Reasonable, but Unreasoned

By the words of the Gospel, may our sins be blotted out.

It turns out that, as Deaconette has many times said here, blogging is not a ministry. Nor is the pre-eminent political issue of our time to be used as the sole litmus test of one’s Catholic voting identity. Nor should clerics “be publicly voicing overt and purely political opinions regarding individuals, parties, election results, the current news cycle, nor engaging in ad hominem attacks.” And with that quote, she draws your attention its source, a remarkable letter from Bishop Donald S. Hying of the Diocese of Oscar Meyer Madison, Wisconsin. You can read it in its entirety online. We know it’s one hundred and one percent correct because we’ve been frequently told of His Excellency’s extra-most-bestest-ness by the Sacred Person whom His Excellency is contradicting.

The typical method of sermon construction in the Catholic churches of North America, illustrated.

It is on that last of the Bishop’s points, i.e. ad hominem attacks, Your Deaconette wishes to expand. And at the risk of repeating herself, she has many times said here something else — that the curriculum for your basic rad-trad priest (and aren’t they all just so, so basic?) does not seem to include fundamental precepts of logic and formal argument. Bishop Hying didn’t clarify, either, and it makes your Deaconette wonder if the good bishop does indeed know the difference between an ad hominem and an insult. An insult, which is an instance when something unkind is said about another person, is of its nature an attack. To make a case for your point of view is to argue, and in so doing one commits the logical fallacy of argumentum ad hominem by making the case about a person, rather than that person’s ideas. Consequently, ad hominems are far more sly and subtle than a mere insult: they are insults used in place of evidence to support a deduced conclusion.

Consider an insult by the Puttering Proprietor of Pithy Porcelain which he often quoted when the subject of Mr. Obama arose. The 4P was fond of repeating that “every word he [Mr. Obama] says is a lie, including ‘and’ and ‘the.’” The author of that witticism was novelist Mary McGrory. By it, she was challenging the truth of playwright Lillian Hellman’s somewhat autofictional career as a memoirist when Hellman recounted her life among literary icons of the twentieth century, including Ernest Hemingway and Dashiell Hammett. More than that, McGrory was entertaining, with humorous hyperbole about the extent of Hellman’s mistruths, while a guest on The Dick Cavett Show television program.

Deaconette is certain the 4P knew of the hyperbolic nature of this insult. It is unkind to call someone an inveterate liar, even when it is demonstrably true of them. You’ll note, though, that while Ms. McGrory confined her remarks to things which Hellman wrote, the 4P expanded it to the entirety of Mr. Obama’s speech. Was he being only humorous? No, Deaconette contends he was expanding the insult into the territory of argumentum ad hominem: any statement by the then-President of the United States could be dismissed without consideration as untrue. Such an argument suggests that because a person has said or done something contemptuous or fallacious once, all other statements or actions by that person cannot be considered good, right or true.

That is wrong. Consider Martin Luther, whom many neo-Montanist Traddies would like us to believe is presently attending The 2021st Annual All-Perdition Lot Casting Competition and Baby Pig Roast at pit number three with an apple stuffed in his mouth, as punishment for not getting proper approval to use thumbtacks on the notice board. Was he wrong to thereafter pen the lines “Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott, ein gute Wehr und Waffen?” No. Even Catholics can find spiritual consolation in The Bulwark Never Failing.

Deaconette remembers a North Carolinian bishop who had two stock sermon-saving magic tricks he would pull out of his miter in case he had to (sometimes even unexpectedly) preach. One was titled “And then s/he died in my arms,” and the other was titled “And then Mother Teresa said to me.” Possibly the most unsafe place to lie down in the world was in a bed attended by the friendly embrace of Bishop Bill; countless multitudes died in his arms over the decades. His wide-ranging privileged hearing of the dying wisdom of a holy soul was the flip side of the ad hominem coin, called the appeal to authority. It attempted to imbue unremarkable platitudes just remembered as the deacon read the Gospel with the sanctity of one of life’s most holy moments. Likewise, his anecdotes of an unusually loquacious Mother Teresa of Calcutta — whom, to be fair, he did know somewhat well — were similarly encyclopedic, if banal, and were oddly untinged by her experiences of India and Croatia. At the time, Mother Teresa was considered an unassailably saintly living exemplar of Christian life; today we understand she’s a mere canonized Saint and thus, she wasn’t at all saintly.

