Wednesday, June 25

John Derbyshire quietly reflects on homosexuality and the clergy

Any organization that admits frank and open homosexuals into its higher levels will sooner or later abandon its original purpose and give itself over to propagating and celebrating the homosexualist ethos, and to excluding heterosexuals and denigrating heterosexuality.

The key phrase there is "frank and open." These things I am talking about are new in the world. Catholic seminaries of 50 years ago were not, to judge at any rate from the novels of J. F. Powers, plagued with the kinds of issues detailed in Michael Rose's book, though there must have been lots of homosexuals in them.

In this sense, the problem is not homosexuals or homosexuality. I am sure that God loves homosexuals and has a purpose for them. (I even think that their prowess in the "caring professions" offers some clue as to what that purpose might be.) The problem is the sexual revolution. The problem is hedonism. The problem is the preening vanity and selfishness of "coming out," of parading private inclinations, of a kind that repel normal people, as if those inclinations were, all by themselves, marks of authenticity and virtue, of suffering and oppression. A large part of the problem, too, is "heterophobia" — the dislike, mistrust, and contempt which many homosexuals feel towards normal people.

My own reaction to all this is, well, reactionary. I rather liked the old order I grew up in, where everyone knew that the local vicar or the Latin master was a bit of an iron,* but that he kept his hands to himself and his private life private, and did a first-class job of work in his chosen line. Such a one could be a respected and admired member of the community. That homosexual schoolmaster in my National Review piece was known and liked throughout our town — a substantial place, pop. 100,000 — and widely mourned when he died.

The Rev. Robinson, with his selfish betrayal of two little babes, and Canon John, with his self-important announcements about his "lifestyle" and his bedroom activities, will never have that kind of respect and admiration, certainly not from me.The church that they and their friends are busily colonizing will soon be one that ordinary Christian families will stay away from in droves.

Organized Christianity began as a religion for women and slaves. It looks set fair to end, at least in the Western world, as a religion for homosexuals. The only thing that might turn the tide would be a determined missionary effort by the diocese of Nigeria.

From the comments:

Oh, right. Pastors should never question inerrant church teaching on faith and morals like: the Jesuits using slaves to build Georgetown University, in an era when half of the republic had rejected slavery; the Magdalene Homes in Ireland; selling indulgances until Trent, forbidding theological education to lay people. Yup, the church never changes and has always gotten it right. I seem to recall that here in the comments section of St. Blog's, the orthodox faithful make free to reject the Church's historic teaching on Just War theory. Talk about your culture of dissent.


New VeggieTales movie on the way; but this one won't be religious.

Get thee to a monastery.

A concise summation of Cardinal Law's troubles.

The question that absolutely must be answered is...why?

No longer can Law say that he always acted based on the best medical information available to him. He praised Shanley for ''years of generous and zealous care'' and an ''impressive record'' after a church-ordered psychiatric evaluation found Shanley to have ''a great deal of psychological pathology.''

Furthermore, Law's predecessor had referred to Shanley in writing as a ''troubled priest,'' and one of Law's own priests had written ''it is clear to me that Paul Shanley is a sick person.''

No longer can Law say that his first priority has been the people priests are ordained to serve - the stacks of documents produced yesterday provide no evidence that Law ever expressed a concern or a kind word about Shanley's alleged victims, who number at least 26.

The documents show that Law's administration told a California diocese that Shanley was ''a priest in good standing'' - even as scandals here made it important for the archdiocese of Boston to hustle Shanley out of town - and show that Law's only expressed concern about Shanley's later move to a New York hostel run by nuns was the possibility of negative publicity.

So. Why?

What did the Cardinals and the other Powers stand to gain by protecting Shanley?

What did they stand to lose by dealing with him as he should have been dealt with?

See, this where the "liberal/conservative" and "progressive/orthodox" paradigms of seeing Church problems absolutely fail. Law has been revered by many, many "orthodox" Catholics since his appointment as an upholder of why was he protecting a child predator? Might there be something else at work here that's beyond those easy paradigms?

Another open thread:

Has the presence of altar girls made boys less willing to serve?

Sort of Open Thread for you while I celebrate the completion of my appointed tasks by reading a book outside in the sun. And perhaps your thoughts will help me get mine organized on an issue I've been following closely, even though I haven't blogged about it in a while.


