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Posts Tagged ‘catholic’

Lesser Known Catholic Saints (and a small lesson in parallel universes)

Maybe I’m attempting too much here, but I’ve only got so much time left and I’m determined to spend it like a drunken sailor.

~ Presenting 6 parallel introductions of the same topic. Each with its own inherent bias ~

  1. The Generous and Funny Introduction: In all of Christendom, the revered Catholic Church is far and away the most consequential. For millennia the resolute Church has provided a dependable sanctuary and a loving interpretation of Christ’s moral philosophy. And even in the darkest of ages, it has been a beacon of hope and a light unto the world. And I use the phrase “unto the world” instead of “in the world” because “unto the world” smacks of greater religious authority. In order to generate even more gravitas in the future, I might rollout out a “thee” or a “thou” and maybe even a few “thines” but I’ll try not to be holier than thou (see, it works). What can you say about an exemplary religion that’s spawned more copycat wannabees than Madonna did in her heyday (and here I’m referring to Madonna the singer, not to Madonna Jesus’s mom)? Sometimes spin-offs work (Doritos begat Nacho Doritos) and sometimes they don’t (Catholicism begat the Amish). Not to disparage the Amish, but my idea of horsepower and their idea of horse power are two very different things.

 

  1. The Damning with Faint Praise Introduction: Of all the Christian sects, the glamorous Catholic Church is far and away the most Hollywood. Tinseltown’s glittery flair seems to have informed the Church’s practices and even decorated their Christmas trees. What can you say about a steadfast religion that’s resisted secular relativism and spawned more spinoffs than Fast and Furious? Sometimes spin-offs work (Chevrolet begat the Corvette) and sometimes they don’t (Chevy also begat the Chevette). Not to disparage Chevrolet, but my idea of horsepower and a Chevette’s idea of horsepower are two very different things.

 

  1. The Contemptuous Zoological Introduction that Goes Off the Rails: Of all the animals in the Christian Zoo, the outsized Catholic Church is the elephant in the room no one wants to clean-up after. In the menagerie of Christian denominations masquerading as the ultimate path to God, Catholicism has the biggest footprint – and why wouldn’t it? It’s the elephant in the room with 4 huge stamping feet that parishioners hope will walk softly and carry a big trunk. What can you say about a religion that’s spawned more spinoffs than an RC Cola accidentally set on a Tommy Dorsey record played at 78 rpms? Make that a Jimmy Dorsey record. In fact make that a reference from less than 80 years ago that people might possibly understand or appreciate. Clearly, I’ve got work to do and I implore you to stay with me and keep reading. You can get back to the familiar satisfaction of your iPhone in 10 minutes, I promise. Hmmmm…but what if you’re on your iPhone now reading this. Suddenly it’s Alice through the looking glass and a tsunami of anxiety overwhelms me. This is no time for a panic attack and yet this fretful, disjointed introduction is a panic attack just waiting to happen. Check that. Oh sh*t! It’s not waiting. It’s happening. Right now…to me. Jesus, where’s writer’s block when you need it. As I hyperventilate and begin rocking back and forth, a semantic question pierces my anxiety: Did writers who lived behind the Soviet’s Iron Curtain suffer from Writers’ Bloc?  

 

  1. The Vacuous, Out-to-Lunch Introduction: Of all the Christian sects, the Catholic Church is one of them. It’s a big one. Elephant big. The Church knows it’s important to be good (or at least to not get caught doing anything bad). But if you are caught, you are invited to confess to a priest and all is forgiven. The idea of being good seems to have informed their practices and is somehow indirectly responsible for all the glorious decorations on their Church ceilings. What can you say about a legacy religion that’s spawned more spinoffs than Pepperidge Farm has with their cookies? Sometimes spin-offs work (Darth Vader begat Luke Skywalker) and sometimes they don’t (Hamburger Helper begat Pancreas Helper). Not to disparage all other religions, but…oh forget #4. I’m just relieved my panic attack is over.

 

  1. The Unforgiving Malevolent Introduction: Of all the Christian sex, the unpoliced Catholic Church has far and away screwed everybody the most. Unvetted priests have groomed and corrupted impressionable followers in the most irreligious ways imaginable. Self-serving silence seems to have informed their practices, even at the cost of millions in settlements and untold psychic harm. What can you say about a religion that spun-off a Hall of Fame to enshrine its most luminous players – they call it Sainthood? Sometimes spin-offs work (The Pirates of the Caribbean ride begat The Pirates of the Caribbean movie) and sometimes they don’t (The Pirates of the Caribbean ride begat The Pirates of the Caribbean movie). I guess it all depends on your perspective in judging whether something works or not. Not to disparage Johnny Depp, but his imitation of Keith Richards as Capt. Jack Sparrow gives no Satisfaction.

 

  1. The Even-Handed, Glossed Over Introduction (so we may finally get on with our entertaining little story): The Catholic Church has done its god damned best to attend to its needy flock. Sometimes they’ve fallen short, but not for a lack of good intentions. Whether Crusading through Europe, or just gently interrogating the Spanish to make sure they were really, truly Catholic, the Church always had its heart in the right place. Sometimes that heart had only 2 creaky chambers distributing the milk of human kindness stingily and unevenly, instead of 4 robust chambers pounding out truth and justice equally to all seekers. What can you say about an institution that’s produced more copycat religions than there are copycat Beatles tribute bands? Not to disparage these tribute bands, but my idea of revolution and their idea of Revolution are two very different things. At any rate, our evolution can only happen at a speed we can handle. Godspeed everyone!

