Thomas Merton vs. Charles Wesley

In the last battle before the start of the highly anticipated Elate Eight (aka the Saintly Kitsch round), Thomas Merton takes on Charles Wesley. Poet vs. hymn writer. Both were brothers, of course — one a monastic brother (Trappist) and one an actual brother (to John Wesley). It’s the final match-up of the Saintly Sixteen!

In a quick media round-up, everyone’s favorite online Lenten devotion was featured last week on National Public Radio, Christianity Today, and even the Methodists got in on the action with a post on, the official online ministry of the Methodist Church (something tells us they may be especially interested in today’s match-up). Also, Archbishops John and Thomas made their national television debut on Bloomberg TV.

What’s the secret behind all the Lent Madness love out there (besides the warm and fuzzy nature of the Supreme Executive Committee)? Forward Movement Managing Editor Richelle Thompson shares her take in an article titled “If At First You Don’t Succeed” on the Episcopal Church Foundation’s Vital Practices webpage (Hint: no high priced PR consultants were harmed in this process).

And if you’re looking to take the edge off Monday Morning, watch the Archbishops’ Update as they preview the Lent Madness week ahead.

Finally, we’re making progress in our campaign to reach 10,000 likes on Facebook before awarding the Golden Halo! We’re pushing 9,650 so make sure to share our page with everyone you know. We suggest pilfering the parish directory and sending handwritten notes to everybody urging them to like Lent Madness immediately.

unnamedThomas Merton

Thomas Merton is considered by many to be the voice of the contemplative tradition in the modern world. His books, over 30 of them, reinvigorated those interested in contemplative practice. Given his voluminous amount of writing, his quotes were more than plentiful.

The quirks, however, are what make his quotes matter. Perhaps the quirk was his life of self contradictions. An unhappy child and unsettled adolescent became an adult who, on a street corner in Kentucky, was overwhelmed with the realization he loved all these people, “that they were mine and I theirs, that we could not be alien to one another even though we were total strangers.”

A man with an extravagant personality and celebrity also craved his own space, eventually granted, somewhat grudgingly, in The Hermitage. A deeply devout Trappist who described his order as one that “carried communism to its ultimate limit” also explored the truths in Eastern faith. A sometimes hermit shared his soul and spirit with millions through his words. A man who, in his later years, fell in love with a nurse, writing her love poetry, wrote love poetry to his monastic life, as well, and ultimately reaffirmed his life as a Trappist before his untimely death. Even that too held contradictions: the avid peace activist’s body was flown to Kentucky on a military plane.

Merton was a writer, a poet, an artist, a jazz aficionado, a dissident, a lover, a peace activist, a hermit, a celebrity, and a man — all held in union in his deeply contemplative soul. The illusion is that we are non-contradictory. To find our true selves, filled with beauty and contradictions and other-ness, we must enter into contemplation. For Merton, “We become contemplatives when God discovers Himself in us.”

Through contemplation, we seek truth. Merton writes, “We make ourselves real by telling the truth….But he can forget how badly he needs to tell the truth….We must be true inside, true to ourselves, before we can know a truth that is outside us.”

And that truth? That self that is beyond illusion, that welcomes our contradictions, our paradoxes and ambiguities? In that space is God.

The man who is not afraid to admit everything that he sees to be wrong with himself, and yet recognizes that he may be the object of God’s love precisely because of his shortcomings, can be sincere. His sincerity is based on confidence, not in his illusions about himself, but in the endless, unfailing mercy of God.

When all our shortcomings, our hypocrisies, our failings…when all that we’d rather not expose about ourselves is welcomed into contemplative union with God, we become part of the dance that is in the midst of us, “for it beats in our very blood whether we want it to or not.”

In the midst of Lent Madness, remember Merton’s call to cast our awful solemnity to the winds and join God’s dance.

Here is a video of a monk from Gethsemani praying one of Merton’s most famous prayers:

Laurie Brock

unnamedCharles Wesley

Charles Wesley (1707-1788), who with his brother John was among the chief leaders of the Methodist Revival within the Church of England, is especially quotable, having penned well over 6,000 hymns during his lifetime, in addition to a multitude of sermons a personal writings. Wesley knew well the power of hymns to convey theology to a wide audience.

One of Wesley’s great hymns was written on the anniversary of his inner conversion, which he described as “a strange palpitation of the heart.” The hymn spanned some eighteen verses, including some no longer in common use today, speaking to the theme of the assurance of salvation by the presence of the Holy Spirit:

O for a thousand tongues to sing, my great Redeemer’s praise
The glories of my God and King, the triumphs of His grace!

On this glad day the glorious Sun Of Righteousness arose;
On my benighted soul He shone, and fill’d it with repose.

Then with my heart I first believed, Believed with faith Divine;
Power with the Holy Ghost received, to call the Saviour mine.

Some of Wesley’s hymns weren’t as “worship-ready.” After his brother John appointed Thomas Coke as Superintendent for the Methodists in America – giving to Coke the responsibilities in America that would have belonged to a Bishop in the Church of England – Charles Wesley penned a sarcastic verse to express his sense of anger and betrayal:

So easily are Bishops made
By man’s or woman’s whim?
Wesley his hands on Coke hath laid,
But who laid hands on him?

But the vast majority of his hymns, however, remain firmly entrenched on our lips. As a man who often preached in the fields to people unable to reach a parish church, yet another text speaks to the heart of Charles Wesley’s ministry:

Ye servants of God, your Master proclaim,
And publish abroad His wonderful Name;
The Name all victorious of Jesus extol,
His kingdom is glorious and rules over all.

But it is one of his hymns written on the theme of Christian perfection that is perhaps the most beloved. The hymn is among the most fitting and most quotable summations of the theology and ministry of this incredible theologian, preacher, and author:

Love divine, all loves excelling,
Joy of heaven to earth come down;
Fix in us thy humble dwelling;
All thy faithful mercies crown!
Jesus, Thou art all compassion,
Pure unbounded love Thou art;
Visit us with Thy salvation;
Enter every trembling heart.

Come, Almighty to deliver,
Let us all Thy life receive;
Suddenly return and never,
Never more Thy temples leave.
Thee we would be always blessing,
Serve Thee as Thy hosts above,
Pray and praise Thee without ceasing,
Glory in Thy perfect love.

Finish then thy new creation:
pure and spotless let us be
Let us see thy great salvation
Perfectly restored in thee
Changed from glory into glory
‘til in heaven we take our place
‘til we cast our crowns before thee, 
lost in wonder, love and praise!

