My good friend Tom Brennan wrote this moving piece about the unsung heroes among us. Enjoy!

Whatsoever Things Are True

In the Greek Pantheon, there are some names that command attention.  After all, they are deities, so it is natural to notice them.  I was a lover of Greek Mythology as a child.  I sat and read  D’Aulaires’ Book of Greek Myths by the hour.  The illustrations were exquisite, and the stories fascinating.  I was later to learn that I was not alone in my fondness for these stories, I found that much of our culture references the stories of Zeus, Apollo, Aphrodite, and Athena.  I found that my knowledge of Icarus, the Minotaur and Hercules was to greatly impact my ability to understand a huge portion of Western literature, and that such literacy gave me the privilege of attaining at least a semi-classical education.  I have been able to fake the rest with the help of Looney Tunes Opera parodies and a musical Hamlet on Gilligan’s Island.  So now you…

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Agnus Dei

Behold, my servant shall deal prudently, he shall be exalted and extolled, and be very high.

As many were astonished at thee; his visage was so marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men:

So shall he sprinkle many nations; the kings shall shut their mouths at him: for that which had not been told them shall they see; and that which they had not heard shall they consider.

Who hath believed our report? And to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?

For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.

He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.

But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.

He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.

He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken.

And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth.

Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. 

He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.

Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the    strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

(Isaiah 52:13-53:12)

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