Saturday, June 20, 2009

It's all about sex.

Erotica might be a better word.
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When I was in 8th or 9th grade, I was once talking with my friends about 'self-abuse' - mainly because I didn't know what it was and Father always asked in confession - "was it complete self-abuse?" I said yes - but as Bob told Larry and me - it really wasn't. I don't want to go into any details with this whole thing, but according to Bob you could play around all you wanted, and if you didn't - you know - it was only a venial sin, and that is what Father was trying to determine.
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Well I didn't know that because I hadn't - never mind. Anyway - the point is that we learned to split hairs regarding sin - did I go too far? Was it just a venial sin? Is it permitted? (Personally, I don't think anyone except a saint would ever be able to stop just before... Perhaps the worst part of it all is the fact we were not properly taught that deliberate venial sin was no laughing matter.) That said - I've never been a big fan of racking my brain over what's okay and just a venial sin, especially in an attempt to defend oneself from mortal sin like that - indeliberate nocturnal episodes excepted. If you were playing around, you were consenting to being impure - it was so beyond just being an occasion of sin. (And yes, the big M is a mortal sin - still.)
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I thought of our teenage discussions in regard to the debate over various aspects of Christopher West's interpretation of JPII's Theology of the Body, especially as regards what is permissible in marital foreplay. (Twenty Foreplay - I once liked that song - from Janet Jackson - not Smith.) The other Janet - Smith, in her defense of West, evidently believes desperate times permit desperate measures, and praises West for meeting contemporary youth at the level they are at:
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"He has worked very hard to understand where those living in the modern culture are coming from, and he's tried to really reach out to them, which a lot of us would be very uncomfortable doing," Smith said. "And I think he has found a way to do it.
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"Some people find some of his examples vulgar and crude, but at the end of the day, I think many more people are going to develop a greater reverence for sexuality and for the opposite sex and for marriage than they had at the beginning."
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"He is a guy that pushes the envelope a bit, and you've got to be prepared for some hits when you do that," she said. "But overall if one sees what he's doing, it is really magnificent." - Source
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*So are the frescoes in Pompeii.
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I couldn't help but wonder if there had been such sexualized evangelization by the early Christians, when the likes of St. Cecilia was axed in the neck and St. Agatha got her unwanted double mastectomy. Ancient Rome was a highly sexualized culture, and Paul had much to say about it in his letter to the Romans. I also wonder if the missionaries of all ages played to the sexual mores of the places they risked their lives in to preach the Gospel, oftentimes in highly sexualized pagan cultures, wherein fertility rites influenced public and private behavior. I'm not a prude, but I think it is very important to examine a highly popularized version of JPII's theology, especially when it raises the concerns of good people.
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One of Christopher West's more benign critics is David Schindler, although West's supporters give the impression of 'how dare he speak ill' whenever they respond to Schindler's concerns:
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Schindler asserts; "The problems are not merely matters of taste; on the contrary, they affect the content of theology. The problem is that the theology of the body gets reduced to a theology of sex, and that is a serious problem.
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"John Paul II's theology of the body must be seen within his theological anthropology as a whole, which is an entire vision of reality centered in love and expressed in the communion of persons and inclusive of the body. It is this anthropological whole that underpins his defense of Humanae Vitae [the Church's 1968 prohibition of contraception]
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"I decided to make a statement because of the great numbers of people who have experienced uneasiness regarding the work of West," he said. "They need to know that this uneasiness has an objective foundation in that work itself. It is not just a matter of their having an unconscious 'Puritanism' or prudishness, but often has to do with what are healthy human and Catholic instincts."- Source
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I said as much in an earlier post. On the other hand, many of Schindler's detractors respond as Smith does and suggest West has found a way to bridge the gap between theology and sexuality for his audience of young Catholics, "who otherwise would not hear or possibly not even be interested in the teachings on the theology of the body." While that may be true, I think it is also safe to say this particular audience has for the most part lacked basic catechesis in faith and morals as well - hence the responsibility to be even more careful and prudent with one's personal interpretation of JPII's thought.
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*Photo: Erotic fresco from Pompeii. Such frescoes were found in brothels, bathhouses, and private bedrooms of the ancient Romans.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

The Year of the Priest



"The Priesthood is the love of the heart of Jesus."

