This is tagged “Humor” because I had to LOL when I heard the officer ever so politely say things ever so calmly like “O.K.” and “Thanks.” I mean, this is sad, tragic, that anyone whomsoever could have such an attitude as does this woman. Wow. But it’s great to see the officer give back utter professionalism. So cool. LOL.
Look, all lives matter, black and blue and white and whatever. We’re all God’s children, well, except for those who don’t want to be. But nobody is beyond Redemption and Salvation, even this lady. Jesus’ grace is more than sufficient, but we can’t go around rejecting Jesus, meaning that we have to love God and neighbor, and racism like this is forbidding that love of God and neighbor, right?
Just a reminder. Purple. Advent. It’s royal purple. Jesus is King of kings, Lord of lords, Prince of the Most Profound Peace.
But filthy, effeminate, luxuriating Herod, clothed Jesus in a robe of purple to mock Jesus. But Jesus had called Herod a female fox, in Jesus’ words: “Go and tell Herod, that bitch…” you know, to use technical canine vocabulary. Check it out. Luke 13:32. The translation will say “fox” because the translators are chickens favoring Herod the bitch. But Herod would decapitate such tender snowflake sycophants though without the regret he had about John the Baptist. In their political correctness, they are already as good as chickens with their heads cut off by the politicians that be.
And this is why royal purple is used for penitential seasons like Advent and Lent. The King will be placed in a wooden manger and nailed to a wooden cross. How do we perceive the purple?
Meanwhile, all the more purple:
If you’re having trouble with all this – too much reality all at once – ask the Immaculate Conception to help you out. She saw what that bitch of Pontius Pilate and what Pilate himself did to her Son. Just look into her eyes:
Advent. Purple. A penitential season. Because of that bitch, Herod.
I can just hear it now, the Bishop reading a thousand complaints about me in letters complaining that I’m not appropriate, that’s I’ve crossed boundaries:
“Dear Bishop, you gotta do something with Father Byers. He’s so mean. He’s, like, using bad words and stuff – splutter, splutter, splutter.”
These bitchy people… sigh… They should read about political correctness and what God thinks about prostituting oneself to political correctness, say, in Ezekiel 23. Bwahahahahahahahahahahahaaaaaaaa!!!!
You know, what would happen is that the Bishop would laugh, heartily, as he knows I’m quoting Jesus verbatim. He loves that. :-)
Then, I’m quite sure, in his own chapel, he would give a purple flower to the Immaculate Conception. How about you?
But I can still hear it: “Splutter, splutter, splutter….”
I like that… “according to a police report.” Best police ever. LOL.
This is why USMC is the USMC. This is why LEOs are LEOs. Yay! LOL.
Sorry, it’s said that we’re not to rejoice in the downfall of our brethren… um…. (laughing out loud, more quietly). LOL LOL LOL! Can’t help myself.
Here’s the deal. We are not to rejoice in the moral downfall of anyone. We are not to hope that someone goes to hell. No. That would not give glory to Jesus but only to Satan. I get that. But this is just, say, a guardian angel tripping this guy up so that he can turn his life around. And in that we can all rejoice. LOL.
We’re looking to get the 8th police chief in three years coming up. Get that? You think that’s the fault of the chiefs, of the officers, all of them, so many officers, so many chiefs, in so little time, career LEOs or fresh out of BLET?
There was a town meeting last week at the Firehouse. We found out that our officers not only did not break the law, but that they did not break any policy, at all. In fact, what they are accused of allegedly doing seems entirely reasonable, laudable, indeed, necessary, as a matter of personal, city and county security, and because of that, of state and national security. If what happened to these officers is happening elsewhere, we’re all drowning in deep sewerage. Personally, I think they should get a medal for what they allegedly did, casting a light – with humor :-) – on what seems to me to be dark and dangerous and wide, wide, wide open to abuse. Yep. It’s always best to avoid pre-arranged ambushes of police officers, don’t you think? :-)
I pushed a bit in that town meeting – speaking four times – with the last intervention being four words: “Pay and back-pay.” It worked. Now they have their pay, though they are still suspended. I call them victims, not perps. I do not think they did anything imprudent, or because they lack experience, or whatever. Some of these guys have long time military and law enforcement careers. Instead, I think they allegedly did what they very precisely had to do until investigations about who and why can take place. :-)
If what allegedly happened to them in their police station – taking them by surprise – happened in my house, I would not have the same actually very benign and humorous and entirely laughable response. :-)
I would be very much tempted to do the Keanu Reeves thing if I were outside the city limits and having no neighbors, tempted to… – in less than a second and from the hip – take out multiple non-human non-animal targets. :-)
I have done up a bit of practice and I am happy to report that it has stuck with me. Sorry, just a bit of humor there. Laugh with me. :-)
It would have fictionally gone something like this in that fictional house of mine :-)
Let me say one more thing: :-)
To the liberals out there: Don’t be Red Flagging me for putting up a bit of humor with Mel Gibson. This IS humor. We’re allowed humor, are we not? Oh, I forgot, liberals have no sense of humor, except, say our Vice-President, who hysterically laughs in the face of drug cartels and human trafficking and sexual abuse and murder in kid-cages at the border. I would laugh, instead, at what would be truly humorous, like the the alleged perps of our day going to prison, say Hillary and Bill, say Comey and Rosenstein, say Kerry and Pelosi, say drug cartels and sex traffickers. :-)
Shadow-dog, setting a good example, has most excellent over-the-top skill sets in hunting and shredding and then devouring “Easter Rabbits” with their baskets of eggs.
The Easter Rabbit comes from a time of fasting in which no meat at all was eaten during lent, not even rabbits. But now, with rabbits having had time to proliferate during Lent, they are everywhere just waiting to be devoured as part of the celebration of Easter when there is not fasting.
