This is me, Eccles

This is me, Eccles
This is me, Eccles

Thursday 25 April 2024

The best and the worst

Nothing new here, just a list of the winners of all the world cups we have conducted. I will keep it updated as new competitions are held.

BAD HYMNS November 2018

Gold: Lord of the Dance
Silver: Gather us in
Bronze: Shine, Jesus, Shine
Fourth Place: Kumbayah

Bad hymns winners

Sydney Carter, Marty Haugen and Graham Kendrick.

BAD CARDINALS (I) February 2019

Gold: Blase Cupich
Silver: Reinhard Marx
Bronze: Walter Kasper
Fourth Place: Francesco Coccopalmerio


Gold: James Martin
Silver: Austen Ivereigh
Bronze: Massimo Faggioli
Fourth Place: Antonio Spadaro


Gold: Idols
Silver: Changing words in the liturgy
Bronze: Communion in the hand
Fourth Place: Consecrating ordinary bread

UGLY CHURCHES November 2020

Gold: St Francis de Sales, Norton Shores, Michigan
Silver: Eglise Sainte Bernadette du Banlay
Bronze: Newman Hall, Holy Spirit, Berkeley
Fourth Place: Parroquia Santa Monica, Rivas-Vaciamadrid

ugly church medals


Gold: Pachamama worship
Silver: Traditionis Custodes
Bronze: Treatment of the church in China
Fourth Place: Rehabilitating Uncle Ted McCarrick


Gold: Vuvuzela
Silver: Bongo drums
Bronze: Kazoo
Fourth Place: Tambourine


Gold: Thomas More
Silver: Thomas Becket
Bronze: John Fisher
Fourth Place: John Henry Newman

BAD CARDINALS (II) October 2022

Gold: Blase Cupich
Silver: Arthur Roche
Bronze: Reinhard Marx
Fourth Place: Francesco Coccopalmerio

Bad cardinals


Gold: Pope Leo XIII
Silver: Thomas à Kempis
Bronze: Pope Pius XII
Fourth Place: G.K. Chesterton


Gold: Jadwiga of Poland
Silver: Elizabeth of Hungary
Bronze: Stephen I of Hungary
Fourth Place: Louis IX of France

SYNODAL HORRORS September 2023

Gold: Abp Víctor Fernández
Silver: Fr James Martin
Bronze: Cdl Arthur Roche
Fourth Place: Dr Austen Ivereigh

SYNOD JARGON December 2023

Gold: a new way of being Church
Silver: a kenotic de-centering
Bronze: a listening Church
Fourth Place: respects the protagonism of the Spirit


Gold: Víctor Manuel Fernández
Silver: Austen Ivereigh
Bronze: James Martin
Fourth Place: Massimo Faggioli

Bad Catholic writers


Gold: Borgloon (Belgium), Holy cow
Silver: New York, God is trans
Bronze: St Edmundsbury, Masonic dinner
Fourth Place: Rochester, Crazy golf

Coming next: the World Cup of Great Catholic Leaders.

Tuesday 23 April 2024

World Cup of Great Catholic Leaders - nominations, please!

Well, the World Cup of Misused Churches has been a bit of an anti-climax, as the polling was probably the slowest of any of these World Cups. Maybe we can do better this time.

Various people (some of them extremely implausible) have been described as Catholic Leaders, or similar. So we will vote to see who best deserves that description.

The rules:
1. Candidates must be living Catholic priests/bishops/etc.
So hard luck, Austen Ivereigh, Taylor Marshall, Joe Biden, ...
2. We will, as usual, do this by Twitter polls.

3. Marko Rupnik is disqualified.
4. The umpire's decision (mine) is final.
So far I have the following nominations (ranging from the sublime to the ridiculous, but you will be able to decide which is which):
Athanasius Schneider
Carlo Maria Viganò
Charles Chaput
Dwight Longenecker
Gerhard Ludwig Müller
James Martin
John Zuhlsdorf
Joseph Strickland
Joseph Zen
Mario Grech
Pope Francis
Raymond Burke
Robert Barron
Robert Sarah
Thomas Reese
Timothy Dolan
Víctor Manuel Fernández
Wilfrid Napier
Wilton Gregory
You are encouraged to nominate further candidates, either by replying to this post or by replying to the advert on Twitter. If I have never heard of your nominee, then he probably isn't eligible, however #saved he may be.


