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Document Details :
Subtitle: On the Surprise of Revelation
Author(s): DESMOND, William
Journal: Ephemerides Theologicae Lovanienses
Volume: 92 Issue: 1 Date: 2016
I want to reflect on the nature of revelation by means of the idea of the 'godsend'. While seeming to be ordinary this word carries communication of what is beyond the ordinary. A godsend suggests something like a chink or crack through which something is revealed – a kind of gap, or permeability, a porosity to a light that comes from a source beyond. In that gifted porosity is there an opening to revelation? Does the godsend say something about the surprise of revelation? In response I follow three steps: from word, to idea, to story. I begin by looking at the word and its etymology and consider what this implies. Then I look at the idea of revelation in connection with the claims of philosophical reason. Here my concern is to illuminate some theoretical considerations concerning reason and revelation, from the more reflective conceptual point of view, especially in relation to the modern sense of reason. Third, I turn to story as true to the godsend, and I pay particular attention to a story that witnesses to a kind of fidelity to singularity, the story entitled 'Revelation' of Flannery O’Connor.