Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Beauty, Balthasar, & Boilers

Maureen Mullarkey, "Beauty, Balthasar, & Boilers" (First Things, January 26, 2015).

I received a link to the article above from Guy Noir - Private Eye, along with these observations:
Well... I do not know if Mullarkey thinks all these things as sharply as she says them, or is just having fun.

Who cares?, since she is tremendous fun and certainly well within reason, even if the the Catholic faithful are still suffering aftershocks from her calling the Holy Father "imprudent."

Now here she is at it again, taking aim at the lodestars of the two previous pontificates and tweaking the ears of De Lubac and von Balthasar. And plugging the Japanese and dime store art, to boot!
[Hat tip to GN]


18 comments:








BenYachov

said...

>even if the the Catholic faithful are still suffering aftershocks from her calling the Holy Father "imprudent."

Since when are the words "imprudent" and "narcissist" synonyms?





JM

said...

Ben, she is an essayist, not a journalist. It's called rhetoric. Francis uses it like deodorant. The idea is to consider the whole, even if media and critics always zero in on one line. In the offending piece, the last line summed it up. "Francis is imprudent." That is hardly like calling him a Renaissance pope!





JM

said...

Having said that, I do agree MMs rhetoric was overheated and hardly respectful. Yet I also ask, since when is anyone of us immune from narcissistic tendencies?





BenYachov

said...

@JM

Calling him imprudent is to say his actions lacked prudence. Which is fair cop and respectable.

Calling him narcissistic and implying he wasn't on his knees praying as much as his two predecessors is slanderous, disrespectful and un-charritible.

The former I have no problem with the later is a scandal as you seem to notice as well.





Charles

said...

B.Y.,

What is "fair cop" and "disrespectful" is, to some extent, a matter of subjective judgment. You can bet your bottom dollar that if you called the pope's remarks "imprudent" somewhere on the Internet, that former Prot apologists for Francis would be all over you like flies on poop.





BenYachov

said...

@Charles

>What is "fair cop" and "disrespectful" is, to some extent, a matter of subjective judgment. You can bet your bottom dollar that if you called the pope's remarks "imprudent" somewhere on the Internet, that former Prot apologists for Francis would be all over you like flies on poop.

Rather I think what gets them excited these days is
when the likes of Ms. Ian Paisley....um I mean Ms Mullarkey writes a gem like this.

"Pope Flatulence is “catholic” in the very same sense that Judas Iscariot was an “apostle”.

See the rest of it.

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/markshea/2015/01/not-at-all-crazy-revenge-of-the-francis-
haters.html

The original for fact checking and context.

http://thefederalist.com/2015/01/26/pope-francis-is-a-leftist-and-must-be-called-out/

Then there is the bit about her comparing the Holy Father to a concentration camp guard.....

I wouldn't call her a Protestant Heretic like the Shea (& what I would call her Doc B would not let me print here for the sake of decency).

But he is right. This is not Paul confronting Peter nor is it St. Catherine of Siena. This is pure hatred & it is clearly diabolic.

In fact it is so scandalous I find myself longing for her accusations of Papal Narcissism.

If a person sees him or herself as a loyal critic of the Pope & believes he needs to be corrected or even resisted.
Rhetoric like this apart from it's obvious sinful nature will practically justify others regarding said person as fringe.

It also make other more benign critics suspect when they merely say Pope Francis is imprudent.

Peace be with you.





Ralph Roister-Doister

said...

I'm always delighted to see a new column by Maureen Mullarkey. I dance a jig after reading every one! I hope that all of her critics and detractors read every word over and over again now on earth and later in purgatory!

BTW, she recently wrote a column on Paul VI's (that great saint-in-waiting) makeover of the sacrament of Extreme Unction into a kind of community pep rally.

Read that one! It's juicy!





George

said...

Ben calls to witness a vitriolic trad-loathing hate monger to condemn what he and the hate monger consider hate speech. That's supposed to convince?





BenYachov

said...

@George

>Ben calls to witness a vitriolic trad-loathing hate monger to condemn what he and the hate monger consider hate speech. That's supposed to convince?

When you give a pass to vitriolic vomit like that of Mullarky you unfortunately
in a sense "prove" "trad-haters" like Shea correct.

