The fall down – Part 2

20 06 2021

Almost a couple of years ago, I wrote an autobiographical post on an abuser priest I had the misfortune of knowing. I kept the names and details fairly anonymous because no one had ever come forward openly as a victim. Well, that changed recently, and I just found out about it. I know everyone that Mrs. Victoria McQuade is talking about in the video above, in fact, I knew Victoria herself by sight fairly well, and saw her every day. I also know the friend she refers to, or at least I have a pretty clear idea of who it is. From her testimony, the now defrocked priest, Benedict “Ben” Vanderputten, had been grooming her and harassing her for years, as well as perhaps a dozen other young women. I highly encourage everyone to watch to her interview, both to know the full scope of the Society of St. Pius X’s cover-up for their ex-priest’s crimes, as well as an amazing testament to keeping one’s faith in an almost impossible situation.

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Hog of God

12 07 2020
https://www.templepurohit.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Varaha-Avatar-Story-Dashavatar-Lord-Vishu.jpg

Gaura Purnima 2020

Part of me will never get used to the idea of mangala aarti. It’s not the idea of the service itself: getting up at 4 am to greet the Deities in the temple by singing and dancing before them. I am an early riser, and always have been. It’s the drums (mridangas), cymbals (kartals), and the loud noise that are strange to me. It’s a shock to the system to start banging these instruments in the darkness. I like my mornings calm, and this hour long service is the opposite of calm.

Eastern Orthodox monastic Matins is more what I am used to, and that service is mostly a dull and very hushed recitation of prayers, with some chants interspersed. It is quite a monotonous affair, day in and day out. In seminary, the only times we had Matins was for Christmas and Holy Week (Tenebrae), and the assigned time for these services isn’t four a.m. Most days, we had Prime at 6 am, followed by a a period of silent meditation and Low Mass most days. So my mornings were by and large quite quiet and contemplative.

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Silence

15 06 2020

I reviewed Shusaku Endo’s novel Silence years ago, but I only recently saw the film adaptation (I don’t watch many movies these days). My main issue with these types of novels / films, namely one’s the treat issues of tortured religious conscience in a modern context, is that I am acutely aware of the rift between ancient and modern religiosity. Perhaps this is a matter of written records, but the radical subjectivity of this literature is more an indication of absence than a heightened sense of presence. I don’ t believe for a minute that modern people “get God” more than their predecessors. If anything, we are greatly more self-absorbed to the point of thinking every difficulty is some sort of existential crisis.

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My Catholic post for the month

6 07 2011

Short and sweet:

Some people say that the problem is that most people in the pews are cafeteria Catholics.

I say that the problem is that the Church is being a cafeteria secularist.

You want to make noises about the rights of immigrants, the religiously persecuted, etc.? Well, other people make noises about an entirely different set of rights.





On the devil inside

13 06 2011

Above: A Ukrainian Eastern-rite sedevacantist excommunicates the past two Popes. Damn, I love Youtube.

“You’ve got the devil in you!”

Such a phrase has resonated in my life for almost twelve years now. Such resonance, however, has not always been front in center, or even audible, in my own mind. When I first heard it, I concluded the opposite. That woman must have had the devil in her: the devil in our pluralistic society who shouts down all differences, who affirms people “just as they are”, and who makes them feel comfortable about themselves, no matter how they are living. In other words, there was no way a twenty year old, full of piss and vinegar, was going to listen to some nosy woman riding on that bus in east Oakland in 1999.
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Catholic history FAIL

24 05 2011

I was browsing around for more information about this CD of Gallican chant of the clerics of Auxerre Cathedral in the 18th century. From information I read about years ago on another website, this was the chant composed by exiled Jansenist clergy who wanted to preserve the pure chant traditions of the French Church against the Jesuits and other future ultramontanist forces.

I cannot confirm the information, other than this review from Gramophone from some years back.

However, I did manage to find a free track from this record at this site, as a soundtrack for, of all things, the Litany of the Sacred Heart. Now, all you novice church historians should know that the Jansenists despised the cult to the Sacred Heart, the much loved weapon of their mortal enemies, the Jesuits. Not sure if this person posted this out of irony, but I at least got the joke.





Notes on personal religiosity

23 05 2011

There are four tendencies that have influence, which I rank in ascending order of importance:

1. The post-Vatican II church: To tell the truth, I have never taken the modern Catholic church seriously. I mean, “never”. Even as a child, I knew all of it was rubbish. That goes for the modern Mass, the new catechism, any pope after Pius XII, and so on. If I have any affiliation with it whatsoever, it is because of nostalgia and an affinity for things not the modern church. It sometimes still keeps trinkets of the atavistic past (that pull on my heart strings) and it can defend values that I don’t find so bad at this point (tolerance, pluralism, etc.) But as a thing in itself, I find it all completely ridiculous.
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This is not a liturgical post

19 05 2011

It is with some reluctance that I comment on Geoffrey Hull’s book, Banished Heart: Origins of Heteropraxis in the Catholic Church. I am not really interested in liturgy (as I have stated before), nor did I find the book all that compelling. Nevertheless, even my newly recovered philosophical orientation has not prevented me from pursuing a broad range of interests. A book that claims to analyze the degeneration of the religious ethos of the West can thus be of some interest to me.

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Salmo

2 05 2011

SALMO 16 (17)

Oye Señor mi causa justa
atiende mi clamor
Escucha mi oración que no son slogans
Júzgame tú
y no sus Tribunales
Si me interrogas de noche con un reflector
con tu detector de mentiras
no hallarás en mí ningún crimen…

Tú que eres el defensor de los deportados
y de los condenados en Consejos de Guerra
y de los presos en los campos de concentración
guárdame como a la niña de tus ojos
debajo de tus alas escóndeme
libértame del dictador
y de la mafia de los gangsters…

Levántate Señor
sal a su encuentro
derríbalos
Arrebátame de las garras de los Bancos
con tu mano Señor líbrame del hombre de negocios
y del socio de los clubs exclusivos
de esos que ya han vivido demasiado!
los que tienen repletas sus refrigeradoras
y sus mesas llenas de sobras
y dan el caviar a los perros
Nosotros no tenemos entrada a su Club
pero tú nos saciarás
cuando pase la noche

-Ernesto Cardenal





Leaving

20 04 2011

Fr. Thomas Reese has an interesting article in one of my favorite Catholic newspapers, the National Catholic Reporter, concerning the hidden exodus of Catholics into Protestantism. Some interesting quotes:

The principal reasons given by people who leave the church to become Protestant are that their “spiritual needs were not being met” in the Catholic church (71 percent) and they “found a religion they like more” (70 percent). Eighty-one percent of respondents say they joined their new church because they enjoy the religious service and style of worship of their new faith…

Catholics who became Protestant also claim to have a stronger faith now than when they were children or teenagers. Seventy-one percent say their faith is “very strong,” while only 35 percent and 22 percent reported that their faith was very strong when they were children and teenagers, respectively. On the other hand, only 46 percent of those who are still Catholic report their faith as “very strong” today as an adult.

Thus, both as believers and as worshipers, Catholics who become Protestants are statistically better Christians than those who stay Catholic. We are losing the best, not the worst.

You mean, they get all the good people, and all we get is all of those damn converts with blogs!
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