David Sibley


NOTE: The Supreme Executive Committee has adjusted vote totals based on some cheating we detected. See your announcement on this subject..


Thomas Merton vs. Charles Wesley

  • Charles Wesley (50%, 3,236 Votes)
  • Thomas Merton (50%, 3,185 Votes)

Total Voters: 6,421

Loading ... Loading ...

162 Comments to "Thomas Merton vs. Charles Wesley"

  1. April 7, 2014 - 8:05 am | Permalink

    Love them both, but I voted for Charles. His music ministry remains excelling. (He’s not Bach, but still…)

    • April 7, 2014 - 9:24 am | Permalink

      I agree–it’s a tie so far in the runnings, which makes sense, and we’re still singing Wesley’s hymns–I’m always looking for the loveliness that stands the test of time. Love them both.

  2. Adam's Gravatar Adam
    April 7, 2014 - 8:11 am | Permalink

    Thomas Merton on to the Elate Eight just as Kentucky goes to the National Championship. Mysterious ways . . .

  3. Jon's Gravatar Jon
    April 7, 2014 - 8:21 am | Permalink

    The Spirit holds in tension my Methodist bent and my contemplative heart. Regardless of my denominational association, I vote as my heart sings with Wesley. Methinks Thomas would agree 😉

  4. John Lewis's Gravatar John Lewis
    April 7, 2014 - 8:22 am | Permalink

    Thomas Merton has played an enormous role in the commitment of several people I know to Christ and his kingdom, myself among them. He has been the magnet to a host of iron filings across confessional lines and even deeper divides in the human family. Charles the hymn-writer was a beloved friend before I was out of single-digit-years-old territory, and many of would be poorer but for his edifying work. Still, I couldn’t repress a wicked thought that comes to me whenever I see a “Green Book” number in our Sunday program: “Oh, no! I’m gonna be lost in ‘Wonder, Love and Praise’ again!”

  5. Susan Fiore's Gravatar Susan Fiore
    April 7, 2014 - 8:26 am | Permalink

    Both of these saints gave us the same Truth, but I have to vote for the one who gave to us a way to express the pure delight of knowing how our savior loves us. The composer of the joyous dancing tune Hyfrydol in the Hymnal 1982 must have been channeling Charles!

    • April 7, 2014 - 8:42 am | Permalink

      I like Hyfrydol much better than the tune sung at the royal wedding, but the words are sublime.

      • Elaine Hood Culver's Gravatar Elaine Hood Culver
        April 7, 2014 - 9:51 am | Permalink

        I agree. It’s hard to improve on Hyfrydol.

        • Phil's Gravatar Phil
          April 7, 2014 - 10:34 am | Permalink

          I like O du Liebe as the hymn tune for Love Divine (I’m a Lutheran), Hyfrydol is also a good hymn tune! Much better than the Welsh tune used at the Royal Wedding!

        • Christine Quinn-Jones's Gravatar Christine Quinn-Jones
          April 7, 2014 - 6:45 pm | Permalink

          I would choose Merton for Lent and Wesley for Pentecost. And to those of you who like Hyfrydol – so do I! I was ‘weaned’ on it in South Wales and learnt it first in welsh…Calon Lan 🙂

          • April 7, 2014 - 8:32 pm | Permalink

            Christine, do you recognize the tune to which the Royals sang “Love Divine”? And why would they possibly choose it over Hyfrydol? Didn’t realize that was not the original tune to which Wesley penned his hymn.

          • Christine Quinn-Jones's Gravatar Christine Quinn-Jones
            April 7, 2014 - 9:12 pm | Permalink

            Hi Linda! I can’t remember the tune the Royals had but I remember being puzzled by it! And I seem to have got myself confused over Hyfrydol. I play the keyboard at church and we have Hyfrydol for ‘Healing God, Almighty Father’ – and also for two other hymns because everyone likes it so much! For ‘Love Divine’ we have Blaenwern 🙂 When I was in primary school in Wales, we also sang ‘Calon Lan’ to a tune called Gwyrosydd by John Hughes!
            Hope we can solve the mystery of which tune the Royals had 🙂

          • April 7, 2014 - 9:38 pm | Permalink

            Christine, looks like it was Blaenwern that the Royals used as well. Might give your congregation a kick to sing “Love Divine” to Hyfyrdol. It’s much more cheerful (isn’t that what Hyfyrdol means in Welch?).

      • Katrina Soto's Gravatar Katrina Soto
        April 7, 2014 - 3:20 pm | Permalink

        I agree. It just seems confusing to have my mind hearing one tune, while my ears hear another. Loved the great view of all the hats, however. Was it a little bit cheating of Wesley’s celebrity blogger to use video of the Royal Wedding? All that bedazzle.

  6. Anne McCorkle Garrett's Gravatar Anne McCorkle Garrett
    April 7, 2014 - 8:28 am | Permalink

    I had not realized that the title of the Hymnal supplement Wonder, Love, and Praise came from the great hymn by Charles Wesley!

  7. MaurineRuby's Gravatar MaurineRuby
    April 7, 2014 - 8:28 am | Permalink

    Merton reads his own prayer and finishes up with “That’s pure Merton”? That just sounds off to me…

    At any rate, it’s been Charles Wesley all the way! He has me singing every day. Talk about “ear worms”!

    • Harlie Youngblood's Gravatar Harlie Youngblood
      April 7, 2014 - 8:49 am | Permalink

      That isn’t Merton reading the prayer in the video. It’s somebody else.
      And it’s Charles Wesley all the way for me too!

    • Valerie DeBenedette's Gravatar Valerie DeBenedette
      April 7, 2014 - 8:50 am | Permalink

      That wasn’t Merton reading the prayer, but another Benedictine.

      • Geo's Gravatar Geo
        April 7, 2014 - 6:12 pm | Permalink


  8. Thomas van Brunt's Gravatar Thomas van Brunt
    April 7, 2014 - 8:34 am | Permalink

    Lost in wonder, love and praise and in trying decide who to vote for today. Merton by one basket.

  9. Gigi's Gravatar Gigi
    April 7, 2014 - 8:35 am | Permalink

    Can’t believe Charles would beat out J.S. Bach, and just not certain about Merton, so I’ll let the winds decide this one.

  10. wilson reimers's Gravatar wilson reimers
    April 7, 2014 - 8:42 am | Permalink

    Since I sing in our choir,I’m all for Charles!!!!!

  11. Nancy Grear's Gravatar Nancy Grear
    April 7, 2014 - 8:43 am | Permalink

    Merton has my heart; but think of all the hymns that thousands have sung in praise of God.