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On the forthcoming Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Friday 19 June 2009 – a day traditionally devoted to prayer for the sanctification of the clergy –, I have decided to inaugurate a “Year for Priests” in celebration of the 150th anniversary of the “dies natalis” of John Mary Vianney, the patron saint of parish priests worldwide.1 This Year, meant to deepen the commitment of all priests to interior renewal for the sake of a more forceful and incisive witness to the Gospel in today’s world, will conclude on the same Solemnity in 2010. The priesthood is the love of the heart of Jesus”, the saintly Curé of Ars would often say.2 This touching expression makes us reflect, first of all, with heartfelt gratitude on the immense gift which priests represent, not only for the Church, but also for humanity itself. - LETTERA DEL SANTO PADRE BENEDETTO XVI PER LA PROCLAMAZIONE DI UN ANNO SACERDOTALE IN OCCASIONE DEL 150° ANNIVERSARIO DEL DIES NATALIS DEL SANTO CURATO D’ARS

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Fr. Zuhlsdorf also has the full text with insightful commentary here.

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Garden shots: 3 - Our Beloved Father


The patron of this place.
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Today is my dad's birthday. The statue in the photo was given to me by an antique dealer a couple of days after my father's death, he said he hoped St. Joseph could be the dad I needed to fix all the pain. Larry had no idea that St. Joseph was indeed my special patron, and he seemed to be rather pleased with himself that he made me such a gift. Larry was an antique dealer for whom I often worked, restoring paintings and doing painted finishes on furniture, as well as painting numerous icons for him to use in his home, and sell. He was fun to work for because he dealt in such fine objects. A curious little guy, quite perverted, but as he was dying of AIDS, he converted. He had been terribly abused as a child, and persecuted for his effeminate manner - he reminded me of Truman Capote and I at first thought he was insipid. That was as a customer - he had some of the finest antiques in town, much of it European and tons of religious artifacts.

Larry himself was very religious - one of those tortured souls addicted to sexual depravity, yet striving for sanctity. As I got to know him I realized he must have suffered from mental illness, in addition to his homosexual compulsion. Once I was upstairs working on an 18th century Italian painted cabinet, decorated in lacca povera - printed paper figures and scenes used to simulate hand painted court furniture - I used antique scrap to restore it and lacquered over it - hence the term lacca. (It is kind of like decoupage, but classier.) Anyway, I'd be working upstairs and downstairs Larry would be servicing clients - if you know what I mean. Then he'd repent. He always tried to be good in my presence however, and he'd put away the pornography whenever I had to work in his shop. I sat with him praying the Divine Mercy Chaplet out loud as his health declined and he got closer to death, that seemed to console him. I became very fond of him, and continue to pray for him. He died an Anglican.

Anyway - today is my dad's birthday. I wish I could have been closer to him as well. I look back and see that I was very self-righteous in his regard, and held a grudge. How odd, I could overlook so much about Larry and yet held my dad to a strict accounting. I pray very much for him now, and spiritually place my self at his death bed, praying as if he were just now dying - letting him know I love him and that all is forgiven.

Please excuse me - I always get a little nuts on the anniversaries of my parent's death. Be with the dying if you can, pray for the dying, and always love and forgive them if you can.

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Garden shots: 2


Zinnias at the front entrance.
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The colors are so intense and the blooms last for weeks.
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Garden shots: 1


Betty on my chimney.
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This is the head of Elizabeth I mounted on my chimney... revenge for Mary.
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Journal: June 18, 2009

This is a huge waste of my time, and yours.
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Remember Lot's wife, who turned into a salt-shaker after she went back to check her email one last time

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Journal: June 17, 2009

Undocumented.
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LGBT month news. What? Obama declared it so.
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The backlash. Gay supporters of Obama are mad because he endorsed some legal brief about SS marriage. Oh - here it is: "Last week, President Obama’s Justice Department filed a legal brief against same sex marriage in which it compared gay unions to incestuous ones and that of an underage girl – in the sense that states have the right to not recognize marriages that are legal in other states or countries." - Source
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Although the administration seems to be trying to patch things up today: "President Barack Obama, whose gay and lesbian supporters have grown frustrated with his slow movement on their priorities, is extending benefits to same-sex partners of federal employees..." - Source
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As time goes on, more and more Obama supporters are going to have to face the disappointment of being disappointed by the man. Did you know American doctors actually booed the President when he spoke to the American Medical Association last Monday? - Source The incident hardly got a mention on regular network news.
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So anyway - I doubt Obama is the answer to any one's prayers, hopes, or dreams.
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Subject change.
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I have stuff to do this afternoon so I may not finish the hedge, or paint. I was going to attend Mass this morning, but I didn't feel well - I've been to the doctor.
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A 10 minute visit for just under $200. He neither offered or suggested any tests, he didn't even listen to my chest. I asked him about it and he waved me off. I'm self pay - I am not an insured customer - I know, SB patient. Doctors employed by Allina (the insurance company which runs the clinic) seem to earn more profit for the company by catering to patients covered by insurance agencies or medicare, so I got the feeling my doctor was giving me the bum's rush - he renewed my prescriptions for another year, said goodbye, and that was it.
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Is there anything like an old fashioned GP with a private office now days? Like a beautician who operates out of the basement of his house? Or someone who can just dispense pain medication? I'm just asking here.
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Which reminds me, I have to clean my basement but I don't want to.
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I need to paint.
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Otherwise I have nothing else to say.