Also disqualified!

This one is SERIOUS, even though you may agree that some of the candidates are complete no-hopers.

Addendum: We now have 48 entrants, which is an appropriate place to stop. The World Cup begins tomorrow (April 25th).

Saturday 20 April 2024

Compromise found in the Rupnik case

Fr Marko Rupnik, you will recall, is accused of a variety of sexual offences, including rape, some of them so disgusting that even Cardinal Fernández has said "I couldn't have used these ideas in any of my pornographic books - nobody would have believed them."

However he is a GOOD FRIEND of Pope Francis, and must not under any circumstances be laicised, burnt at the stake, or otherwise inconvenienced. And even his dreadful "artwork" is still on prominent display in the Vatican, the Ivereigh Towers Art Gallery, etc. etc.

Luckily, Dr "Expert" Ivereigh has come up with a compromise solution.

Ivereigh tweet 1

"These works raise our minds and hearts to God, so the answer is..."

Ivereigh tweet 2

"... QR codes!"

Yes, from now on, we keep the Rupnik daubs in prominent places, adding a little QR code which conveys the message: "By the way, some Puritan heretics don't like what Rupnik has done, but who are we to judge?"

Rupnik himself has agreed to wear a little lapel badge carrying a QR code (but we don't recommend any ladies to get close enough to scan him), and Ivereigh Towers also has a little QR code on the door warning people about what they may find inside. Cardinal Napier - another Rupnik fan - has agreed to have the QR code sewn into his mitre, as a gesture of solidarity with the "Don't let's be beastly to Marco" campaign.

QR code

The Rupnik QR code - note the traditional merging of two eyes.

As a result of these new ideas, it is possible that the sacrament of Confession will also be modified in the near future, and that people will be allowed to create QR codes linking to a description of their sins, which can be scanned by the priest - surely this is less embarrassing all round?

Wednesday 10 April 2024

A history of popesplaining

Although the word "popesplain" is of very recent origin (it has not yet reached the Oxford English Dictionary), popesplaining as an activity has been around for 2000 years, as it has always been necessary to explain the bizarre actions of the current pope.

It probably started in about A.D. 33, when St Peter thrice denied Christ (an incident involving a cock crowing, should you need reminding). That same night the popular blog What's Peter Up To Now?, through its editor Michaēl Levis, was explaining that denying Christ was a perfectly reasonable thing to do, and anyone who criticised this was a heretic. Also, he'd be writing to their bishop. Peter's support of the disgraced artist Judas Rupnikus was also justified on the WPUTN blog.

Six hundred years later Pope Honorius I got into trouble, being accused of monotheletism (also of keeping a collection of Pachamama statues and kneeling before them). His biographer Austen Iverius rushed to his defence, and, pausing only to call all his critics "neurotics", dashed off a seventeenth biography of the pope, entitled "Honorius, the Great Reformer", which explained how Catholic teaching had evolved.

Later, Pope John XII was accused of gross depravity and worldiness, also of attempting to bless same-sex relationships. However, his good friend Giacomo Martino SJ, author of "Come out of the closet" (which he claimed were the exact words of Jesus), was there to add his support, although he was rather disappointed that the pope did not agree with his support for "trans" people.

Pope Alexander VI, one of the Bergorgia family, was also backed by many popesplainers, such as Christoferus Agnus and Maximus Leguminus, whose coverage of his iniquities was selective, to put it mildly.

So, let us be thankful that the current pope is not only infallible but also impeccable, and we no longer have any need of popesplainers!

Mike, will this do? If you think it's OK, you can post it on your blog. Eccles.

Monday 8 April 2024

Misused churches - the final rounds

We introduced the World Cup of Misused Churches here.

This post will be used for the results of the quarter-finals and later rounds. Here are photos of those remaining churches that were not already mentioned in the previous post.

giant sweater

Vienna - giant sweater.

holy cow

Borgloon (Belgium) - holy cow.

light and sound

Washington - light and sound

God is trans

New York - God is trans.