The Easter eggs thing comes from a time of fasting in which no eggs[!] at all were eater during lent. At Easter, there is no such fasting, and everyone would immediately hunt down all the eggs they could find, both eating them and, in their rejoicing that Lent was over because our dear Lord and God and Savior was now risen from the dead, they would decorate those eggs and give them to others, encouraging rejoicing all the more.
Dogs killing Easter Rabbits with baskets of eggs for the devouring of all and sundry. Great! Perfect card for Easter, actually. Kill that meat-rabbit! Eat those eggs!
By the way, Shadow-dog has been practicing right along to kill that rabbit and sack the eggs:
“And all spoke well of him, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of his mouth [all surely with sarcasm]; and they said, “Is not this Joseph’s son? [asked surely with sarcasm]” And he said to them, “Doubtless you will quote to me this proverb, `Physician, heal yourself; what we have heard you did at Capernaum, do here also in your own country.'” [Jesus knowing their insincerity and mockery.] And he said, “Truly, I say to you, no prophet is acceptable in his own country. But in truth, I tell you, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, when there came a great famine over all the land; and Elijah was sent to none of them but only to Zarephath, in the land of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow. And there were many lepers in Israel in the time of the prophet Elisha; and none of them was cleansed, but only Naaman the Syrian.” When they heard this, all in the synagogue were filled with wrath. [Of course. They were this way already.] And they rose up and put him out of the city, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their city was built, that they might throw him down headlong. [Murderers, all. Yep.] But passing through the midst of them he went away.” Luke 4:22-30
Whatever the unfortunate political collateral damage good donkeys must suffer because of presently passing circumstances, it remains true that donkeys have always been an intimate part of the life of the Holy Family, with (usually) highly complimentary imagery throughout both Testaments of Sacred Scripture and then in the life of the Church.
It has come to my attention that there are interlopers out there, namely, from a Religious Order that rhymes with the Order of Preachers, those Dominicans, particularly those of the Great Province of Saint Joseph in these USA, who are surely self-fancied as those guard-dogs, those sheep-dogs, who ride around the flock on the backs of donkeys, pretending that donkeys are not really guard-donkeys, just those dogs that they are.
They find agreement with Saint Augustine, who would call yours truly an ass, but then he at least would encourage me that, nonetheless, I carry Christ: “Asinus es, sed Christum portas.” I won’t begrudge them the ride, of course, because those dogs carry the light of Christ, Himself the Lumen Gentium, to the whole world. Blessings upon them.
Here are those dogs. I note that they are braying away. :-)
I have begged through the years to be have relief from this interdict, at least from the sharpness of its cynicism and sarcasm, for it was known from the beginning that there is no possibility of circumstances under which I could possibly submit to ecclesial authority in this matter, that is, to wit, even though I no longer reside in said territory, for I continue to this day to be forbidden to even pass through, or say “Greetings!” There is no mercy for this Missionary of Mercy, it being having mercy on those banished to the peripheries at said institution which has brought about my own being cast into the same existential, anguished darkness. The holy angels, I reckon, were never happy with such a result prepared by the highest tribunals in the Holy See (note the exaggerated ecclesiastical Latin of penal decrees ossified by centuries of rote application to like offenders against expected loyalties).
Although the given reason for the interdict seems serious enough, I’m guessing that the T-Shirt art produced in my honor for the event in question is thought to be politically incorrect in any number of ways. I respond that this over-reaction is symptomatic of our day. Instead of that reductionism, I firmly confess that the faith is spread by the sword as it was when Jesus’ Heart was pierced through (truly this was the Son of God), when Mary’s heart was pierced by sorrow (when our thoughts are laid bare), and this ever since the ferocious cherubim back in Genesis 3:24 brandished their fiery sword (for our conversion), since Elijah used his sword (for the edification of believers and the pedagogical punishment of non-believers), since Saint Michael used his (to show forth God’s glory), since our Lord told Peter not to use the sword in that most dire of circumstances (so that He Himself could have a sword plunged into His Heart).
I recommend that all seminarians get to know faith by the sword.
BTW: How good and pleasant it is when brothers live in unity… Perhaps, as a punishment for my continued contentiousness, I will be sent back to this office in the Pontifical Family (after all, notice the donkey in the painting besides the one sitting at the desk):
And while I open myself up to the less perspicacious of the communications crowd over in the Holy See, letting them think that I’ve actually been put under interdict (what with their Latin surely not being up to speed), I think it would be downright humorous altogether should I be publicly castigated and recommended for excommunication for real, you know, based on the interdict already supplied to yours truly above.
The American Community Survey of the U.S. Census Bureau of the U.S. Department of Commerce is still closely following this blog. I guess the bit I levity in which I indulged with the last post yesterday about their new Federal enforcement agents bit a button or two. :-)
Meanwhile, that was quickly followed by another hit some stone-throws away, over at the great Family Research Council, also in D.C. just East of the White House. I mean, it’s the post that they go to straightaway that’s just so cool. I know it’s just a coincidence, but on the other hand, it was like a direct warning from them about the anti-family American Community Survey:
Here’s that post. It was written some years ago. I take it to heart now. Thanks, FRC!
I’m also tagging this with “Humor” as this made me laugh out loud. I’m having way too much fun as a priest. I know, I know. I’m sure I’ll pay for it soon enough with a knock on the door and cuffs being slapped on hands and feet. Whatever. It is what it is. I refuse to let go of a sense of humor even in dark, dark times.
