Monday, March 06, 2006

In memetipso juravi:
Egressa est de ore meo iustitia,
verbum, quod non revertetur;
quia mihi curvabitur omne genu,
et iurabit omnis lingua.

--Isaias 45 : 23


"Every knee shall bend to Me. . ." But not in the Diocese of Orange. Bishop Todd Brown will have none of that outdated carry-on. Standing is to be the order of the day because. . .uh, well, Because.

Read more about the new mortal sin of kneeling here. And here.

25 years ago the great Fr Daniel Johnson took this dying, empty parish and with blood, sweat, and prayer filled it to overflowing. Fr Johnson retired due to age and illness a couple of years ago and Brown has been devoting himself to bringing it back to its original empty condition ever since. He wasted no time. Before Father had even left he forbade the old Roman Rite Mass which Bishop MacFarland had inaugurated at St Mary's. And now he has expelled these recusant parishioners from the church and the diocese.

Now, I don't know who these unhappy folks are. Most of those that I knew when I went there left with Fr Johnson and now attend elsewhere. Perhaps they are just the sort of ornery curmudgeons that Fr Tran's notice says they are. [Sudden thought: did the notice get nailed to the church door? Brown is big on nailing stuff to church doors. Messages about corruption. Condemnations of Our Lady Help of Christians Chapel. All sorts of things. I can't imagine where he got that habit.] In any event, even if these recalcitrant folk really are utterly without the pale, is it really that necessary to make them stand instead of kneel? Cui bono?

And canonically, precisely what does it mean to be "officially invite[d] to leave the parish. . . .and the diocese. . . ."? Is that schism? Or excommunication? Or just the usual Niagra of incomprehensible bafflegab that gushes out of Newchurch? How does one appeal a "penalty" which doesn't seem to exist officially?

Prediction: when His Excellency has tinkered with the parish sufficiently so that it is no longer viable, look for a sale of the very valuable - two blocks from the beach - property. Then look for a notice in the news that some funds have suddenly become available for this thing.