St Edmundsbury, Masonic dinner 76.8 v Vienna, Giant sweater 23.2

Westminster, Amal puppet 37.9 v Rochester, Crazy golf 62.1

Canterbury, Silent disco 49.6 v Borgloon (Belgium), Holy cow 50.4

Washington, Light and sound 11.4 v New York, God is trans 88.6


St Edmundsbury, Masonic dinner 47.6 v Borgloon (Belgium), Holy cow 52.4

Rochester, Crazy golf 20.0 v New York, God is trans 80.0


St Edmundsbury, Masonic dinner 75.0 v Rochester, Crazy golf 25.0.

Bronze medal to the St Edmundsbury Masonic dinner. Bon appetit!


Borgloon, Holy cow 51.5 v New York, God is trans 48.5

Holy cow! Borgloon takes the Gold (just) and New York the Silver.

Monday 1 April 2024

The Book of St Richard, Chapter 31

Continued from Chapter 30.

1. It came to pass, the following Easter, that strange events took place in the mighty city of Lon-don, of which the mayor was Genghis Khan, a fierce Muslim warrior.

2. For the people were ordered to ignore the holy events of Lent and Easter, but to celebrate Ramadan, a month in which the Muslims fasted in the daytime and ate all night long.

3. Unlike other people, who fasted at night and ate in the daytime.

Ramadan in London

The mighty city celebrates Easter.

4. And Richard spake out, saying, "I was horrified to see this. For I am a cultural Christian, who likes hymns and carols. Also, I like cathedrals and churches."

5. For Richard had not heard the worst hymns such as "Lord of the Dance" or "Shine, Jesus, Shine", nor had he visited the cathedral of Clif-ton.

Monstrous sculpture

Nor had Richard seen this statue of Jesus and Mary Magdalene.

6. Richard went on to explain that he enjoyed hot cross buns, Easter eggs, and sweet little bunnies (cooked in a red wine sauce).

7. However, although the Islamic faith also had its beautiful mosques, its great hymns such as "Shine, Mohammed, Shine" and delicacies such as hot crescent buns and sheep's eyes, Richard could not be a cultural Muslim.

8. For (he said) the religion of Christ was fundamentally decent, whereas the other one was fundamentally indecent.

Clown in Mass

Richard is obliged to disguise himself when he attends Mass.

9. For was not Islam hostile to women and to those men who chose to lie with other men?

10. Where were the female Imams shrieking "Wakey-wakey! Put your food away! Allah is great!" from high towers at the crack of dawn?

11. And where were the LGBTQ+ Mohammedits writing trashy books about "Building a Bridge"?

12. No, Richard could not say that he was a cultural Muslim.

Dawkins sings

"All Glory, Laud and Honour to Thee, Redeemer, King. Culturally speaking, of course."


14. Which was perhaps a slight exaggeration, as Richard had never been known to murder or steal. Not even culturally.

To be continued.

The Book of St Richard beginneth here.

Muslim synod announced

Following the striking success of the Catholic Synod on Synodal Synodality, our Islamic brothers have announced a Muslim Synod on Synodalised Synodding, which is to be seen as a follow-up from the "Mecca II" Council of the 1960s.

Islamic synod logo

The strangely-familiar synod logo.

We spoke to Mike Al-Potato of the "Where Ali is" blog. "Of course, the Ayatollah Farhan-Zees is always right, and his Synod should bring the Islamic churches kicking and screaming into the 11th century," he said. "By the way, everyone who disagrees with me deserves to be stoned."

Sister Nat-Ali Burqua, one of the proposed "synodal mothers", is delighted with this opportunity to change Islamic teaching. "Should men really receive 72 virgins in Paradise?" she asked. "Cannot they make do with, say, 24? Also, what's in it for us women?"


Sister Nat-Ali.

One of the synodal experts is Ustan I-Verei, Professor of Canon Law at the Islamic University of Bradford, and regular contributor to the Taliban magazine. However, as usual, he had nothing interesting to say, so we'll move quickly on.

Prayer mat

The Mecca II prayer-mat used by Ustan I-Verei.

Another topic up for discussion at the synod is the Islamic prohibition on alcohol and pork. Given that the synodal dinners are to be supplied by the "Saracen's Head" public house ("Beer and sausages our speciality") we may expect some changes in this respect.

Saracen's Head

Possibly a bit tactless.