Sunday, April 19, 2015

Recommendation: The Pope Francis Little Book of Insults

Many of you in the Catholic o'sphere may have already seen this, but if not, I invite you to take a look. The Pope Francis Little Book of Insults was first introduced more than a year ago, though it is an ongoing project and further suggestions continue to come in through the comments section of the original post and elsewhere.

It was launched by the English blogger at That the Bones You Have Crushed May Thrill, a long-running and extremely useful site that is one of the few that I link to on my relatively short Catholic blog roll. As many of you probably recognized, the distinctive title is from Psalm 51.

A few caveats. Though this may not be completely clear from a casual reading, there is in fact no such book. (This didn't stop a few news services from reporting on it as if there were.) Rather, the list is contained on the original post. While I think the author and I are on often on the same page on the state of the current Church and things Catholic, no endorsement by Bones of my own quirky blog is necessarily suggested.

From my point of you, what is particularly annoying about the Pope's "who am I to judge?" statement--an originally off the cuff remark that obviously took on a life of its own--and the implicit (and sometimes) explicit message of much of his pontificate, is not that a general Christian attitude of refraining from the judgment of persons is not meritorious--after all, there is firm scriptural backing for it--but the idea that this Pope is somehow different from or better than his predecessors and perhaps other Catholics in this regard.

In point of fact Pope Francis has been incredibly judgmental in terms of persons, especially towards fellow Christian and Catholic persons. Indeed, what the "book" clarifies for us, beyond any reasonable doubt is that judgmentalism has reached a sort of mania with Francis. That this is almost the reverse of the mainstream view simply shows that when it comes to judgment the mainstream view is almost exclusively concerned with judgment concerning non-Christians and non-Catholics as well as, for lack of better terms, dissenting or "liberal" Christians or Catholics. On this view, passing judgment on opinions in favor of, say, communion for the divorced and remarried or some such is fascist. Judging Cardinal Burke or some anonymous Catholic who likes the Traditional Mass is righteous. And so on.

Or, as you-know-who might say, who am I to judge? Judging is for those liquid Christians (no. 14), those querulous and disillusioned pessimists (no. 28), those sloth-diseased, acidic Christians (no. 61), those moralistic quibblers (no. 96) over there!

Go the the original post, but here are two excerpts from the short and long parts. To his credit, every insult has a link to the original source. I hope the author had a good cocktail after finishing it. 

Who can deny that these are positively Shakespearean?
"Old maid!" 
"Fomenter of coprophagia!" 
"Specialist of the Logos!" 
"Rosary counter!" 
"Self-absorbed, Promethean neo-Pelagian!" 
"Ideological Christians!" 
"Mr and Mrs Whiner!"
Weathervanes! All of them! 
Rotting in the heart, weak, weak to the point of rottenness! Gloomy in the heart! 
Weak-hearted Christians! 
So much sterility within our Mother Church: when because of the weight of the hope in the Commandments, that pelagianism that all of us carry within our bones, she becomes sterile. She believes she is capable of giving birth… no, she can’t! 
Many times I think that in some places the Church is more like an entrepreneur than a mother. 
A discouraged, anxious, sad Church; a Church who is more spinster than mother; and this Church isn’t useful”, such a Church is no more than a museum. 
Christians in appearance! Made-up Christians, because when the rain comes, the make-up runs off! 
“So many ‘apparent Christians,’ collapse at the first temptation,” 
Appearances! Christians of appearance ... they are dead! 
“Band of the chosen” in that “ecclesiastical microclimate!”

These really do not do the whole thing justice. You have to read the full post (and hopefully the comments) to get the full impact in all its, so to speak, glory. It's funny, then painful, then funny, then...

Spalding, signing out. I have to go now. My make-up is running off.

No comments:

Post a Comment