Monthly Archives: December 2021

“Where Charity and Love Prevail” Stolen Tune!

If you look up the tune for “Where Charity and Love Prevail,” it says the tune is CHRISTIAN LOVE by Paul Benoit, 1961. There’s an earlier version from 1959, too.

But no, that’s not the whole story.

I am listening to Frofro, a medieval Christmas album by the Ioculatores and the Schola Cantorum Leipzig. And they are singing St. Ambrose’s famous song, “Veni Redemptor Gentium,” to the same tune, which was a 12th century tune found in a manuscript. (Einsiedeln, Stiftsbibl. 121). The chant tune was known all over Europe, and came down to the present.

Apparently this is a known fact, because it’s on the Wikipedia page for “Veni Redemptor Gentium.”

But wait, there’s more! Luther’s translation was sung to a “simplified” and hip 1500’s version of the same tune, known today as NUN KOMM, DER HEIDEN HEILAND. (Often used for the English translation of the Luther translation, “Savior of the Nations, Come.”)

It does not sound like the chant tune VENI REDEMPTOR GENTIUM. I mean, it sounds like somebody beat up the chant tune, if you have a lot of imagination. (I like the NUN KOMM tune, though it is very German.)

Meanwhile, “When Charity and Love Prevail” is Omer Westendorf’s translation of the Latin chant hymn “Ubi Caritas,” so it makes sense that they’d pick a chant tune. Just not the normal chant tune for that particular text.

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St. Hildegarde of Bingen and the Cosmic Power of Music

This is an amazing paper. Obviously I need to read St. Hildegarde’s protest letter.

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Oatmeal/Grits Hack

It’s very nice to blend Korean instant grain-based teas with American instant porridges. Instant grits really like adlay/almond/walnut tea, for instance. Oatmeal goes very well with Ssanghwa tea, and it would probably also be nice with Cream of Wheat.

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Most kinds of hydrangeas are poisonous. Every part of the plant.

However, the mountain hydrangea found in South Korea has edible leaves which are used in tea. The unique thing about this tea is that it has no flavor when initially sipped, but floods the throat, tongue, and mouth with sweetness after it’s swallowed.

The substance that causes this is called phyllodulcin. Not only is it sweeter than sugar, but it also helps regulate fat cells and improve metabolism.

Sigh. Here’s a picture of a package of it.

Hydrangea tea is called Iseul-cha, which literally means “dew tea” (probably because it’s so flavorless and colorless, at first). It’s supposed to be good for hay fever and for UTIs. (Honestly, though, there’s a ton of teas that claim to be good for UTIs, probably because you can get them by not drinking enough water.)

There’s another variety called Gamno-cha, sweet dew tea. It’s also called Suguk-cha.

Koreans also drink White Mountain tea and Rosebay tea, both made from a local variety of flowering rhododendron — which in most of the world would be toxic as heck.

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The Power of Tamales

Somebody was selling homemade tamales at work this year. Harking to the words I had heard elsewhere on the Internet, I decided that I was indeed supposed to buy them. And they were good.

So today I was home. I had been feeling some kind of cold or crud sneaking up on me yesterday, and so I’ve been hydrating and staying warm today. And I ended up eating six tamales and drinking a ginger beer, and then pulling up the covers and going to sleep.

I cannot tell you how much better I felt.

The medical profession keeps naysaying the whole thing where you wrap up warm, sleep, and let your body fight, but it’s often the best idea.

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UD Messes Up the Mary Page

Okay, you have a webpage that has been around since the Dawn of the World Wide Web. Everybody links to it. What do you do?

  1. Lose the domain name.
  2. Change the webpage organization.
  3. Make the webpage ugly, under the impression smartphone users will like it.
  4. Make it impossible to find anything, especially since you just changed all the domain names and made all the links outdated.

Yes, that’s what the University of Dayton did to their famous “Mary Page.”

It’s now called “All About Mary,” which of course is a totally unique name that will show up easily on searches. (bangs head into wall)

You now have to go to UD/International Marian Research Institute/All About Mary. ( The address used to be, without any shilly-shallying.

And then they have an alphabetical list of articles, and a vague group of topics by which they are indexed. No explanatory material. You might be able to find articles if you use the search; but then again, maybe not.

Most of the long, lovingly composed articles full of scholarly endnotes have been replaced by short question and answer formatted articles. (Often with illustrations that don’t relate to the topic.)

I cannot emphasize enough that this is stupid. Mind-bogglingly stupid. What the heck, UD???

Apparently they have been moving toward this format since about 2015 (ie, they changed the name and everybody ignored it), but whoever was lovingly maintaining the old standards of completeness and scholarship seems to have been jettisoned recently. (Because the old pages were still showing up last year.)

So you get complicated topics like “The Quran and Mary” reduced down to two paragraphs. Not very useful paragraphs. Leaving out all the important stuff, literally. There are Church documents reproduced in full, however, and a few articles still have their bibliographies.

If you browse around long enough, you will find some useful material hidden under the topic Spirituality and Devotion. For example, an entire website on Mary Gardens that was formally bequeathed to UD. Now, you would think that you would want to showcase such an odd but endearing legacy… but nope, it’s hidden. (Although at least it’s still there.)

But I couldn’t find the information that I went to the webpage to find, so I’m going to see if it’s on Sigh.

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The City God of Tarsus

Yup, St. Paul’s Tarsus. Had a god of the city, back when it was pagan. The god is shown on Roman coins and such.

The god’s name was Baaltars, the Baal of Tarsus.

Yes, of course I’m thinking of Baltar from Battlestar Galactica. Because that is hilarious.

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