This is me, Eccles

This is me, Eccles
This is me, Eccles

Monday, 24 June 2019

The bishops get tough on forced abortion

Yes! Our England and Wales bishops have at last shown that they are prepared to take a moral lead! Faced with the case of an NHS trust which wishes to force an abortion on an adult Catholic woman with moderate learning difficulties (say, one step down from Diane Abbott), they did not hesitate to condemn the brutal decision by Mrs Justice (ha ha) Lieven in the strongest possible terms.

Well, they hesitated for three days. But I suppose yesterday was Sunday, and some of the bishops may have been attending church.

Catholic bishops

"On the one hand..." "On the other hand..." "There are two sides to every question." "Remind me, are we for or against massacres?" "We mustn't offend anyone, must we?" "When do we get the doughnuts?"

But finally, there came the statement we had all been waiting for:

By and large, all things considered, we think that forcing women to kill their kids may not always be the best solution. But we don't want to make an issue of it. Still, we think you ought to know that some of us are slightly disgruntled by the whole affair.

That's telling them!

Apparently a few phrases were deleted from the original statement, because the bishops could not agree on them. These included:

Brood of vipers. Blood-crazed doctors. Murder. Bunch of psychos. Jackals. They're booked for the Lake of Fire - trust us, we know about these things.

But, on the whole, we think that the bishops' statement (which will be totally ignored, anyway) has really shown those fiends where they get off. Well done, my Lords!

Sunday, 23 June 2019

Amazonis Laetitia

The Instrumentum Laboris for the forthcoming Amazon synod has been released, and here are some excerpts from the document, which was edited by Cardinal Blopipe (pronounced, "Blo-pee-pay"), the special nuncio to the Amazon jungle. We expect to see many future synods named after rivers, including the Mississippi Synod, the Yangtze Synod, and - most heretical of all - the Rhine Synod, at which the German bishops will be instructed to "wash away all the old teachings".

Amazonis Laetitia

As always, the Catholic Church is guided by her faith in the Mother Earth Goddess, and her attendant Spirits, of which we mention Viracocha, Quetzalcoatl, Bergoglio, Maradiaga, etc. It has naturally been discovered that doctrine has evolved since the boring old 1st Century, and along the following lines.

Viracocha

"Peace be with you!"

Marriage of priests. Following detailed researches into Church customs, it has been agreed that priests shall be allowed to marry, but none should have more than six wives. Coincidentally, this brings us into line with best practice in the Church of England, whose founder also had six wives; thus it may be regarded as an ecumenical gesture.

Human sacrifices. This is a theological grey area, but very important, and so we have relegated the new doctrine to an ambiguous footnote on page 94. It is generally agreed that human sacrifices are at best an optional form of the liturgy (like the "sign of peace" but less offensive), and we expect the German bishops to take a lead here. Provided that "discernment" and "accompaniment" are stressed, who are we to judge?

Incan sacrifice

The Spirit of Vat-Inca II.

Women priests and deacons. Traditionally the Catholic Church has said that it is impossible to ordain women to holy orders (see the encyclical Retro in Cocinatorium ("Get back in the kitchen").) However, there is evidence (thank you, Fr Martin!) that in fact three of the twelve apostles were women, and one was not at all sure, and we haven't even mentioned the view that Mary Magdalene founded the Church. So it is definitely a grey area, and if it's one thing the Church is here for, it is to provide Jobs for the Boys (and Girls!) So we will mumble ambiguously about this one for a few months until suddenly everyone notices that lots of the priests are in fact female.

Liturgical blowpipes. Here we are stressing the traditional Christian line that firing poisoned darts at your neighbour (tipped with the venom of the serpent Blasus Cupichus) during Mass is considered to be bad manners; still, some bishops may choose to allow the custom. The priest, on the other hand, may fire suitably blessed blowpipes at unruly members of the congregation, although like the Extraordinary Form Mass, this is something we do not really encourage.

Blowpipe

Cardinal Blopipe practices his rituals.

Dubia, Filial Corrections, Rude letters from theologians, etc. These will be ignored, as usual, except that if we find out where you live, you may suddenly disappear. Understood?

Saturday, 8 June 2019

The new version of the Lord's prayer

Pope Francis has set up a special Vatican committee to provide a new modernist translation of the Lord's prayer, and we were privileged to hear (by means of an Ecclesbug (TM)) an account of their discussions.