So many Catholic homilies are rushed affairs with little intellectual merit. Shocking? Well, your Deaconette cannot tell you how many Sundays she has heard the words, “This morning as I was finishing my coffee,” immediately following the words “Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.” She thinks it’s at least a month of Sundays. It therefore be-cloven-hooves us to be alert for poorly constructed and fallacious arguments, since we hear so many of them at Mass — and for our own spiritual edification, no less. In any given Sunday Mass homily from clergy ranging in goodness from devoted to debauched you’ll hear ad hominems, a circulus or three, red herrings, ad crumenams, hasty generalizations, false dichotomies, straw men, and slippery slopes. Learn what those are and your ears will prick up so often in the pews, you may be forgiven by heaven for playing Angry Birds instead of listening to the dressy dude at the pulpit. Learn what those are, please; they are your intellectual self-defense.

Deaconette commends Bishop Hying, again, on his wise letter to his diocese. His urgency was clearly motivated by a Prevaricating, Prattling, Politically Presumptuous coffee mug salesman who’d been naughty for a very long time. But even in the good bishop’s letter, Deaconette spots numerous informal and formal errors in logic, and that’s a shame. Perhaps traditionalists will return rhetoric and composition to its honored place in seminary formation. Let’s not wait for that, though; the rest of us can demand an end to lazy sermonizing as if our souls depend urgently upon it. Perhaps they do.

Through the intercession of St Teresa of Calcutta, patron saint of unchallenged and unrepentant charlatans, may Almighty God grant the renewal of His gifts of Confirmation to you, that you may bind up the broken of His clergy, with a gag if necessary, in the Name of the Creator, and of the Redeemer, and of the Sanctifier. Amen. Please put away Angry Birds and stand for the creed.

Septic Fistula

From the final volume, minus indexes, of the Still Newer Catholic Encyclopaedia, as yet unpublished and likely to remain so due to declining demographic support for such a publishing enterprise:

Zuhlsdorf, His Reverence John Todd. The Unreconstructed Neoplatonic ideal of a failed priesthood. Converted from Lutheranism and shortly thereafter applied to priestly formation with, inter alia, the Archdiocese of Milwaukee. Dismissed from seminary studies by a series of formators due to serious psychological aberrances and antisocial behaviors and not, as he claims, for being too conservative. He persisted in applying for priestly formation until he found a non-American sponsor without the pesky psych battery entry requirements, one also willing to overlook prior reports. Was ordained in 1991 by the late Pope “Saint” John Paul II of happy, or call it mixed if we’re honest, memory for the suburbicarian Roman Diocese of Velletri-Segni. Never took up priestly ministry in his home diocese. Served as a very minor official in a relatively abstruse and unimportant Roman dicastery, and then for reasons shrouded in mystery and graduate studies, did not. Upon returning from Rome to central Wisconsin, that hub of academic inquiry into patristics, he “worked on his degree” for a decade or so without achieving it, and established a blog which, in the words of his bishop, Mons. Vincent Apicella, “combines arguments of faith and morals with photos of birds, Chinese food, and aircraft seats, as well as boasting about a firearms license, [and] speaks for itself… I do not see what theological or scientific credibility he [Zuhlsdorf] can have.”

The blog was nevertheless widely read, especially by an outspoken pseudo-heretical subset of the American Catholic laity noted for their neo-Valentinianist beliefs in the primacy of worship of the Divine Being over the emulation of the Divine Nature. Significant achievements of his blogging career included harassment of Catholic academics at Hofstra University resulting in his ban from that campus; harassment of officials of the Leadership Conference of Catholic Women resulting in his ban from attending their annual gatherings as a journalist; harassment of papal commission appointee and veteran naval officer Prof. Phyllis Zagano q.v.; instructing the his coterie on the necessary disposition to pray for the death of Pope Francis while simultaneously avoiding sin; and an extended personal and ugly vendetta against Rev. James Martin SJ,. q.v. Inspired several parody blogs, notably one “Father D’s What Does the Priest Really Do All Day” and “Deaconette C’s Blog.” Was eventually pressed in 2014 into special ministry for the Diocese of Madison to its angriest Catholic laity, the Tridentine Mass (sic) Society of Madison.

Such was his non-rôle when he was caught in early 2021 broadcasting via his Chinese food blog and other social media, n.b. falsely, that he had obtained the permission of the local ordinary, Mons. Donald Hying, to exorcise demons in connection with purported and non-existent fraud in the best-audited federal election ever conducted in the United States. In fact, Zuhlsdorf had been granted permission to recite prayers of exorcism in connection with the global SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, which he characterized with pejorative epithets such as “The Wuhan Devil,” “COVID-1984,” and “plandemic,” doubtless also not what Mons. Hying had in mind in extending such faculties. Following a revolt on the seat of the United States government by supporters of the discredited election fraud conspiracy theory, Zuhlsdorf’s nefarious activities were brought to light by leading Catholic intellectuals whom he had relentlessly antagonized, including Martin, SJ, supra and Tony Arnett, q.v. After conducting a brief inquiry and holding an audience with the reprobate priest shortly thereafter, Mons. Hying announced an ostensibly mutual agreement whereby Zuhlsdorf “will relocate from the Diocese of Madison to pursue other opportunities,” but did not mention if any of those opportunities include long-term psychiatric care and/or medication.