    So much for my bracket!


  12. Another Peg's Gravatar Another Peg
    April 7, 2014 - 8:50 am | Permalink

    Touching to see Kate Middleton singing the words by heart, ready to cast a real crown. Merton is so very human and divine he could be a Bible figure. Today is probably another win-win day, but with all due respect to the monk, I’m going for the musical over the mystical. And not just because of the glimpse of Sir Elton and all them crazy hats.

    • Lindsay Graves's Gravatar Lindsay Graves
      April 7, 2014 - 9:09 am | Permalink

      Well said, Peg. Who WAS that woman in the bizarre chapeau behind Elizabth Regina? I too was touched by Kate’s hymn singing, perhaps because I grew up singing in Methodist church choirs.
      Charles Wesley touched me early and often.

      • Another Peg's Gravatar Another Peg
        April 7, 2014 - 9:23 am | Permalink

        The two young ladies in the wildest of headgear are the daughters of Sarah Ferguson. The beige hat was such a sensation, it had its own Facebook page. Its designer was clearly lost in wonder.

        • Emelyne's Gravatar Emelyne
          April 7, 2014 - 9:42 am | Permalink

          Princess Beatrice later sold the hat on EBay, raising a whopping £81,100 for UNICEF. I rather like the idea of raising a bit of a ruckus and turning the profits over for good!

          • April 7, 2014 - 11:38 am | Permalink

            And all for a hat that looked like a toilet set atop her head!

    • Katrina Soto's Gravatar Katrina Soto
      April 7, 2014 - 3:24 pm | Permalink

      Another Peg, I, too, was touched by seeing Kate singing a hymn obviously known to her. Not just a poser, that one! And I loved seeing all those great hats, but would not liked to have been next to the lady in the white hat with all the feathery things sticking out. That was just a “poke in the eye” waiting to happen.

  13. Brigid Courtney's Gravatar Brigid Courtney
    April 7, 2014 - 8:52 am | Permalink

    This was the harest decision I had to make…… (in Lent madness!!) Did vote for Charles Wesley, because his music makes my heart soar..

  14. Grace Cangialosi's Gravatar Grace Cangialosi
    April 7, 2014 - 8:56 am | Permalink

    I would vote for Merton against anyone. (Well, maybe not against Dorothy Day!)

  15. Fiona Haworth's Gravatar Fiona Haworth
    April 7, 2014 - 8:57 am | Permalink

    ‘… and the fact that I think that I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so.’ Merton’s prayer speaks to me, so although I love many of Wesley’s hymns, today my vote goes with Merton.

    • Kim Forbes's Gravatar Kim Forbes
      April 7, 2014 - 10:32 am | Permalink

      Me too Fiona. This one was so hard, that it came down to the tape. I viewed both videos, and the Merton prayer moved my heart.

      • Megan Elizabeth's Gravatar Megan Elizabeth
        April 7, 2014 - 12:46 pm | Permalink

        YES!! I love the fact that we have to ‘review the tapes’ in lent madness – makes it sound so sports-like…. 🙂

  16. Walter Gladwin's Gravatar Walter Gladwin
    April 7, 2014 - 9:04 am | Permalink

    Speaking for myself, Merton is my man. But I am only one of probably millions who haven’t read him but have sung and loved John Wesley’s hymns. So I guess I voted for them, and not for Merton.

  17. Mark D.'s Gravatar Mark D.
    April 7, 2014 - 9:04 am | Permalink

    Probably the toughest match in any bracket, any season. Merton by a free throw!

  18. pat royalty's Gravatar pat royalty
    April 7, 2014 - 9:07 am | Permalink

    my favorite quote from Merton when he grew unenchanted with the church in England, commenting on the processional, goes something like this: ‘they walk as if they have already arrived’. oh, yes, i’ve seen that, some vergers seem especially susceptible. however, i’m a tad tired of Merton (!can that be?). Wesley it is, for this moment.

  19. rellingrw's Gravatar rellingrw
    April 7, 2014 - 9:15 am | Permalink

    I love so many of Charles’ hymns that I am voting for Charles: he has shaped our common devotion and made our worship life richer.

  20. Anne L's Gravatar Anne L
    April 7, 2014 - 9:16 am | Permalink

    Incredibly tough today, but Merton’s prayer got me. Loved the hats, though.

  21. Sonia S.'s Gravatar Sonia S.
    April 7, 2014 - 9:16 am | Permalink

    Wonder, love, and praise
    Oh, what a day of days!
    Will I be certain
    if I vote for Merton?
    Or do the hymns of Wesley
    resound and bless me?

  22. Mary Lou Creamer's Gravatar Mary Lou Creamer
    April 7, 2014 - 9:19 am | Permalink

    WOW! Tough match, and as much as I love the words of Merton, the hymns of Charles hold my heart.

  23. Bob K.'s Gravatar Bob K.
    April 7, 2014 - 9:20 am | Permalink

    As much as I wanted to vote for a Wesley brother I ended up with Merton. The scope of his ministry, his connection with eastern religion, his complex and contradictory musings seem to capture the state of the Church today. Merton by a point. 🙂

  24. Jerry Rankin's Gravatar Jerry Rankin
    April 7, 2014 - 9:22 am | Permalink

    Merton’s prayer, prayed in the accompanying video, is the prayer of my life and ministry; so I voted for Thomas. But I am also mindful that the one “who sings, prays twice”.

  25. MaurineRuby's Gravatar MaurineRuby
    April 7, 2014 - 9:29 am | Permalink

    Thanks, y’all, for setting me straight on the Merton video. I just couldn’t reconcile that comment with the things I’ve read!!

  26. April 7, 2014 - 9:30 am | Permalink

    Wow! Looks like a close one today.

  27. Catherine's Gravatar Catherine
    April 7, 2014 - 9:30 am | Permalink

    Merton had me at his call to join God’s dance.

  28. Alan C's Gravatar Alan C
    April 7, 2014 - 9:32 am | Permalink

    “He who sings prays twice.” Probably for that reason Charles has been a bigger influence on my faith. So I’m voting for him even though i picked Merton to win the Golden Halo.

  29. Bob Cagle's Gravatar Bob Cagle
    April 7, 2014 - 9:35 am | Permalink

    Having just read Merton’s The Seven Story Mountain as part of my Lenten Discipline, I have a greater appreciation for the contemplative life and Merton’s journey.