Right, guys, Pope Francis wants a new translation of this prayer. We could start with the New Testament Greek if you like?

Oh no, that's all squiggles to me. How about using the Latin? Does anyone speak it?

I did a bit at school. Caesar adsum jam forte. Pompey aderat. That sort of stuff.

Caesar adsum jam forte

Caesar adsum jam forte. Pompey aderat.

Great! We can probably work that in somewhere. Now, let's start.

Pater noster, qui es in caelis.

Our holy Father who is... er, in caelis?

In the cellar? That's where he lives now that he has become even more humble.

Sanctificetur nomen tuum.

Sanctified be your, er nomen. Gnome? Is this a reference to Austen Ivereigh?

Adveniat regnum tuum.

Adveniat, er, Advent? Advent rules you? How about "Advent rules OK"?

Fiat voluntas tua.

Your wish was a Fiat. I think the Pope wanted a really humble car, you see.

Pope and car

My other car is a Fiat.

Sicut in caelo et in terra.

Does he play the cello? Well I've heard of Maradiaga on the fiddle... So far I've got "As the cello on the ground" - doesn't seem to mean much.

Look, if we aim for a meaningful translation we'll be here all day, and we'll miss Cocco's party. Shove it down as it is.

Panem nostrum quotidianum da nobis hodie.

This is the bit about bread, isn't it? Shall we make the prayer more up-to-date by changing it to "pizza"? Give us some pizza today?

Et dimitte nobis debita nostra sicut et nos dimittimus debitoribus nostris.

Something to do with debts and nostrils? Help us pay for our cocaine?

Hurry up, Cocco's party's starting soon.

Et ne nos inducas in tentationem.

We all know what he wants there. Do not let us fall into temptation.

Why not "fall into the Thames"? That would be snappier, wouldn't it?

Sed libera nos a malo.

Malo is apple, I'm fairly sure. Is this a reference to Adam and Eve?

Free us from apples!

Adam and Eve

Free us from apples!

So, what we'll give the punters from now on is:

Our holy Father, who is in the cellar,
Sanctified be your gnome.
Advent rules OK.
You wanted a Fiat
As the cello on the ground.
Give us some pizza today, 
And help us pay for our cocaine.
Do not let us fall into the Thames,
But free us from apples!

Well, guys, I think we've done a good job there. Pope Francis will be delighted.

Friday, 7 June 2019

Do women have the right to bare arms?

This week's big question arises from a tweet from Fr Kevin Cusick, namely,

Ladies, a priest I know was forced on Sunday to ask a woman at Mass to cover her shoulders. Please help the priest to protect the purity of the men at holy Mass by choosing to dress modestly. The alternative is awkward for all involved. Thank you.

Venus de Milo

Not welcome at Mass.

This caused a mighty backlash on Twitter, and the good Fr KC felt obliged to drop out, rather than simply replying "You is not saved only I is saved," to his critics, which would be guaranteed to stun them into silence (it always works for me). We asked our experts to comment:

Sister Judy Piranha of the "Nuns on the Train": Coo-eee, Kevin!!?? Come along to our convent, and you'll see far more than naked shoulders!!?? Doesn't your constitution give women the right to bare arms??!! As a retired major-general, you should know all about that!!?? Anyway, Little Judy is just DYING to meet you, and give you a good time!!?? Byeeeee!!??

liturgical dance

Bare shoulders are only part of the problem.

Fr James Martin, LGBTSJ: I hope you're all having a good Pride Month, following on from Gay History Month, Catholic Lesbian Month, Transitioning Deacon Month, Priests who like Gay Sex in a Vat of Olive Oil Month, etc. etc.! There's something for everyone in our church, and nobody I know will be excited by a woman's bare arms - except for most of the other women! Anyway, must dash, the Jesuits have got a male stripper coming to Mass this evening!

Fr Jack Hackett, Craggy Island: GIRLS!!!!

Bishop Libby of Derby

Bishop Libby, a part-time onion-seller.

Bishop Libby: We Anglicans brought women's rights kicking and screaming into the 1960s, and burning our bras was only the first step. And the Catholics copied us - there isn't a single cardinal who wears a bra! Not even Tobin. Well, they couldn't get one in his size... Now, girls, remember to dress decently and tastefully, as I do!

