Tuesday, July 28, 2015

First Thing: Is Maureen Full of Mullarkey?

Still on the tail of the dust-up over the New York Archdiocese's  Making All Things New campaign, we have First Things and National Review persisting with articles about good, bad and ugly parishes in New York City.  I hesitate even to cite the articles but, here, here and here, it's only fair that one reads and decides for oneself.

In these articles, everything from clashing ideologies to art history to bureaucratic politics is invoked to report on what reads like ad hominem attacks on Our Saviour's newest pastor and his very bad horrible decision to remove artist Ken Woo's icons from the Church of Our Saviour.  As a former parishioner at Our Saviour, I too signed the petition to save the icons and I too lamented the loss of Fr. Rutler as pastor.   I also lamented the loss of the religious education program.  (Oh, you didn't know about that?  Funny that neither First Things or National Review has picked up on the termination of the program--eighty kids, numerous loyal families and some 20 volunteer catechists and volunteer director summarily told by the new pastor, Good-bye!)

Fr. Robbins, or the mere idea of him, has managed to get the very blood of some so-called traditionalist New York Catholics boiling.  It's true that at Our Saviour, the air has changed, but Fr. Robbins hasn't yet replaced the wafer with Wonder Bread nor has he brought in liturgical dancers or a rock band. The Mass continues to be a rather reverential one.

What comes through in these articles is an ideologue's vitriolic disdain for that which challenges his ideology.  In this case, the target is the likes of a Fr. Robbins who, with his co-conspirator Cardinal Dolan, himself by now a satyr with tail and horns, dares to oppose a Fr. Rutler, definitely a heavenly cherub who can, by the way,  more than adequately defend himself if need be. It's predictable now if not comical to hear how suspect and disagreeable are all those who do not present as sufficiently traditionalist and orthodox to the traditionalist Catholic New Yorker who requires that others of us pass muster, we lesser ones being those who surely collude and conspire to deprive traditionalists of their priests, their parishes, their masses.

Where's the Catholic joy?  Who would want to be a part of this orthodox crowd when they whine and stamp their feet so miserably because their sensitivities are upset. 

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