Did St. Catherine of Siena speak this way to the Holy Father in her time?

Would she condone Mullarky's words.

Commonsense and reason suggest otherwise. Also even I sympathetic to the outrage of the Trad-hater here have no problem saying his claims she is a "Protestant heretic" are wrong.





JM

said...

Ben, I would have assumed your comments were steady and have not even replied. Except I could not resist the catnip of you mentioning Shea, and so checked out both links. The latter, in The Federalist, is one I encourage everyone here to read. It makes Mullarkey's case effectively, and I guess marks the point of departure between you and me, since I agree with her entirely there.

http://thefederalist.com/2015/01/26/pope-francis-is-a-leftist-and-must-be-called-out/

As for Shea, I also read his piece.

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/markshea/2015/01/not-at-all-crazy-revenge-of-the-francis-

Surprise -- I found it to be an adolescently passionate distortion of the situation, quite ironic given his feigned offense at Mullarkey's passionate distortions. "OMG, she mentions prisoners giving the finger to the Nazis, and therefore she is suddenly... Calling the Pope a Nazi!!" And Mark is gonna tell on her. Shea *knows* she is filled with hate. Suddenly, it is OK to see inside *her* heart, although not for her to see inside that of the Holy Father's. I guess since Shea is... what, a grown man with a bugs bunny fixation known for quickly resorting to histrionic name-calling with those with whom he most obviously violently disagrees? He is indicative of the less-flattering traits of the Scott Hahn tribe (no offense to them), who are orthodox in content yet determinedly pedestrian in style, and whose knee-jerk reaction to anything but papal ring-kissing makes them prone to bequeathing us rhetorical beauties such as "Saint John Paul ll The Great."

Given the raizing of the bastions in the aftermath of Vatican II, I think a faithful Catholic can make an easy claim that Church policies can in fact be quite toxic threats. And I don't care if a Pope spends his entire papacy on his knees in terms of justification, any more than I care if Kasper or von Balthasar did theology on their knees. Guess what, so did Garrigou-Lagrange. And the Mormon Prophet in Salt Lake City also reportedly spends time with hands folded as well...Wait, I feel a revelation coming on...

(continued)





JM

said...

(from part I)

It is as guardian of Tradition that the Pope is to be esteemed, and not as gadfly to the United Nations or even prayer warrior. When the Pope conflates temporal and eternal matters, he confuses the faithful and encourages majoring on minors, just as earlier Popes' political power plays did and John Paul II's globe-trotting theatrics did. Gaurding the deposit of faith and managing the clergy is not the same thing as saying "Yeah Jesus!," but that is the operating assumption of so many. No one says Francis is sinister or diabolical, at least no in their better moments ({I wonder what Newman said about his Pope when the microphone switch in the Oratory was turned off). Francis may be quite godly (who knows?). It is apparent to me he is well-intentioned. But I don't give a rip about intentions when eternal verities, ones it is his charge to hold high, are dragged thru the mire of 21st century ambiguity under the guise of New Evangelization. The clarity of the Gospel Message as proclaimed by the Church is diminished right now. Of course, that is how I see it, I know. And I think as does Mullarkey, if I read her correctly.

If you share that appraisal, if you believe doctrine and morals not only matter but matter more deeply than any policy on employment, environment or economics, you will unavoidably be calling foul against Rome unless you subscribe to the papalolatry of the NeoCatholic camp. As cause for scandal is given in the heat of rhetoric, I'll happily confess my need for forgiveness. But the Pope is the one who has asked for people to stir things up and to make a commotion. The Pope is the one who acknowledges peoples' deep-seated humanity. And so I hardly think a few barbed-wire phrases discount anyones essential arguments. Maybe they actual make the arguments more human, and rescue satire from its politically-correct precincts. I laugh to see Mullarkey vilified for daring to call the Pope "narcissistic" even as Mike Huckabee is dismissed as a knave for calling women "vulgar" who use the word "f#@k."

