Famous Quotes & Sayings

Donald Spoto Quotes & Sayings

Enjoy the top 9 famous quotes, sayings and quotations by Donald Spoto.

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Famous Quotes By Donald Spoto

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But there is probably nothing in the world as determined as a child with a dream — Donald Spoto

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When we renounce our fear of life and give up trying to have it under our control - that is, when we acknowledge our contingency and utter dependence on God - then God comes to us and turns us toward Himself. — Donald Spoto

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Avoid theatrical flourishes - the phrases that sound so damned good that they stand up and beg to be recognized as "good writing," and therefore must be struck from the text. — Donald Spoto

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In the Christian tradition, for example, the only model for faith is Jesus of Nazareth. His proclamation, one observes in the New Testament, was not particularly religious: he spoke of God, certainly, but only in relation to ordinary human life with its quotidian struggle and suffering. Nor did he speak or preach in especially religious or secretarian terms; in fact, it maybe be said that Jesus came to set the world free from enslavement to and obsession with mere (humanly made) religion. "He went about doing good" is the biblical summary of his life and mission, and no words are more moving or provocative. — Donald Spoto

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And what of Joan's presence among so many young, armed men? Perhaps of all the nobles and military men, the Duke of Alencon - that dedicated, courageous and skillful commander - may be trusted most. Although he was a man who had a keen eye for attractive and available women, he too recognized a rare quality of sincere devotion that deflected any tendency to make sexual overtures. 'Sometimes I lay down to sleep with Joan and the soldiers,' Alencon recalled. 'We were all in the straw together, and sometimes I saw Joan prepare for the night. Sometimes too I looked at her breasts, which were beautiful. And yet I never had any carnal desire for her. — Donald Spoto

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However we assess the relief of the siege of Orleans and the subsequent successes in the Loire Valley, the military proficiency of the French shocked the English to the point that French victory now seemed almost inevitable. If the English had learned that the French had new materiel or a brilliant new commander, they might have been able to devise counter procedures. But they had underestimated everything, from the loyalty evoked by Joan's leadership at Orleans to the fresh resolve of the men who knew her. In a way she also stood for something like a principle of minimal violence, for although she was always exposed to injury and indeed sustained serious wounds, she never personally harmed an enemy solider. The events of the late spring and early summer of 1929 engendered a new collective spirit among the French. — Donald Spoto

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Centuries later, it is often presumed that such a pious tone and environment would create boredom, cynicism, and even open rebellion among any militia. But in an era when faith was a fact of life, prayer was ubiquitous, ritual respected, and the presence of clergymen taken seriously, the result was a fresh discipline and respect - even a chivalric courtliness - among many of the troops. Joan herself was so obviously and sincerely devout that the major captains of her met-at-arms and crossbowmen were more than impressed: they followed her example as best they could. — Donald Spoto

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The idea of Christian perfection, which began in the ancient monasteries and spread to the world as an ideal, is one of the most appealing, demanding and ultimately hopeless notions of the spiritual life. By definition, only God is perfect - that is, complete and independent unto [God's] self. Humans, on the other hand, are radically imperfect, and that, paradoxically, is welcome news, for the recognition of our incompleteness throws us on the mercy of God and enables us, as Saint Paul stressed, to put up with one another's faults. — Donald Spoto

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What Joan impressed on the men by her faith and her actions, then, had more to do with the things of God that the machinery of war or prevailing politics. For her the struggle against English occupation and the eventual permanent establishment of French sovereignty were matters of justice, and justice was regarded as a major virtue in the Middle Ages. From justice came the origins of chivalry, which was about much more than mere courtesy: it concerned the order of a sovereign society and its place in the economy of God's plan for the world. — Donald Spoto