Thursday, September 4, 2014

Dolan to Catholics: Everybody Into the Ghetto

One lesson the Bear had to learn about blogging was that he didn't have to write about every aspect of a story. So he's going to focus on just one thing about the New York City St. Patrick's Day Parade controversy.

In case you've missed it, Timothy Cardinal Dolan is going to be grand marshal of next year's parade, which is fine. Unfortunately, it is going to be the first parade to allow openly gay marchers. Worse yet, Dolan has gone on record as saying he supports the decision.

The one thing the Bear wants to talk about is The Catholic Ghetto.

You see, nobody cares what Catholics do in their churches or their homes. Priests can give homilies about whatever they want. Catholics can eschew contraception and have ten kids apiece. Sure, the public might disapprove of much of Catholic life, but as long as we keep it on the down low, they'll tolerate us.

What makes them flip out is when Catholics step out of their churches and into the public square. They don't want to hear about our pro-life, pro-marriage propaganda. In an instant they'll go from "coexist" to screaming "keep your rosaries out of my ovaries."

Actions speak louder than words. What Cardinal Dolan is really saying is that the Catholic Church recognizes a difference between what goes on at St. Umptyfrat on Sunday morning and the real world. (By extension, he is insinuating that what goes on at St. Umptyfrat on Sunday morning isn't real, but the Bear wants to stay focused.) 

To Cardinal Dolan, the St. Patrick's Day Parade is not strictly a Catholic event (unless you count St. Patrick). It is a cultural event with sponsors, such as Guinness. (Guinness' threat to pull out was one reason the organizers let the homosexuals in. The Bear suggests Korbinian's Doppelbock as an alternative, a fine Benedictine brew that's a meal in a bottle.) In Cardinal Dolan's mind, Catholics must go along with whatever rules the organizers set. If it promotes a sin, Catholics must not only stay quiet, but pay ritual obedience to the Prince of the World by expressing approval.

There is an alternative. Cardinal Dolan can't change the rules. What he can do, however, is to refuse to burn a pinch of incense before the emperor's statue. Christians died rather than perform that one, small gesture of civic responsibility. He has a splendid platform and a huge audience at this moment. He could explain that the Catholic Church believes homosexuality is a grave sin, and that it is impossible for a Cardinal of the Catholic Church to be associated with any event that promotes it. It's not like he's going to be thrown to the lions, after all, so it would not take very much courage.

Of course, Cardinal Dolan would lose the good opinion of men if he actually spoke like a prince of the Church. So instead, he is essentially telling Catholics to get into the ghetto.

Because what else is it when we put on our Catholicism like our best Mass clothes on Sunday, but dare not speak of it anywhere else? Cardinal Dolan is saying this:

I am happy to lend the name of a beloved saint and the prestige of my office to a parade that will celebrate homosexuality. You see, this is not a religious event, therefore, I don't have anything to say about it. It is not my place as a Catholic to butt into secular affairs. Whatever the organizers decide is fine with me. It's not like they are coming into our churches and telling us what to do. So why should we tell them how to run their parade?

A ghetto is any ethnic or religious enclave. The Catholic Ghetto is the place we live if we do not challenge the world's immorality. The Catholic Ghetto is where we live when greet public immorality with "who am I to judge?" or "bravo!" or "I approve." Our prelates are building the Catholic Ghetto not to protect us from the world, but, bizarrely, to protect the world from us. Don't be salt. Don't be light. Don't be controversial. Don't judge. Don't proselytize.

This is the Bear's prayer. That one day all the cowards in high places may put the last brick in the wall of the Catholic Ghetto, only to find themselves the sole residents, where they can do no harm, and a vibrant, growing Church, filling the streets, transforming the world without them.


  1. What a wonderful prayer. Amen to it.

  2. I am in PSR classes teaching kids to "put their Catholic on" wherever they go--school, movies, the mall, sporting events..not just at Church, to bring it to the public square. The example of Cardinal Dolan does not help. It is a BAD example.

    Thanks, your Grace. May the Holy Spirit guide you.

    1. When do we get to the point when we have to warn kids away from all high-ranking clerics in order that our little ones do not stumble? Dear God, why do you afflict us with such pastors? I'm a convert, too. There are days I feel I've been sold a bill of goods. Had I understood back when I entered the Church in the 70s what I was really getting into, I wonder if I would have gone through with it.

    2. I hear you. I am grateful to have been born in the One True Church. I had my period of doubts after high school. We muddle as kids, you know. We really only understand a little, but generally accept what we're told until we get too big for our britches.

  3. Dolan strikes me as having a need to be the best-like guy in the room. I bet he's the life of the party, and you would walk away from a conversation with the man feeling great.

    During the interview about the self-outing of the athlete, you can see it in his eyes: sheer terror for an instant when he gets the question. His eyes flick away when he answers. The answer is overly enthusiastic, too eager to please, and yet unauthentic. (I do get lied to for a living so I pick up on these things.) I think he knows better, but the political/PR calculus says back the homosexuals. And, of course, he has cover from Pope Francis. The vapid "Who am I to judge" covers a multitude of sins. The Church is all but crossing that off the List of Sins as we watch. (The Bear wants to know when they're going to get rid of his sins.)

  4. Thank you Bear for this. I was anxious to read your views on this latest example of seeking the praise of men rather than God. The Scriptures warn us all about this, but how much more scandalous when it comes from one of our lead shepherds. I am becoming very scared as there seem to be fewer in the Church hierarchy that we can trust to give any kind of Catholic Christian witness now. Your idea of them trying to wall faithful Catholics up in a ghetto is very thought-provoking. And your prayer is most helpful and hopeful. God bless you for your witness. I need it!