Fr Kevin Cusick (mostly saved): You see what I have to put up with?

Monday, 3 June 2019

Bishop Tobin makes a humble apology

Bishop Thomas Tobin (not to be confused with Cardinal Joe Nighty-Night Tobin, whose views are rather different) managed to upset a lot of people by reminding Catholics that Gay Pride events are an invention of the Devil, and that people taking part will be assigned to the Lake of Fire faster than you can say "James Martin."

Being a bishop, he did not use those exact words (although St Paul would certainly have done). Since this blog has now decided to become a work of accurate record, following an embarrassing incident in which people were led to believe that Prof. Massimo Faggioli was actually a Count Massimo Faggioli, we are posting the original tweet verbatim.

Tobin tweet

Oops... Bishop accidentally reminds people of Catholic teaching.

Anyway, after an outcry from the Catholic community worldwide (including Piers Morgan, ha ha ha), the good bishop has backpedalled with the standard non-apology, which goes along these lines:

I deeply regret that you are such a load of wusses that you throw a wobbly whenever a bishop reminds you of Catholic teaching. I can only apologise sincerely, by saying "Keep your hissy fits to yourselves, you brood of vipers, and go to confession!"

This backtracking appears to have satisfied everyone, and is being spun as BISHOP SUPPORTS LGBT EVENTS AFTER ALL, TOBIN WITHDRAWS HOMOPHOBIC ABUSE, and TOP CATHOLIC SAYS "CAN I COME ALONG?"

Tom Tobin

Bishop Thomas Tobin

In next week's news: Bishop Tobin advises that theft is against Catholic teaching, and is justly condemned by the TBRPPBMEF (thieves, bank robbers, pick-pockets, muggers, embezzlers and frauds) community.

Saturday, 1 June 2019

How can a Pope tell lies?

As the latest instalment in our self-help guide, "How to be a good pope," intended for those of our readers who are already getting themselves measured for the white zucchetto, "just in case," we address the thorny problem of whether a pope can tell lies.

The simplest answer, of course, is no. Infallibility guarantees that, whatever you say, it is automatically true. Of course, as Rex Mottram would put it, you were actually telling the truth in a spiritual sense, but others are too sinful to see this.

Benedict, Francis, basket

"This is the complete dossier on McCarrick."
"I'll say I know nothing."

Let's take a case in point, the sordid story of "Uncle Fred," once one of your favourite cardinals, and now sadly disgraced. Your predecessor as Pope knew about some of his activities, and, when the St Gallstone Mafia launched a coup and got you the top job, he told you all about him, and advised you to keep Uncle Fred chained up in a dungeon. So you let him go.

This is the story told by Archbishop Vinegar, and now other evidence is coming out. Donna Whirly was involved too. In fact it seems that everyone in the Vatican knew about Uncle Fred EXCEPT YOU.

McCarrick, Wuerl, Dolan

The Pope says he knows nothing!

So many people say you're lying! They really don't understand how Holy Fathers work, do they? Luckily you have friends who know that popes cannot lie (when Peter denied knowing Jesus, it wasn't a lie, it was simply because he had forgotten who He was, it could happen to anyone).

First, there's little Austen Ivory, telling the world that He didn’t know about McCarrick's past, or the sanctions (how could he know?) while at the same time throwing in a few character assassinations, in line with your new Motu proprio, AD HOMINEM. Other mates will rush to your defence, such as Robert Muckins, who still hasn't recovered from the news that your predecessor, whom he called "The rat" refuses to die. He manages to be even less coherent than Austen, no mean feat!

Unfortunately Fr Martin James LGBTSJ is not available to join in the fun, as he is in hospital having an operation. We have no idea what it is, but when she comes out, she will no doubt support you too.

Manuel

The Archbishop of Barcelona also knows nothing.

Anyway, here are a few useful phrases which should help you get through this tricky time:

I know nothing.
I have an alibi.
Nobody told me.
I wasn't there.
I plead infallibility.
It's a case of mistaken identity.
It must have been some other Pope.
You don't have any DNA evidence, do you?
If I have a weakness, it's my inability to lie.
If you can't trust the Pope, whom can you trust?
I reserve the right to remain silent.
     (Well, it worked for those Dubia...)
Jesus and Pontius Pilate

What is truth?

