Friday, July 31, 2009


Today is the feast day of St. Ignatius of Loyola. Does this mean I should or shouldn't make Jesuit jokes?

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Bad Idea.

Listening to The Clash before celebrating a funeral Mass. (Not the right frame of mind to be in.)

Update 7/31: Tried it again with the funeral today. Definitely a bad idea.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

In My Parish, But Not From My Parish.

PLAIN CITY, Utah – Police in Utah say a 7-year-old boy led officers on a car chase in an effort to avoid going to church.

Dispatchers received reports of a child driving recklessly on Sunday morning. Weber County Sheriff's Capt. Klint Anderson says one witness said the boy drove through a stop sign.

Anderson says two deputies caught up with the boy and tried unsuccessfully to stop the Dodge Intrepid in an area about 45 miles north of Salt Lake City. The car reached 40 mph before the boy stopped in a driveway and ran inside a home.

Anderson says when the boy's father later confronted him, the boy said he didn't want to go to church. The boy is too young to prosecute and no citations were issued, although police did urge the father to make his car keys more inaccessible to children.

The Word Of The Day: Archeologism.

Archeologism is defined as, "Taking past practices as inherently better than present practices, especially as regards the liturgy." This is a heresy and was defined as such by the Church on various occasion. (See especially Pius XII, "Mediator Dei", 60-64.)

Those interested in this topic might like to read this essay from Antiphon. Principally about the revision of the rite of blessing holy water, it also talks about the principles used to produce the Book of Blessings. These principles explain why it is so underwhelming.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Friday, July 24, 2009

How Not To Argue Against Communion In The Hand.

Let me state that I consider the practice of Communion in the hand to be a colossal mistake that has seriously undermined respect for the Most Blessed Sacrament and belief in the Real Presence. If I were ever in the position to revise this practice, it would be gone in a heartbeat. However, I find most of the arguments against the practice to be defective. Some argue that the hand is somehow less worthy than the mouth. It is rightly pointed out that the mouth is the more common instrument of sin than the hands. This won't cut it. Others rightly point out that Communion in the hand makes desecration far more likely. This is true, but the abuse does not negate the use. A far more effective tact is to note the difference in the nature of the actions of receiving in the hand as opposed to receiving on the tongue. Receiving on the tongue is well more receptive. It makes clear that the Host is something to which we have no right; that we passively receive. (This is even more clear when one is kneeling.) Reception in the hand is far more taking, as if the Host is not a free gift of God.

Terms I Dislike.

People of color--What am I? Transparent?

Happy Mormon Day.

Today is the anniversary of the entrance of the Mormon pioneers into the Salt Lake Valley in 1847. (The original plan was to settle in Utah Valley next to the fresh water lake, but as 5000 Utes were camping there....) It is celebrated with one of the largest parades in the nation. (No, I don't watch it. I worked for the parks one year and had to clean up after it. Rather spoiled my appreciation.) Also, all the little kids wait with breathless anticipation for a visit from the Jello Fairy. (Utah joke.) BTW, the real name is Pioneer Day.

Rule #9: Don't Ever Get Angry With Someone For Doing Their Job.

On NCIS, Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs has 50 rules governing work and life. I have several myself and am working on more. One is, "Clowns are creepy, mimes are evil." Another is, "Never get mad at a person for doing their job." Which apparently is precisely what Professor Gates did with the Cambridge police. Police and others have a difficult job. No matter what they do, someone will condemn them. As with most people, if you are polite to them, they will be polite to you. This applies whether or not you are in the right and they are in the wrong. (It also gives you more of a chance of getting a warning rather than a citation.) BTW, Rule #10 is, "Engage brain before engaging mouth." Barry should adopt this one.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

A Day Late.

(I had intended to write this yesterday, but I had to get things in order so that I could come down to Salt Lake and help the maternal unit after she had some minor surgery: she is doing fine. And it is fun to tell her that she has to take a nap.)

Yesterday, we celebrated a feast that is near and dear to my heart; that of St. Mary Magdalene. You see, she is the patroness of my diocese and also my home parish, the Cathedral of the Madeleine. Also, as is right and proper for any Christian, she is also dear to me for the role she plays in our salvation. She prophesied the death of the Lord with her anointing of His feet, the stood with Him as He died upon the Holy Cross, and she was chosen to bring the news of His Glorious Resurrection to His Apostles.

I had the privileged of celebrating the feast according to both the Ordinary and Extra-ordinary form. One focus on her role as the herald of the Resurrection, the other as a penitent. There is no conflict between these roles. She was a sinner, repented, was a disciple of the Lord, and played a crucial role in our salvation.

Now, I know there is a conflict about the traditional identification of the Magdalene with the woman taken in adultery as well as the sister of Martha and Lazarus or as a reformed whore. And not just in the mind of Dan Brown and assorted radical feminists. I realize that the identification is not explicit in Sacred Scripture, but neither is it excluded. I tend (understatement) to trust the Fathers more than Scripture scholars who have drunk too deeply from the well of the Historical Critical method.

Furthermore, I strongly object to those somehow think that this denigrates St. Mary. Scripture itself say that she was a demoniac from whom the Lord cast seven demons. She was a reformed sinner, like St. Matthew, like St. Paul, like St. Augustine, etc.... What matters is that she turned from sin and followed the Lord. It is far more remarkable and comforting that God used a reformed sinner for such an important role in salvation.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Calls For Cthulhu Episode 1

Dipstick Mormon Missionary Of The Year Award Goes To ...