  30. Vicki's Gravatar Vicki
    April 7, 2014 - 9:37 am | Permalink

    Another day one wishes one could vote for both. I comfort myself with the thought that at least here one is able to chose between two goods, rather than between the lesser of two not so goods. I respect and enjoy them both, and it seems in a way that we’re caught in the dilemma between a primary focus on gratitude (CW) and a primary focus on reflection and questioning(TM), both essential to life (and both shared by both saints really). So what’s a girl to do? It came down to the day, and i’m slightly in my own head leaning to the later in this moment – because i’m stuck inside on a beautiful spring morning? So Thomas gets the nod, with the caveat, that had it been another day it could just as easily have been dear Charles.

  31. Jennifer's Gravatar Jennifer
    April 7, 2014 - 9:38 am | Permalink

    While I often recite Merton’s prayer, I have to vote for Wesley whose hymns are known throughout Christendom.

  32. Lynda Moses's Gravatar Lynda Moses
    April 7, 2014 - 9:45 am | Permalink

    It’s validating to hear a famous person describe the feelings of insecurity in one’s spiritual path. I wept through the prayer that was read.
    Music always helps anchor me in my faith and can often speak what I want to say what I can’t speak/write well, and that could be a reason to vote for Charles, but sometimes it’s nice to see that the “saints” also lived with their faith being uncertain at times,and their prayers also spoke what I can poorly speak/write.

  33. Joy's Gravatar Joy
    April 7, 2014 - 9:46 am | Permalink

    How many many times I have said “I believe my desire to please you O Lord does in fact please you” and found new comfort and peace in those words. Yet I think music spans in even greater ways than thoughts human culthres, eras, and moves hearts and minds in ways beyond our understanding. I love you Thomas and thank God for you. My vote today goes to Charles.

  34. Ann Cappel's Gravatar Ann Cappel
    April 7, 2014 - 9:53 am | Permalink

    I wasn’t sure how I felt about Merton, so I ventured online to read more. I realize now that he was a man of our time. He led a self centered youth, but then felt the call of God for more depth to his existence. He persevered in his struggle and became a true influence of the 20th century
    I am all for music and hymns. I dearly love the deep history of Christianity. But, Thomas Merton is a man of our time, and example of the ongoing depth of our beliefs, and an inspiration to believe that we each have change within us.
    My vote goes to Merton! Win or lose, his story has had an impact on my life

  35. Anthony Lee's Gravatar Anthony Lee
    April 7, 2014 - 9:55 am | Permalink

    Gosh, as of the time of my vote, they’re neck in neck, but even if Merton loses, it’ll be by a nose. (Block that metaphor!) (Why do I always pick losers?) Much as I love Wesley’s hymns, Merton once again wins my favor for being “a poet, an artist, a jazz aficionado, a dissident, a lover, a peace activist, a hermit”–complex, extravagant, quirky–God needs more like him.

    • Vicki's Gravatar Vicki
      April 7, 2014 - 9:59 am | Permalink


  36. Elaine Hood Culver's Gravatar Elaine Hood Culver
    April 7, 2014 - 9:59 am | Permalink

    “Love Divine” was sung at Bruce’s and my wedding as well, and it’s a masterpiece. Nevertheless, I voted for Merton because of his perception of the complexity of human nature and its relationship with the divine.
    That done, thanks be to God for Charles Wesley and Thomas Merton, two holy men who gave us many holy gifts.

  37. Linda M's Gravatar Linda M
    April 7, 2014 - 10:07 am | Permalink

    Tough choice, love them both. The music wins out, though, because I love his hymns.
    It’s Charles all the way.

  38. Anne Burton's Gravatar Anne Burton
    April 7, 2014 - 10:15 am | Permalink

    I love Merton for his struggles, and his honesty in sharing them. However, I think more people have been influenced by Charles Wesley’s hymns so Charlie is my darlin’ today. I want “O Come Thou Traveler Divine” played at my funeral.

  39. Patricia's Gravatar Patricia
    April 7, 2014 - 10:27 am | Permalink

    I love Thomas’ writings. However, the faith of more Christians [of all denominations] are reminded of G-d’s wonder and love through the music of Charles than the much smaller number who have read and be inspired by Merton. Even the un-churched find themselves humming Wesley hymns, praising G-d regardless!

  40. Mabel Douwes's Gravatar Mabel Douwes
    April 7, 2014 - 10:31 am | Permalink

    Charlie has me singing praises with my lips, but my soul is dancing with Merton.

  41. Rev. Lucy Porter's Gravatar Rev. Lucy Porter
    April 7, 2014 - 10:32 am | Permalink

    As dear as Merton is to my soul, the hymns of Charles Wesley have been part of my formation for even longer, probably even when I was in my Methodist mother’s womb. One of the things that has kept me a Methodist (now United Methodist) for 76 years so far is the enthusiastic hymn singing in our churches. Incidentally, Charles wrote only the words to all these 6000+ hymns, not the music. They have been sung to various tunes over the years. However, there are three hymn tunes in the United Methodist Hymnal by his descendant, Samuel Sebastian Wesley: #473, Lead Me, Lord; #501, O Thou Who Camest from Above (with words by Charles Wesley!); and 545, The Church’s One Foundation, which is probably the best-known by this composer. We also have one hymn written by Samuel Wesley, father of John and Charles, as well as several by John Wesley. Charles Wesley gets my vote today.

  42. Diane's Gravatar Diane
    April 7, 2014 - 10:41 am | Permalink

    Sitting at my desk quietly singing “Love Divine All Loves Excelling” and feeling my heart swell. Charles gets my vote.

  43. Karen's Gravatar Karen
    April 7, 2014 - 10:44 am | Permalink

    I admire Merton, but, not being a theologian, I can relate better to Charles Wesley and his straightforward message of God’s love.

  44. Phil's Gravatar Phil
    April 7, 2014 - 10:46 am | Permalink

    “Oh, for a Thousand Tongues to Sing” is one of my favorites. Charles Wesley’s hymns are included in most hymnals of any note — across all denominations! Charles Wesley has a kind of universal appeal, that as a musician and a student of hymnody I cannot vote against. As St. Augustine said, “Those who sing, pray twice!”

    “Oh, for a Thousand Tongues to Sing!” words by Charles Wesley, tune: Azmon

    • JAMG's Gravatar JAMG
      April 7, 2014 - 4:30 pm | Permalink

      Thank you, Phil, for the posting.

  45. Anne Wrider's Gravatar Anne Wrider
    April 7, 2014 - 10:54 am | Permalink

    “Lost in wonder, love and praise.” Merton is impressive, but Charles has my heart.