Transylvanians fear Pope's visit

In Transylvania, honest peasants are decking their homes with garlic and crucifixes, and refusing to go out after dark, as Pope Francis arrives on the latest of his world trips.

No, it is not the Holy Father, "He who can never tell lies," that they fear; rather it is the entourage of journalists, theologians, priests, vampires, and werewolves, who accompany him wherever he goes.

Dracula, Lugosi

Fr Antonio Spadaro.

Said Bram Stoca, a humble peasant from Bran, "Probably there is no truth in the rumours that Austen Ivereigh sleeps in a coffin, that Robert Mickens can turn into a bat, or that Fr Rosica can only be killed with a stake through his heart, but I am taking no chances."

The local Lord of the Manor, Count Dracula, is equally perturbed by the prospect of the invading hordes, not least as they are likely to take "customers" away from his own private Banca de Sange.

Dracula, Lee

"Any chance of a job with the Tablet?"

Some say that the Transylvanians' worries are unfounded, but for hundred of years peasants have told their children in hushed tones of the legend of the National Catholic Reporter, of Michael Sean Winters, of Fr Thomas Reese SJ, and even of Count Massimo Faggioli himself, of whom it is said in 1 Maccabees 5:4 (and no we are NOT making this bit up):

And he remembered the malice of the children of Bean: who were a snare and a stumblingblock to the people, by lying in wait for them in the way.

Peter Cushing

Fighting an NCR journalist with the only thing he fears.

Wednesday, 29 May 2019

Brexodus 18 - the end of May

Continued from Chapter 17.

1. Thus the twenty-ninth day of the third month arrived, and the waters of the Ref Sea parted; but lo! the children of Bri-tain did not depart from the land of EU-gypt as foretold by the prophets.

2. For May-sis was granted a delay unto the last day of October, a day known to the godly as the eve of all Hallows, and to the ungodly as the day of all pumpkins.

pumpkin priest

A high priest prepareth for Brexodus.

3. Thus the children of Bri-tain were told to take part in new elections to the high council of EU-gypt, and to mount upon their donkeys to visit the stations of poll.

4. And strange wonders were seen in the land, for the party that is called Brexodus won many votes, and there was a return of the plague of Farogs throughout the land; although the people were also inflicted with Cable-flies, and other pestilences.

5. And the Conservatites were deserted by all their supporters, and were greatly distressed.

Farage and Soubry

A farog rejoiceth, while Anna the Chukkabug is less amused.

6. Now on the next day, while the people were still waiting for their votes to be counted, May-sis spake out with the first words she had ever spoken that delighted the children of Bri-tain.

7. "No longer shall I serve you as your leader. Instead, I shall follow that great priest Cam-aaron into the land flowing with milk, honey, speaking engagements, dinners of the chicken of rubber, and great rewards in the form of cash."

8. "Although I am not leaving just yet, for I wish to receive King Donald the Trump and feast with him one last time. For it annoyeth the Corbynites."

back of May

Finally the people see the back of May-sis.

9. Then there came a mighty rushing wind, which bore upon it dozens of men and women who wished to succeed May-sis as leader of the Conservatites.

10. The people saw the return of Bo-sis, together with the Raabi called Dominic, the Governor of Michael, Jeremiah the hunter, and many others, in number like unto the grains of sand on the beach.

11. For so many wise people wished to beat their heads against the wall of the house that is called Commons, even though they would lose their wits thereby.

To be continued.

Tuesday, 21 May 2019

A Protestant asks for some wine

Following the recent incident in which a customer of Hawksmoor Manchester was accidentally served a bottle of Château le Pin Pomerol 2001 (priced at £4,500) rather than the cheaper (£260) wine they had ordered, we have news of an even greater surprise.

Hawksmoor tweet

Mr Luther Tudor, a devout "Easter worshipper", accidentally wandered into a Catholic church for Mass, rather than the Protestant Eucharist that he was expecting. After receiving Communion he was startled to be told that he had actually received the Precious Blood of Christ (beyond price), rather than the Plonque de Welby (£2.99 a bottle) that he had expected to drink.

