Monday, November 14, 2011

From the Sublime to the Ridiculous

The useless priest who said Mass this morning preached the most spectacularly inappropriate homily – it being the feast of All Carmelite Saints, what does he talk about?  The recent suicide (complete with all the gory details) of a sports journalist, and then the usual liberal put-downs of "mediæval" ideas of "mortal sin", an allusion to the grim "institutional Church", and so forth.  

(In charity, I suppose it is right to focus on "nothing can separate us from the love of Christ", but the implication that suicide is unfortunate, but not really a cause of anxiety about any self-murderer's salvation, is hardly uncontroversial.)

And this, I repeat, on the feast of All Carmelite Saints!

This is the same priest who found it too difficult to get up on Saturday morning to celebrate the 7.30 am Mass, meaning the Carmelites had to alter their monastic timetable and postpone it till 9 am, and get another priest to say it for them (he being otherwise engaged).  Now, having increased the workload for others, he has been reassigned to take the Monday early Mass (one wonders how long he'll stick at it).

At Carmel, a slow, meditative manner is encouraged: he belts through the Mass, and you hear the outside door bang when he leaves, having very quickly devested before even the final hymn is ended.

This priest obviously hasn't bothered to learn the new words for "Behold the Lamb of God" or any of the other bits of the new translation (he conspicuously didn't recite the Gloria with the congregation this morning).

I was so cross it was all I could do not to shout out "Lazy ignorant priest!" during the service.  I certainly muttered under my breath.

When I left after Mass, I was fortunate enough to have a chance to disburden myself to Sandra, one of the regulars - I confessed my fault to her: she told me not to worry, since this had actually been one of his better sermons!  Apparently his antics at the Saturday Masses (which I've hardly ever attended at Carmel) were appalling: once, he preached on how good Bishop Morris of Toowoomba was, and how nasty the Holy Father - and this to cloistered religious!

I now understand why other parishioners have told me they have stopped going to Mass in his parish, and go elsewhere on Sundays.

From shitten shepherds who lead astray and drive away the flock – Good Lord, deliver us.

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