This is me, Eccles

This is me, Eccles
This is me, Eccles

Friday, 30 July 2021

Latindr App used to catch priests in compromising situations

As reported by journalists from the Bitter Pillar (formerly the Tablet), data from the popular social networking Latindr app, used by people of a certain inclination who want to get together for a bit of TLM (nudge, nudge), has been used to trap priests and bishops in compromising situations.


Not suitable for Catholics.

As many commentators have pointed out, Pope Francis's attempt to restrict the traditional Mass is not simply a change in forms of worship, but a piece of deep moral teaching, on a par with the edict that homosexual priests should keep their trousers on (except possibly if they are Jesuits). All right, it contradicts all the ideas of previous popes, but then so does practically everything that oozes from the papal pen.

So the big moral debate this week was: which is worse, using Latindr to get together with like-minded Catholics, or getting hold of such personal data and "outing" rogue clergy? Well, we on this blog are in no doubt. These nasty wicked people should be exposed for what they are, even if it involves tracking their movements.



The Latin Given By Tradition (LGBT) movement is very powerful these days, and even non-LGBT commentators were shocked to see Pope Francis's Romaphobic condemnation of the practice. But hacking into Latindr may be the best way to purify the Church.

As a bonus, we have the results of this week's Eccles "horror art" competition. The theme was "families" and competitors were to imagine a dysfunctional family where the parents had three eyes between them, wicked Uncle Arthur was an alcoholic who liked to surround himself with Yorkshire puddings, and the ghosts of the dead grandparents looked on in dismay.

rotten picture

The winning entrant from Marko Ivan Rupnik (age 6).

To read more of this post, please confirm that you are not a robot by solving the folloiwing Captcha.

Catholic captcha

Friday, 23 July 2021

The Book of Covidicus 18: Free Dom Day

Continued from Chapter 17

1. After the departure of Matthew of Hanoch, Bosis gave his servant Sajidiah the task of healing all the sick in the land of Bri-tain.

2. And Sajidiah continued with Matthew's plan, and announced that there would be a day called Free Dom.

3. For this was to celebrate the freeing of Dominus Vobis Cummings, formerly a trusted adviser to Bo-sis, who had been imprisoned in the castles of Barnard after losing the favour of Bosis.

4. So Dominus was released, and he devoted his life to explaining how all those who had ever worked for Bosis were untrustorthy and dishonest. Except himself.

Boris and Cummings

Dominus buildeth a Bosis golem, but cannot control it.

5. Meanwhile, Bosis had come up with a cunning scheme for stopping the plague from spreading.

6. Everyone was asked to carry around a small box, called Phone, which would go PING! if they had ever been near another person who had the plague.

7. Or, in fact, near a person who had been near a person who had been near a person who had been near a person whose box had gone PING!

8. Such people were outcasts and told that they had the symptoms of the plague, even if they were totally healthy.

Boris goes ping

Bosis's Phone speaketh to him.

9. And Bosis spake out saying "That way PING! we shall know PING! who is to be PING! locked up until their PING! ping stoppeth. But not me of course."

10. But the people were very angry and cried with one voice "PING! Bosis too must be locked PING! up." And it was so.

Big Ben ping

Benjamin the Great hath been near to a plague victim.

11. Now, after the Free Dom day, many new rights were given to the people.

12. They need not wear masks on omnibuses, in the markets, nor when eating or consuming drink. Unless they were told to.

13. Finally, Bosis recalled his solemn promise that, although he wanted everyone to take the great vixen that cureth all ills, he would permit those who did not wish it to refuse it.

masked priest with water pistol

A priest blesseth his flock.

14. So he decided that all men should receive Vixen Passports, without which they could not buy food or clothing, attend the theatres, or worship in the temples.

15. "Thus I have PING! kept my promise," said he. "Now, how do I PING! silence my Phone?"

To be continued.