Edited by Rev. F. McButterpants, S.J.

Deaconette suspended this blog in the hopes of allowing Bishop Hying time to rectify Father Zuhlsdorf’s ills in the Bishop’s then-new see of Madison. She didn’t expect it to take so long, but she congratulates him on his wise pastoral care. She considers Father Zuhlsdorf’s lengthy career as having come to its inevitable fruitless fig tree crossroads. Her work here is done, for the nonce at least. Let us be vigilant but hope that Father Z’s stone-cold, shriveled, little black soul may by recent events be prompted to blossom into something worthy of meeting its maker before the biological solution to his ministry prevails over his eternal rest.

Action Item! Capirotes for Traddies!

By now most of you know about the Douillettes for Doucheciples Project.

Thank you for keeping small people warm.

In light of recent events, and in consultation with the Imperial Warlock, here is a new project for your consideration.

CAPIROTES FOR TRADDIES PROJECT

The Project will work along the same lines as the Greca Project.

Laypeople and clerics (priests and deacons – bishops buy your own!), contact the Grand Klaxon with your information – check your hat size before you call.

Here is a handy chart about how to measure for your NECK SIZE: HERE.  It is important to double-check especially if you have gained or lost a lot of weight or hair.

“Capirote” is, of course, a Spanish nickname for the long conical penitent hat. It was worn as a sign of penitence. Today it is mainly seen during Easter season processions. Spaniards also call the hat a “Nazareno – Nazarene hood.” Otherwise it is a “coroza.” “Capirote” is fun and pretty much everyone knows it.

Some people in the high realms of power are really triggered by the Capirote.  It’s a curious phenomenon.

The Grand Klaxon informs me that there are a couple options for your capirote.  There are different kinds of Nazarene hoods: they come in silk, (rather shiny as in the photo, below) and ordinary poly-blend medium threadcount pillowcase.

“Meno chiacchiere – più processioni!. … Less chattering – more processions!” Perhaps we can carry lit torches.

We need a hard identity as Catholic traditionalists. People should know who we are and what we stand for by our mode of dress.

Importing antiquated styles of historic headgear from Europe is a clear and convincing way to show our penitential sorrow in these lax modern times.

We should not be afraid to help our neighbors in these United States understand exactly who we are as RadTrads.

¡Hagan lío!  Let the New Evangelization Thrive!

ON THE ROCKS: Cocktails at Bishops’ Conference Belies Church Suffering

A bishop is a middle-school CCD student who grades his own pop quiz.

Catholics4Change

By Kathy Kane

Dear Bishop Senior and Bishop McIntyre,

We have crossed paths over the years but have never formally met. I considered introducing myself in the hotel lounge at the Marriott in Baltimore. I chose not to because I couldn’t trust myself not to recreate the scene of Jesus in the temple with the money changers. I might have overturned a table, sending glasses of Cointreau and Johnny Walker Black Label into the air.

I’m one of the mothers from the Philadelphia Archdiocese who traveled to Baltimore to stand with the survivors outside of the hotel during the Bishops’ Conference. We also attended the Conference in November. We call ourselves the “Mom Squad” and we support the victims and survivors who have literally saved our children by exposing the issue of clergy abuse to the world.

Voices Carry

Your group of bishops did not notice us when you arrived…

View original post 1,411 more words

Specie Circular

2019 Predictions

1. Pres. Trump will be credibly accused of several felonious activities before, in pursuit of, and during his Presidency by the Special Counsel, but will not be removed from office, as this will politically benefit neither party.

2. The Pleonasmic Porcelain-Peddling Priest will miss the point and continue to tout the brand of an inveterate pathological liar, associate of known criminals, philanderer of porn stars, and likely felon and traitor because hey, he puts men just like him (*cough*cavanough*cough*) on the Supreme Court.

3. The Diocese of Madison will get a new ordinary who would be relatively low on the terna Fr Z would have submitted, had anyone cared what he thought and entrusted to him the well-being of his brother priests, which of course they did not. Looking further ahead than 2019, it will come to pass that the new Bishop of Madison will either curtail WDTPRS or The 4P will relocate to avoid that fate.

Continue reading

Senza Vincoli

ASK DEACONETTE:

From a man with too much time on his hands…

Quaeritur: I was wondering if you know the rubrics or know where the rubrics for lay instituted acolytes in the EF can be found?
At my parish, we try and do a lot of things in the extraordinary form, and I am trying to find some authoritative/knowledgeable source on what an instituted acolyte can/ cannot do/wear (in terms of the biretta) for liturgical celebrations (mainly outside of Mass). Thank you!