    1. We are free woodland creatures and will have no part of any Catholic Ghetto. I was just reading in Matthew 16:13-20 tonight. It was on my One Year Bible Reading Plan, oddly enough, since we were just discussing "Upon this rock..." That was a turning point for Jesus. Because "from then on" he began to prepare the apostles for his death. But he had accomplished something very important. He had made Peter the foundation, the beginning in history, of his Church. Essentially, it was all there, waiting to be filled. And Jesus said the gates of Hell would not prevail against it. We tend to throw that around a lot every time something disturbs us. But while that is a fact beyond doubt, it also implies Hell will be doing everything it can against the Church. We can't go wrong staying at our post, be it ever so humble, praying, and being salt and being light. We should not be surprised at any of this. And thank you for asking God to bless me! I need it.

  5. The Cardinal has a blog at his web site. There appears to be a way to submit comments on posts. No post on this topic yet. I have not submitted a comment myself I admit.

    Perhaps we should start a campaign of submitting comments calling on him to step down as marshall and condemn the inclusion of homosexuals.

  6. That was an excellent post. I have been following you for some time and have not commented yet, but I pretty much agree with your take on all things Catholic. Cdl Dolan is such a disappointment, but to tell you the truth, when I first saw him, I said to my husband, "He's a good ole boy, isn't he" and that is exactly what he wants to be at any cost. BTW where can I get some of that brew?

    1. Hi Karen. I found Korbinian's Doppelbock in my local supermarket, of all places. It is a substantial product like Guiness, but with more of a rich caramel taste than bitter.

  7. cardinal dolan is a clerical ralph cramden. he does not care about the faithful but only of paying the ransom of the gay agenda! Pray for him and his ego!

  8. Bear said:

    "and a vibrant, growing Church, filling the streets, transforming the world without them." and as Timman said, "BOOM!"


    They cancelled all color
    Sanctuaries stripped
    First Communions were duller.

    No crinoline whites
    Pale hues they stressed
    Only pearled-Pharisees
    Are ever so dressed.

    Roses, carnations,
    Flowers, all manners
    Left just to wither
    ‘Gainst assertive beige banners.

    Pillars of marble
    Corinthian styles
    They decided to paint
    Like pink bathroom tiles.

    Cassocks of red
    Habits blue, white,
    Robes of distinction
    Extinct over night.

    Missals with pages
    Embossed in gloss-gold
    Latin in tint
    English-black often bold.

    Even the ribbons
    To mark scriptural prayers
    Were of green, yellow, silvers
    So to keep us from errors.

    The soft votive flames
    The red opaque glass
    Gave an aura of stillness
    Like time could not pass.

    Yet time it passed,
    Vividness drained
    And populations without color
    Cannot be sustained.

    So those underground
    With red blood in blue veins
    Birthed knowledge, the arts
    Great virtues they’ve gained.

    They did not decay-
    God’s colors, kept green
    For the day up above
    Once again to be seen.

    Except for those beige
    Gray fertility fades
    In their black open minds.

  9. Great post! I'm going to link to it from my own blog.

  10. "Subvet" left a comment that included a bit of profanity, which the Bear edited out and will repost for him. We don't have many rules in the woods, but let's keep it clean. Thanks!

    At times like this I recall that when Henry VIII broke with Rome only one bishop (later cardinal) spoke out against him. That was St. John Fisher who was martyred for his troubles. There was a double butt ton of bishops in England who were of the “go along to get along” mentality, hoping that the troubles would all blow over. Subsequent persecutions under Henry’s daughter Elizabeth and other rulers proved the opposite. For the sake of historical accuracy I'll mention that Catholics had as much blood on their own hands when they would regain control of the nation for brief periods of time. The whole thing could have turned out differently if enough clerics grew a set of balls and told Henry to take a flying leap. They didn't and for those pewsitters unfortunate enough to be under the “care” of Fisher’s contemporaries life must have sucked on toast, there was probably a fair amount of time when they didn't know whether to **** or go blind as far as following Church teaching. Nevertheless a fair number were able to adhere to the Faith even unto death. Dolan’s recent actions prove we still have the same sort of Judas goats amongst us that kept quiet under the House of Tudor.

    1. Bear, thanks for taking the time to edit my comments and repost them. I should have been more circumspect with my wording. Just because I'll use profanity and vulgarity on my own blog is no reason to expect others to tolerate it on theirs. My apologies and thanks again.

    2. Well, I just figured from your name maybe you're a crusty old shellback. I was in the Navy myself and occasionally shock the family with some colorful language.

  11. - "The floor of hell is paved with the skulls of bishops." - St. Athanasius, Council of Nicaea, AD 325 attributed. Cardinal Dolan should repent now!

  12. "Of course, Cardinal Dolan would lose the good opinion of men if he actually spoke like a prince of the Church. So instead, he is essentially telling Catholics to get into the ghetto."


    Well said.

  13. Instead of bishops and priests talking against sin from the pulpit they are approving and praising sin from the pulpit and will have to answer to almighty God!

  14. Cardianal Dolan is braking catechism 1868 rule of the church. Sin is a personal act. Moreover, we have a responsibility for the sins committed by others when we cooperate in them. - By participating directly and voluntarily in them. - By ordering, advising,praising, and approving them.- By not disclosing or not hindering them when we have an obligation to do so- by protecting evil doers. REPENT CARDINAL DOLAN!! REPENT!!!!


Moderation is On.

Featured Post

Judging Angels Chapter 1 Read by Author

Quick commercial for free, no-strings-attached gift of a professionally produced audio book of Judging Angels, Chapter 1: Last Things, read...