Wednesday, 21 July 2021

Priest discovered in compromising locations

The good kind people of The Pillar have reported on misconduct by Mgr Jeffrey Burrill, former general secretary of the U.S. bishops' conference, which was identified by Grindr data correlated to his mobile phone showing that he had visited various unsavoury places (and I am not referring to Cardinal Coccopalmerio's parties).

Our own hackers have constructed some data tracking the movements of a certain Jesuit priest. This has been forwarded to Pope Francis, who will take action some day, no doubt. Meanwhile, here is what we produced.

Silly map

Map of Fr Anon's movements (click to enlarge).

Sunday, 18 July 2021

The World Cup of Francis achievements

How will Pope Francis be remembered? Well, he's still chugging along on half a colon, and may have more plans up his sleeve, but it's time to take stock of the "Pope of Surprises". Here are a few entrants for the forthcoming World Cup (to be conducted using Twitter polls), and further nominations are requested.

Rome poster

My Italian is weak, but I am told that this is the pope's favourite portrait..
  • Franciscan friars of the Immaculate
  • Order of Malta
  • Amoris Laetitia
  • Response to the Dubia
  • Pachamama worship
  • Slapping of a lady pilgrim
  • The church in China
  • Appointment of Cupich, Farrell, Tobin etc.
  • The Scalfari interviews
  • Imaginative ex-aeroplana teaching
  • Encouragement of Emma Bonino
  • Encouragement of James Martin
  • Management of Vatican finances
  • Finance of Rocketman
  • Reception of Cardinal Zen
  • Traditionis Custodes
  • Pope Francis book of insults
  • Vatican Christmas scenes
Pope and Spock

"Live long and prosper, dear Tridentine Mass enthusiasts," says the Pope.

To nominate further achievements (and be as polite as I am, for I have not said anything either for or against these remarkable accomplishments), please reply to this post or else reply to the corresponding Tweet. We'll start when I am ready.

Saturday, 17 July 2021

Pope's doctors admit "we should have removed the spleen."

The surgeons who removed Pope Francis's semi-colon this week have now admitted that they removed the wrong organ. "We see now that we should have removed his spleen, and probably also the gall bladder in which he stores up all his bile," they said.*

*The board at the foot of the papal hospital bed said "pain in the backside", but this was not a medical diagnosis.

As Evelyn Waugh would have put it: A typical triumph of modern science to find the only part of Francis that was not malignant and remove it.

The pope's behaviour has been increasingly bizarre in recent weeks.

Francis has returned from hospital full of venom and bitterness, and it took him just two days to issue a new Motu Proprio "Traditionis Custodes" (an anagram of "Ass! Idiot! Destruction!" but that is probably just a coincidence). Subtitled "Why Benedict is wrong and I am right", the papal scribbles begin with the phrase Guardians of the tradition, the bishops in communion with the Bishop of Rome, showing that the pope could have had a successful career as a comedian if he had wished.

"Nobody's ever called me a guardian of tradition before!"

So, apart from the obvious question "Quis custodiet ipsos traditionis custodes?" we serious Catholic commentators need to ask some fundamental questions:
1. What is he doing?
2. Why is he doing it?
3. Will he get away with it?

Two popes doing what they do best.

Now the pope's reasoning behind the repeal of Summorum Pontificum without even waiting for Benedict to die may be seen as just another case of loutish bad manners (like refusing to answer the Dubia, slapping pilgrims, snubbing Cardinal Zen, etc.) but in fact it is dealing with one of the worst crises in the church: the popularity of the traditional Mass.

I'm sure that these things are randomly chosen.

After all, there can be nothing more serious! Child abuse, idol-worship, the persecution of the Church in China, Fr James Martin's sodoministry, Devout Catholic Biden's abortion mania, the widespread embezzlement of Vatican finances, the squandering of Peter's Pence on dirty films, heretical papal documents, ... all these are trivialities compared with the use of the same Mass as our grandparents used before Vatican II.*

*Did you genuflect when Vatican II was mentioned? I did. Fun, wasn't it?**

**Remember that Vatican II changed nothing at all. Which is why everything has changed.

The cunning plan:
1. Blame the traditional Mass for causing a schism.
2. Cause a schism by banning it.