"I know that the Rev. Doris always says something like 'The Blood of Christ' when we go for our Lord's Supper," explained Mr Tudor, "but we accept that this is just a metaphorical thing, like most of Jesus's teaching."

Mr Tudor was asked why he did not guess that he was in a Catholic Church when he heard the prayer for Pope Francis. He explained that, since this was followed with general sighs and face-palming, he had naturally assumed that he was in an extreme Protestant church, possibly Presbyterian.

Pope Franic and Justin Welby

"That's funny: nobody likes me, either."

Saturday, 18 May 2019

Churches to say "Alabama" rather than "Alleluia"

In this Easter season, it is common to hear interjections of "Alleluia" into prayers, hymns, and greetings. Of course, this can be taken too far, as in "After the Alleluia service there is Alleluia coffee served in the Alleluia Cardinal Danneels memorial Hall. Alleluia!" However, to celebrate the new Alabama abortion law, all Catholic churches have been asked to use the alternative liturgy "Alabama!" this weekend.

Alabama flag

All churches will be flying this flag.

This is expected to cause particular irritation to the anti-life types, and if you meet Senator Joe Biden in church (unlikely) and say "Peace be with you, Alabama!" don't be surprised if he kicks you in the shins. Still, the decree should not be surprising when we see the great commitment to pro-life issues by our bishops (for example, in the March For Life UK, there weren't actually any English bishops present - it was far too far for Vincent Nichols to travel - but we did see Bishop John Keenan of Paisley).

Kay Ivey

The Holy and the (Kay) Ivey. Even Baptists feel squeamish about mass murder!

So, on to Handel's "Alabama Chorus" from "Messiah":

A-la-ba-ma! A-la-ba-ma! Alabama! Alabama! A-la-a-bama! etc. etc.

and Paul Inwood's equally celebrated version:

Ala-bama Ch Ch, Ala-bama Ch Ch! Ala-bama Ch Ch, Ala-bama Ch Ch!

You know, I don't think God would mind us dropping a few Alleluias for a week or two, if it also meant that a few million lives were saved. But what do I know?

Addendum I: Of course there's always some stupid commentator who likes to [rude word mening "urinate"] on other people's parties, and Fr James Martin LGBTSJ 666 and "supertroll" Austen Ivereigh did not let us down. But you guessed that would happen, didn't you?

Addendum II: Could this be start of the 2nd American Civil War? Free states versus killer states? I hope not. Can the killers be crushed peacefully?

Tuesday, 14 May 2019

Alyssa Milano gives a moral lead

Although Catholic bishops (with very few exceptions) no longer give a moral lead, all is not lost as the great actress Alyssa Milano, star of, um, the 1980s television series Who's the Boss? (er, has she done anything since then?) has called for a Sex Strike - something to do with the fact that real feminists like to have sex and abort babies, so if they can't do one they won't do the other.

Very young Alyssa

"When I grow up I'm going to organize a sex strike!"

This moral lead has been widely praised by people on both sides of the divide - and Alyssa has gone on to provide more guidance:

1. Thou shalt not steal. A burglars' and muggers' strike is being organized, to last until theft becomes legal in Georgia (or wherever it isn't yet legal).

2. A drug strike. No more cannabis, cocaine, etc. to be consumed until it is made legal. Yes, this will probably bring Hollywood to a halt, but it is worth it to show how much we care about this issue.

Alyssa in silly hat

Alyssa models a mantilla suitable for Catholics on strike.

3. An adulterers' strike. Although the Pope has not yet got round to answering the Dubia, or ruling definitively on whether adultery is still frowned on in the Catholic Church, the Blessed Alyssa has called an adulterers' strike - no more sleeping around until you can get away with it!

4. In a devastating blow against climate change, Alyssa promises to use no electric fires and to wear no fur coats whenever we have a hot day. If that doesn't show CO2 that we mean business, nothing will!

Bill Nye

The end is Nye! A mad "scientist" explains.

Impressed by Alyssa's moral lead, Pope Francis is planning a trip to Hollywood, with a view to meeting the actress and benefiting from some of her popularity. It is rumoured that he is going to star with her in a bio-pic about a now obsolete British band. It will of course be called Frankie Goes to Hollywood.

Saturday, 4 May 2019

The trial of Pope Francis

Cardinal Luis Ladaria, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith: Jorge Mario Bergoglio, alias the Bishop of Rome, alias Pope Francis, alias Peter, alias 'Umble Frank, you are charged with heresy...