Well-intentioned Francis himself has fired off several magazine-loads of unflattering names at what he sees as uptight wayward faithful spirits. Now many well-intentioned faithful have loosen up, PTL, and are returning rhetorical fire in an internal tactical game launched by HIs Holiness himself, and not them. Heck, these are men and women who would prefer to defend a Pope, not have to defend the Church from his misguided swipes. If he and his cadre can't play with the big dogs, maybe they need to get off the porch. But after all I quite am certain they can defend and explain themselves very effectively, whenever they decide they want to finally end the encounter. And that is actually very much what I for one am afraid of. Francis does not need defending. As Pope, he holds all the keys. It's just that we all have to deal with his unloosenings.





George

said...

"... vitriolic vomit like that of Mullarky ..."

I took it as disinterested reporting of plan facts.

Quit being a hater, Ben.





BenYachov

said...

@JM

I am not convinced. For the sake of brevity let me just address the meat and potatoes.

>Surprise -- I found it to be an adolescently passionate distortion of the situation, quite ironic given his feigned offense at Mullarkey's passionate distortions. "OMG, she mentions prisoners giving the finger to the Nazis, and therefore she is suddenly... Calling the Pope a Nazi!!"


JM that joke in the third paragraph is clearly an allegory equating the "timid" Rachel Lu who wrote "Don't Pick a Polictical Fight with Francis" with the woman who tells her husband flipping off the Nazi guard "Don't cause trouble". By implication Francis is the guard and he is doing the moral equivalent of sending people to the gas chambers.

That is kind of out there and hard to miss.

Also if for sake of argument I gave you that one how are any of Shea's other direct citations from the article wrong? How can one defend calling the Holy Father "Pope Flatulence" & comparing him to Judas?

>No one says Francis is sinister or diabolical, at least no in their better moments ({I wonder what Newman said about his Pope when the microphone switch in the Oratory was turned off). Francis may be quite godly (who knows?). It is apparent to me he is well-intentioned.

I applaud that sentiment.


>But I don't give a rip about intentions when eternal verities, ones it is his charge to hold high, are dragged thru the mire of 21st century ambiguity under the guise of New Evangelization. The clarity of the Gospel Message as proclaimed by the Church is diminished right now. Of course, that is how I see it, I know. And I think as does Mullarkey, if I read her correctly.

Such concern for safe guarding the truth was at the heart of St Paul and St Catherine's corrections but Mullarkey is not in that category and neither is her presentation indeed she is an additional source of scandal I am afraid.

BTW if you are expecting me to excuse Shea for his past over-reactions and bad behavior you will wait in vain.

But as someone lately told me you don't overcome evil with evil but with good.

Let me confess in the past (maybe yesterday?) I have been guilty of that. But I want to be better.

Mullarkey has not gone from poor to good. But from poor to worst.

She needs to be better for her own sake and for the sake of the things she cares about.

>Well-intentioned Francis himself has fired off several magazine-loads of unflattering names at what he sees as uptight wayward faithful spirits.

Which if true and if I were to disregard my own opinion it is only for fellow Bishops to rebuke the Pope that would still mandate correction with charity.

If Francis & the whole post conciliar church is as you say causing scandal then how is it a cure to return scandal for scandal?

Surely you must see my point on some level? Even a little?

Peace.





BenYachov

said...

>I took it as disinterested reporting of plan facts.

Could we then also say that of Shea?

(Because I couldn't with either of them)

>Quit being a hater, Ben.

Then how will I operate my Sith Powers?

Cheers.





Ralph Roister-Doister

said...

Wheee! This is one of Mo’s best columns. It is delightful!

The Balthazar quote near the beginning is one of the funniest things that the Greatest Theologian Since Marcel Marceau ever wrote. And he wrote some very funny things, as we all know. I’ve often thought that pulp fiction and comic books are the detritus, the stinking end game corruption of nineteenth century romanticism: that most narcissistic and masturbatory form of art. I can see The Greatest Theologian Since Stan Lee getting together with Strat Caldecott, Bob E Howard, and maybe Al Capp and perfecting a 20 volume Theoturgy out of the Marvel Thor saga, or maybe Conan. Something else for the dweebs at Ignatius to freak over.

Gotta love that Mo!! Just sayin'!!





Charles

said...

It's always fun to watch Ralph on a roll.





JFM

said...

Ben,

"Surely you must see my point on some level? Even a little?"

Indeed I do. Thanks and peace.

Joe





BenYachov

said...

@JFM

Thanks Bro I appreciate it.

Peace be with you.