On Bad Bishops & Other Catholics:
"As for bad Catholics, this is simply one of the facts of life. I am reviewing some sermons of St. Augustine on the psalms and ran across this:
'Still I want to warn you about this, brothers; the Church in this world is a threshing floor, and as I have often said before and still say now, it is piled high with chaff and grain together. It is no use trying to be rid of all the chaff before the time comes for winnowing. Don't leave the threshing-floor before that, just because you are not going to put up with sinners. Otherwise you will be gobbled up by the birds before you can be brought into the barn.'
She probably sees more stupidity and vulgarity than she does sin and these are harder to put up with than sin, harder on the nerves."
Of Faith & Novels:
"I don't think you should write something as long as a novel around anything that is not of the gravest concern to you and everybody else and for me this is always the conflict between an attraction for the Holy and the disbelief in it that we breathe in with the air of the times. It's hard to believe always but more so in the world we live in now. There are some of us who have to pay for our faith every step of the way and who have to work out dramatically what it would be like without it and if being without it would be ultimately possible or not. I can't allow any of my characters, in a novel anyway, to stop in some halfway position. This doubtless comes from a Catholic education and a Catholic sense of history - everything works towards its true end or away from it, everything is ultimately saved or lost..."
"Yesterday I sold a pair of [peacocks]...These people showed up in a long white car...The man was a structural engineer. He said he had a friend who was a writer in Mississippi and I said who was that. He said, 'His name is Bill Faulkner. I don't know if he's any good or not but he's a mighty nice fellow.' I told him he was right good..."