I readily admit that I am a Mac addict and at times I think I am more successful in converting people to the Apple ecosystem from the Windows than sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ (but I take solace in Umberto Eco’s famous proposal that Mac was the Catholic computer). So I don’t just look at liturgy blogs. This can lead to some interesting cross-pollination in my liturgical musings.
Today I saw an interesting example of the value of relics on MacRumors. The post is entitled Original Apple I Piece Used in Caviar’s $10,000 Limited-Edition iPhone 12 Pro Here we are told that the Russian luxury accessory firm Caviar has created a case for the latest iPhones that start at $10,000 each (this is the base model, more expensive luxury versions are available).
One of the reasons for the high price tag is that Caviar have laid their hands on one of the original Apple I computers. These computers were made in 1976 and only 63 of these are known to exist and “they have been known to fetch around $400,000 at auction.” The computer has been broken up and “a fragment of the circuitry of the first personal computer in the world – Apple 1” has been incorporated into the iPhone case.
Less wealthy readers might be reassured to know that a cheaper cover is also available starting at a paltry $6,490. This “key element” of the budget case “is an Apple logo of aviation titanium with a piece of the original legendary Steve Jobs’ turtleneck.”
On a very real level this luxury is in a good example of Pope Francis’ warning in Fratellli Tutti that “persons are no longer seen as a paramount value to be cared for and respected, especially when they are poor and disabled, ‘not yet useful’ – like the unborn, or ‘no longer needed’ – like the elderly. We have grown indifferent to all kinds of wastefulness, starting with the waste of food, which is deplorable in the extreme.” Nonetheless I think that the desire to have a “relic” of the original Apple computer, or even a “third-class relic” of Steve Jobs also points to the need humanity still has a need for physical contact with those who have gone before us and even physical contact with our saints in the form of relics.