Aliens in This World

An ordinary Catholic and a science fiction and fantasy fan.

Tuesday, February 25, 2003

Lafferty Update

Well, he's still a great writer -- and certainly his chances of Heaven are still high -- but apparently R.A. Lafferty's chances of canonization are the classic Slim, Fat, and No. Sandra Miesel commented in email:

I knew Lafferty and wrote some critical articles about him which he liked. In fact he wrote a limerick about me and once sat on my lap. He was indeed a VERY Catholic writer, to the degree that it made his work less accessible to his non-Catholic readers. His most religious books being PAST MASTER, FOURTH MANSIONS, and THE FLAME IS GREEN. But unfortunately, the old gentleman was a long-time heavy drinker who died senile. Not a good candidate... I can vouch for his drinking by personal observation. Over at least 11 years of conventions I never saw him remotely sober nor did anyone I know.

Poor guy. But that is pretty indicative. Miesel further commented, on the saint topic:

Check out my article on Tolkien's Universe in the current issue of CRISIS.

Some years ago I was going to write an article for Catholic FAITH & FAMILY on possible future saints but the Legionaries scrubbed it lest they be appearing to tell the Congregation of Saints what to do. Some of my chouices were: Rose Hawthorne, Cornelia Connelly, Caritas Pirkheimer, Anne Dacre, Mary Ward, Mother McCauley, and St. Elizabeth of Hungary's husband Louis.

Yes, you may put the above comments on your blog.

I didn't know Tony Boucher but he was much loved in the SF world.

Some of Lafferty's papers are at the University of Iowa, but there's not much of them. One linear foot is one banker box, folks. The balance of his papers must be the ones at the University of Tulsa.

A Lafferty bibliography, a short summary of his novels and another of his works. A biography in French and German, and a page biographical information. An obituary by Michael Cassutt and the guy at Snarkout, twice. Interesting musings by Past Master by Bill McClain and The Devil Is Dead by Steve Hooley.

As Snarkout noted, Lafferty's books are in print, from the invaluable Wildside Press. Go forth and buy them.

Who the Heck Is Mother McCauley?

A thorough Googling didn't reveal who the heck Mother McCauley is, except that there's a big old girl's school named that in Chicago. Googling for Bishop Ford of Bishop Ford Hall (used as the old cafeteria at my school) produced a couple pages, including these memories of the man and this sermon inspired by the article. There's also the splendid tribute of a cheat essay one must pay to download, and this other cheat essay, which is at least free. Amusingly, that free cheat essay can also be purchased from the aptly named Cheathouse. No honor among thieves. And yes, I'm sure Bishop Ford was martyred so some lazybones can Google herself a good grade. Fortunately, teachers can Google too.


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