Respondio: Footwear is de riguer, of course. Socks and ideally, shoes, should you be able to afford them; sandals are generally frowned upon unless accompanied by the habit of your mendicant order. Opinions vary on athletic shoes and boots; Deaconette believes they are best avoided at liturgical celebrations if one has the wherewithal to make a substitution more formal in nature. Omit the wristwatch. Finally, some sort of undergarment is generally expected, though it ought to go unseen. Tighty-whiteys, boxers, briefs, boxer-briefs are all acceptable; the thong, g-string, athletic supporter, or cloth diaper with safety pin is only acceptable when the acolyte is serving in a non-public situation, e.g. in the chapel of the Cardinal’s beach home at the Jersey Shore.

Continue reading

Costume Jewellery

actionitemDoes € 880.00 seem a bit pricey for 3-D printed plastic hats to you? It does to Deaconette. Could the cost be run up, not so much by the plastic, as by the genuine Elmo Muppet hide that is affixed as a plume?

Perhaps we should rally round and pass the, ahem, hat. In such a way, those fine Helvetian gentlemen who keep safe the Holy See from terrorists bearing halberds and bardiches can attend to their duties without pecuniary anxieties. It is the example of almsgiving so often set for us by the 4P.

“Guard spokesman Sgt. Urs Breitenmoser says the new helmets won’t be used Sunday. The army is looking for sponsors for the 880-euro ($1,050) helmets, which cost about half as much as the old metal ones.” One has to wonder where the Sergeant got the idea that great swathes of the public-at-large stand ready to donate to so literally quixotic a cause. Read the rest, gentle readers, at http://time.com/5266741/popes-guards-3d-printed-helmets and contribute.

Or not. Deaconette is sure you can find less silly uses and more worthy needs for the earnings you spread in charity.

Cersei’s Uncle Kevan

ASK DEACONETTE:  “My 4 year old [child] insists on praying in Valyrian.” Valyrian resources for young children?

From a lonely man posing as his reader…

Quaeritur: Thank you for the delightful and edifying omnibus that is your blog. [Yes, the Profanator of Petrified Provincial Patois pretended, pathologically, that a partisan praised him with that preposterous plaudit when, plainly, he penned it personally.] It is my understanding that Septa Unella, or maybe it was even the High Sparrow, created a syllabus of works to be read when studying how to waste time the Seven would have us put to better use. It is known. Do you have a copy of this for those studying at home? Also, my 4 y.o. [child] is insisting upon saying her prayers in High Valyrian. Do you or the readers know of any resources for young children to study or read in High Valyrian? Valar dohaeris.

Respondio: No. Please ask your daughter to outside and play with the other boys and girls until dinnertime.

Meet the Blogger Priest Firing Red Pills at the Vatican

Said Faggioli, “Fr. Z is much more convinced about the Christian character of Donald Trump than of Pope Francis. That’s remarkable.”

actionitemDeaconette thinks Dr. Massimo Faggioli has an enviable gift of concision which has ever eluded her. Perfection being attained not by addition but by subtraction, Deaconette will not embellish on the good professor’s elegant and astute observation.

If you have not yet read the profile of Father Zuhlsdorf that ran in yesterday’s BuzzFeed, go do. Share it far and wide.

“Meet the Blogger Priest Firing Red Pills at the Vatican”
Joseph Bernstein, BuzzFeed, February 1, 2018

Sesame Corona

Deaconette is sorry for her relative tardiness in analyzing the predictive data for the two thousand eighteenth year of Our Lord. The Prognosticating Presbyter in Pontoon Pants beat her to it.

2018 Predictions

1. Pres. Trump’s obvious cognitive decline will be revealed to be related to a progressive neurological disease.
2. The criminal trial of Paul Manafort will begin. Indictments will be handed down for one or more of Pres. Trump’s children.
3. The word “chasuble” will be used more often than the word “resurrection” at WDTPRS.
4. Pope Francis–still Pope–will still make no material progress on what to do with Cosplay Ray.
5. For no particular reason, several times throughout the year Vince Apicella will send the “Sudden Sweetness Gerber Daisy Thank You Delivery Assortment from Participating Network Florist” to Bob Morlino, with his heartfelt assurance of continuing prayers.
6. Viri probati will cause far less controversy among the faithful than priests on probation for probing virile preteens.

295_350x350_front_color-whitered
Deaconette prefers the superior precision of the term “ad apsidem” to the posterior posture.

7. The number of places in the United States with Holy Mass, whether ad orientem or not, will decline significantly.
8. From a likely source, we will learn much of value about pasta made with squid ink and almost nothing about alms-giving.
9. Doctrinal evaluation of professors and theological writings will be devolved to local bloggers.
10. Fr. Z will still want to be a Monsignor.