Omnes: ...on three counts: heresy by thought, heresy by word, heresy by deed, and heresy by action - *four* counts.

Ladaria: If there are any more quotations from Monty Python, I shall clear the court. Anyway, where is the defendant?

Francis poster

Guilty or not guilty?

Defence Counsel (Austen Ivereigh QC, Fellow in Contemptible Church History at Campion Hall, Oxford, author of Pope Francis, the Great Redeemer): The Messiah is unable to be here, My Lord, as he does not know of the charges and wouldn't answer them if he did.

Aidan Nichols OP: He's not the Messiah, he's a very naughty Pope...

Ladaria: I'm warning you...

Nichols: I didn't expect the Spanish Inquisition... oh, well never mind.

Ladaria: Since I am indeed Spanish, I'll let you off with that one. Now, what evidence do you wish to present, Fr Nichols?

Nichols: Amoris Laetitia, the Pope Francis book of insults, 200 reports of very dubious behaviour from LifeSite, etc., wielding this finely-crafted stang, covering up sex crimes, driving the popemobile like a maniac, misbehaving every time he takes an airline flight, contradicting all Catholic doctrine since the 1st century, illegally taking over the Order of Malta, ...

[2 hours later]

Nichols: ... and appointing that compete and utter villain Cupich as a Cardinal.

Ladaria: Serious charges indeed. Does the defence have anything to say?

Ivereigh: Pope Francis is literally Christ, and this is the scribes' fault.

A charge of blasphemy against Dr Ivereigh?

Fr Hunwicke: Better sell your shares in Bergoglio PLC, Austen, they're rapidly becoming worthless.

Massimo Faggioli (screaming): These complaints are all the work of extremists. All the students in my class agree with me - at least the ones who passed did.

Deacon Donnelly: You're just jealous because Fr Nichols is a better theologian than you.

Tina Beattie: Aaagggh! It's Deacon Nick, my mortal enemy. [Faints]

Michael Winters of the Fishwrap: Deep down, the accusers know that Pope Francis is right when he tries to change Catholic doctrine on a daily basis.

Stephen Walford, author of Pope Francis is right even when he's wrong: Exactly, Catholic doctrine is nothing more nor less than what the pope of the day says it is.

The Spanish Inquisition reaches its verdict.

Ladaria: This doesn't seem to be getting us anywhere. Does anyone have anything to say, apart from ad hominem attacks?

Jimmy Akin (who he?): None of the signatories to this letter have doctorates in the relevant fields of canon law or sacred theology. Therefore they aren't as clever as I am. My verdict is that the accusations don't amount to heresy.

Ivereigh: Of course not! (To stockbroker on phone): Don't sell the shares just yet.

Nichols: Well, we should perhaps have said apostate, heterodox, dissenter, heresiarch, nonconformist, protestant, schismatic, outcast, separatist...

Ladaria: I've had enough of this. Pope Francis, wherever you may be, I find you not guilty. But don't do it again. Er... who's going to tell him?

Spadaro: Tell him? We don't tell him these things. He hasn't even heard about the Dubia yet!

Sunday, 28 April 2019

Why JAMES J MARTIN, SJ is the Beast of the Apocalypse

As Revelation 13:18 records:

Here is wisdom. He that hath understanding, let him count the number of the beast. For it is the number of a man: and the number of him is six hundred sixty-six.

Many attempts have been made to identify the beast. Could St John have meant Nero? Or was it a prediction of Napoleon? Or Hitler? Now, at last I have found the answer.

Rachel Riley on Countdown

Eccles's assistant help with the hard sums.

One of the standard codings of the alphabet is the following:

A=1, B=2, C=3, ..., I=9,
J=10, K=20, L=30, ..., R=90,
S=100, T=200, U=300, ..., Z=800.
So we tried putting in various names such as FATHER (310), JAMES (156), MARTIN (390), LGBT (239), JESUIT (624), but nothing seemd to work. But then, Divine Inspiration! Fr James Martin actually has a middle initial, as is documented in several places, and it is J! (Nobody seems to know what it stands for, but my guess is Judas.)

Thus we have:

JAMES J MARTIN SJ = 156 + 10 + 390 + 110 = 666.