It’s not always the case, but the other night Laudie-dog and Shadow-dog were both inside with me. But then, at zero-dark-thirty (as always), one of the local thugs knocked quietly on the outer walls of the rectory, surely not to get my attention, but to see if he could get the attention of the dogs. I’m sure the dogs would have been shot yet again with a pellet gun had they been outside. Shadow-dog has now been shot some eight times plus a 9mm to his dog house since he adopted me by way of the Police Department, while Laudie-dog has been shot twice since I’ve had her and once more before she adopted me.
Anyway, something must have spooked the thug, maybe someone driving by out front, and he ran in the direction of the drug-house through the creek-side of the back yard of the rectory. Of course, maybe he was smacked by a feather of my guardian angel to get him running full speed. :-)
On the creek-side of the back perimeter of the property there’s four-foot high goat-wire fence, plain as day for all to see, even at night if my flood-lights are on; the lights are about as bright as the sun as pretty much everyone in town informs me. This guy seems to have run full speed right into the goat wire. I’m not sure what that makes him… The neighbor pointed out the destruction to me the next day, calling me up all upset. Together we noted the dynamics of how the fence was violently stretched out of shape blown out from the rectory side of the fencing. The goat wire is attached to the chain-link fence on the one side, but just stands loose and is lightly wrapped around a tree on the far side by the creek (not attached at all).
I can only imagine the scene of this guy running into that fence, flipping him head over heels, having him hit his head hard on the cement driveway of the neighbor. Ouch! Karma? Not so sure about that. How about irony. No, there’s got to be something more personal. Let’s see… my Guardian Angel! Yes, I think that’s it.
I immediately smashed into the ground a couple of what we Minnesotans call snow-fence posts along the fence line as a temporary measure. These were from the once-upon-a-time hermitage, after which I gave them to yet another neighbor. He’s re-envisioned his garden for next Summer and just gave them back to me.
That’s just temporary. The goat wire will be tied up much more sturdily, and I’ll be adding some more lengths of goat wire fencing on the creek side with the help of yet more posts. Meanwhile, the back yard neighbor – really nice guy – gave me quite a lot of barbed wire to add to the top. Heheheh. Of course, any good thievery tools will be able to cut down all the fencing within seconds. I don’t put my trust in fences. I just want to do what I can to protect the dogs. This is also to protect the neighbor at the back. The creek is a kind of highway for the druggies and home-invaders. My neighbors, especially those with little kids, don’t like all the heroin needles and ruffians around the back doors of their homes. The little goat-wire fence helps to dissuade the dark side from making this their avoid-the-police path.
Meanwhile, a funny story about fences and priests:
Some tough church ladies told me a funny story down in Australia as I was installed as the new pastor in that outback parish. I was in Australia to teach in the new country seminary, and the bishop had me doubling up the work by having me do up some trouble-shooting, having me also follow an all-too-weak priest who was doing way too much fence sitting. His fence sitting upset the tough church ladies, and so they hauled him aside and told him the truth of the matter in no uncertain terms, no fence sitters they:
“You can’t be sitting on the fence these days, Father, because these days we make fences out of razer-wire.”
Perfect. I love that. Church ladies are always tough.
Legend has it that the new Federal compliance agents of the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey – after doing a preliminary drive-by to check out the logistics of the Catholic Rectory where an inhabitant is daring to be a non-respondent (yours truly) – have now gone into hiding in a CHAZ or CHAD safe space until this very day, bewildered, befuddled, baffled at the sheer number of purposed microaggressions on the attack in the front of this Catholic Rectory, even showcased in the front window.
Let’s count the microaggressions by which they are surely offended:
This Catholic rectory is happy to proclaim the virtue of patriotism, to uphold that this nation is a democracy for, by and of the people, who live in a Constitutional Republic. Note the American Flag.
This Catholic rectory is happy to proclaim that the Rule of Law is to be respected and honored, instead of caving to an unbridled fake democracy of tyrannical feelings of some over against others, over against natural law, over against reason, over against the Constitution. Note the Thin Blue Line Flag.
This Catholic rectory is happy to participate according to circumstance in the just defense of the innocent over against unjust horrific ISIS-esque aggression, taking care in whatever way those in need of mercy because of that unjust aggression. Note the Flag of the [Crusader] Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem, of Rhodes and of Malta, that is, in an early version of the flag still evident on ceremonial robes today, a flag entirely consonant with the American Flag and the Thin Blue Line Flag.
This Catholic rectory is happy to honor Jesus and Mary and Anthony of Padua with statuary that thugs and buffoons would want to destroy, because, I guess, there is such a depiction of peace with that artistry.
This Catholic rectory is happy to honor the angels and the birth of the Messiah, Jesus, King of kings, Lord of Lord’s, Prince of the Most Profound Peace, who is Himself the Light of the world, who is Himself the Temple – His own Body – who will come to judge the living and the dead and the world by fire. Even Federal enforcement officers of the American Community Survey of the U.S. Census Bureau of the U.S. Department of Commerce will He judge. Yes, even they.
I think I saw somewhere that these guys, all kitted out and badged up, have like six months to recover in their safe-spaces from all such microaggressions before making one last attempt at having someone complete the survey. That will bring us to something like mid-Summer 2021. But I have to wonder if they will ever be brave enough to do a drive-by again, much less stop to knock on the door, what with so very many microaggressions just stubbornly staying right where they are.
Of course, they can throw a vindictive tantrum and fine me up to $5,000.00 and throw me into a Federal Penitentiary, roughing me up, breaking my will (um… not) for up to five years just because I’m a microaggressioning non-respondent… I guess the charge would be “passive resistance” for not filling out their 48 page interrogation…
Of course, they have to find me at home. That’s difficult, as I’m out with the sheep of Jesus’ little flock, as Jesus’ little flock can testify. But if they ever catch me, I’m sure the first words out of their mouths will be: “Ihre Papiere, bitte!” But they probably won’t be so polite as all that:
The one thing I’ve learned in life is to just never give in, ever. You lose your soul in doing that. If our Lord has anything to say about it, my soul will stay with the Lord Jesus. See John 10:27-30:
“My sheep hear my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish. No one can take them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one can take them out of the Father’s hand. The Father and I are one.”
