Category Archives: Ecumenism

Fr George: WNC Baptist snake handler

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How shameful! Father George is in a short-sleeved clergy tactical work shirt with the collar open doing a bit of R and R! And he’s, he’s, he’s a man of ecumenism, practicing up to be a Western North Carolina Baptist Minister Snake Handler! Surely he’s a snake in the grass! Whatever you want to call him (Eastern Racer, Bull Snake, Rat Snake, Black Snake, Snake in the Grass, Satan…), this is the friendliest kind of serpent in the world. Oh, I’m talking about the snake, not me! Or do I protest too much? Anyway, these guys are happy to laze around in the sun right in front of you, keeping a watchful eye for varmints.

It was a local one-time Baptist minister friend who was happy to see me practicing up. He’s the one who brought the snake over to a parishioner’s house as there was a developing problem of rats eating the dog food, a serious concern since she raises the best cadaver, drug, bomb, protection, accompaniment, PTSD, and especially bite-dogs in North America. Everyone was scared of the snake, only because they think such snakes bite. They don’t. But her bite-dogs do bite. One of them broke her training “arm” with one bite. She said she saw one bite-dog break both forearm bones and rip off the forearm of someone in one bite. Serious dogs. I’m making friends with the one that law enforcement is especially afraid of. So far, he sits down for me upon request, but at this point that only means that he’s happy to make a meal of me while sitting down. Yikes!

In these days of great confusion in both the Church and the world, I think we need to remember a sense of humor amidst all the darkness, and be able to bring joy to those around us. We are all Missionaries of Mercy when we do this, as this brings people hope. Archbishop Fulton Sheen once said that making people who suffer laugh was a great act of mercy. When we suffer we tend to drag all the hurt of the past into the present, and then project all that into the future dragging that, then, back into the present as well, making for unbearable suffering. But when, in the present moment, one is brought into innocent laughter, all of this mind-game with time of past and future is shattered, giving one hope for the future regardless of the past because of present goodness. Our greatest fears are brought under control with the love that Jesus Himself provides to us, His littlest children.

Update: sent in by a reader with the request of making a parallel video for priestly vocations:

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Filed under Dogs, Ecumenism, Humor

CRITICA TEXTUS & Dotty the 1987 Toyota “Pope Francis” back-mountain pickup goes to town

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Today’s another one of those medical forays into medical practice for one of my parishioners, whom I’ve brought to one of the nearest actual hospitals, about two hours 45 minutes away, way across state lines, where people are practicing to practice medicine.

“Eee-haaaaaaah!!! Lookie here Erlanger in Chattanooga, Ténnessee: it’s country come to town!”

Dotty has been “to town” on some other rare occasions such as the Chrism Mass six hours from the parish, at least on the return trip it’s six hours during rush hour.

Anyway, my view for awhile in bat perspective, that is, hanging around in the waiting room:

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This is an all day affair. Didn’t get to bed until 12:30am. Woke up at 3:25am. We’ll get back about midnight. Offered Holy Mass early on. Breviary is on the phone app. This post goes up with the phone as well. A priest is coming down from Knoxville and we’re going to have some lunch and ferocious spiritual discussions.

Meanwhile, over in the comments box of 03 The Father Byers Kryptos, a third extended comment came in from Christopher, who is very much trying to get a hold of the treasure map thing. I have a great deal of respect for that, but the third comment has gotten into rabbit holes, some helpful, some not. I have not published it.

Regarding the unhelpful bit, I ask that everyone read page 125 of The Reliques of Father Prout. I’m sure Christopher will have had this at hand as a favorite childhood book. Perhaps the 1860 edition published in London would do just fine. Those across the pond do sometimes exhibit a bit of culture and wit in such a way as to make even us Americans marvel. Look for the description of prout as an adverb. ;-)

Regarding the helpful bit, in the via negativa that is, I noticed a rather distressing and now more explicit and unfortunately I must say typical misunderstanding of Sacred Tradition and the Traditiones. That deserves its own post. Not getting that will not let one see the truth. Stay tuned. But read Father Prout!

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Flores for the Immaculate Conception (ecumenical edition)

flores1This little flower is in pretty sad shape. Not good enough for the Immaculate Conception. What to do? I remember that the stories about Saint Francis put together by Saint Bonaventure were called the Little Flowers, right? So, I have a short story, an analogy if you will, about ecumenism. One of our local Baptist churches put up a message which acts as a bit of ecumenical reprimand if we take it that way. I mean, we could apply this to say, some aspects of the Synod on the Family, could we not?

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Update: Martin Luther: “We are at fault in not slaying the Jews.” The Holy See: “Let’s celebrate his life!” J’accuse!

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“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” mlkjr

Being Pope Francis’ Jewish Missionary of Mercy, and invited to speak with parrhesia by him, I think I am obliged to offer some comments about the push among some curial officials to celebrate the life of Martin Luther and the Reformation, the former being inextricably intertwined with the latter. Cardinal Koch has said some good things in the past, so this is an occasion of real dismay for me particularly, and for all men of good will.

Martin Luther defined himself and his Lutherans as those who are to be condemned if they would not murder Jews: “We are at fault in not slaying them” (Luther, Martin. On the Jews and Their Lies, cited in Michael, Robert. “Luther, Luther Scholars, and the Jews,” Encounter 46 (Autumn 1985) No. 4:343–344). Like so much else with Luther, this is reminiscent of Islam, the old spread by the sword your faith kind of thing. This is the Reformation in all of its pristine vigor. It is Martin Luther’s “insight,” his “spiritual experience,” his Promethian understanding of “righteousness” and “mercy.” The response both of Lutherans and the Holy See to all this is: Continue reading

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Filed under Ecumenism, Jewish-Catholic dialogue, Pope Francis

Only rats “Swim the Tiber” – Use the bridge the Pontifex built!

tiber angels bridgeThe Successor of Saint Peter, the Rock upon whom the Church is built, is such because he is the Bishop of Rome. It is because he is the Bishop of Rome that he is the Supreme Pontiff, that is, the Supreme Bridge Builder. It just strikes me as being silly that anyone would ever speak about “swimming the Tiber” when there is a perfectly good bridge to walk across. Using the bridge provided by the Supreme Bridge Builder carries the joy of simply coming home. Swimming the Tiber is dangerous, and Continue reading

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