"All right, lads. You know where he lives. You know what you have to do.

Priests: if you wish to celebrate a Mass in the Extraordinary Form, it is very simple now: all you need is for your bishop to ask the Pater Sanctus for a signed letter giving permission (one for every time you wish to celebrate). Pope Francis is very good at answering letters (ask Burke, Brandmüller, etc.) and will gladly take time off from his Pachamama devotions to scribble you a note.

Curiously, some bishops are actually giving Pope Francis (and his evil side-kick the sinister Dr Rauci) a shock, by saying that they will continue to allow Latin Masses as before. Some really are "Traditionis Custodes" after all. Amazing!

"Muscles" Barron prepares to celebrate the Extraordinary Form.

Incidentally, all this was foreseen two months ago in the writings of the Prophet Eccles.

Saturday, 10 July 2021

Worries grow over side-effects of Vaticanation

The Vatican II jab, introduced in the 1960s as a way of countering the widespread TLM Cathovirus, has long been regarded with suspicion; indeed in 2007 President Benedict prescribed a dose of Summorum Pontificum instead, suggesting to the general public that the TLM was really nothing to worry about, and "Vatican II" passports would not be necessary for travel to distant places such as Heaven.


President Francis gets his booster Vatican II jab.

The current President, Francis, is less enthusiastic, relying largely on advice from Dr Arthur Rauci, his chief scientist; indeed there are rumours to the effect that Summorum Pontificum will soon be put on the "forbidden" list.

Still, the Vatican II jab can have serious consequences, especially in its "Spirit of Vatican II" form, and as a public service we are now providing a listing of some of the side-effects suffered by recipients of the injection.

Common side-effects.
An inclination to grope people in Church as a "Sign of Peace";
Singing bad hymns;
Female altar-servers.

Protective lanyards for use in Mass.

Rare but more serious side-effects.

Liturgical dancing;
Clowns and puppets;
Blessing homosexual unions (the German variant).

Fatal side-effects (very rare).
Idol worship, also known as Pachamamitis.
Pope Francis and Arthur Roche

"I believe that masks will protect us from the Latin Mass" says Dr Arthur Rauci.

This has been a public service announcement.

Tuesday, 6 July 2021

How to be a Catholic blogger

Since the only spiritually nourishing item of news this week is the de-colonization of the Pope, it seemed like a good idea to write about something else. Following the lead of Mundabor, I will give readers the benefit of my ten years' experience (we started here in June 2011 and are expecting some readers to turn up any time now).

Polly the penguin

Polly the nun, first seen here in 2011.

1. Make money out of it. There is nothing a reader likes more when he clicks on a blog than being asked the following:
i. Do you accept cookies?
ii. Would you like notifications every time more rubbish is posted?
iii. Would you like to install the Ecclesblog App?
iv. Can we come round to your house for tea?
v. How much can you donate ($1,000,000 would be reasonable)?
vi. Would you like to buy some "Saved Eccles" coffee?
vii. Oh, you came here to read the blog? Weird!
As Dr Johnson said "No man but a blockhead ever wrote except for money." Well he was obviously wrong, as I'm not a blockhead am I? I'm not. Honest.

2. Make it all about you. Obviously a Catholic blogger may occasionally say something religious - about as often as the Pope's Twitter account does - but people are really here to know about the exciting life you lead. If you have four pet hippopotamuses, write about them ad nauseam - indeed you could even put up a guest post from Batmanghelidjh (the fat one) in which she describes how wallowing in mud enriches her spiritual life. Or if you did a pilgrimage to Lourdes (the supermarket down the road), then tell people about your struggles in the low-carbon toilet paper aisle.