Oh, and if anyone feels insulted by the references to Nazi monstrousness above, note that what the American Community Survey is all about goes against “Judeo-Catholic conscience.” Once that starts, it’s over already, a done deal. And it has started.
The above is just one of many this morning. Many of these groups are the very best in the world for extracting everything from raw-formatted hard drives and flash drives. Pfft. Whatever. I don’t care one little bit. Good for them, as long as they are doing what they do for God and neighbor, Pro Deo et Patria, 4GOD4ALL and all that. Great.
But aren’t hackers 24/7/365-366 in their mother’s basements even when they are older, not coming up even for a delicious Thanksgiving dinner especially during Covid lockdowns coming from the Dems?
That would be wrong.
These hackers in their dozens all took off the entire Thanksgiving holiday weekend. Ain’t gonna happen with malicious hackers. Never. So, these guys are just bored workers here in these USA wanting to get inspired with AriseLetUsBeGoing even if being paid slave wages to do so. Whatever about their oh so so ultra secret exit nodes[=outhouse holes?], they all seem to flush out [sorry!] at Fort George G Meade (=NSA) and other such locations. ;-)
Counterintelligence amounts to a lot of baiting and counterbaiting in a vortexed maelstrom of – in the end – who knows what? I know that well. But I thought a bit of humor – and all this is humor – would be good just about this time post-election 2020.
No offence to our intelligence services. Really. It’s just that it seems all this is impolite.
Having said that, I have a really good friend who was invited to be a chaplain for the NSA.
He’s another one of those most researched people in the world.
Just to inject a bit of humor into the situation here in these USA, I poke fun at myself, and let my associations run wild. Come along for the ride. You won’t be disappointed.
The hit to the blog above had ultra-inaccurate Verizon Fios geolocators pointing to McLean[!], Tysons Corner[!], D.C.[!], and – as always – Charlottesville, in other words, to about five million other people and surely just a mistaken click on the blog… but, just to say, the TOR hackers disappeared all at the same time, all of them, just like that, totally.
Hahaha. In other words, it’s a good thing to keep a sense of ultra-light-hearted-humor in what are stressful times for many people, what with Covid policy treated as legislated law, what with the obvious fraud amounting to a coup d’état, what with religious rites still being smacked down by those who hate God and neighbor, our Constitutional Republic of, by and for the people, by those who hate the Rule of Law. Let yourself enjoy a bit of humor! Remember what Saint Lawrence said when he was being burned to death on a grid-iron: “You can turn me over now; I’m done on that side.” No matter how bad things can get, know that Jesus intends to bring us to heaven. And don’t forget, the CIA can continue full on with no government funding for multiple administrations of any POTUS.
Besides being steadfast in the faith only by the grace of God, besides keeping a sense of humor, I myself like also to fall back into nostalgia for a bit of wonderful distraction. So, when places like McClean and Tysons Corner come up, my first reaction is to render due honor where due honor is due. It’s like someone saying a word and then you have to say the first word that comes to mind. In this case, I instantly turn to this event honoring the great Joyce Kilmer, which happened a couple of years ago, when yours truly had the great honor of honoring this Catholic giant of poetry, this spectacular Catholic giant of the Intelligence Community. I wrote about it then. Here’s some of that post:
July 30, 2018, was the 100th anniversary of death by sniper of forward field intelligence officer Joyce Kilmer. He’s personally the heroic example of what would become the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) which would itself turn into the Central Intelligence Agency. The CIA, the Central/Catholic Intelligence Agency, doesn’t much treat Kilmer as a forerunner, but in my opinion, they should.
Descendants of Joyce Kilmer were there. The VFW was there in force, including the State and National Commanders. There were bagpipes, the bugle for Taps, the 21 gun salute.
After offering a few religious words about heroism and then enjoying the privilege of reciting the entirety of Kilmer’s Rouge Bouquet included below, I had the honor of commanding that honors be rendered. Here’s that ceremony:
JOYCE KILMER: Memorial –Rev. George David Byers July 30, 2018 – Centenary Memorial Service – Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest
Joyce Kilmer was enthusiastically respected in all good friendship by his brothers in arms back in the day, a lively respect which continues today as we are now witnessing one hundred years later. Anyone who is profoundly immersed in their own times remains at one with us in all times. Joyce Kilmer is a hero because he leads us back to ourselves and who we are before God. Joyce’s poetical intervention about, say, any tree being awesome because of being just another tree, but made by God is an analogy bringing us into the lived reality of who any one of us is to be as a hero.
Like so many others in our topsy turvy society with wars and rumors of wars, in our day as people did in Joyce’s day, I have searched for heroism if not in all the wrong places then surely in all the wrong ways. Growing up in a military family, my father having been trained up at Parris Island as a Marine Fighter Attack Pilot in Guam, the Philippines, Japan, China and Korea, having been commander of the famed Checkerboard Squadron, I have bragged about him as my hero, perhaps making him too extra special. Joyce Kilmer knew there was a danger to making one tree more special than all the others, a danger of not seeing that we are all made by God, the danger of thinking that this other fellow is a hero so I don’t have to be one. That’s not the kind of respect a real hero wants.
