Dear Bishop, Deacon Nick Donnelly, of the blog “Protect the Pope”, provided many of the faithful with a sound insight into church affairs, especially into the disgraceful activities of the ACTA organisation.
Could you please tell me, therefore, why you have asked him to observe a period of prayer and reflection?
Assuring you of my prayers. Richard Collins.
It is good to know Bishops have blogs. It allows the shepherds to “get out” in the world, and “get in touch” with the sheep. To “reach out” to the “outskirts”. More “dialogue”, and “inclusion”. So very Francis.
Alas, it would appear Mr Collins’ message was culled.
Now: the Bishop’s blog is his own living room, and I do not think I can tell him, or anyone else come to that, whom he should or should not welcome in his own living room. If he thinks the question impertinent or disrespectful he will certainly cancel the message, and that’s that.
But just in order to be sure that the message was not cancelled merely because the bishop does not like Mr Collins (perhaps confusing him with the slightly more famous Phil Collins, whom he might not like as a musician), I thought it fitting to copy and paste Mr (Richard) Collins’ message and to post it in the combox of a blog post pithily named: “Entering into Lent with the Syro-Malabar Catholic and launching “The Light is ON for YOU – Reconciliation Wednesday!”).
As I write this (Tuesday evening, 10:45 pm GMT), the message is respectfully waiting in the moderation room of the Bishop; probably sitting on a comfortable, if rather old-fashioned, sofa and nervously tapping the floor with the shoe, wondering “will I be allowed to get in?”. I am sure the Bishop’s assistant offered him a coffee, though, so the wait should be bearable.
You may want to check, tomorrow afternoon (19 March) GMT, whether the message has been posted, or even answered. In this case, I would be so kind as to forward said message to Mr Collins who, I should say, is entitled to read it before me.
If no message has been posted – perfectly legitimate, I repeat it: I cancel tons of messages myself – it cannot be excluded that this has happened because the Bishop does not like me, besides Mr Collins. Shocking, I know. But again, my comment box tells me every day that perhaps – just perhaps – somewhere, someone might not like me.
In this case, I would suggest that you also post a message. I am sure Mr Collins will not be offended if you allow yourself to copy and paste it, as I did. In the end, it isn’t much longer than the title of the Bishop’s blog post, so I doubt he’ll consider it beyond “fair usage of combox” policy. If that particular blog post does not allow to leave a message, I am sure the Bishop will fully understand if you leave the message using another one. If several of you do it, I think he will be even happier about the dialogue with faithful Catholics. He chose a wordpress blog, so I can tell you the message will appear in the same line on his screen wherever you may post it, even a one-month-old post.
The question posed by Mr Collins seems very legitimate to me, who have been scratching my head for days trying to understand what special need of prayer and reflection Mr Donnolly may have had.
The Deacon seemed a thoroughly fine chap to me. Never a wrong word. Not even “faggot”, or “dyke”. Exemplary.
It has nothing to do with ACTA, surely?
Surely not, but it would be nice to know more. The bishop likes the “Tablet”, I am told, so he must have read of the blog issue there, too.
And has the bishop noticed how nice the blog is? Happily, the Deacon’s prayer time has not made any damage at all.
Dear Readers, please let me know how this one goes. It’s good to be able to communicate directly with the Bishop on occasions like this one.
Actuosa Participatio, I call it.