The Narcissist

"Barack Obama is a narcissist." - Dr. Sam Vaknin, Israeli psychologist.
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"I must confess I was impressed by Sen.Barack Obama from the first time I saw him. At first I was excited to see a black candidate. He looked youthful, spoke well, appeared to be confident - a wholesome presidential package. I was put off soon, not just because of his shallowness but also because there was an air of haughtiness in his demeanor that was unsettling. His posture and his body language were louder than his empty words. Obama's speeches are unlike any political speech we have heard in American history. Never a politician in this land had such quasi "religious" impact on so many people. The fact that Obama is a total incognito with zero accomplishment, makes this inexplicable infatuation alarming. Obama is not an ordinary man. He is not a genius. In fact he is quite ignorant on most important subjects.
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One must never underestimate the manipulative genius of pathological narcissists. They project such an imposing personality that it overwhelms those around them. Charmed by the charisma of the narcissist, people become like clay in his hands. They cheerfully do his bidding and delight to be at his service. The narcissist shapes the world around himself and reduces others in his own inverted image. He creates a cult of personality. His admirers become his co-dependents Narcissists have no interest in things that do not help them to reach their personal objective. They are focused on one thing alone and that is power. All other issues are meaningless to them and they do not want to waste their precious time on trivialities. Anything that does not help them is beneath them and do not deserve their attention." - Source
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Narcissist check list:
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  • Narcissists are often callous and even ruthless. As the norm, they lack conscience. This is evident from Obama's lack of interest in his own brother who lives on only one dollar per month.
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  • Obama evidences symptoms of pathological narcissism, which is different from the run-of-the-mill narcissism of a Richard Nixon or a Bill Clinton for example. To him reality and fantasy are intertwined. This is a mental health issue, not just a character flaw.
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  • Pathological narcissists are dangerous because they look normal and even intelligent. It is this disguise that makes them treacherous.
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  • A narcissist cares for no one but himself. The election was like no other in the history of America. The issues are insignificant compared to what is at stake. What can be more dangerous than having a man bereft of conscience, a serial liar, and one who cannot distinguish his fantasies from reality as the leader of the free world?

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On his visit to Egypt, Mr. President saw his image on a wall in one of the pyramids, interrupting the guide he said, "Hey, that's me!"

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My thanks to Tara for the story.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The First Lady of Fashion

Shelley's meteoric rise.
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Seriously.
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The fashion industry made it clear at its annual awards ceremony Monday night that it's looking to future stars to see it past the doldrums of the recession, shunning longtime favorites and honoring a largely new guard: Rodarte, Proenza Schouler, Alexander Wang — and Michelle Obama.
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The Council of Fashion Designers of America's special tribute award went to the first lady, considered a new player in this world.

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Noting her "meteoric rise as a fashion icon," CFDA president Diane von Furstenberg said Obama had "a unique look that balances the duality of her lives" in her roles as trusted adviser to her husband, President Barack Obama, and busy mother to their two daughters.

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But it took host Tracey Ullman less than two minutes in her opening monologue to mention the new first lady of fashion. As complimentary as she was, though, Ullman, a Brit, did say Obama shouldn't have worn a cardigan to meet Queen Elizabeth II. - Fashion World Honors New Stars
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The American fashion industry is officially dead.