I will start off by simply saying that the situation worries me greatly. I actively search out good news stories from the country, find a few, but still don't have any sense that the administration has a handle on this, and came into this terribly ill-prepared, and the situation is even more worrisome because of what will be required if the building tensions with N. Korea, explode into open conflict , which may happen a lot sooner than we think...

From Georgie Ann Geyer

All this empire stuff on the part of the illuminati of this administration is serious in getting people killed, but barely serious in any planning for the long run. It is heedless, random expansionism without any base.

The hard road to peace

The killing of six British soldiers and the wounding of eight yesterday shows that the war in Iraq never really ended with the capture of Baghdad and the flight of Saddam Hussein. It also demonstrates that, when the British and Americans invaded Iraq, they entered one of the most dangerous countries in the world.

"Remember even Saddam Hussein found this a difficult place to rule," said an Iraqi neurosurgeon yesterday. He had spent the past four months removing bullets and other munitions from the heads of many Iraqis, 90 per cent of them civilians, who have become casualties of the war and its aftermath.

Iraqis still say they are astonished at the ease with which the US and Britain won the war militarily but have been unable to turn this into a political victory. Iraq, even after the stunningly rapid defeat of its armed forces, was never like Germany or Japan in 1945 because its people had never identified with the regime that was overthrown. Instead, they blame the outside world for supporting Saddam Hussein, tacitly or openly, for so long.

In theory, the US and British armies should be in total control of Iraq, yet they remain curiously isolated within the country. L. Paul Bremer, the head of the Coalition Provisional Authority - as the occupation administration is known - issues confident assertions that the final remnants of Saddam's supporters are being hunted down and life is returning to normal.

But yesterday in Baghdad there was still no electricity in much of the city.

Sitting outside his office in Sadoun Street in the centre of Baghdad - he said it was too hot to sit inside - Abdul Wahab al-Hashimi, a businessman, laughed contemptuously when told of Mr Bremer's claim. He said: "My company owns a lot of property in Baghdad but we haven't collected any rents because we have nowhere to put the money and we would be immediately robbed if we kept it in the office."

In the months before the war, many Iraqis would say privately that they secretly hoped, with the overthrow of Saddam Hussein, they might, for the first time since the start of the Iran-Iraq war, have a normal life without military conflict or sanctions. But life in most of Iraq is anything but normal 10 weeks after the capture of Baghdad. The state collapsed and the US has not succeeded in putting it back together again. Instead, it has added another layer of bureaucracy. In one mental asylum in the city patients did not eat for 24 hours last week because the appropriate American official could not be found whose signature was necessary to spend $600 (£360) on food.

Before the war, some 60 per cent of Iraqis were dependent on the UN's oil-for-food rations to fend off starvation. Today, the figure is higher, because the only big employer in Iraq was the government and that has collapsed spectacularly

And this, via Eve

I have two articles to write this morning. They pay, you don't.


Ugandan rebels kidnap schoolgirls

A Ugandan army spokesman, Shaban Bantariza, told the BBC that some girls had managed to escape the night-time attack on their school in the north-east of the country. Twelve girls had been found hiding nearby and were rescued, but between 40 and 80 were still thought to be missing. The United Nations says the rebel LRA has kidnapped more than 5,000 children in the past year alone, using them as soldiers, labourers and sex slaves. Mr Bantarisa told the BBC's World Today programme that the raid on the Roman Catholic school near Soroti was a continuation of the rebels' 17-year brutal resistance movement.

Vatican internet news:

Vatican Museum goes online

and...the Vatican's website is under attack by about 30 hackers every month

"Fortunately, up to now no-one has managed to penetrate the pope's site thanks to a highly efficient team of specialists charged with antivirus protection who have always managed to block hackers' emails," said Archbishop Claudio Celli, secretary for the administration of the Holy See's heritage."Young Americans are the most common and aggressive of hackers around the world seeking to cross the Vatican's e-borders," he continued.

The Vatican must also fend off web surfers who harbour no hostile intent whatsoever, such as an insomniac Franciscan friar mentioned by Celli, who had repeatedly tried to enter the site.


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