Monday, January 24, 2005

The University Archivist took me to both Midwest Jesuit Archives and the joint Ursline Sisters Central Province Archives and the Society for the Sacred Heart US Archives today. We helped the sisters move some heavy furniture and got a tour of their new facilities. They have some items relating to Ong, mostly notes or transcripts from talks Ong gave to their organizations and notes taken by sisters who took classes with Ong. I then got a tour of the Jesuit archives. Most of Fr. Ong's personal possessions, in so much as a Jesuit can have possessions -- things like gifts given to him, photographs, academic robes, etc. The Jesuit archivist has said that we can look through the collection and either make copies of or have most anything not directly related to Ong's role as Jesuit.

More on Ong's "revealed theology," published in "The Catholic Church's Interest in Knowledge and Research" Hospital Progress June, 1957: 50-51, 102, 106:

"It is spectacularly evident today in astronomy and paleontology that the further we get from the beginnings of our universe and of the human race, the more we are managing to find out about these beginnings. This new knowledge is constantly being consolidated with the old, so that the old is being seen and presented always in new and more illuminating perspectives. Human knowledge involving spiritual activity is cumulative.
     "As a spiritual being, man moves always forward, consolidating earlier knowledge with more recent acquisitions. He does not always do this perfectly, of course. Yet, when we compare the present state of knowledge with that of Neolithic man 200,000 years ago, or even with that of the ancient Egyptians only a few thousand years ago, we must say that there is unmistakably a pattern in the development of human knowledge as a whole and that this pattern is unmistakably one of progress, and one of gigantic progress" (50-51).

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