Received a newsletter from St. Michael’s Skete yesterday which, among other things, had an excerpt from a letter sent by St. Cyprian of Carthage to a friend named Donatus (St. Cyprian’s Epistle to Donatus). The letter, as they note, “has been paraphrased, put into contemporary letter-writing form….to underline that St. Cyprian’s world 1,750 years ago and ours today, in many ways are not worlds apart.”
Interesting as we make our way through Holy Week.
Carthage, North Africa
Have you noticed how often these days…those who are innocently accused perish, while the very man who sits to convict their alleged crimes often commits them himself – the judge becomes the culprit. Crimes are common everywhere…. One man forges a will, another fraudulently makes a false deposition… The prosecutor makes his accusation, the false accuser attacks, the witness defames, and on all sides…hired witnesses produce false accusations… There is no concern about laws, investigators and judges, because any sentence can be bought off for money… The laws have come to terms with crimes, and whatever goes on has begun to be allowed. What integrity can there be when there is no one to condemn the wicked, and often the very people one meets ought to be condemned?…