Thursday, February 1, 2007

Mo' Money

...for the Catholic League. Yeah, some mock outrage is expressed at the means, but it's a bash nonetheless.


  1. i'm also down for a dollar per bash. this could get pretty pricey.

  2. Pauli(e), maybe you could spend a post detailing your and your fellow crunchies problems with Dreher's commentary on the state of contemporary Catholicism. Don't y'all agree that a lot has been lost, aestetically and morally, since V2? Or is the really galling thing that Dreher continues to complain about the Church even after his conversion to Orthodoxy? Or is the problem that he takes legitmate criticism and runs with them? Please elaborate.

    Sorry I can't be more insuling at this point, but maybe if your answer displeases me, I could return with a healthy discharge of vitriol, thus giving you what you demand of your readers at

  3. Andy: yeah, sure I'll do that. Kathleen et al can chip in, too. But let's make sure we all take our rose-colored glasses off regardless of which time period we're looking at. St. John Chrysostom and many of the fathers had a lot of the same complaints about liturgy, piety, etc. in their time. Pre V-2 by many years I daresay.

  4. Or is the really galling thing that Dreher continues to complain about the Church even after his conversion to Orthodoxy?

    For me, that's a biggie, certainly. He never fails to get his digs in. Even when the news is positive, he finds a way to twist it so it's negative. Plus, he makes mountains out of molehills (but only when they're Catholic molehills), jumps on every little thing (including some dumb Star Wars video made by a bunch of perfectly orthodox seminarians in their get the idea), etc. etc. He also works every other post around to Gay Priests and Bad Bishops--even posts on topics that have nothing whatsoever to do with Gay Priests or with Bad Bishops or even with Catholicism. Coming from someone who cut and ran, it just gets very, very old. It's not only a broken record; it's a highly selective one. No other communion comes in for such relentless bashing.

    But mea culpa! I'm supposed to keep this clean. E-mail me for further details if you can stand it. :)

  5. this could get pretty pricey.

    No kidding. There goes my discretionary money for 2007.

    Oh's for a good cause. :)

  6. "fellow con-crunchies" I should have written...

  7. Diane: But mea culpa! I'm supposed to keep this clean.

    You're doing fine. I really think his selectivity regarding Catholic news is enough to condemn him. His ostensible "I'm a religion writer" excuse can be easily shredded by a quick look at ZENIT. That's why the headline of his post "Dog Bites Man" is so ironic. In 99.9% of the church there is no scandal. Then someone gets bent out of shape about a rumor about a possibility of somebody joining a social group. To me, the headline should be "Man Allegedly Almost Swallows Chihuahua Embryo" or maybe "Tempest In Teapot Excites Bored Catholic Bloggers."

  8. "Or is the really galling thing that Dreher continues to complain about the Church even after his conversion to Orthodoxy?"

    this is the nub of the matter for me too. It might be acceptable from someone who is truly clueless socially, but Dreher engineers so much of his commentary to his own advantage (now he is going to heal the rifts of racism because he eats greens, for instance) that the conclusion he does the opposite with catholicism is unavaoidable. that is, Dreher tries to make catholicism look as bad as hard as he tries to make himself look good.

    as you see, i have a hard time with how self-serving his blog, his book, his attitude towards people who disagree is. for me, that is part and parcel of his attitudes toward catholicism. and he *always* claims he's not bashing catholicism when he bashes it. ("I'm not stabbing you in the back, i'm just thrusting my hand forward which happens to be holding a knife, and your back happens to be in my way!")

  9. Check this out from his "Vile Reporter" post:

    "[T]here were occasions when I would either get into an argument in the confessional with a priest (e.g., the time a priest told me that my wife and I should be using contraception)."

    I have to ask myself what would elicit this response, but that's admittedly a digression. Obviously the priest was heterodox on this point. Giving this kind of advice in the confessional makes it even worse, granted. My question: will Rod balance this with a story of a good experience in the confessional? Will he qualify it by pointing out that it was before he had a regular confessor / spiritual director whom was in line with the church?

    If this kind of incident was the norm for Rod when he was in the Catholic church I just feel really bad that he couldn't figure this stuff out and not be scandalized by the inevitable scandals (Lk 17:1). It is not an uncommon experience, but leaving over it is an uncommon reaction. E.g., my friend was told by a priest that he should "embrace his manhood" regarding sins of lust. (He's still Catholic, BTW.) Maybe whatever priest Rod received instruction from didn't prepare him for that kind of thing; mine did.

    I once went to confession to a grumpy old priest (of the Potato Tribal variety) once who mumbled the absolution in Latin then said rather more loudly, "You're done, now get out of here!" Not nice, but I said, "Thank you, Jesus," etc. and said an extra prayer about Father's hemorrhoids or whatever.

  10. LOL--that Potato Priest sounds like a hoot. (Not a pleasant experience at the time, I'm sure.) Good thing, though, that you'd already learned the Classic Catholic Answer to Everything: "Offer It Up." :) Rod should take your correspondence course.

    Sheesh, who hasn't had bad experiences in the confessional? And not just post-VCII, either.

    But guess what? People have had similarly bad experiences in other communions, too. Several of my cyber-chums left Orthodoxy because of the intense spiritual abuse they'd experienced in their parishes. (Apparently this is a big problem in contemporary American Orthodoxy, where parish priests are regarded as super-popes whose lightest word must be obeyed...a syndrome that comes from the growing influence of monasticism, I'm told. The potential for spiritual abuse is enormous, and [as a result] such abuse is rampant. But I digress. :))

    I will leave you, folks, with an anecdote from my '50s-era Potato Catholic youth in an inner-city borough of Boston. We lived in a three-decker on a busy street, right near the local Catholic church and attached "sister school," natch. An identical triple-decker stood beside ours. In it lived the Faron family--lots and lots of Farons, all as Irish as Paddy's pig. One of them was Peggy Faron. She was two years older than I. We all admired her immensely because she would regularly beat up the neighborhood bully, Teddy Terecchi. Good old Peggy Faron. She was fearless, carefree, and utterly untroubled by neurotic guilt feelings.

    Once she went into the confessional and said, "Bless me, Father, for I have sinned. I stole a banana and slipped on the skin." The priest instantly threw her out on her ear, as you can imagine. But of course we kids thought the whole thing was hysterical. It doesn't take much to amuse seven-year-olds. :)