At the same time I would go out of my way to greet any veteran I might see at a gas station or a supermarket or at church. I’ve learned NOT to say, “Thank you for your service,” as I would often get a half-hearted, or sad, or almost cynical if polite acknowledgment in return. To say “Thank you for your service” almost seems ungrateful to the very veteran before whom one stands, being thankful perhaps only for his or her service in unrepeatable circumstances so very far away, a fog of war that any veteran struggles to recount to anyone, a service which, therefore, is in danger of being forgotten if heroism is merely about things done, if heroism is just that specialized, that distant, that out of reach, my usual mistake of “he’s the hero so I don’t have to be one.”
To veterans then, I’ve learned NOT to say “Thank you for your service,” but simply, “Thank you.” The acknowledgment is immediate, sincere, one of appreciated solidarity. And yet, even in this thanksgiving there can still be something missing about the heroism Joyce Kilmer lived out, the heroism which won him the enthusiastic respect in all good friendship of his brothers in arms and of our own respect today.
An Army friend of mine who was taken up as a field agent of the CIA much along the lines of Joyce becoming a kind of distant forerunner of the best of our CIA operatives, reprimanded me, saying that I had much to learn about thanking any veteran. He said that a hero isn’t someone you thank so much as strive to imitate with intensity of service at whatever cost. That’s it, thought I foolishly. Striving to imitate intensity of service is a real compliment, a real thanksgiving, and goes a long way and is what any veteran would like to see from anyone. But it still isn’t the full story and is certainly not quite yet an appreciation of the kind of heroism lived out by Joyce Kilmer.
We’ve all heard veterans of foreign wars like Marcus Luttrell or Robert O’Neill say it; we’ve all heard our friends in Law Enforcement and Firefighting say it; I’m certain that most who are here today have said it, as heroes: “I’ve done nothing special.” And then they add what our Lord said we will all say should we make it into the gates of heaven: “I’ve only done what I had to do.” There are those who think that this is what humility is all about, misunderstanding this as some sort of self-deprecation. But they miss the point. This isn’t false humility to say “I’ve done nothing special.” It is to say in Joyce Kilmer’s analogy, that any tree is awesome among any other trees, each having been made by God, so that each tree, each person is to do what they have to do, what they’ve been given to do, what they’ve been called to do in whatever impossibly unrepeatable circumstances they happen to be in. We’re all called to be heroes.
What was so attractive about Joyce Kilmer to his brothers in arms and to us today is that he knew he had what we can all have by way of God: we can all have a love that is stronger than death, a love stronger than death. “Let me have the most dangerous assignment!” said Joyce Kilmer again and again. A love stronger than death given by God. That’s what we recognize as what we are all to have, a love stronger than death given by God; this is who we are all to be, one who lives out what we have to do, what we’ve been given to do, what we’ve been called to do in all our impossibly unrepeatable circumstances. What makes the hero is that which all can have, this God given love which is stronger than death. “Let me have the most dangerous assignment!”
So said the eternal Word of God the Father: let me have the most dangerous assignment; let me stand in their place, the innocent for the guilty, so that I might have the right in my own justice to have mercy on them. And we know what happened next: “God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life,” eternal life, a love stronger than death, the eternal Son of God, our warrior of goodness conquering evil because giving us of his love that is stronger than death so that we might also say: “Let me have the most dangerous assignment!” Jesus is the One hero, and we are all heroes in him, recognizing before this love that is stronger than death that is offered to us all, that we then do, in thanksgiving, what we have to do, what we’ve been given to do, what we’ve been called to do in all our own unrepeatable circumstances, as in Joyce’s day, so in our own. The thanksgiving that our hero veterans want to have is that we all become heroes.
My own prayer this day is that those who visit this forest, coming into contact with the eternal Creator of creation, might find out about the heroism of Joyce Kilmer, the heroism we can all have with that God-given love that is stronger than death, that love which is eternal. Only God can make a tree. Only God can make a hero. We thank God for all our heroes, begging that we might strive to imitate intensity of generosity by living out in our everyday circumstances, with enthusiasm, that love which is stronger than death. Thank you, Joyce. Thanks to all our veterans. Thanks to all our heroes. Thanks to Jesus for giving us a love stronger than death.
The Rouge Bouquet
In a wood they call the Rouge Bouquet There is a new-made grave to-day, Built by never a spade nor pick Yet covered with earth ten metres thick. There lie many fighting men, Dead in their youthful prime, Never to laugh nor love again Nor taste the Summertime. For Death came flying through the air And stopped his flight at the dugout stair, Touched his prey and left them there, Clay to clay. He hid their bodies stealthily In the soil of the land they fought to free And fled away. Now over the grave abrupt and clear Three volleys ring; And perhaps their brave young spirits hear The bugle sing: “Go to sleep! Go to sleep! Slumber well where the shell screamed and fell. Let your rifles rest on the muddy floor, You will not need them any more. Danger’s past; Now at last, Go to sleep!” There is on earth no worthier grave To hold the bodies of the brave Than this place of pain and pride Where they nobly fought and nobly died. Never fear but in the skies Saints and angels stand Smiling with their holy eyes On this new-come band. St. Michael’s sword darts through the air And touches the aureole on his hair As he sees them stand saluting there, His stalwart sons; And Patrick, Brigid, Columkill Rejoice that in veins of warriors still The Gael’s blood runs. And up to Heaven’s doorway floats, From the wood called Rouge Bouquet A delicate cloud of bugle notes That softly say: “Farewell! Farewell! Comrades true, born anew, peace to you! Your souls shall be where the heroes are And your memory shine like the morning-star. Brave and dear, Shield us here. Farewell!”
From the Catholic funerary rites:
Saints of God, come to their aid! Come to meet them angels of the Lord! Receive their souls and present them to God the Most High. May Christ, Who called you, take you to Himself; may angels lead you to Abraham’s side. Receive their souls and present them to God the Most High. Let us pray: We commend our brothers and sisters to you, Lord. Now that they have passed from this life, may they live on in Your presence. Amen. Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May their souls and all the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.
