Category Archives: Rude & Amusing

Badges???

Man saying "I have a Catholic website." Second man at table replying "You'll need a badge."

Vatican observers did a double-take when they read Paragraph 146 of the final approved Youth Synod document.  While there’s plenty to be found in the document which will curl the hair of most traditional/orthodox Catholics, Paragraph 146 is a whopper in its own right.  It speaks to the need for creating “certification systems for Catholic websites, to counter the spread of fake news regarding the Church.”

Say what, now?

You mean something like the electro-magnetic web-based Internetty version of a Imprimatur or Nihil Obstat kind of thing for web content?

Sounds like a swell idea…what could possibly go wrong?

It’s one thing for the Church to put her seal of approval on Catholic publications advising readers that they’ll find nothing doctrinally offensive or heretical in a book or some such.  The Church should have been doing more of that…assuming, of course, that it would be the heretical or quasi-heretical stuff that would get the flashing red warning light associated with it.  These days, you’re probably more likely to get clotheslined by a Vatican theologian for actually supporting the Magisterium as it existed prior to this pontificate.

I think most of us can imagine what’s really behind the Synod’s report calling for ‘badges of approval’ for Catholic websites:  they want to suppress dissent.

Well, I don’t know many of my fellow Catholic internet dudes/dudettes who are thrilled with that idea.  It’s not hard to imagine that outfits like Church Militant, LifeSite News, the Lepanto Institute and The Remnant would be early targets of such a “certification process.”

Dear Youth Synod Document writers/ghost-writers/stooges, we have a message for you:

Read more about it here–>  https://www.churchmilitant.com/news/article/vatican-looks-to-censor-lay-catholics

What’s That Stang Thang?

Cartoon depiction of Vatican

Yeah, today’s Halloween.  It’s a special time of the year (except for the raccoons who come to visit me throughout the year; they show up each night expecting treats, and they’re always wearing masks, so every night of the year is Halloween for them, I guess…)

And apparently, even the folks in the Vatican are into dress-up this October.  During the Youth Synod, Pope Francis was seen walking around looking like he was preparing to play Quidditch.  His staff (called a Papal ferula) looked nothing like a traditional bishop’s crozier, and certainly nothing like the trademark Crucifix which adorned the top of St. John Paul II’s ferula.

Observers can be forgiven if they sensed some sort of Wiccan flavor to the staff he was carrying.  It looked far more like a stang of the type favored by those practiced in the dark arts than it resembled anything Christian.  “Not so!” we were assured by Vatican staff (the administrative sort of staff as opposed to the ceremonial walking stick sort of staff).  The new, avantgarde and oh-so-fashionable staff was a gift from “the youth.”  If you look closely (really, really closely) you can almost–if you squint just right–see what might look like a Y-shaped Crucifix.

Taking a shot or two of the local chianti might aid the identification process.

Not only are we laity having trouble with the funny-looking staff, the Papal staff is having trouble with the staff as well…

 

Francis, Chairman Mao, and King Henry VIII

It’s hard to keep up with all the moves being made during this pontificate.  Many of the pronouncements coming from the Vatican seem to be intentionally ambiguous, allowing for the faithful to fib to themselves that nothing’s changed, and allowing the less heterodox among us to exploit the carefully constructed loopholes in documents like Amoris Laetitia.  No doubt the end product of this month’s synod will produce whoppers of equal magnitude.

Then, of course, there are the outright moves of betrayal, such as the stunning agreement with the Red Chinese which effectively throws the Underground Church in China under the bus.

Even though many faithful Catholics are confused, perplexed, disturbed, and perhaps even outraged by the Pontiff’s moves, there are those whom we suspect would be quite pleased…

“I’m Viganò!”

Hand forming the "V for victory" sign. Next to it are the words "V is for Vigano"

V_is_Vigano_GOOD_2

The hunt is on for the “renegade” Archbishop!  In the wake of his bombshell eleven page letter which named quite a few names, more than a few high-ranking prelates are ticked off.  According to some press reports, the Vatican is actively seeking the whereabouts of Abp. Viganò, and has dispatched agents to locate him.  Fearing for his life, Abp. Viganò has  gone into hiding.  From an undisclosed location, Viganò has written two additional letters.

Pray for Viganò’s safety during this time of crisis.  Pray that his allegations be investigated fully, and pray to Our Lady that our beloved Church will emerge from this present tribulation stronger and holier!

Yeah, but still…

Two pictures. The left is of a priest at a traditional Latin Mass facing the altar and elevating the Chalice. The picture on the right is of a Novus Ordo Mass with the priest facing forward while four young women perform a liturgical dance.

Traditional vs Novus Ordo MassDuring the recent spate of dangerously high winds and unpredictable wild fires that threatened southern California, I wanted to stick close to home in case things got dicey.  So instead of going to my regular Latin Mass parish (which is about an hour’s drive from my rural home), I attended some masses at Catholic Church in our nearby small town.  One of them was reasonably decent, with some good traditional singing (they did the Gloria in Latin, which was a very pleasant surprise!) and a dignified rendition of their Novus Ordo liturgy.  That was on December 8th, and I thought to myself, “Well, that wasn’t too bad!  It certainly wasn’t a Traditional Mass of the Extraordinary Rite, but it was done with reverence.  Yeah, not too bad.”  When I wen t to the same parish for the regular Sunday Mass a few days later, I got clobbered by some full-on “Church of Nice” kind of stuff:  Whacky songs, applause, a platoon-sized contingent of Eucharistic Ministers, and an altar woman (she was far too old to be termed an “altar girl,” which is disturbing enough in its own right; but this alter server had a braid of partially greying hair traversing half way down her back.  It was just plain weird!).  At communion, I knelt to receive the Blessed Sacrament on my tongue, and it became embarrassingly evident that I had chosen the wrong line.  Eucharistic Minister Number Three of Five had no idea how to administer the Sacrament in the time-honored manner, and we came very close to having a Eucharistic fumble.

Following communion but before the concluding rite, therewas the inevitable parade of lay people to the pulpit, each with a vital announcement to make, each little speech being met with enthusiastic applause.  Sufficiently brutalized, I sought refuge in the side room reserved for the Blessed Sacrament (no tabernacle on or anywhere near the alter in this church, of course, built in the 90’s according to whatever liturgical-architectural whims were prevalent at the time).  My intent was to say a Divine Mercy chaplet there, with a little peace and quiet.  The tabernacle in this room was of heavy industrial design, looking as if it was meant to contain dangerous radioactive waste rather than the Real Presence.  As Mass concluded with a rousing “going forth” ditty, the inside of the church erupted into a cacophony of happy voices as the parishioners greeted each other heartily at the top of their lungs and caught up on important personal goings-on of a significance far too important for them to wait until they had entered the lobby area.

Was the Mass I attended valid?  Yep.  Definitely.  Was it, in my personal opinion, done in poor taste with less reverence than should be shown by faithful Catholics?  Yes.  Can they do better?  Yes, they can!  I’d seen them do a better job just a couple of days earlier.

May God bless those good people.  I wish them well.  And it makes me all the more grateful each and every time I step into my own parish church!

IMPORTANT CAVEAT:  The picture accompanying this article (the one with the liturgical chorus line) was NOT taken at the parish I visited.  It wasn’t that whacky..!