The garden


This year I planted zinnias in all the pots. I also planted tomato, eggplant, basil, and peppers - each in their own pot. For the trellis I did a new type of morning glory along with roses. I'll add more photos later. Today I am trimming hedges and I came in to eat something and check mail. See what social networking does to a person? And people pretend that their work gets done, even though they spend hours online reading blogs, twitter, facebook, and various news sites - constantly checking mail. No wonder the Vatican blocked access to their workers.
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I thought of some great theology of the body jokes too. I can't tell them however. Wait, wait! Oh, never mind.
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Gotta run - lunch.
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Journal: June 16, 2009

I don't know about the painting I'm working on - sometimes I think, "Why bother?" you know?
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Why blog? Sometimes certain Catholics disgust me.
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Whatever. I was thinking about the martyrs during meditation this morning. Today we remember Blessed Brother Thomas Redying, one of the Carthusians martyred for refusing to take Henry VIII's anti-papal oath of supremacy. Thomas was one of 10 monks (out of 30) who resisted apostasy, choosing to die rather than compromise the faith as had most of the remaining 20; these later were exiled from the Charterhouse which they had surrendered to the crown. The Carthusians were martyred in batches - if I remember correctly, the last group of 20 was not killed, although I don't know what happened to them.
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That isn't my point however. The martyrs who suffered during the reformation, during the French revolution, as well as those killed under Communism, Nazism, the Spanish martyrs, the Mexican martyrs, and so on - they died because of stuff the world considers foolish. Even fellow Christians thought as much. They could have pretended they went along with the State - but they didn't. They believed in the Gospel without compromise.
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Imagine how alone some of them felt. My reflections caused me to remember Fr. MacRae then.
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Moving on.
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Remember Lot's wife, who turned to look at those perishing amid much clamour.
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So anyway.
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A friend sends me news links she finds interesting - I get many of my post this way. The latest that struck me was the Christopher West Theology of the Body saga. Another blogger had a good post discussing the issue - lots of comments - it was all about common sense regarding the defense of AP - okay, I'll say it once, Anal Penetration as foreplay in heterosexual marriage. (BTW - if Catholics do this crap - oh, and some people call guys who do it fudge packers, then I was right about the slut/pimp thing I referred to in Sunday's post on modesty.)
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As St. Paul says - "this stuff should not even be mentioned amongst you, your sanctification forbids it". But sex sells and this culture is sex saturated beyond belief, and rather than correcting that, some people seem to be condoning immoral acts, which they insist lead to the greater good. That's wrong.
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Read this...
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"In Chapter Five of his book Good News About Sex & Marriage – Answers to Your Honest Questions About Catholic Teachings (First Edition), in response to a question on the morality of anal sex for married couples, West states “There’s nothing inherently wrong with anal penetration as foreplay to normal intercourse.” This is a false teaching and a serious moral error.
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Based on my 17 years of research for The Rite of Sodomy – Homosexuality and the Roman Catholic Church, which included a study of all of the Church Fathers, including Saint Peter Damian and Saint Bernardino of Siena, on the vice of sodomy, I can categorically state that the Catholic Church has always defined sodomy to include anal penetration, with or without ejaculation.
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The act of sodomy, whether carried by homosexuals or by spouses, is intrinsically evil and a perversion. A married couple who engages in anal penetration and then goes on to normal coitus has engaged in two separate acts - the first, sodomy, is a grave sin, whether or not ejaculation has occurred. Further, the physiology of anal copulation is such that it would be most difficult to prevent ejaculation.
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Now, alas, we have Janet Smith, claiming that: Certainly there isn’t any “Church teaching” about this action at a magisterial level, but few seem to know that there is a tradition of approval of such behavior as foreplay to intercourse (not to be confused with the biblical condemnation of sodomy which replaces intercourse) by orthodox Catholic ethicists. The principle generally invoked is that consensual actions that culminate in intercourse are morally permissible…." - Randy Engel, Sodomy and Theology of the Body, Les Femmes - The Truth
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Of course, none of the stuff these folks teach is dogma - but it certainly is popular. This type of thinking does indeed lead to greater permissiveness and certainly can be used to justify other behaviors, entertainments, fashions, and the like.
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Oh well.
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Once I was out to dinner with some gay friends and one friend told me, "Aristotle Onassis liked anal sex - he used to do it with Maria Callas all the time, but Jackie refused to do it." He laughed and I said "Ick! Good for Jackie!" He looked at me so surprised.
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I think it is disgusting - gay or straight - and the practice degrading to any human being, as well as a mockery of the marital act.
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"Today there arises the risk of a serpentine secularization even within the Church". - Pope Benedict XVI

Le Diable chie toujours au même endroit.

"The devil sets up another dangerous temptation: self-assurance in the thought that we will in no way return to our past faults and worldly pleasures: 'for now I have understood the world and know that all things come to an end and that the things of God give me greater delight.' If this self-assurance is present in beginners, it is very dangerous because with it a person doesn't take care against entering once more into the occasion of sin, and he falls flat; please God the relapse will not bring something much worse. For since the devil sees that he is dealing with a soul that can do him harm and bring profit to others, he uses all his power that it might not rise." - St. Teresa of Avila, Way of Perfection 39: 4

The Year of the Priest.