The American Community Survey of the U.S. Census Bureau is NOT the Census of the U.S. Census Bureau. The ACS is sent out to relatively few individuals after the Census itself is over and done. The first round of the ACS amounts to a small volume of 48 pages, 8 1/2 x 11, with lots of intrusive, personal questions regarding one’s lifelong unrepeatable history. The penalty for lying or alternatively for not responding to questions is mandated by the U.S. Congress: up to $5,000.00 dollars in fines and up to five years in a Federal Penitentiary.
Yours truly, Father George David Byers, Catholic priest and pastor of Holy Redeemer Catholic Church in Andrews, NC, admits his “guilt” for ignoring the electronic version of the ACS. It was indicated that a hardcopy would be sent out if I ignored the electronic version, or for some reason couldn’t complete it, such as a bad internet connection.
That hardcopy arrived Saturday evening, 21 November 2020. Yours truly also admits that, to date, now a week later, 29 November 2020, I have ignored that hardcopy. It was indicated that if I do not respond promptly with the hard-copy, an in-person interview may be conducted. I’m waiting for the banging on the door to begin. Fun!
The stats on belligerent non-respondents being chosen to be interviewed, all things being equal, stand at 33%.
All things being equal, this is all random. But I know of two respondents in this region: (1) myself (the rather unwilling however vaunted Regional Census Partner for Western North Carolina); (2) our Supreme Knight of the Knights of Columbus (who volunteered to go door to door for the Census). The chances that both people tapped to be respondents to the ACS that I just happen to know about would have an already established relationship of some kind with the U.S. Census Bureau are, like, one in a zillion. Ain’t gonna happen. So, not really random.
Also, the ACS, like the Census itself, is dishonest, as they themselves brag about, saying that they will intentionally falsify answers given with the intention of protecting your identity from, you know, hackers and such. So, the whole exercise is used for – what? – gerrymandering political districts so as sway elections? My higher-up in the Census Bureau admitted they were giving talking points on this but wouldn’t talk. Pfft. What a bunch of criminals. Just my opinion. Anyway…
Some questions within the 48 page survey endanger oneself and one’s property. You are required to provide your daily schedule, as in when you leave your residence, to the minute, LAST WEEK (their capitalization), what kind of vehicle you have used in the LAST WEEK (their capitalization), how many minutes it takes you to get from home to work in the LAST WEEK (their capitalization), and extremely detailed information about everything there is to know about telephones and communications devices. Whiskey, Tango, and you know the rest. But that’s about as much as I would complain about the American Community Survey, all things being equal.
////// Humor break: Did I mention that the etymology of “Survey” is “voyeurism from above“? Yep. That would be right. Anyway… //////
Not all things are equal. There are any number of reasons why I cannot respond to the American Community Survey. In this post, I’ll just give one reason, the reason that I will ever so politely iterate to any very nice door-knockers. But I have more reasons.
After I had sent in the Census form of the United States Census Bureau on time and with correct information, such as yours truly being the only one to live in my residence, you know, as a Catholic priest in a Catholic Rectory, I received messages on my phone from three different individuals (some repeated) from the Atlanta Regional Census HQ apoplectic that I had to get in touch with them extremely urgently (I hate that kind of breathlessness) to answer a question they had for me about my residence. I did call them back…
My Catholic religion and I myself were forthwith mocked with great sarcasm by way of an inescapable implication that I am committing any number of criminal activities that must be secretly occurring in the Catholic Rectory where I reside. The only reason for such a concern is that it is, very specifically, a Catholic Rectory. Maybe I wouldn’t have been targeted if I lived in a Presbyterian Presbytery or a Baptist Parsonage, or in the house of a whatever Preacherman, Rabbi or Imam, or I were just an atheist or a Freemason or if I lived in the residence of – dare I say it? – a Democrat. Maybe it’s really because I’m a white boy, therefore “privileged” and, because white, therefore “racist.” This wasn’t about providing my credit card details. It’s not a scam. It’s called a hate crime wrought by the U.S. Census Bureau. To my recollection, the guy at the U.S. Census Bureau baited me multiple times with such words:
Because this is a Catholic Rectory we’re talking about, that must necessarily mean that you are keeping women and children there, because it’s a Catholic Rectory, right?
That word “keeping” inescapably implies accusations, right?
Targets for target practice?
Islamic style polygamy including child-marriage like Muhammad?
You fill in the blank: ________________
Gotta be something like that because, after all, all Catholic Rectories are always necessarily residences used for committing crimes that involve “keeping” women and children. This isn’t one guy in the U.S. Census Bureau with some sort of personal tender snowflake ax to grind. There are three. This is purposed harassment accusing me of lying on the Census about numbers of people in the rectory and accusing me of any number of vile criminal activities.
So, it being that the Department of Commerce’s Census Bureau has me maliciously targeted only because I’ve been ordained a Catholic Priest and only because I live in a Catholic Rectory, how is it, I ask, that I am supposed to trust the next subsidiary of the U.S. Census Bureau called the American Community Survey, which also asks about any others living in whatever residence. The U.S. Census Bureau has already said that I must be a liar, feloniously attacking me in the form of a religious hate crime. What am I supposed to do with the repeated questions? Jesus was silent before Pontius Pilate. That’s my only way to proceed. That silence sent Jesus to His death. It will only cost me $5,000.00 and five years in prison. So, what-ev-uh!
Someone is surely going to say that belligerent non-respondents are not prosecuted for like the last zillion years, but the demonstrated malice on their part in my case is truly striking. In a swampy administration, I’m guessing that this kind of malice will be the common way of proceeding.