  46. Catherine. (Kit)'s Gravatar Catherine. (Kit)
    April 7, 2014 - 10:55 am | Permalink

    Today is my birthday so I would like to be granted a second vote. I cast that vote for Thomas Merton after much contemplation.

    • Gillian B's Gravatar Gillian B
      April 7, 2014 - 3:10 pm | Permalink

      Happy Birthday!! My sister is Catherine, Kit for short too! I haven’t quite decided who to vote for yet. Better go contemplate.

  47. Jackson's Gravatar Jackson
    April 7, 2014 - 11:07 am | Permalink

    I’m a musician, a former Methodist (now at home in the Episcopal church). and a real supporter of Charles Wesley. Then I read over Merton’s story, and I began to sense that this joyful man from Kentucky (I am a native Tennessean) really deserves my vote today. But as I read those wonderful words of Charles which have inspired me, comforted me, challenged and guided me, I knew there was no other choice. Hark! The herald angels said vote for CW!

    • Harlie Youngblood's Gravatar Harlie Youngblood
      April 7, 2014 - 12:23 pm | Permalink

      Speaking of herald angels…
      I remember some years ago, when the Fourth Sunday of Advent fell on December 24.
      That morning at church we sang, for the recessional, “Lo! he comes, with clouds descending”. There we were, singing about the Second Coming, while we were on the very doorstep of Christmas Eve. Cool!
      And a great hymn, too.

      • Jackson's Gravatar Jackson
        April 7, 2014 - 3:10 pm | Permalink

        and another great Wesley hymn!

  48. Ann Shelly's Gravatar Ann Shelly
    April 7, 2014 - 11:09 am | Permalink

    This is the most difficult match up. One man reflects our inner selves and one brings such joy in the hymns. Not easy to decide.

  49. Mary Ann Grennen's Gravatar Mary Ann Grennen
    April 7, 2014 - 11:12 am | Permalink

    Had to go with Charles Wesley. I feel as if his music opens up a path to my soul to receive God, if that makes any sense. It was close, but I had to chose the composer over the poet.
    Quick Question on another subject. In the first week, I think the Archbishops picked my name to win a mug. How do I get it?????

  50. April 7, 2014 - 11:36 am | Permalink

    I will not be disappointed with whatever the outcome of today’s vote. Both of these saints have contributed so much to my spiritual journey. I went with Charles Wesley simply because hymns play such a tremendous role in my spiritual autobiography. Without that never-ending jukebox playing the Episcopal hymnal in my head, I don’t know how I would have been lured to go back through the doors of the church.

  51. Betsy Heilman's Gravatar Betsy Heilman
    April 7, 2014 - 11:37 am | Permalink

    I voted for Merton as a testament to Laurie Brock–what a lovely write up! Church music is nice and everything, but I don’t consider it especially necessary.

    • Laurie's Gravatar Laurie
      April 7, 2014 - 7:53 pm | Permalink

      Thank you! Researching and writing Merton’s bio was particularly meaningful, since I got to go to Gethsemani and meet monks who knew him. His writings are quite profound, and his life certainly preached.

    • JenniferThomasina's Gravatar JenniferThomasina
      April 7, 2014 - 8:00 pm | Permalink

      Collective intake of breath from all the Lutherans on board. Music “not especially necessary”?!?
      Good thing we can agree on so many other things…like the especially high quality of this week’s write-ups.

      • rellingrw's Gravatar rellingrw
        April 7, 2014 - 8:57 pm | Permalink

        Yes, Jennifer, I agree. Music is essential and hymn singing is right there too. Episcopalians are attached to music, even if they don’t have that rep. Gerontologists can tell you that when we get older and we lose our minds, the things we still remember are the hymns that we have sung in church. Those are the last things to go. So, if something is essential, then it would be those hymns.

        • Anne McCorkle Garrett's Gravatar Anne McCorkle Garrett
          April 7, 2014 - 10:34 pm | Permalink

          I also agree that music is essential for my spirituality and worship! A former United Methodist, now in the Episcopal Church, I have never gotten accustomed to the early services which are spoken with no music.

  52. aleathia (dolores)nicholson's Gravatar aleathia (dolores)nicholson
    April 7, 2014 - 11:39 am | Permalink

    SHE who sings prays twice, thank you very much.

    • Martie Collins's Gravatar Martie Collins
      April 7, 2014 - 8:20 pm | Permalink


  53. Cynthia Astle's Gravatar Cynthia Astle
    April 7, 2014 - 11:45 am | Permalink

    Oh, what a choice! Having made retreat at the Abbey of Gethsemani, where I was blessed with a vision that has shaped my spirituality, I am grateful to Thomas Merton for his writing and example. And yet, I cannot forsake my beloved “Uncle Chuck” Wesley, who with his brother “Father John” Wesley gave us the tradition of disciplined practice and grace-filled theology that we still sing today. Charles Wesley gets my vote!

  54. Elaine's Gravatar Elaine
    April 7, 2014 - 11:53 am | Permalink

    This may be the most difficult choice for me yet. Wonder, love, and praise are inspired by both!

  55. Pamela's Gravatar Pamela
    April 7, 2014 - 12:07 pm | Permalink

    I do love Merton…. but I named my Number Two Son after Charles Wesley. So…. Charles it is. Y’all are just being MEAN by putting two of my favorite folks up against each other!

  56. April 7, 2014 - 12:30 pm | Permalink

    Laurie Brock’s fine post about Thomas Merton grabbed his gift for holding the opposites of the present age in a fine tension. Besides, we owe him a ton for bringing contemplative prayer into the 20th century and paving the way for other greats such as Brothers Basil Pennington and Thomas Keating. I voted for Merton in order to make a statement in favor of the mystical…which of course is also touched by Wesley in abundance (wonder, love and praise!!). Nevertheless, the modern contemplative won out today. Merton for me!

  57. Carol Buckalew's Gravatar Carol Buckalew
    April 7, 2014 - 12:31 pm | Permalink

    I love the hymns and I sing. But it was the words of Merton that touched me this morning. I have not read any of his books or writings. Anyone have a recommendation of a good place to start?

    • Barbara's Gravatar Barbara
      April 7, 2014 - 6:31 pm | Permalink

      My one and only Merton book was “The Seven-Storey Mountain.” It’s basically his autobiography, up to and including the time he entered Gethsemani monsastery, and it’s pretty interesting. I think it came from journals he kept during that period. I found it especially interesting as a description of life in the early 20th Century on two continents.

      I’d recommend it, but it’s not a “spiritual how-to” or anything.