Well, who else could it be? When the man isn't promoting his "Mary Magdalene was the Church" heresy, or attacking traditional worship, he decides to get people talking about him by tweeting stuff like this:

Martin LGBT crap

About homosexuality (inevitably). Heretical views (inevitably).

I suspect that James J. Martin SJ has known about the apocalyptic interpretation of his name for some time - why else would he stop using the second initial?

So where do we go from there? Do we get an interview, with, say Steve Colbert?

Colbert: Jim, I understand that, in addition to being a best-selling author, fashion expert, and part-time priest, you are also the Beast of the Apocalypse?

Martin: Heh heh heh, yes, that's right. From now on I'm going to put "BOTA" as well as "SJ" and "LGBT" after my name when I sell myself for speeches, fashion shows, gay pride marches etc.

Colbert: Jim, you're the sort of Catholic I can really go with!

Westboro Baptists poster

Apparently he's very fond of country music too.

Friday, 26 April 2019

Pope Francis joins the Climate Strike

After a fruitful meeting with 10-year-old activist Greta Thunberg, Pope Francis has eagerly agreed to take part in the Climate Strike.

Although he refuses to speak to his own cardinals, such as Burke and Brandmüller, the Holy Father has joined the Gretamania Cult, which has seen the 9-year-old superhero meet such eminent people as John Bercow, Jeremy Corbyn, and Donald Trump. No, not Donald Trump, although Joe Biden has offered to stroke her hair.

Curiously, 8-year-old Greta is not the shortest person from whom Pope Francis has ever taken advice - that honour goes to Austen Ivereigh.

Pope and Greta

"Climate science is so simple a 7-year-old child could understand it. Fetch me a 7-year-old child, as I can't make head nor tail of it."

So what results shall we see from the Pope's conversion to the movement? He has already vowed to glue himself to the High Altar of St Peter's, unless the Vatican reduces its carbon emissions to zero with immediate effect (it should still be possible to offer masses without treading on him). Moreover, Francis will no longer be working on Fridays, but will spend them sitting in a pink boat in St Peter's Square with distinguished scientist Emma Thompson (who is on her way in a private jet plane). Nobody is sure why.

Emma Thompson

"The Holy Father is backing me!"

Sadly, there are other unfortunate side-effects of the Pope's Laudato Si' ad absurdum approach. The Swiss Guard will be asked to jettison their new plastic helmets (which turned out to be ineffective against battle-axes, as the late Sergeant Emmenthal and Corporal Gruyère discovered to their cost when they tried sparring), in favour of low-carbon steel helmets.

Swiss guard helmet

Likely to get into the oceans and trap the heads of dolphins.

As 6-year-old Greta continues her world tour, we learn that she is soon to star in a remake of the Sound of Music, singing classic songs such as "Raindrops on roses cause acid rain damage" and "Ray, a drop of golden sun burning up the planet" to new settings by Marty Haugen. We wish her well.

Sound of Music

5-year-old Greta in rehearsals.

Tuesday, 23 April 2019

Almost thou persuadest me to be an Easter Worshipper

As recorded in Acts 11, Saul and Barnabas came to Antioch, and hung around for a year, teaching. And, as Luke records, the disciples were called Easter Worshippers first in Antioch.

Luke omits the details, but it is clear that these Easter Worshippers were devoted to a sacred rabbit, and lived mostly on chocolate eggs. At other times of the year they were known as "Xmas Worshippers", indulging in strange rituals involving shopping, mince pies, and fat men in red coats and white beards sitting in "grottos".

Lom and Hopkins as Saul and Barnabas

Saul and Barnabas hit on the name "Easter Worshippers".

But Easter Worshippers has been the traditional name, ever since the first century. As Agrippa said to Paul, "Almost thou persuadest me to be an Easter Worshipper". Even St Peter got in on the act, with his "Yet if any man suffer as an an Easter Worshipper, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf."

Leeds gaffe

How Leeds City Council celebrated Easter. (H/T C.H.)

The name occurs in many hymns, such as the militant "Onward, Easter Worshipper soldiers," the rather soppy "They'll know we are Easter Worshippers by our love", and the stirring "Easter Worshippers awake, salute the Happy Morn!"