What it means is this: I will be able to avoid a $5,000.00 fine and five years in a Federal Penitentiary if only I assent to their religious hate crime by agreeing with them that all priests always and everywhere are keeping women and children in their Catholic rectories because they are Catholic priests living in Catholic rectories, and only if I then proceed to agree to cooperate with the American Community Survey based on that presumption, so that I must lie and say that I am indeed keeping women and children in this Catholic rectory according to the numbers that they will, I guess, provide themselves, since there are in all actuality exactly zero women and children living here, or visiting here, ever. Doesn’t happen. But they consider that to be a lie, so they will fine me and imprison me anyway, you know, to cover up their religious hate crime.
BUT IT’S ALL MUCH WORSE: All of this is a blasphemy against God, who is Himself disparaged by the assertion that all of Jesus’ priests must necessarily be monstrous sinners because and only because they are Jesus’ priests. To threaten one of Jesus’ priests to blaspheme Jesus under threat of a $5,000.00 fine and five years in a Federal Penitentiary is that which is subversive to the Constitutional Republic of these United States of America, which instead boasts of the free exercise of religion, that is, freedom from the religious hate-criminals crushing the unalienable rights of citizens in good standing. The first amendment protects citizens from their government, which is supposed to be for, by and of the people.
What is happening with me is a full on persecution of religion by the government in this otherwise Constitutional Republic boasting of the Rule of Law, viz., these United States of America. Just the other week, the great SCOTUS Justice Samuel Alito was right to warn us all about the hell of religious persecution coming upon us.
I’m guessing that the nice interviewers won’t come around for another few days or maybe another week or two because of Thanksgiving week throwing the schedule off just a bit. But maybe, if they then have time to read this post they’ll just choose to skip me altogether, you know, if all things were being equal. And, yes, I do get multiple hits from the U.S. Census Bureau to this tiny blog written by yours truly, an obscure mountain priest in this tiniest of parishes in North America.
///// UPDATE: Since this was published, the US Census Bureau has indeed visited the blog, with this post right near the top. Here’s that stat:
I’m an easy target for the cowardly but self-perceived powerful people, an expendable and insignificant test case. They have no idea that Christ Jesus, the Son of the Living God will come to judge the living and the dead and the world by fire. But, as I say, there’s not a great chance that I will be skipped considering their religious hate crimes against yours truly.
Having said all that, their religious hate crime is only one objection. I have plenty more. And if they push, I will iterate another in detail, and if they push back, well, then, we’ll just have ourselves a little bit of discovery going on, won’t we? I’ll finally be able to delve into all those “files” of the Department of State. Heh heh heh. So, I don’t expect to see any Feds at the rectory at all. But sometimes people feel so “powerful” they just go ahead and launch themselves right into it, especially when they think that their swamp has sucked justice and integrity and honesty and the Constitution and the Rule of Law right down into the vortex of their quagmire…
Look, I just want to continue being the Catholic priest for Jesus’ little flock here in Western North Carolina while being a patriotic American citizen in good standing. To desire good things is not virtue signaling. It’s called the hope of a sinner in God’s mercy, and the hope of a citizen in a very dark world.
But I’ll tell you what: I am totally disgusted by the swamp rats who hate God and who hate these United States, who have no integrity, no honor, no patriotism, who specifically hate Catholic priests and the Catholic Church.
I am attracted instead by the honor and patriotism instilled in me by my father, a great American hero, a practicing Catholic who taught me how to kneel properly at an altar rail, how to love Jesus. I proclaim that to the world:
This isn’t hero worship of my father. He was a sinner. He went to confession. I’m a sinner. I go to confession. When we honor the heroes it’s not done by acclaiming them and that’s it. That’s cheap. Jesus condemned that kind of fake praise. Instead, thanking our heroes is all about striving to follow their example of risking their lives continuously for God and country by doing the same ourselves. Pro Deo et Patria. That others may live. All that. Yes. All for Jesus, for neighbor, for country.
Can those who hate Jesus hurt me in this world specifically because of Jesus’ Holy Name? Yes. Can they hurt me specifically because I am one of Jesus’ little ones? Yes. And, being weak, I am a little bit in trepidation about that, like the greatest of all prophets, John the Baptist, was in trepidation, he wondering if Jesus was really the Messiah, because, you know, it shouldn’t be that the Forerunner, John, should get his head cut off for witnessing to the ten commandments, for if Jesus were really the Savior, He would stop that, right? Jesus’ response was to have John told that he wasn’t to be offended by Jesus. It’s the ol’ “as the Master (who will be crucified) so the disciple,” who was then forthwith decapitated.
It boils down to this:
American Community Survey Interrogator: “Curse God and blaspheme Jesus!”
Father George David Byers: “Praise God! I love Jesus!”
“Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you falsely because of me. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven. Thus they persecuted the prophets who were before you (Matthew 5:10-12 nab).”
I really like how Luke recalls this:
“Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they exclude and insult you, and denounce your name as evil on account of the Son of Man. Rejoice and leap for joy on that day! Behold, your reward will be great in heaven. For their ancestors treated the prophets in the same way. (Luke 6:22-23 nab)
Yes, I really like that: “Rejoice and leap for joy!” That’s Jesus saying that. So, I better do it. I hope I don’t sprain my ankle! Here goes… LEAP!… I survived!
A couple of university “grass roots” community organizers came to church the other day, one with a neck-gator, one with an extremely poorly fitting mask that mocked the purpose of any mask wearing if any purpose existed ever, even though they said that they were community educators on how to wear masks properly, well, you know, educators of only that sector of the community they claim to be so stupid that they don’t know how to wear a mask, namely, they said, the Latinos.
