Monday, August 14, 2006

Obstinate O'Leary refuses to be banned

Fr. Joseph O'Leary -- a.k.a. "Spirit of Vatican II," or just "Spirit," or "SV2" -- is the second commentator in the history of this blog to be banned. He was banned a couple of weeks ago, long after having been banned from sites such as Al Kimel's Pontifications and John Heard's Dreadnought. O'Leary was not banned for his views -- for his dissent from Church teaching, his theological liberalism, or other ideological leanings. We consider the comboxes of this blog an open forum, open to any contributors interested in addressing the topics of the posts, as long as a modicum of courtesy and decorum is observed (see Da Rulz). O'Leary offended many readers of this blog. Most consistently offensive to readers was the fact that a man so obviously gifted with intelligence and broad learning who was ordained to the Catholic priesthood would represent himself in such unseemly ways in service of undermining all that is pure, good, holy, true, and beautiful in the Church and her tradition. "How could he be serious about being a Catholic priest?" they asked. He also offended and wearied readers by consistently dominating and spamming our comboxes. Despite this, and long after receiving many recommendations to ban him, I refused to ban O'Leary -- perhaps partly because of my personal acquaintance with him that goes back twenty-some years to graduate school days, but also because I seriously wanted to maintain an open forum. Yet in recent weeks, the obnoxiousness of his remarks towards fellow commentators and toward myself in the comboxes has reached such levels that permitting him to continue on would be a case of flagrantly turning a blind eye to the basic published protocol for decent conduct on this blog (again, see Da Rulz). A measure of O'Leary's indifference to matters of courtesy is that since his banning he has continued to obsessively post comments (to date) from no fewer than five different IP addresses! What this says about his lack of courtesy and respect for others is one thing. What it says about his state of mental and spiritual health, my readers may surmise for themselves. One thing is clear: this priest is under very little if any supervision and has far too much time on his hands. Any further comments posted by O'Leary from any other IP address will be deleted. In the meantime, pray for this sad and lonely priest. My own prayer for him is that which my late, great missionary mother taught me -- that God would heighten his loneliness, deprive him all his earthly consolations, and drive him to such despair that he may at last have nowhere else to turn but to the one Source of all consolation, hope, and joy.

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