Sunday, January 31, 2010

Sacred, Beautiful and Universal: Colloquium XIX

Okay, this is how Catholic Church music should sound:

I think I should let the video speak for itself, and the people within speak for themselves. All I can say is: "WOW! What beatiful—nay, divine!—music! Who would not feel in the presence and awe of God with that in his ears?"

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

How to boost the number of priestly vocations!

The following is a response I posted in Father Z’s blog. There was an ongoing argument started when someone saw that the number of permanent (lay) deacons had doubled since 1985 (from 7,204 to 16, 380) while the number of diocesan priests almost halved (from 22,265 to 13,072), and immediately committed a post-hoc fallacy: “The decline was caused by the reinstitution of the permanent diaconate!” Unfortunately, my entry was fairly late in the game, so I doubt it’ll be noticed:

The reason for the decline of priestly vocations is not due to the re-establishment of the permanent diaconate. Rather, there are two proximate causes: 1) Failure of priests to actively recruit; and 2) Altar girls.

Friday, January 22, 2010

On the Senate race in Massachusetts

I posted this comment on GetReligion’s story on the Democrat debacle over Teddy Kennedy’s long-time seat:

Marcia Coakley lost because she took victory for granted, and for that reason failed to do things that she should have learned in Electioneering 101—Kiss the babies, shake the hands, meet and greet everyone from the mayor to the local bag-lady, and for goodness’ sake be careful not to p*** off a swing bloc with an ill-considered statement. She left everything on the table, and ought not to be surprised that Scott Brown swept it up. He worked for the seat; she didn’t.

Monday, January 18, 2010

The Killer Instinct

 On Christmas Eve on my other blog—what’s its name again?—I spoke about men and women’s social expectations for them. My argument was that women had stopped expecting men to behave as Menschen (which isn’t quite the same as √úbermann, but definitely a little more than your average Joe. When a German calls another man a Mensch, you can almost hear him underline it and put an exclamation point after it: “What a man!”). And because women no longer demanded special treatment by men, men stopped trying to be Menschen and became dogs … except that such a comparison is unfair to the dog, who at least can be expected to show some fidelity.

Now in the magazine First Things, poet and homeschooling mother Sally Thomas takes a look at the problem from the other side of the fence. Her argument is a little more than simply saying, “Boys will be boys”. Rather, she goes on to argue, “It’s a mistake for parents to presume that a fascination with the idea of blowing something away is, in itself, a disgusting habit, like nose-picking, that can and should be eradicated. The problem is not that the boy’s hand itches for a sword. The problem lies in not telling him what they are for, that they are for something—the sword and the itch alike. … Heaven forbid, we always say, that our boys should have to go to war. Still, what even a symbolic knighthood accomplishes is the recognition that a boy’s natural drive to stab and shoot and smash can be shaped, in his imagination, to the image of sacrifice, of laying down his life for his friends.”

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

New Mass/Old Mass

 Father Z at What Does the Prayer Really Say is soliciting comments about the “New Mass” (Novus Ordo or Ordinary Form) versus the reintroduced 1962 Extraordinary Form of Pope John XXIII (EF or TLM [Tridentine Liturgy Mass? Traditional Latin Mass?]). Here’s the bulk of my response:

If I ever participated in a TLM, it was from the cry room with the other young’uns. My clearest memories of Mass as a child were of the Novus Ordo; in fact, I remember distinctly that at one communion the music ministers sang “Day By Day” from Godspell, and at another singing the “hymn”, “Teach your children well/ Their fathers’ hell/ Did slowly go by ….” (Thank God that phase didn’t last long!) After high school, for awhile I sang and played guitar at Mass (though I never heard anyone call me a “music minister”) and taught CCD—an example of the blind leading the blind if ever there was one.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

This has been floating around the Catholic blogosphere!

The following hoaxes/myths will be exposed in 2010:

Manmade global warming
Atheistic evolution
Relativism is the only absolute
Abortion is "health care"
Nobody can do health care better than the government
A Catholic can be pro-choice

The government will take care of you
How Obama saved America
America no longer needs God

Come, Lord Jesus!

The Most Rev. Robert F. Vasa

Sunday, January 3, 2010

So why did I need a second blog?

Especially when the first blog hasn’t exactly set the world on fire? I don’t know. Call me masochistic … I’m just not being ignored enough.

The truth is, though, that I wanted to experiment with the blog as an online diary. Outside the Asylum, whatever else you can call it, is the syndicated op-ed column I’ve always wanted to write. However, I’m starting to get into a rut with the topics, and I really don’t want to re-plow the same tired row no matter how fertile it is. Plus, I want some room to be more light-hearted. (What, me too serious? No way!)

The other thing is, this year I decided that I should finally get up off my lazy tuchas and start going to church regularly like the good Catholic boy I sometimes pretend to be on OTA. As I try to expand my devotional life and get back into the habit of practical Catholicism, I hope that it will inspire some deeper thoughts. Or at least provide some fodder for chuckles.

Feast of the Epiphany:
Is 60:1-6
Ps 72:1-2,7-8,10-13
Eph 3:2-3, 5-6
Mt 2:1-12