You know the drill: “I’m gonna force you to wear a mask ‘properly’ you damned stupid Latinos, but I’m not gonna follow my own advice, so blatant about hypocrisy, on purpose, that you’ll get the hint that we’re inviting you to also *join the power* of racism and hypocrisy. Stop going to this church! Agitate! Protest in the streets!”
They said they were representing a grass-roots organization that was set on instructing the stupid Latinos who are so very stupid about mask wearing, and, by the way, they added, Latinos are so very stupid about masks.
They’ve never even been to the parish before. They’ve never attended our Spanish Mass. They’ve never seen how well the Latino community does in fact wear Covid-19 masks (regardless of whether you believe in their efficacy and very possible politicization). And that presumption about our Latinos is racist. And if I would have agreed with them that all Latinos are stupid and so yes please come and community organize (a verb) these stupid Latinos, easily manipulating them for your clearly ulterior motives, then I would be racist myself.
As it is, I believe all lives matter because Jesus redeemed us all and wants that we assist each other to be saved, we who all will look together on Him whom we have crucified and pierced through, we, from every tribe and tongue and people and nation.
Knowing literally within seconds that this couple were Marxist Community Organizers trying to establish a foothold in my parish with my blessing so that they could bully their political views by scaring our Latinos with immigration status and offering the Latinos the usual lies about giving them money and status if they would also agitate, I immediately asked them who it happens to be who is funding them.
Perhaps that was impolite, right? I mean, if I were to take them at face value with their self declared grass roots status, they would be doing this at their own expense or also using the donations of fellow students, but nothing more. Maybe their roots are dying with altogether too much B.S.
This question obviously caught them off guard as they looked to each other for a way to answer. The other one answered candidly, saying that there were, in fact, certain “groups” financially floating their endeavors, but straightaway [singular]*they* added that, of course, they didn’t know who these groups were or where that money was coming from.
“Bwahahahahaha,” thought I trying desperately to remain with a straight face. I think this parish priest has waaaay toooo much fun. It’s just too easy.
But now I laugh out loud writing all this: Bwahahahahah!!! :-)
In all their condescending concern for our beloved Latinos who they say have no idea how to wear a Covid-mask because they are all uneducated and stupid and have no one else to condescend to them to instruct them in all their stupidity…. in all their condescension are they not the very epitome of the definition of a hateful racist?
They offered to try to come up with a statement about themselves, but I said that I would get some research done on them myself. There is nothing to research of course. But all I have to do is examine their statements:
“We’re grass roots and we’re funded by groups so secret that even we don’t know who they are.”
“We’re so concerned about Latinos unlike this racist church because we say that Latinos are all stupid and they have to follow our dictates, and you haven’t already told them they are stupid and you haven’t already told them that they must follow our dictates so it is you who are racist with your stupid racist church… splutter, splutter, splutter…”
I’m fully expecting that a report on our little parish church – that we are not compliant with anti-USA violent bullies – will, say, go to George Soros and to our own Governor Cooper of North Carolina, whose discrimination against churches had to be smacked down hard by a Federal Judge. And now we’ll be enemies of anti-Americans, enemies of the liberal crowd, even though our Latinos are great about wearing masks, even if just to keep us out of trouble with the powers of the community organizers that be, our Latinos being really very smart altogether. :-)
You know, I was so very soft-spoken and polite with these community organizers, but I suppose I could be still be labeled as being an old meanie in that I’m also tagging this post as “Humor.” Sorry, but I have to laugh again:
P.S. Someone will surely try to litigate against me and my parish church and my diocese and the USCCB and the Vatican while claiming that I’m clearly writing this post surely as a Republican over against Democrats, and so that proves that the Catholic Church should lose its tax exempt status. However, did I mention that this was any kind of political move in such a fashion? No.
Everything I said in this post is said as just another human being trying to be respectful of the natural law, trying to be respectful of our Latino community who were being viciously insulted by racist political baiters.
But, am I a priest? Yes. All the more am I going to understand the basis for being respectful to all, Jesus, who redeemed us and wants that we respect one another. Was I being disrespectful to these university students by writing this summary? No. Not at all. This is utmost respect, taking them seriously, pointing out to them that which perhaps no else will point out to them. I’m no tender snowflake racist like them. They need to convert and be respectful of their fellow human beings.
But they will surely complain that their secret sources of money will disappear if they are not racist enough, not anti-Catholic enough, don’t hate these USA enough.
I’ll just continue here in my church, priest that I am, trying my best to lead people to Jesus. Jesus is the One. He’s the only One. I believe in Jesus.
You know you live a dangerous life when your insurance salesman gives you bullets, especially during Covid-price-times. This one box of just 50 target rounds for 9mm is $30 bucks. That’s about four times the old Walmart pricing. So, this is quite the serious gift. But it’s also humorous.
These are tiny laptop drives that a non-techy parishioner asked me to delete, who was getting rid of dinosaur computers but was not wanting to leave files on the hard drives. Not being much of a techy myself, and that person not requesting the drives back, and me later deciding not to want to bother with the old computers, the drives were put out somewhere between 5 and 10 yards. Three 9mm to the one on the left and a half a mag-dump to the one on the right. Haha. That was the extent of my target practice in this time of no ammo amidst Covid lockdowns and such. This kind of target practice is all calm, entirely efficient. I mean, the interior disks were reduced to a small and momentary metallic dust cloud with the largest shards of the disks pictured above, but all the rest being reduced to pretty much smaller than a zeptometer in size. That’s, like, really small. Hillary’s hammers are operated with such angst and distress and are so inefficient, so readable in their larger shards. And software? Pfft. 9mm target practice is fast and gets the job done and… and… is fun. I didn’t want to break my word about erasing the drives. :-)