3. No rude jokes. If the Pope is in hospital, don't say "He has a pain in the backside" accompanied by a picture of Austen Ivereigh. Still less with a picture of James Martin, as that could have a totally misleading interpretation. Just back off, right?

4. Don't be scared to recycle old jokes. I must have used that "Rhino Marx" joke at least half a dozen times. I vow never to do so again. Oh all right, once more for luck.

Rhino Marx

An old joke.

5. Don't use your real name when posting. Mundabor had that advice too. You use your own name to post something totally innocuous such as "2+2=4" or "Men have XY chromosomes" and the public will beat a path to your door, up the stairs, and into your bedroom, where you're peacefully lying in bed thinking of new insults for Cardinal Becciu. Luckily nobody knows that I am actually an eminent cardinal from Guinea!

6. If you can't think of anything to write, run a poll. Thanks to me the world now knows that the worst hymn ever written is "Lord of the Dance", that the worst Cardinal is Cupich (until the next poll, which is not far away), and the ugliest church is St Francis de Sales, Norton Shores, Michigan. So you know what to avoid.

ugly church

"We're please to welcome Cardinal Cupich today. And now, Hymn number 666, 'Lord of the Dance'."

7. Post when you feel like it. Professional Catholics have to produce posts, scoops, Youtube stuff, podcasts, interpretative dance videos, etc. etc. on a regular basis. Darn it, even bishops feel they have to produce pastoral letters when all they can think to talk about is carbon footprints and "build back better". Can't they just say "You're all DOOOMED!" and leave it at that?

So, only post when you have something brilliantly incisive and witty to say. Like I do.

Eccles (Nobel Prize for humility).

Wednesday, 30 June 2021

Monty Python's Life of Jorge

The surviving members of the Monty Python team have gathered together with some friends to produce a new comedy film, Monty Python's Life of Jorge, about a perfectly innocent Argentinian man who is frequently mistaken for the anti-Christ.

Terry Jones and Graham Chapman

Chapman/Jones lookalikes play Jorge (seen here in papal clothes) and his mother.

Script-writer John Zmirak has adapted some of the Life of Brian catchphrases to the hilarious story of a man with some followers who think he is the Messiah (see for example the "Where Pachamama is" website), but also many others who think he is the exactly the opposite (hi, Mundabor!)

Pachamama worship

Top quality trolling from a Pachamama fan.

Some of our favourite Life of Jorge catchphrases are:
He's not the anti-Messiah, he's just a very naughty pope.

What have the Roman popes done for us, apart from 
preserving traditional worship and teaching, and giving 
leadership to the worldwide Church? 

It's every Jesuit's right to have babies if he wants them.
But ... you can't HAVE babies, Jim!
Don't you oppress me!
And of course...

Pope after slapping a pilgrim

Always look on the gloomy side of life.

Tuesday, 29 June 2021

The Pope writes to the Beast

Scholars have long known that James J. Martin S.J. was the Beast of the Apocalypse, and it was no surprise to Francis-watchers this week when he received a letter from the Holy Father himself.

Pope's letter

That letter in full.

Said the Beast, "The Pope is fully backing my campaign to support LGBT people, to allow them a sacramental marriage, and to permit them to become priests. (Oh what a giveaway!)"

Pope and Jimbo

Let me not to the marriage of true minds admit impediments.

Pope Francis himself is to be the subject of a new book by John Cornwell. Having had his hit job on Pope Pius XII thorougly debunked, John feels far more confident of his new book "Xi's Pope" detailing how Francis sold out to communist China. We hope to persuade Cardinal "My letter of support from Pope Francis seems to be lost in the post" Zen to review it for this blog.

Charlie Chaplin

One of those meme things.

Meanwhile, President Joe Biden, anxious that he might ultimately be told not to receive Communion*, is planning to invade the Vatican and install a puppet pope (these days warmongering is his best chance of a Nobel Peace Prize). The choice seems to be between Cupich, Wuerl, Farrell, N.N. Tobin, and Uncle Wilt Gregory. Or one of the Muppets would do just as well.

