Famous but dead

Mr. Michael Jackson had his memorial service yesterday with much media frenzy. Of course he was famous.

Within a short span of time in June the following famous people were no more.

Michael Jackson

Farah Fawcett

Ed McMahon

I am not interest in measuring the lives they lived. I am in no position to do that. Instead I am more interest in the fact that our society pay attention to them or in other words consider them famous.

I cannot say it better then the following quote:

“The opposite of tradition has no name. Yet we know what it is. It is a life lived only in the present, which is necessarily an uninformed life, formed by whatever happens by. It is a life not consciously assimilated to authentic heroes, and so a life doomed to be unconsciously assimilated to bogus celebrities. It is a life not measure against the past, and so unexamined, a life not worth living.

Jesus said, “Turn the other cheek.” Without his example, and without the examples of the saints, the injunction has no meaning. The letter without the Spirit, which I take to mean content without context, speech without biography, present without past, kills. The Spirit, the animator of heroes, gives life.”

“Luminous Dusk” by Dale C. Allison Jr. Eerdmans 2006, p135.

Consider two other persons whom you may not have heard of who also died recently:

Ray Anderson, who was a professor at Fuller:



Fr. Lawrence (Lorenzo) Rosebaugh , who was a priest in Guatemala City:



Prof. Martin Hengel, NT specialist at Tubingen:




Who we notice on the obituary pages may well give us insight into where we put our priority.


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