      • Glenis Elliott's Gravatar Glenis Elliott
        April 7, 2014 - 6:50 pm | Permalink

        Thank you for sharing Thomas Merton’s book. I will be adding it to my list of Lent Madness books I want to read.

  58. Sue's Gravatar Sue
    April 7, 2014 - 12:34 pm | Permalink

    Tough vote today, but I’m an avid fan of Merton, so had to vote for him.

  59. Becky S.'s Gravatar Becky S.
    April 7, 2014 - 12:43 pm | Permalink

    First, Kudos to both bloggers for their excellent use of multi-media and celebrity placement. Enjoyed it! Looking at the wedding attendees singing Charles Wesley’s words, I found it hard to detect much joy in their demeanor. I am pondering how we can help today’s “nones” find our churches. When we focus on the things we have loved since we were children, do we present our most welcoming face to the unchurched who wonder about and question God’s existence? Thinking of a conversation I had with a young person yesterday, today I had to vote for Merton. That prayer moves me deeply.

  60. J.B.'s Gravatar J.B.
    April 7, 2014 - 12:49 pm | Permalink

    AAAgh! Hardest vote yet!!! I am moved to vote for Thomas Merton but grateful to God for both of these saints.

  61. Susan Pieper's Gravatar Susan Pieper
    April 7, 2014 - 12:56 pm | Permalink

    Can’t do Easter without “Christ the Lord is Ris’n Today”!!!

    • Phil's Gravatar Phil
      April 7, 2014 - 2:35 pm | Permalink


  62. Verdery's Gravatar Verdery
    April 7, 2014 - 1:07 pm | Permalink

    While I have loved and sung Charles’s hymns all my life–and will continue to do so for the rest of it–I voted today for Thomas because of where I am spiritually in my life. This day is about contemplation and paradox.
    But it *was* cool to see all those stiff-upper-Brits singing “Love Divine”! And splendid of the Royals to include it in the wedding.

  63. Bob Corey's Gravatar Bob Corey
    April 7, 2014 - 1:31 pm | Permalink

    My Birthday — Charles’ Feast Day. A slender connection. I sought a better reason to vote. I found myself voting AGAINST Thomas as I contemplated certain things that disturb me, pretty much only on the basis of having read Seven Storey Mountain. That assessment could well be my problem not his, as well as the inadequacies of my bias toward Reformed theology.

    Charles sought constructive, not pentitential discipline. Charles adored a dynamic Jesus of mill and market, not the static Jesus of tabernacle and monstrance. Charles came to me at a younger age and clings to me still. Putting away childish things compels me to accept the challenge Thomas represents. But Charles, though dear to the child, is not among childish things. He’s among Faith, Hope, and Charity.

  64. Karolen's Gravatar Karolen
    April 7, 2014 - 1:47 pm | Permalink

    Toughest match up to date!

  65. Ann Willis Scott's Gravatar Ann Willis Scott
    April 7, 2014 - 2:11 pm | Permalink

    I give thanks for both of them this time. However…..Thomas got my vote. Today the contradictions of life call me to Merton’s kind of faith. The question mark is our top spiritual signpost and anyone who doesn’t think so must be living in a dreamworld not open to me. Hyfrydol, the tune of “Love Divine” was my parents’ favorite hymn and we sang it at both of their memorial services.

    • April 7, 2014 - 3:06 pm | Permalink

      I’m realizing that I love the words because I associate them with that music. Not that the words aren’t astounding, but the music is sublime. Now my choice is harder.

  66. Donald Lowery's Gravatar Donald Lowery
    April 7, 2014 - 2:25 pm | Permalink

    The one who sings prayers twice…so it is Charles for me. It is looking mighty close at the time I voted. Will there be a runoff if they come in as a tie?

  67. Rich's Gravatar Rich
    April 7, 2014 - 2:27 pm | Permalink

    Seemed like a tough choice at first, but Wesley wrote hymns and helped (unintentionally) found a new offshoot of the mainline Protestant Church. Thomas Merton, on the other hand, is perhaps one of the first of the true Emergence Christianity movement – a concept that only recently became familiar to me, but speaks to the need for ecumenical acceptance of the spirit of God in all, regardless of the human reflection of their faith traditions. Thomas is an early and major force in what is becoming a huge paradigm shift in how we view spirituality, our Lord, our own relationship with Christ as Christians, and with those of other faith traditions that we must recognize the face of God in to survive.

    • Anne McCorkle Garrett's Gravatar Anne McCorkle Garrett
      April 7, 2014 - 10:37 pm | Permalink

      Charles Wesley did not help found an offshoot. He helped form societies in England for revival of the established church. And please remember, the Methodist Movement was not a schism like the Episcopal Church suffered in recent decades. It was simply a revival movement like Cursillo. The only reason it became a church before the Episcopal Church is that they got impatient waiting for clergy, and hadn’t thought of the Scottish solution.

  68. Karen's Gravatar Karen
    April 7, 2014 - 3:02 pm | Permalink

    I love Thomas Merton, but as a United Methodist clergy – my vote goes to Charles Wesley!

  69. billfleming's Gravatar billfleming
    April 7, 2014 - 3:05 pm | Permalink


  70. Tom Sramek, Jr's Gravatar Tom Sramek, Jr
    April 7, 2014 - 3:39 pm | Permalink

    Merton gets my vote. Man of contemplation and contradictions–sounds like a Golden Halo recipient to me!

  71. relling westfall's Gravatar relling westfall
    April 7, 2014 - 3:44 pm | Permalink

    Thank you David Sibley for that wonderful video of the hymn sung at the Royal wedding. I would have voted for Charles Wesley anyway, but that video was very fun to watch. Thanks.

    • Carol Justice's Gravatar Carol Justice
      April 7, 2014 - 7:21 pm | Permalink

      Same here!

  72. Kelly A Donovan's Gravatar Kelly A Donovan
    April 7, 2014 - 4:01 pm | Permalink

    Brother Louis has my vote~always!

  73. Patsy's Gravatar Patsy
    April 7, 2014 - 4:02 pm | Permalink

    Another tough one. I go with the hymn-writer, whose hymns have moved me to tears and flights of rapture [even though I stayed quite Episcopally grounded].

  74. April 7, 2014 - 4:15 pm | Permalink

    Mos Def, Two Cool Cats, but Wesley gets my vote for making the best mix tape for Jesus! Just like my college boyfriends.. No denying this one!

  75. Glenis Elliott's Gravatar Glenis Elliott
    April 7, 2014 - 4:17 pm | Permalink

    So tough. What a way to get ready for the final four!!!! I think for me the picture of William & Kate knowing they were singing Love Divine was the final deciding fact for me I must admit that I won’t be upset with either one.