*No, it's not going to happen.

Fozzie Bear

The next pope?

Saturday, 26 June 2021

The Book of Covidicus 17: The Sins of Hanoch

Continued from Chapter 16.

1. And now, Theophilus, I must break my rule of writing just one chapter for each month of these wondrous events: for in the sixth month of the second year there came a great shame upon the people of Bri-tain.

2. For Matthew of Hanoch, the trusted adviser of Bo-sis, was discovered in an amorous relation with a lady named Castel Sant'Angelo, who was not his wife.

Matt and Gina

The Sun shineth upon Matthew of Hanoch.

3. These deeds broke the great commandments, which Matthew had written out on stone tablets for all to obey on pain of death.

4. Thou shalt keep thy hands to thyself.

5. Thou shalt cover thy face at all times.

6. Thou shalt keep a distance of four cubits between thyself and any other person at all times.

7. Thou shalt not commit adultery. (Deleted at the request of Bo-sis.)

Moses and stone tablet

Bo-sis receiveth the commandments.

8. And the people spake out with great wrath saying, "I wished to visit my aged grandmother, but she hath spent the last 15 months sitting in a pool of hand sanitizer, and I have not been able even to embrace her."

9. "However, Matthew of Hanoch is able to perform the ancient rituals known as Kan Oodle in the Corridors of Power. He must go!"

10. And the people recalled that at the time of Brexodus, when ten brave men had fought to take over from May-sis as leader, one of those great men had been Matthew of Hanoch (nul points).

ten great men

The ten disciples of May-sis. All are pure save one alone.

11. "Blessed are we," they said, "for we might have chosen a leader who was a lecherous adulterer. But instead we chose Bo-sis."

12. Then the people recalled the story of Neil, son of Fergus, who had been cast into the outer darkness by Matthew of Hanoch because of his inappropriate use of models.

13. But Bo-sis replied "I have the greatest confidence in Matthew of Hanoch. For he is a master of confidence tricks."

14. So at last the people of Bri-tain spake out with one voice: "MATTHEW OF HANOCH MUST GO!"

15. So he did.

Hancock resigns

"Bless me, Father, for I have breached the guidance."

Continued in Chapter 18.

Thursday, 24 June 2021

How can a pope make friends?

Yes, it's another one in our "How to be a good pope" series, directed to those readers who are suddenly pushed out onto the papal balcony and told "You've got the job. Now go out and be spiritually nourishing."

It's a lonely job being a pope. No more nights out in the pub with the lads. An endless round of visits, audiences, church services... irritating people wishing to be introduced to you so that they can publicise the latest instalment of their fawning biography, Pope Fred - the greatest saint since St Augustine of Ivereigh? World leaders that you don't like...

Pope and Trump

Always smile to welcome visitors, even if you don't like them.

It's said that students at university spend the first week making new friends and the next three years trying to get rid of them. In your case you got the job because of the influence of the St Wormwood Mafia, and as a result you have people like Cardinals Casper, Dandruff, Morphine-O'Corblimey, etc. all thinking that you owe them something. But you would prefer to choose your own friends, rather than members of a power-crazed pressure group.

When you started your new job there were plenty of people prepared to give you a chance: the whole Catholic Church in fact, at least for the first hour or two. However, you have a knack for causing annoyance to people, either by invading Malta, writing odd documents such as Amorous Letitia, accusing people of being "rigid", or simply building up your collection of Pachamama idols. Cardinal Bulke refuses to come to dinner, Cardinal Sally gives you penetrating glances, and even Cardinal Müllet points at you and taps his head significantly.

The answer is to take the Christian attitude. Make friends of people whom everyone else regards as beyond the pale. If possible, promote them to jobs way beyond their level of competence.