And Now We Begin Our Story

Similar to the way Steven “Book of” Jobs founded Apple by tinkering in his dad’s garage, Jesus started writing code for his start-up cult in his dad’s stable. Sometimes Joseph would poke his head in and suspiciously inquire, “Jesus Christ, what’s going on in here?”

To which his exasperated son would reply, “Daaaad! I told you, I’m formulating a moral philosophy for mankind to live by.”

“Yeah sure son. Every night for 6 months?,” Joseph would huff in Aramaic. “I’m not sure what’s going on in here, but I smell frankincense.”

“I told you dad. I got that as a gift when I was born. It helps me to think.” Jesus explained. Read the rest of this entry »

Google Proposes to Buy Catholic Church

Financial and moral bankruptcy makes Catholic Church ripe for the plucking.

In an unlikely marriage of high tech and high mass, Google Inc. has vowed to purchase the 2000 year old Christian start-up and convert it from a parochial relic of medieval luminosity, to a go-to search engine of latter day enlightenment. In other words to reimagine the Church, not as some vestigial sanctuary of last resort, but as a relevant refuge of first resort – and without all the resort fees.

 

Google promises to create an online spiritual haven far beyond the binary limitations of earthly design – a transformative resort where true seekers can purge themselves of barnacled beliefs and pardonable, but entrenched assumptions in preparation for boundary-dissolving experiences. These experiences, they say, will illuminate both the poignancy and absurdity of life’s predicament. And Google hopes to accomplish all this, not with a prophet, but at a profit.

 

Some say we should genuflect to our digitally savvy superiors and welcome them with a hearty “All hail the coming of our spiritual overlord – Wi-Fi? Why not?”  More cautionary voices insist we, “Slow down there Mr. Univac. Your glorified abacus is just an electronic toy here to serve us. Remember, you’re made in God’s image and not vice-versa.” These are the typical binary talking points you get on earth whenever transformative change is in the air.

 

Reflecting the volatility of their proposed purchase, Google’s bid was not filed with the SEC, but rather with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Crosses – or as it more commonly appears in writing: The Bureau of AT&✝. In their bid, Google pledges to create a welcoming, spiritual resort that honors all paths and not just the ones that hold rummage sales in church basements. A place where worshipers feel they’re on vacation instead of on trial. No longer will adherents have to nourish their souls on the stale, old piety of centuries old dogma. The Church, reborn under a new rubric, will become a divine haven where spiritual gamers (Google’s nomenclature for parishioners) can now operate in a cosmic resort of first resort. Read the rest of this entry »

You Can’t Make This Stuff Up (even though I did)

The Catholic Church has decided to modernize its URL from “www.catholic.org” to “www.catholic.OMG”

 

In France, when famed mime Marcel Marceau died, the French observed a national moment of screaming for him. He was later ceremoniously interred in the Pantheon in Paris – in the same invisible box he had such difficulty getting out of when he was alive.

 

The word “synonym” is almost a homonym for “cinnamon.” Similarly “how ya been” is almost a homonym for “homonym.” And this is why so many are homonymphobic.

 

A proctologist was hurt when his chair collapsed at a local bar. As usual, the proctologist blamed it all on a loose stool.

 

A Happy Ending for Everyone

Robert Kraft’s limo was caught on surveillance video at a West Palm Beach Jiffy Lube getting its dipstick wiped clean. “It was just maintenance. Nothing more.” said the chauffeur. No charges were filed…other than the charges for the jiffy lube.
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The Apocryphal Discovery of Isaac Newton’s 1661 Trinity College Thesis on the Catholic Church

Sir Isaac Newton: Scientist extraordinaire and genealogical forefather of Rod Stewart.

Sir Isaac Newton: Scientist extraordinaire and genealogical forefather of Rod Stewart.

Mrs. Hattie Beasley of Ipswich expected nothing more than a serviceable Queen Anne picture frame when she paid a bargain 3 quid 10 bob for it at the estate sale of dearly departed Gwendolyn Chatham in 1992. She planned on removing the existing picture of 4 English Bulldogs playing poker and replacing it with one of her own – a little hand-painted still life of apples for which she was renown in Suffolk County. In fact for about the price of a pint of mead, the purchase yielded Mrs. Beasley much more than she bargained for. Because when she removed the frame’s backer and withdrew the folded spacing materials that helped to press the English Bulldog print flush against the glass, she discovered a trove of remarkably well-preserved papers from Trinity College in Cambridge dating from 1661. Amazingly the authenticated papers were written in the strong, clear hand of Sir Isaac Newton, who, at the time they were written, was known as Isaac the Underachiever. As she examined the clean and unspoiled historic sheets, she noted they were from some kind of examination paper whose subject was titled: Catholic Church History: On Tracing Its Origin, Development and Cultural Semiotics with Respect to its Hierarchy, Heresies and Celibacy – All within an Aristotelian Construct. Read the rest of this entry »