  76. Alene's Gravatar Alene
    April 7, 2014 - 4:25 pm | Permalink

    I do not know how to vote, but I trust that the desire to vote for both does in fact inspire and that both these saints will continue to lead the way regardless of who wins the vote today.

  77. Holly S.'s Gravatar Holly S.
    April 7, 2014 - 5:22 pm | Permalink

    I voted Thomas Merton – that prayer just did it for me. If Anna Cooper could beat out Bach, is Charles Wesley toast in the next round?

    (My Catholic roots are showing here – I’m not familiar with any of these hymns.)

    • Anne McCorkle Garrett's Gravatar Anne McCorkle Garrett
      April 7, 2014 - 5:47 pm | Permalink

      I knew Roman Catholics didn’t sing many of the hymns, but surely they sing Hark! The Herald Angels Sing.

    • Phil's Gravatar Phil
      April 7, 2014 - 6:29 pm | Permalink

      I know that Hark! The Herald Angels Sing is in the Catholic hymnal, I went to two different Catholic Universities!

      • Phil's Gravatar Phil
        April 7, 2014 - 6:34 pm | Permalink

        I believe I have also heard Catholics sing Jesus Christ is Risen Today, also by Charles Wesley!

        • rellingrw's Gravatar rellingrw
          April 7, 2014 - 7:27 pm | Permalink

          Doesn’t everyone sing something by Charles Wesley?

          • Phil's Gravatar Phil
            April 7, 2014 - 9:52 pm | Permalink

            I think that is essentially correct!

    • Molly Reingruber's Gravatar Molly Reingruber
      April 7, 2014 - 10:01 pm | Permalink

      I just couldn’t decide today. Anna Cooper has NC connections, so I will probably vote for her in the Elate 8 anyway…same for Thomas Gallaudet who was associate rector of my parish for a while.

  78. Phil's Gravatar Phil
    April 7, 2014 - 5:29 pm | Permalink

    Charles Wesley: Jesus Christ is Risen Today! Hymn Tune: Easter Hymn

    Charles Wesley: Hark! The Herald Angels Sing Tune Mendelssohn

    Next to the Word of God, the noble art of music is the greatest treasure in the world. — Martin Luther

  79. April 7, 2014 - 5:35 pm | Permalink

    Reading Merton’s Asian Journal during Lent, I am grateful for his inspired commitment to join the early dialogues with other leaders of world religions. In my life time I have seen the fruit of his work. No stranger to Wesley, I am certain he sang “Christ the Lord is Ris’n Today” many times. With that in mind, my vote goes to Merton (free throw!).

  80. April 7, 2014 - 5:46 pm | Permalink

    Must vote for “Love Divine,” my favorite hymn (though only when sung to Hyfrydol), though also voting for younger brother Charles’ dig to older brother John’s hubris.

  81. Kate Guistolise's Gravatar Kate Guistolise
    April 7, 2014 - 6:18 pm | Permalink

    This one is REALLY HARD!
    My first instinct was to go with Wesley, his hymns are incredible! I was thinking about how they always made me feel good. And Merton has ways made me so very uncomfortable… That’s when I decided to go with Merton. Yes, he makes me squirm – he struggled – so do I. How he got through those troubles and the growth he showed and his honesty made me realize that although the wonderful words of prayer contained in Wesley’s hymns are an important part of my prayer life, perhaps the Holy Spirit is nudging me this Lent to walk a more challenging path. So it’s Merton for me.

  82. Geo's Gravatar Geo
    April 7, 2014 - 6:30 pm | Permalink

    I’ve been reading Merton since I was a high school kid forty-some years ago but, oddly, I voted for Aelred in the last round. Oh well, I’m sure Merton would have approved of my vote for his Cistercian predecessor. I know Charles Wesley is a huge presence but I see Merton as more contemporary; flawed, yet continually seeking God and something of a change-agent. As a nod to our decades long friendship, Confrater Maria Ludovicus gets my vote today.

    • Phil's Gravatar Phil
      April 7, 2014 - 6:41 pm | Permalink

      When in two weeks from last Sunday, virtually every church in the world sings Jesus Christ is Risen Today (on Easter Sunday, except for the Eastern Orthodox), you will know just how “contemporary” Charles Wesley is!

      • April 7, 2014 - 10:09 pm | Permalink

        I believe we’re all, including the Orthodox, on the same day for Easter this year, are we not?

        • Phil's Gravatar Phil
          April 8, 2014 - 10:31 am | Permalink

          I was unaware of that!

  83. Madeleine Baier's Gravatar Madeleine Baier
    April 7, 2014 - 7:05 pm | Permalink

    Hokey Smoke Bullwinkle, this just keeps getting harder!! I voted for Wesley, though I am inclined to just dump all this competition and strew haloes hither and yon!!

  84. patricia's Gravatar patricia
    April 7, 2014 - 7:08 pm | Permalink

    hurrah for charles! so glad he prevailed. now, on to the golden halo. i love lent madness!

    • April 7, 2014 - 8:22 pm | Permalink

      The polls are still open on the West Coast!

      • Anne McCorkle Garrett's Gravatar Anne McCorkle Garrett
        April 7, 2014 - 10:39 pm | Permalink

        The polls are open until 8 a.m. Eastern Time, which is several hours away.

  85. Conny Santana's Gravatar Conny Santana
    April 7, 2014 - 7:25 pm | Permalink

    So much about Charles’ music but he didn’t write the music, he wrote the hymns. The hymns were put to the music. I just wanted to point this or some several people shafted that they chose the music over poetry. Charles hymns are basically poetry that was put to music. Just saying. I voted for Merton, a man very much of our times.

    • rellingrw's Gravatar rellingrw
      April 7, 2014 - 7:30 pm | Permalink

      I agree with Phil, above, on this whole contemporary business….. poetry is contemporary yesterday, today and tomorrow

    • Phil's Gravatar Phil
      April 7, 2014 - 9:50 pm | Permalink

      Who said he wrote the music?

    • Anne McCorkle Garrett's Gravatar Anne McCorkle Garrett
      April 7, 2014 - 10:41 pm | Permalink

      It is true that Charles wrote the lyrics to the hymns as poetry, which has then been put to an assortment of music. In fact, 19th century hymnals had separate books for lyrics and for music, and there was a list of tunes to which the song could be sung. However, Charles’ intent was indeed to be writing songs to be sung in corporate worship, not to be writing poems to stand alone.