Pope and James Martin

"Father Jimbo. They tell me you're beyond the pale. Welcome!"

Promoting Fr Jimbo (as above) might be a step too far, although you can appoint him as an adviser, provided that you ignore his advice. Here's another example in which you can give a vote of confidence to a complete no-no.

Rhino Marx, the last of the famous brothers.

Cardinal Rhino is a special case, as he comes to you and says, "I'm a total failure, and I resign!" Well, he's right, but you can earn his everlasting devotion by giving him a big hug and saying, "Stay on, Rhino! At least you're not as bad as Nicholas Vincent of Westminster!"

Cardinal Marx

Another new friend.

One final example. Cardinal Tubby of Noahsark (whom you made "eminent" as a little joke) has got himself into trouble by sending indiscreet tweets and mysteriously associating with actors. So what can you do to earn his undying worship? Promote him to the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura! This job comes with a papal knighty-knighthood, and he'll love that.

This way, you can guarantee that you are surrounded only by yes-men, but be warned! Some ingenious people may get to see you even if you having been avoiding them for years...

Pope and Spiderman

"Now about China..." Cardinal Tao wears an ingenious Spadaro-man disguise in order to get near you.

Saturday, 19 June 2021

Catholic bishops slammed for being Catholic

Americans were up in arms today on learning that their Catholic bishops had voted by 168 to 55 to produce a document explaining Catholic teaching on the Eucharist. Provisionally entitled Ad Nodum Josephe ("Get knotted, Joe!") the encyclical will reveal the surprising news that killing babies is wrong, and people guilty of mortal sin should really do something about it before rushing up to receive Communion.

Biden in church

Joe Biden slopes out in disgrace.

Said one ally of the president: "I thought the Catholic Church was a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Democratic party. Having seen such top theologians as Fr James Martin and Cardinal Wilton Gregory campaigning against the Bad Orange Man, I naturally assumed that the bishops would do exactly what Top Catholic Henry VIII President Biden wished."

We have not yet seen the names of the 55 bishops who voted against publishing Catholic teaching, but it seems that Soapy Blase and Nighty-night Tobin have already spoken out against "weaponising the Eucharist", which is a Democrat way of saying "reminding people of New Testament teaching".

Silly Lieu tweet

A brave warrior gets 15 minutes of fame by explaining that he doesn't understand Catholicism.

BREAKING: Apparently, the bishops' decision has been reversed, after 200 more votes came in overnight, all backing Biden. Some people have noted that they are all in the names of people who are either dead (Archbishop Jesse James, Bishop "Doc" Holliday) or completely non-existent (the Bishop of Wounded Toe, The Bishop of OK Corral). However, all votes count, and it seems that the USCCB can go back to being agnostic after all.

The Book of Covidicus 16: Freedom Postponed

Continued from Chapter 15.

1. Now Bosis had decreed that on the longest day of the year, namely the twenty-first day of June, the children of Bri-tain would regain their freedom once more.

2. For, having once spoken of "three weeks to flatten the curve", "just another two months to save the Service of Health", "six months to turn the tide", "another five years to follow my roadmap", and "my adviser, Neil, son of Fergus, saith that in three hundred years we may have the plague under control," he had finally decided to let his people go.

3. But before this could happen, Bo-sis himself wed a comely maiden named Carrie. For he had suddenly noticed that this lady had dwelt in his tents for two years, and that he had even begotten a son from her, named Wil-fred, which signifieth "He who wants peace".

4. For it is said that Carrie gave Bo-sis no peace; and still less did Wil-fred.

5. Thus, being a devoutly religious man, Bo-sis made his way to the mighty temple of West Minster, and made an honest woman of Carrie, or at least as honest as he himself was.

Boris Johnson wedding

"Are you number 3 or number 4? I forget."

6. But as the summer approached, Bo-sis was sore afraid, for the Indian variant of the plague had now mutated its name and was now called the Delta variant, in honour of the Ganges Delta.