The 'Holy' Year of the Priest begins Friday, the feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, June 19, 2009. A friend sent me the following letter from a priest to Priests In Crisis . I am stunned. I, we must remember to pray for all of our priests, especially those unjustly accused.
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FROM FR. GORDON J. MACRAE

“Kill the priest!” “Kill the priest!” “Kill the priest!” This rousing foot-stomping chant greeted me as I was led down the tier of a prison cell block nearly 15 years ago. It was maddening.

Today the eve of Pentecost 2009, I have been in prison for 5,333 days and nights for a crime that never took place. My fellow prisoners do not organize chants for my demise any longer. I have a pretty good rapport with them, though even after 15 years it’s clear that I don’t quite fit in.

I live daily with the irony that I would not today be in prison if I did not maintain my innocence. Under a deal offered by the state I would have left prison over 13 years ago had I been guilty and willing to say so.

Today I am prisoner number 67546 in the Hancock Unit of the New Hampshire State Prison. I live in a prison block reserved primarily for men serving long, long sentences, most of them for murder. I taught college courses to prisoners for several years and now work in the prison library.

The case against me was a fraud brought for the guarantee of hundreds of thousands of dollars in settlement money. I have come to know that there is far more fraud in the claims against American Catholic priests than most people know or want to believe.

Some would have us believe that no one – certainly no young man – would falsely accuse a priest just for money. My fellow prisoners laugh at such naïve beliefs. Some of them have reminded me that they have taken lives for far less money than what was gained by those who took my reputation and freedom 15 yrs. ago.

A few years ago a contingency lawyer representing dozens of claimants seeking five million dollars in new settlements from my diocese was quoted in a local newspaper: “Church officials didn’t even ask for details for the claims, such as location and date and the abuse alleged. I’ve never seen anything like it.” That same lawyer is now in his fifth round of mediated settlements.

The names of the accused priests have been released to the public despite the contingency lawyer’s statement that the church sought no corroboration for the claims whatsoever before handing over millions of dollars. The names of the accusers, many of them now men in their 30s, 40s and 50s, remain shielded from public view.

Fifteen years in prison for a crime that never took place is no small affair. In 2005 the late Cardinal Avery Dulles, in the first of a series of letters between us, salvaged the spiritual life of my priesthood. He placed my unjust imprisonment in a context that in my anger and hurt I had not previously considered. Cardinal Dulles wrote:

God does not intend that your life be futile. Much of the finest Christian literature comes from believers who were Unjustly imprisoned. Do you believe, Fr. MacRae? Someday your story and that of your fellow sufferers will come to light and be instrumental in a reform.

I am sure that in the plan of Divine Providence your ministry of suffering is part of your priestly vocation, filling up for the Church what is wanting in the suffering of Christ. Your writing which is clear, eloquent and spiritually sound will one day be monument to your trials.

I hope and pray that this is so. Cardinal Dulles gave meaning and purpose to something that is otherwise meaningless, as anyone who has ever served an unjust imprisonment will attest. On his suggestion, I now offer each day in prison as a share in the suffering of Christ for the spiritual support of another.

I will always be grateful to Cardinal Dulles. I am also grateful to Suzanne Sadler and “Priests in Crisis.” It takes a singular courage to speak against any unjust tide.

Please do not be ready to always believe the worst of any priest who is accused in the current climate. - Taken from Priests In Crisis
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Help Fr. MacRae here.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Journal