  86. Conny Santana's Gravatar Conny Santana
    April 7, 2014 - 7:28 pm | Permalink

    Argh! That is, as several people stated that they choose music over poetry. Dang auto correct!

  87. Conny Santana's Gravatar Conny Santana
    April 7, 2014 - 7:34 pm | Permalink

    Surely the vote is not over. It’s only 1:30 in the afternoon here in Hawaii. Let’s not be to hasty.

  88. Harlie Youngblood's Gravatar Harlie Youngblood
    April 7, 2014 - 7:51 pm | Permalink

    “Wesley his hands on Coke hath laid,
    But who laid hands on him?”
    One of the things that draws me to Charles is that he upheld the Apostolic Succession of bishops (which links us in the present day to the earliest believers in Jesus).

  89. Kathleen Mary's Gravatar Kathleen Mary
    April 7, 2014 - 8:25 pm | Permalink

    Thank you, celebrity blogger, for posting the video of Father Matthew reading Thomas Merton’s famous prayer. Though I’ve been Episcopalian for the last 15 years, I go down to Gethsemani once or twice a year for a silent retreat. You can really feel close to Merton there, and pray by his grave. The monks certainly couldn’t care less what denomination or religion you are. I got to have a talk with Father Matthew a few times, and back a few years ago when he was well enough to give his evening talks I would always go to them when I was there. The video made me tear up.

    Though I’m a little disappointed Merton lost, I suspect that he thinks this whole thing is hilarious, and that he and Charles are having a beer and laughing together…

    By the way, someone had mentioned The Seven Storey Mountain. Later in life, though he always stayed true to the Catholic church, he said he wasn’t the man who had written that book any more. His later writings were different, and reflect how far ranging his spiritual journey was. He was also just an incredible writer, especially in his journals.

  90. Jason Tank's Gravatar Jason Tank
    April 7, 2014 - 8:48 pm | Permalink

    My contradictory soul finds comfort in the words of Thomas Merton, therefore he’s getting my vote.

  91. Anne E.B.'s Gravatar Anne E.B.
    April 7, 2014 - 9:08 pm | Permalink

    Charles Wesley for me today.

  92. Molly Reingruber's Gravatar Molly Reingruber
    April 7, 2014 - 10:04 pm | Permalink

    Upon deep reflection I wonder: who will have better kitsch for the Elate 8?

    • Molly Reingruber's Gravatar Molly Reingruber
      April 7, 2014 - 10:05 pm | Permalink

      Oh, that’s right, it doesn’t matter because I’ll vote for Anna Cooper anyway….

    • Molly Reingruber's Gravatar Molly Reingruber
      April 7, 2014 - 10:10 pm | Permalink

      At 10 p.m. Eastern the spread is only 70 points in favor of Wesley. Oh myyyy….

  93. April 7, 2014 - 10:30 pm | Permalink

    Now it’s only 53 votes! Late-night Catholics beat early-morning Methodists?

  94. Leonora's Gravatar Leonora
    April 7, 2014 - 11:58 pm | Permalink

    This is for Herman and Don Will in honor of the United Methodists. And this is for the power of voice and song.

  95. Nancy Mawhinney's Gravatar Nancy Mawhinney
    April 8, 2014 - 12:19 am | Permalink

    12:18 AM and the point spread is 4 for Charles! Only four!!! Good grief, Charlie Brown…. or Charlie Wesley!

  96. Sue's Gravatar Sue
    April 8, 2014 - 12:40 am | Permalink

    I am a recovering Baptist/Methodist–raised by Methodists in a church I thought was deathly boring, terrorized by evil and sin and fire and brimstone at a Baptist parochial school–over 40 years ago. Happy being contemplative and Merton inspired and Episcopalian! 🙂

    • April 8, 2014 - 12:06 pm | Permalink

      I am a recovering Baptist also, and didn’t really discover Wesley’s hymns (other than Christmas carols) until I became Episcopalian–when they quickly became my favorites.

  97. Irene Cowley's Gravatar Irene Cowley
    April 8, 2014 - 12:51 am | Permalink

    As we go to bed on the’West Coast’, the split is 16 (but it keeps changing!). It will be interesting to see how our Anglican, Lutheran and Methodist brothers and sisters in NZ, Australia, China, India and Africa change things!!

  98. H.G.'s Gravatar H.G.
    April 8, 2014 - 2:33 am | Permalink

    Just had a mindfulness group get out. Someone mentioned this so we had to put our votes in for Merton. Love this site.

  99. Anne McCorkle Garrett's Gravatar Anne McCorkle Garrett
    April 8, 2014 - 3:58 am | Permalink

    I hope this tight margin is not tempting anyone to cheating! The spread just jumped from 7 to 15 in a short time.

    • Jane C's Gravatar Jane C
      April 8, 2014 - 7:41 am | Permalink

      Only 20 minutes to go! Wesley needs just 9 votes. Help, anyone!

  100. Jane C's Gravatar Jane C
    April 8, 2014 - 7:56 am | Permalink

    I demand a recount. Well, unless Charles squeaks ahead in the next 4 minutes.

    • Anne McCorkle Garrett's Gravatar Anne McCorkle Garrett
      April 8, 2014 - 8:07 am | Permalink

      I agree! Or at least look for instances of cheating! I’ve never seen one come out this close, with switches in who’s ahead. But I do remember one where there was multiple voting from the same computer, and the SEC needed to remove some votes.

    • Jane C's Gravatar Jane C
      April 8, 2014 - 8:09 am | Permalink

      And could we get Jimmy Carter to oversee the recount?

  101. Patsy's Gravatar Patsy
    April 8, 2014 - 8:41 am | Permalink

    This close vote will go down in Lent Madness history. Both saints are worthy . I am glad the SEC is checking the chads this morning.

  102. Chaz's Gravatar Chaz
    April 8, 2014 - 9:43 am | Permalink

    Oops. An intro to Bible study group I had last night voted from the same computer. Sorry if that’s against the rules! if we had thought of it we would’ve just voted from our cell phones instead. Yay technology!

    • Anne McCorkle Garrett's Gravatar Anne McCorkle Garrett
      April 8, 2014 - 10:28 am | Permalink

      Well, that depends upon the votes of the Bible study group. If you voted for Merton, then it was absolutely against the rules, and your votes must be removed! If your votes went for Wesley, then we can be gracious and let it slide this time.

  103. April 8, 2014 - 10:05 am | Permalink

    Is the SEC consulting with the Diocese of Massachusetts tellers?

Comments are closed.