Thursday, April 07, 2011

A Ringing Endorsement

It's not every day I get new entries for the Victory Endorsements feature on my sidebar.  An insult has to be really juicy before it's worth putting up as an endorsement.  But today is a red-letter day.  I just got the following comment from "Carol" to an expose I put up four years ago: "Edwina Gateley: Pagan Priestess":
Sign me, 'proud to be an ex-catholic,' if you, the above, are any example of what being catholic is all about.

What about'judge not, lest you be judged?' Jesus came to set us free from 'Law' with a new law, a true law: 'love one another.' How many of you judges do what Edwina does. . .work with those society considers the lowest of the low, prostitutes. The hurting. I think you're all too concerned with getting your theology self-righteously perfect. Pls. read about Pharisees, oh you perfect ones.
Sign me,
so glad to be free of religion
Personally, I suspect Carol was proud to be an ex-Catholic long before I ever came along.  No doubt I am being accused of "judging" because this post was written in praise and defense of the judgment of Bishop Thomas Olmsted of the Diocese of Phoenix, who judged that Edwina Gateley was not fit to give a retreat in his diocese in June of 2007.  It's funny how people who profess themselves emancipated from religion nevertheless are always wanting to trot out Bible verses.  If Carol is "so glad to be free of religion," I wonder she has any use for the Bible, or for Jesus, or for principles like "judge not lest ye be judged."

Oh, by the way, Carol, speaking of rash judgment: I want to address your point -- if something as gauzy as your comment can be said to have anything in it as sharp as a point -- about your confidence that I have nothing to do with people society looks down on as the lowest of the low, etc.  As a matter of fact, I am a public defender.  I doubt seriously that the beatings I take on a daily basis in the service of the "lowest of the low" have ever entered into the darkest imaginings of Edwina Gateley.  

And I bet she makes at least three or four times my salary not taking them.


  1. You know, you really have to ignore a LOT about the Bible to reduce it down to "love as I define it, never mind what Jesus said" because He was pretty Damn direct in what Love is and what it is NOT.

    Anita, you really shouldn't feed the trolls. It just encourages them and makes them bog down in their Christological heresies (and Trinitarian heresies, etc...)

  2. Oh, I don't know...I found that the trolls sharply decreased once I started putting up their best items as Victory Endorsements. Plus, there is also comment moderation...

  3. Dear sister, thank you for the day's dose of schadenfreude. I guess that's what it is to chuckle at the stupidity of apostates.

    But then I contemplate the implications of apostasy, how it dulls the wits and kills the soul, and become sad.


    (your brother in SPND)

  4. Anita: I agree with your approach. However, I must confess that I wish trolls would more often leave a comment at my site. There are a few of reasons.

    Firstly, I like the engagement with the barbarians outside the gates, so to speak. Also, one has to put up with the insults, lies etc. But is not that what Our Lord endured? Some people can't deal with that, I know, and that's OK. But were we not instructed to "go out into the world"?

    Secondly, it forces one think through things, allowing me to understand and express my positions better. That is a good, no doubt.

    Thirdly, in responding to trolls, you have no idea, after they shut their computers and are alone with themselves, if they will reflect on your response, perhaps giving them a course correction, steering them back onto the right track. I like to hope so.

    I find that in many cases the "don't feed the troll" mantra leads to an echo chamber effect, preaching to the choir, exclusive clubs, a pack mentality, cults of personality, which (as I learned very quickly when starting up my site) exist in various sectors of the Catholic blogosphere.

  5. Yes, indeed apostasy is sad, as Stella Oriens has pointed out. This has not been lost upon me, however much it may seem otherwise.

    But those who must make their apostasy public must be answered publicly. The failure to do so not only leads to the echo chamber effect, as TH2 says, but also emboldens the trolls, who discover that they need not fear accountability. St. John Chrysostom said that heretics must be smitten across the face and made to fear declaring their opinions in public, lest some Christian overhear them and make short work of them. I am not prepared to believe that this was because Chrysostom, saint and Doctor of the Church, was uncharitable; rather, I think because he realized the world would be a better place for not being exposed to the public airing out of error. I have commented on that at some length in this space.