Keven McGill. Digi, Attorney-at-law, found this punk on Facebook. (See here, here, and also here.) Kev-dog evidently is a fan of gangsta 'culture', which while kinda strange doesn't surprise me much--I have been stuck in traffic next to enough white Utah boys groovin to c-rap. (I really hate listening to the base line of other people's music even though their windows are shut and so are mine.) Stupid, but hey numbnutts is 19. However, he also thinks that it is entertaining to paint a Hitler mustache on Pope Benedict and rename him Adolf Hitler and, haha, post it on Facebook. (Hmmm, maybe he wants to be a reporter for the New York Times and cover papal events.) Not cool, especially considering the history of the Holy Father and His Family. I wonder if he has a picture of Dr. King dressed as a Klansman somewhere. I also wonder how Keven would react to a nice picture of President Monson in drag or perhaps with horns and a goatee. But Father, he is a only 19. This is bad taste, but hey he is a kid. Yeah he is being immature, but this points to a deeper problem. The Mormon Church has historically taught, and still does in many places, that the Catholic Church is the "great and abombinable church", the Whore of Babylon. It is, therefore, no wonder that one of their missionaries would do this any more that it was no surprise when a group of missionaries desecrated and vandalized a Catholic Church in Colorado a couple of years ago.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Eben Brooks: My Boss' Office

(At the request of the singer: "This video is included here at the sole instigation of this blog's owner with permission from and Eben Brooks as set forth in the video's syndication settings when it was originally uploaded. Inclusion of this video in this blog is not to be considered an endorsement of said blog by either or Eben Brooks.")

Friday, July 17, 2009

Crocodile Tears.

Walter Cronkite is dead. I won't shed many tears. He is one of the people who made my father's sacrifice in Vietnam meaningless or at least without any worldly impact. The most trusted man in America betrayed his trust by promoting his own agenda under the guise of journalistic neutrality. (At least today, the MSM doesn't even pretend to be anything other than left-wing liberal entity that it is.) The Tet Offensive was an amazing, hard-fought victory for the U. S. and the Republic of Vietnam, but Cronkite knowingly made it something else. Following his retirement, Cronkite came out of the closet as it were and publicly aired the views he had formerly advanced undercover. (I remember him saying something to the effect of good people are necessarily liberal.) I don't mourn his passing. I will force myself to pray for his salvation, but I certainly won't enjoy it. I also hope that he has a good deal of time to meditate on his betrayal. (I feel much the same way about the late and much unlammented Robert McNammara.)

Paul Blart: Mall Cop.

This was a fun, clean movie. (Yeah, it's dumb, but in a good way.) What's not to like about a movie where an overweight mall security man takes out a bunch of skate punks trying to rob a mall?

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


Ok, so I was having morning coffee after Mass today. I was just sitting there minding my own business and the chair collapsed underneath me. Nope, I don't need to go on a diet. Well, maybe I do, but the chair collapsed because it had been broken before and re-welded. So, I have issued a decree: if a chair breaks, it is to be thrown out. Meanwhile, I have a greater understanding of Forrest Gump's war wound.

Saturday, July 04, 2009

Lessons From Today's First Reading.

1-Never trust your little brother.
2-Mom really did like him best.

Friday, July 03, 2009

Scraping The Bottom Of The Barrell.

An Asteroids movie?!?
(from Dark Horizons)

Universal Pictures has won the film rights to the classic 1979 video game "Asteroids" says The Hollywood Reporter.

The game featured a spaceship that had to shoot down incoming asteroids to avoid collision, that's about it which means there's no backstory and a lot of creative freedom for Matthew Lopez who is adapting the script.

Lorenzo di Bonaventura will produce. No other names or schedule dates have yet been set.

Happy Anniversary!

Today, my mom and dad would have been married 45 years. (Dad didn't want to be married on Independence Day.) Dad took mom to Vernal, Utah for their honeymoon.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

The Cold Call of Cthulhu

Crucified Practically Everyday.

Allow me to suggest a prayer intention to you, o faithful reader, the many seminarians that currently undergoing Clinical Pastoral Education (aka CPE, Crucified Practically Everyday, or CPEatme.) CPE is meant to educated clergy in pastoral care, according to its Wikipedia entry. Usually, this takes place in a hospital setting. One would think that this would entail learning how to effectively minister to the sick, dying, their families, and health care workers. At its best, it does. However, more often than not it is hijacked by theological liberal in their effort to weed out orthodox seminarians and teach relativism. The horror stories are endless. I know of one fellow who was placed in a program supervised by an ex-Episcopalian Wiccan priestess. I was fairly lucky. My program was supervized by an Episcopal priest who was a liberal in the classic sense, he was open to everyone's views even mine. This however didn't stop my being repeated attacked in group by the ex-Catholic priest and the extremely bitter middleaged Catholic woman. To tell you how bad it was, the fellow student I got on best with was the Episcopal woman seminarian from Berkeley. (We both liked beer and Star Trek. I have since read that she has given talks on women in minstry at Minneapolis' infamous St. Joan of Arc.) During the following year at the seminary, my evaluation was used by a couple of the plain clothes penguins to make my life more difficult. (I had the gall to actually tell my friend that no, I didn't believe that women could validly be ordained.) If it were up to me, CPE would be removed from seminary requirements. Until then, pray for those who have to endure it.

A Classic In Honor of Indepence Day.