is, we must look at Christ. In Him, we shall discover a Mind that loved His own creation so completely that He became part of it, suffered with and for it, and made it a sharer in His own glory and a fellow worker with Himself in the working out of His own design for it.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“Christ was seldom very encouraging to those who demanded signs, or lightnings from Heaven, and God is too subtle and too economical a craftsman to make very much use of those methods. But He takes our sins and errors and turns them into victories, as He made the crime of the Crucifixion to be the salvation of the world.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“When Judas sinned, Jesus paid; He brought good out of evil, He led out triumph from the gates of Hell and brought all mankind out with Him; but the suffering of Jesus and the sin of Judas remain a reality. God did not abolish the fact of evil: He transformed it. He did not stop the Crucifixion: He rose from the dead.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“All of us, perhaps, are too ready, when our behavior turns out to have appalling consequences, to rush out and hang ourselves. Sometimes we do worse, and show an inclination to go and hang other people. Judas, at least, seems to have blamed nobody but himself, and St. Peter, who had a minor betrayal of his own to weep for, made his act of contrition and waited to see what came next. What came next for St. Peter and the other disciples was the sudden assurance of what God was, and with it the answer to all the riddles. If Christ could take evil and suffering and do that sort of thing with them, then of course it was all worthwhile, and the triumph of Easter linked up with that strange, triumphant prayer in the Upper Room, which the events of Good Friday had seemed to make so puzzling. As for their own parts in the drama, nothing could now alter the fact that they had been stupid, cowardly, faithless, and in many ways singularly unhelpful; but they did not allow any morbid and egotistical remorse to inhibit their joyful activities in the future.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“Never think that wars are irrational catastrophes: they happen when wrong ways of thinking and living bring about intolerable situations; and whichever side may be the more outrageous in its aims and the more brutal in its methods, the root causes of conflict are usually to be found in some wrong way of life in which all parties have acquiesced, and for which everybody must, to some extent, bear the blame.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“…it is the business of the Church to recognize that the secular vocation, as such, is sacred. Christian people, and particularly perhaps the Christian clergy, must get it firmly into their heads that when a man or woman is called to a particular job of secular work, that is as true vocation as though he or she were called to specifically religious work.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“In nothing has the Church so lost Her hold on reality as in Her failure to understand and respect the secular vocation. She has allowed work and religion to become separate departments, and is astonished to find that, as a result, the secular work of the world is turned to purely selfish and destructive ends, and that the greater part of the world’s intelligent workers have become irreligious, or at least, uninterested in religion.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“How can anyone remain interested in a religion which seems to have no concern with nine-tenths of his life? The Church’s approach to an intelligent carpenter is usually confined to exhorting him not to be drunk and disorderly in his leisure hours, and to come to church on Sundays. What the Church should be telling him is this: that the very first demand that his religion makes upon him is that he should make good tables.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“Let the Church remember this: that every maker and worker is called to serve God in his profession or trade—not outside it.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“…when you find a man who is a Christian praising God by the excellence of his work—do not distract him and take him away from his proper vocation to address religious meetings and open church bazaars. Let him serve God in the way to which God has called him. If you take him away from that, he will exhaust himself in an alien technique and lose his capacity to do his dedicated work. It is your business, you churchmen, to get what good you can from observing his work—not to take him away from it, so that he may do ecclesiastical work for you. But, if you have any power, see that he is set free to do his own work as well as it may be done. He is not there to serve you; he is there to serve God by serving his work.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“Nine-tenths of the bad plays put on in theaters owe their badness to the fact that the playwright has aimed at pleasing the audience, instead of at producing a good and satisfactory play. Instead of doing the work as its own integrity demands that it should be done, he has falsified the play by putting in this or that which he thinks will appeal to the groundlings.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“Where there is no light, there is no meaning for the word darkness, for darkness is merely a name for that which is without light. Light, by merely existing, creates darkness, or at any rate the possibility of darkness. In this sense, it is possible to understand that profound saying, “I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things” (Isaiah 45:7).” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“That is what the orthodox Catholic doctrine is. I do not want to argue it here because that would lead us away from our subject; but I want to make clear what it is. Evil is the soul’s choice of the not-God. The corollary is that damnation, or hell, is the permanent choice of the not-God. God does not (in the monstrous old-fashioned phrase) “send” anybody to hell; hell is that state of the soul in which its choice becomes obdurate and fixed; the punishment (so to call it) of that soul is to remain eternally in the state that it has chosen.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

“The sin of Adam is the occasion of the Incarnation; redeemed man is something more poignantly blessed than innocent man could ever have been.” – Dorothy Sayers (Letters to a Diminished Church)

 

 

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