Then again, it has also become a first name (what old fashioned people call an "Easter Worshipper name" as opposed to a "surname"). Hans Easter-Worshipper Andersen, Dr Easter-Worshippeer Barnard, Easter-Worshipper Dior, ...

James Martin

A male model shows off a shirt by Easter-Worshipper Dior.

So, can we PLEASE stop hearing people whining just because Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, and the rest of George Soros's sockpuppets referred to the Christians massacred by Islamists in Sri Lanka as "Easter Worshippers"? That is what they called themselves, and that is what we should call them.

Saturday, 20 April 2019

The secrets of Notre Dame

Apologies for a third post on Notre Dame this week (plug1, plug2), but news is just breaking from the investigative journalists of Associated Press that, besides being a tourist Mecca, Notre Dame is also revered as a place of worship (by Muslims, presumably).

prayers by Notre Dame

Mecca.

We asked some of our religious friends to comment:

Jew: Well, it's certainly a place that I find very kosher.

Hindu: For me, it's something of a sacred cow.

Anglican: It's been a centre for the Church of England since A.D. 597. (Oops, that last one's almost genuine. See below.)

Daniel Hannan's gaffe

An entry for the David Lammy prize for religious knowledge.

Buddhist: I go there to listen to the sound of one hand clapping.

Muslim: Well, if the mountain will not come to Mahomet, then we have to go there ourselves.

Whatever else goes on there, it is rumoured that Catholics are also interested in Notre Dame. However, the New York Times is still a little hazy about the "body of Christ".

New York Times gaffe

Journalism at its finest.


By the way, for those who missed the reference above to David Lammy MP, here it is again.

Lammy gaffe

If Notre Dame's smoke is anything to go by, the next pope will have grey skin.

Thursday, 18 April 2019

Cardinal Tobin rewrites the catechism

Uncle Joe Tobin has complained that Catholic teaching on homosexual acts is "unfortunate", specifically CCC2357 with its Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered (together with a lot more on the same theme).

Accordingly, he has produced a more helpful rewriting of the catechism, to take into account the fact that sacred scripture and and traditional teaching need to take a back seat to accommodating people's own desires.

Tobin and baby

"My lodger helped me write it."

The new passage reads as follows:

2357. Basing itself on the sacred writings of Martin, Cupich, and Tobin, the Catholic Church teaches that homosexual acts are perfectly normal, and no impediment to advancement in the priesthood.

2358. Indeed, it is not good for priests to be alone, and they are encouraged to welcome actors and male models (known as "babies") into their houses.

2359. If a priest is separated from his baby, then the correct way to wish him a blessed and holy night is by tweeting "Nighty-night, baby. I love you." However, this form of address may also be used for the priest's sister, his cousin or his aunt.

2360. Similarly, LGBT pilgrimages are to be encouraged and welcomed. And no more talk of "grave depravity" and "being called to chastity", please!

This is not expected to be controversial.

Tobin welcomes pilgrimage

Bring your "babies" with you!

Wednesday, 17 April 2019

Holy Smoke

The Catholic world was stunned today by the news that Liverpool Cathedral, or "Paddy's Wigwam", generally regarded as the ugliest cathedral ever constructed in Britain, has burned to the ground.

As Catholics sang hymns of thanksgiving, and danced in the streets, firemen were out all night desperately spraying petrol onto the flames and adding wood.

Liverpool Cathedral

The Holy Tent of St Patrick (to give it the official name).

One altar server (who wished to remain anonymous) explains: "We have been trying for years to make something of this place - preferably a heap of ashes - and this included replacing the holy oils with paraffin, sabotaging the thurible, and using wooden candlesticks. But it is hard to burn down a building that is made mostly of concrete."

"Of course we did hold some interesting religious events in the cathedral, including indoor barbecues, bonfires, and firework displays, but nothing went wrong."

cooling tower

Smoke pours from the tower of Liverpool Cathedral.

Luckily, all the sacred relics kept in Liverpool Cathedral have been saved. These include the holey socks of Warlock with special Vatican II loopholes, and the blindfold worn by Archbishop McMahon during the Alfie Evans case.

Fortunately, the replacement cathedral has already been designed by a Mr Lutyens of Holborn, and we know what it will look like.

Lutyens's design

Not as a lovely as Paddy's Wigwam, but nearly as good.