Light emitting diodes.
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Today I decided that the blog is just a journal or a notebook, and it must remain so for awhile because I have so much work to catch up on with the house and the yard and I also have a major painting cooking on my brain right now.
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Terror. That is how I get before I begin something that seems to me to be important, or something that challenges my very limited skills. Working out composition is my greatest challenge, but then a voice says, just do it - it will look like what you do any way. Which is not at all consoling - I want it to be better than that.
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When the subject matter is religious, I become rather fearful that it will turn out looking overly pious or schmaltzy - like the stuff you see in religious goods stores and catalogs.
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BREAKING NEWS! A snow white squirrel just entered my yard! It must be my sign to begin. I have never had an albino squirrel before.
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Anyway. I was doing some research online and I found myself actually repulsed by typical devotional art. That doesn't mean anything for devout souls and people who like it - it's just me. Much of my own work is equally atrocious - so I'm just saying - religious art can absolutely turn me off sometimes.
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That said - I want to include some of that kitsch on an otherwise serious painting. I want the painting - the narrative, to be traditional while at the same time read in very contemporary terms - outside the typical religious genre. I just don't want it to look like a promotional ad for an Evangelical seminar of Biblical prophecy and the end times. Neither do I want it to come off totally secular.
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I'm thinking Anna Maria Taigi. I don't know why she makes me laugh but she does. (Don't get me wrong, I venerate the woman.) I was going to write more about her on her feast day but I thought it might be too irreverent. For instance, it occurred to me that the illuminated globe of light which she seemed to always see, showing her mystical images and future events, was kind of like TV. Hence my joke: "Anna Maria was the first housewife who sat around all day watching TV to be beatified." (See - it's not funny if you have to explain it.)
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So anyway. My idea came out of that. Picture it... Visionaries witnessing secrets as in a mirror... before the invention of TV... LED screens, and so on. Intriguing, huh?
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"Wait. What are you saying? Are you suggesting the visions were..." you ask.
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"No! Not at all! But an LED panel (light emitting diode) is a better analogy than a mirror - the visionaries just never knew about that stuff... Not that the visions were LED images - but they were seen in 'the light that is God' - and if LED had been around at the time, the visionaries may have described it better that way." I answer, cutting you off before you can protest, disagree, or criticize the concept. I hate it when people do not agree with my point of view.
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"What about HD holograms?" you ask.
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"Not going there," I reply.
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That's all.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

The risk of a serpentine secularization...



"Today there arises the risk of a serpentine secularization even within the Church, which can convert into a formal and empty Eucharistic worship, in celebrations lacking this participation from the heart that is expressed in veneration and respect for the liturgy," the Holy Father cautioned, going on to explain, "the temptation is always strong to reduce prayer to superficial and hurried moments, letting oneself be carried away by earthly activities and worries." - Pope Warns Secularism Can Infest Church
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At my local parish the Eucharistic worship isn't exactly formal - superficial and hurried seems to hit the mark however.

Dressing for Mass.



Yesterday I went to confession again. Then I stayed for Mass.
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Yeah, so... Saturday evening Mass was for Corpus Christi. To my astonishment, a young woman, possibly just out of high school - an extraordinary minister of the Eucharist no less - entered the sanctuary wearing a black, really low cut, plunging, boob-a-luscious strappy top. She looked kind of like Mariah Carey - that isn't a compliment BTW. The girl was with her parents and little sister. Her boobs were pumped and firm and bulging - I'm not exaggerating. She was hot. Tight jeans, flip-flops... She distributed Communion dressed this way. I don't know why that disturbed me, made me uneasy - but it did.
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Out of the blue I recalled Letterman's joke about Sarah Palin and her daughter the other night - Tasteless! Nasty! Tacky! --it happens! But what pisses me off even more is that I thought of that big to-do-about-nothing at Mass - after watching a young woman enter the sanctuary to assist with distribution of Holy Communion. I was at Mass, distracted by some girl's sun-tanned boobs, with cleavage down to the base of her breast-bone; suddenly thinking of lecherous Dave Letterman and Sarah Palin's daughter. And guess what I concluded?
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If you are a kid and you dress like a slut, old men like David Letterman are at least gonna joke about it. And some guys are gonna act on it. Palin's daughter doesn't even have to dress like that - but plenty of 14 year old girls do - and with their parent(s) consent. So Letterman maybe was just following popular culture with his stupid-ass remark. Whatever. Millions of little girls, teenage girls, and adult girls dress like sluts in the summer. Yeah - so what I'm really saying is: Sarah Palin, her little girls and families like them, have a bigger responsibility in making certain no one else mistakes them for sluts. Women have that responsibility. Dads, husbands and boyfriends have an even bigger responsibility: Stop pimping your wives and daughters by permitting them to dress like that; if they don't listen, and you pay the bills - stop paying for their slutty clothes.
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Having said that - what the hell is going on allowing a barely clad young women to distribute Holy Communion?
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I do not ever make a big deal about what people wear to Mass - modest shorts on men or women do not bother me, jeans and t-shirts don't bother me - I don't care. But at Mass last evening, girls were in really tight tees, some sleeveless and low cut, with butt-crack low-rise jeans, while a few were in really short shorts. That is totally inappropriate. The mothers were dressed as badly as the teen girls - but at least they were wearing Capri pants. My parish is very affluent - upper crust you know - many Tangle Town and Creek people - who obviously have no taste.