“Protect The Pope”: The Bishop Speaks.
Bishop Campbell has reacted to the media echo of his treatment of the blog “Protect the Pope”.
There are some huge news. And some observations worthy of the one or other comment. I see the bishop’s main points as follows:
1. The Deacon writes that the blog reflects his personal opinions, but he does say that he is a deacon of the diocese, and this could lead the readers to think that the deacon reports the views of the diocese.
Well: if they are stupid, yes. But stupidity has no rights, nor would civilisation exist if everything that can be misconstrued by the stupid would not be written or told. Still, it seems to me the bishop has another point here, that I have made in another post: if one says he is a deacon, he has spent the office he holds. At this point, his bishop and superior may well have something to say about it. If one were to say “I am the CEO of Coca-Cola and I am in favour of so-called same-sex marriage”, the representatives of the shareholders (like big investment funds) would have every right to intervene in the matter and ask the man not to mix Coca-Cola with his own freedom of expression, because it can damage the shop.
This is, I think, almost the only point the Bishop has. Let us see the rest.
2. A blog is good if it protects the Pope. It is not good if it acts as a watchdog of bishops, clergy and theologians.
The bishops has not said why being a “watchdog” would be bad, if one watches over orthodoxy, and why a bishop would be above criticism, if the criticism is made in the light of orthodoxy. Priests themselves do that all the time. Bishop Campbell is a clericalist of the worst sort. He tells you in your face that blogs must not criticise bishops. The arrogance beggars belief.
3. Criticism is particularly bad, when it is addressed to alleged dissent inside the Church.
Every one with some sense knows that the enemies within are much worse than the enemies without. The Church of the past – the thinking one – knew this very well, and acted against heresy with a determination and ferocity fully in line with the danger represented from the enemy coming from within. Ask every military man, every politician, even every football manager. This alleged argument is emotional waste for old whining women, and unworthy of an adult or of a serious discussion. Embarrassing.
Father Z writes perhaps half of his non-liturgical post against Catholic dissenters. He knows why.
4. A Deacon can say what he thinks, but not if he divides the community (e.g. through ad hominem attacks, etc.)
Yes, and no.
Truth is per se divisive. If a blogger is not divisive, he is not telling the Truth.
One might agree – I would, in general, agree – that from a Deacon or Priest one would expect a different tone than from, say, Mundabor. I am the first one to admit this. But I personally have never noticed in the blog in question anything even remotely approaching, ahem, Mundaborian tones. The problem here is the Great Disease of this country: political correctness, niceness as religion, and sissidom on steroids. Someone felt “hurt”, therefore you were too aggressive. This requires a robust answer, but sissies do not like robust answers. They like their quiet.
They do not like assertiveness, either. To the sissy, everyone’s a bully.
5. I have nothing against blogging. In fact, you must know, I write a blog myself.
A blog that no one reads, that makes those who read it fall asleep, and that disappears utterly and completely when compared to the serious blog of a serious Catholic, his own very Deacon Nick. I do not want to insult the bishop’s intelligence, but he sounds as if he believed people go on the Internet to read bishops’ blogs.
Wrong. The exact contrary is the case: they go on the Internet because of all the rubbish they hear and read from their bishops. This press release is just another example of the embarrassing mediocrity of our hierarchy.
6. I have asked the Deacon several times not to attack individual people. Unfortunately, he did not listen to me.
What does the bishop mean by “people”? ACTA? What should the Deacon have done? Write in riddles? Yes, one tries to speak about the sin without mentioning the sinner if he can. But if this cannot be done, well then: things and people will have to be called with their names. And he is not prying into the private life of people, either. ACTA isn’t a secret society.
I understand calling things with their name is unknown to the bishop. This is, very probably, the reason why he is bishop! By the by, ACTA is a scandalous group of shameless dissenters. That a bishop dares to even think to put on the same level his orthodox Deacon and a group of saboteurs and enemies of Christ says a lot about where his priorities lie. For shame.
7. Cardinal Dolan bla, bla & bla.
Let us reason about this. This bishop is addressing a multitude of justly enraged orthodox Catholic blog readers, and he tries to impress them with… Cardinal Dolan.
These people must live on the moon.
8. I am very peeved that it was made public that I wanted to silence the blog.
I am accustomed to do what I please and get away with it. I was shocked this time it was not the case. Please note: I will not be criticised. See point 2. Thanks.
(Dulcis in fundo…)
9. I have not closed the blog. The Deacon has asked to be authorised to blog again, and I have said “reflect more”.
This is the huge news.
Obviously, this is either a massive backpedaling from the bishop, or he wanted – in non-authoritative style – let the Deacon understand he does not want him to write again, but without explicitly ordering him to stop blogging. Plausible deniability, you see. Something like “I think you are not ready to start writing again, but frankly it is difficult to think that you ever will”. In any way, it seems to me the bishop is saying “I will not – I do not have the guts to – order the closure of the blog”. Which translated means: the more pressure on the bishop, the sooner the blog will be live again. Clint Eastwood, this bishop ain’t.
(9b. There will be no further comment)
(Well, that’s a relief).
This is what I have gained from the frankly embarrassing “blog release” of the bishop.
I will visit William Hill and Betfred in the next days to see if they accept bets on “Protect the Pope” being active again, under the keyboard of Deacon Nick, before the end of the summer.
If this is a prince of the church ( I know a bishop is not a Prince, strictly speaking, but you get the drift) it’s no surprise the commoners are so confused.