7. And this Delta variant was not a kind and friendly plague, like unto the Alpha, Beta, and Gamma variants, but a cruel and hostile variant.

8. Thus Bo-sis went to the box in which he kept his plans, and started to develop new plans, such as "just one more month to flatten the delta".

9. Also, it was still necessary that all the world should be vaxed at least twice, then once more in the autumn, then once more at Christmas.

10. Further, all men should be tested three times per day to see whether they had caught the plague. For the new symptoms were very hard to detect, being exactly the same as a cold, or a hay fever, or in some cases perfect health.

Boris and Joe being silly

Little did Bo-sis know that the plague was transmitted via the elbows.

11. Then, as all the children of Bri-tain quaked in fear at the onset of this invisible plague, Bo-sis invited some of the greatest leaders of the world to a mighty party known as G Seven: for they were nine.

12. In fact these G Seven men, and their families, had been chosen because they were totally immune to the plague. Thus, they could mix in crowds, and avoid imprisonment in the dungeons known as Qumran-tine, and still the plague touched them not.

13. However, the common people were still to be locked down for another month, lest they go to the theatre, or sing in church, after which the Delta plague would surely inflict them with wheezles and sneezles.

Queen cutting a cake with a sword

The Queen cutteth a cake in a socially-distanced manner.

Continued in Chapter 17.

Friday, 11 June 2021

Let him who is without sin bowl the first ball

Following evident signs that the Pope has lost interest in religion, and is now devoting his time 100% to environmental activism, the England and Wales Cricket Board has agreed to take on the job of giving moral leadership to the world.

Its chairman is a man called Ian Watmore, of whom nobody has heard except in sentences such as "What? More woke nonsense from the ECB?" and so the job of Pope has now devolved to the England Captain, St Joseph "Joe" Root.

cricketers take the knee

Time for prayers!

It is the job of popes to develop new doctrine that contradicts all that previous popes have said - well, Pope Emeritus Francis thought so - and Pope Joe has hit the ground running as far as that is concerned. "If you have sinned in the past - say, you said something naughty when you were a teenager - then you should confess, repent, and seek forgiveness. But now, here's the twist in the tail - YOU WON'T GET IT."

As Our Lord put it in the Gospel of St Ollie, "Come unto me all ye who have sinned, and confess your sins. I shall then make sure that you lose your jobs and never work again, even if ye be in your twenties."


The new England cricket team. Much more saintly.

As the disciples of Pope Joe, also known as the England cricket team, rushed to delete all tweets made since Twitter began in 2006, just in case one of them turned out not to be of truly saintly character, the Holy Father has decided to sack them all to be on the safe side, and appoint a team made up from members of the Trappist order of St Lord's. These holy men neither speak, nor write, and have never heard of the Internet. It is true that they will be unable to cry HOWZAT when they think a wicket has fallen, but on the other hand HOWZAT is now deemed a hate word, and it is best if they say nothing, perhaps kneeling in silent prayer.

As Pope Joe put it: "Consider the England cricket team. They can neither bat nor bowl. So, no change there."

Tuesday, 1 June 2021

Eccles explains canon law

Quaeritur: How can I arrange to be married in Westminster Cathedral?

Canonist Eccles: Tell me about yourself.

Q: Oo-er, cripes! I was baptised as a Catholic, confirmed as an Anglican, got married twice outside the Church, got divorced twice, I've been living in sin, my current girl's had a little boy called er um...

Voice off: It's Wilfred Dominic Covid Johnson! Now get off the computer and come and change his nappies!

Q: Nearly finished, dear. Oh, and I never never attend church; too busy saving the world, don't you know.

Canonist Eccles: Congratulations! You can marry in a Catholic cathedral. Any particular girl in mind? Well, don't worry, you can decide when you turn up. All clear now?

Note to Catholics planning marriage: other routes to wedlock are available.

