View from the choir

I am a Catholic layperson and Secular Franciscan with a sense of humor. After years in the back pew watching, I have moved into the choir. It's nice to see faces instead of the backs of heads. But I still maintain God has a sense of humor - and that we are created in God's image.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Try this: A threat

Not long ago, I got into a tiff at an "orthodox" blog. The person who writes it continually criticizes my diocese, Rochester (he is a former resident of this diocese).

Some of the criticisms have been valid. I, too, have been critical of some actions and decisions in this diocese and by Bishop Clark in the past.

But often, those criticisms in this other person's blog are delivered in snide and disrespectful tones. And sometimes, information is twisted or spun to make even innocent things seem sinister or suspect.

At one point, the blogger commented about something lacking from a parish bulletin. He did not name the parish. I asked for the name of the parish so I could check if it was a one-time thing, or if it really was a problem. He did not name the parish, despite repeated requests.

Accusations without investigation or support. Sadly typical.

This went on - there was at least one other instance in which I asked for support for a criticism - and finally I suggested he and some of his fellow bloggers making rather unfair comments read the Catechism sections about bearing false witness.

Hoo Boy!

Various nasty things were said (or implied) about me. He made sure that he erased much of what I said (just in case someone might read what I said and begin to wonder?).

And there was a threat.

This person knew I was considering applying for the permanent diaconate program in this diocese. He said if I persisted in pointing out uncharitable acts on his part, he would report me to officials of the permanent diaconate program. The implication being, of course, that that might hurt my chances.

I observed that given the consistently uncharitable nature of his criticisms of the diocese and our bishop, that might actually have helped my chances!

Anyway, that's what prompted the three poor limericks I recently posted. They were not charitable. Mea culpa.

As I noted, there are legitimate reasons to criticize actions and decisions by the diocese and the bishop - whom I know to be a good and caring man - but it should be done respectfully, not with inuendo and snide comments.

And as for the diaconate, I am not applying anyway due to a number of circumstances (not the least of which are the health problems of my father and father-in-law and the surgeries they are having this week).

At this point, I will follow Jesus' advice to his disciples, and leave this blogger be, making sure I shake the dust from my feet.

Or, since this involves blogs, should that be dust off my fingers?


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