Wednesday, June 19, 2019

So how come nobody ever punched Uncle Ted in the nose?

I hesitate to write this because it will probably offend a lot of people but I have simply had enough of the sugar coating that has been going on concerning the latest clergy sex scandals. For years people have been gossiping about Monsignor Rossi, the rector of the Immaculate Conception basilica in DC   and male Catholic University students.  I am not defending Rossi. In fact, I'm horrified. If he made overtures to male students he should be removed as rector of the Basilica, public ministry, and returned to the lay state.  However, he has not been accused of slipping drugs into drinks or running a Turkish prison out of his office. He may have said " How bout it?" or "Do this or I'll make sure you lose your scholarship," but the grown and in the prime of his life  college student couldn't be forced into it.  We treat college students like boys and girls but they are not and if you've ever been in an emergency room  near a university on a weekend night you've probably seen what damage an angry college student can do using nothing but his fists.

In all the years he was preying on seminarians apparently nobody  has claimed to have seen  Theodore McCarrick coming to Mass with a black eye or having to make an emergency dental visit because he claimed to have been in an accident that caused him to lose a few teeth.  I don't think that any seminarian over the age of 18 who engaged in sex acts with that wizened, foul imp can claim legal rape and neither can any male college student who acquiesced to Rossi.  McCarrick and Archbishop Bransfield up in West Virginia are a gruesome twosome but we  obviously have another problem that nobody seems to be talking about.   Why did so many young men, seminarians, lay college students and young priests put up with all this? Is sex for recompense the way to get ahead in certain Catholic circles? Why are some young men golden boys in the clerical and professional lay Catholic ranks and others-- devout, smart, and liked and trusted by men,  relegated to the outer Mongolias of their dioceses?

For further information about Monsignor Rossi see this post at An Archdiocese of Washington Catholic blog.  I can't be shocked anymore but these things do make me sick.

Monday, June 17, 2019

Mass on a road trip

Rocky's nephew graduated this weekend so we went to Mass at St. Ignatius at Chapel Point.  The parish was founded in 1641 and I think is the oldest continuously used parish in the US.  The parish priest gave a very good homily. He taught what the catechism says about the Holy Trinity and discussed what the Church Fathers have said over the centuries. The parishioners are kind and very tolerant of tourists. Sitting in the old pews I couldn't help but think about all the people who have  walked up this aisle over the centuries. May they rest in peace and may they pray for me.

Saturday, June 08, 2019

Adventures in ushering-- the modesty edtion

Some years ago when Rocky was ushering at our old parish he asked a lady and her two daughters if they wanted to take up the unconsecrated Hosts and wine. They agreed. The lady and her family had been parishioners for many years and the family were friendly with the pastor. They had taken the gifts up before without incident. This time,when they got up  everyone could see that the youngest girl who looks to be about 13, was wearing white lace shorts that barely covered her buttocks. Several people complained to Father after Mass.  Later a memo went out to all the ushers to make sure that the people asked to take up the gifts were decently dressed. Rocky was very unhappy that the ushers were expected to do what the parents should be doing and said so. He also pointed out that the girl was wearing a long sweater when he saw her in the pew that covered her to the knees. He had no idea that she'd take the sweater off and he certainly had no idea of what she wearing underneath. The only person at fault was the mother. The people who were upset with Father should have been in her face instead.

It's odd but if you talk to women about modesty they freak out and accuse you of wanting them to look like Afghan women. Nonsense.  God made us to look good to men. He did not make us to look like we are for sale. There is a huge line between see through lace shorts ---which served no legitimate purpose; the church was ice cold and if the girl was that hot she needed to be taken to the hospital---- and wearing a woman hating mobile prison.


Divine Savior Jesus Christ, Thou are the Good Shepherd who gives His life for His sheep. Oh, be in a very special way the Good Shepherd of those poor lost priests who are also appointed by Thee to be leaders of Thy people, but who have broken the oath of their holy ordination and have become unfaithful to their exalted calling. Bestow upon these poorest of the poor the very fullness of that pastoral solicitude with which Thou dost so faithfully seek the sheep that are lost! Touch their hearts with the irresistible ray of grace which emanates from Thine all-merciful love! Enlighten their minds and strengthen their wills, that they may turn away from all sin and error and come back to Thy holy altar and to Thy people. O most compassionate Savior! Remember that Thou didst once redeem the souls of Thine erring priests with Thy Precious Blood and in infinite preferential love didst impress upon them the indelible character of the priesthood. Put wholly to shame those miserable helpers of Satan who lay snares for the virtue of priests and endanger the holy ideal of the priesthood. Most graciously accept our prayers and sacrifices for poor priests who have gone astray and hear our earnest petition.

Imprimatur - Bishop John F. Noll (April 18, 1948)

St. Anthony of Padua, defender of the Holy Eucharist, obtain for us holy priests
St. John-Mary Vianney, model of sacerdotal holiness, obtain for us holy priests

St. Francis Xavier, patron of missionary priests, obtain for us holy priests
St. Therese of the Child-Jesus and of the Holy Face, victim offered for the sanctification of priests, obtain for us holy priests

Saints and Servants of God, obtain for us holy priests.

Friday, June 07, 2019

What's up with all the soft core porn on Catholic sites?

I used to read a political/cultural blog by a man who raised a lot Hell back in the 60s and 70s but repented . Why did I stop reading him? Because of the porn. He can have a beautiful post about goodness, kindness and the mercy of God and then in the very next post have  a photo of a semi naked woman. Lately even his posts about his prodigal years seem less like St. Augustine's confessions and more like "I know it was bad and I wish I hadn't done it but I sure had fun," semi-boasting.  Another Catholic Tumblr blog that I used to read had breathtakingly beautiful Catholic art but also had gauzy soft core photos and paintings of naked women.

What is the deal with these guys? Are they faking their Faith for kicks or are they trying too hard to show  that while they're devout they aren't girly? If it's the latter isn't anyone worried about this? I've seen many tiresome rants about Catholic men not participating in their parishes but why would they when many men look around see that the parish is only for women, little kids and Father Skippy? Nobody talks about it but it's gotten to the point where men seem to be ashamed of being devout and have to demonstrate in some way, albeit a crude one that they aren't like Fr. Skippy.

Thursday, June 06, 2019

Don't make your money from writing or talking about the church

Whenever I meet a young lay person studying theology and complaining about how little they are going to make as a professor I always want to give them a good shake. In  America we are taught to follow our passion when it comes time to get a job but what if your passion simply will not support a family and a wife who is not interested in genteel poverty? I've seen Protestant preacher converts who were too old to start over with a career who glide into being Catholic apologists and I've seen cradle Catholic guys, (its' mostly guys) who have some talent at it, supplement their incomes with writing gigs at  Catholic media outlets. The writing gig can lead to a book and the lucrative speaking circuit and fans who hang on their every thought instead of consulting an actual priest. The trouble with this is the gravy train has to be fueled.

When you have a family and the rent/mortgage/tuition needs to be paid it's pretty hard to take a stand that could take food from your children's mouths or make your spouse very unhappy because the bill collector keeps calling. Dr. Peter Kwasniewski wrote a review on Amazon about Antonio Socci's book. Somebody didn't like it and he revised the review four times and each time was less positive a bout the book.  Pitiful.