Henry VIII

There once was an old man of Lyme
Who married three wives at a time,
When asked 'Why a third?'
He replied, 'One's absurd!
And bigamy, Sir, is a crime!'
(William Cosmo Monkhouse. See Amoris Laetitia for details.)

Queeritur: But what about same-sex couples? They cannot have their civil union blessed even in private by a priest because "God does not and cannot bless sin..." Asking for a friend, you understand.

CE: Oh shut up, Jimbo. Why do you have to bring everything back to the subject of homosexuality? Which word of "God does not and cannot bless sin" do you find difficult?


James Martin and Pope Francis

No, Jim, we can only be good friends.

Quaeritur: I am a very high-profile Catholic, founder of the traditionalist blog Five Peter One, which brings me in a small income that helps me maintain my family of thirty-nine children. Admittedly, I haven't been to church since 1981. Today my priest said "I'm sorry, Mr Kojak, we can't marry your same-sex pair of cats in a church. Your blog isn't as spiritually nourishing as Eccles's - I'd happily marry his same-sex pair of cats if he wished me to." Should I sue him?

CE: Isn't that the American answer to all problems? Ask Fr Altman if he can help you raise a few million dollars.


Top blogger Kojak.

Wednesday, 26 May 2021

How to get rid of the Latin Mass

It's time for another in our long-running series on "How to be a good pope," which is proving unmissable reading for those cardinals itching to sit on the throne of St Peter.

The story so far: your predecessor, Pope Benedictus, who lives entirely on German beer and is therefore still alive at the age of 103, wrote a Motor Propeller, Summa Holiday (memo: check title) permitting the wider use of the traditional Latin Mass.

Molesworth translator

Translating some updates to the liturgy into Latin.

Now you always hated Latin at school, ever since Mr Pacelli gave you six of the best for mistranslating the Lord's Prayer. And there is evidence of widespread support for your views - why only yesterday you got a letter on the subject which said "old, unpopular, incomprehensible, really rather pointless, better alternatives available." Admittedly they were talking about you, but it's the thought that counts.

So the time has come to repeal Summa Holiday. You were waiting for Benedictus to die, but you saw him out jogging this morning, and you are wondering whether he might even outlive you. So you have written your own Motor Propeller. In Italian of course, as it would be shooting yourself in the foot if you used Latin. Anyway, your F- grade in Latin is still a sore point.

Still, to make it look official, you have given it a Latin title.

Romanes Eunt Domus

The cover page of your Motor Propeller.

Romanes Eunt Domus is - your advisers assure you - an idiomatic way of saying "No more Latin", and will make the public realise you are serious.

The first thing to do is to give a press conference to which none of the press is invited, just a bunch of chatty Italian bishops. That way, your plans can leak out unofficially (as your mate Arthur Sousa points out, "If it ain't on a tape-recorder, it never happened, and that goes for the New Testament too.")

Now ask a few dead-beat journalists to make up reasons why the Traditional Latin Mass needs suppressing. They will say it is:
* fascist, alt-right, Trumpist, racist;
* homophobic, transphobic, claustrophobic;
* expected to cause climate change: it has already killed off 
all Rome's polar bears;
* beloved of Burke, Sarah, Müller, Pell, and  all the other 
loonies who used to be your friends;
and so on. Then you can go ahead with it. One top tip is to replace Cardinal Sarah at the Congregation of Divine Worship with his deputy, bluff Yorkshireman Friar (Arthur) Tuck. You've never been able to understand a word he says, but you're fairly sure that he hates Latin ("ee, tha's a poncey southern language!") so he will help you implement Romanes Eunt Domus, and take the blame if it all goes wrong. Make him a cardinal so that you can keep an eye on him.

Sarah and Roche

When I become Pope, my first encyclical will be called On Ilkla Moor Baht' at.

Quod erat demonstrandum!

Addendum, one day later. Uncle Arthur got the job, and here he is beginning his revision of the liturgy.

Herbert Lom