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Fr. Tom Classic

While we are on the subject: And why are the cows that claim to see giving milk as a unifying force so angry, filled with venom and hatred toward the cows that are milked daily?

But anyways…

Just came across a link today on Mundabor’s most excellent blog regarding our very own Canuck bon vivant and scourge of Faithful Catholic bloggers everywhere, one Fr. Tom Rosica. (see here)  The link is to a speech he gave at the Archdiocese of Baltimore circa March 2014 (see here). There is no date on it, but according the the speech, it must have been given about March of 2014 since Rosica mentioned that one year of the Francis Thugacy™ had just elapsed. Among some of the most “emboldened” claims was the following:

What is the most important achievement of Pope Francis? He has rebranded Catholicism and the papacy.

Reading this, I said to myself, I said self, where have I heard that before.

In the transcript of the speech, there was also this golden nugget:

We become easily fixated on lots of eye-catching, buzz-causing externals and great photo opportunities: A Pope who abandoned the red shoes – that were never an official part of the papal wardrobe! A Pope who dresses modestly, pays his own lodging bills, drives around Vatican City in a Ford Focus, brings jam sandwiches to on-duty Swiss Guards at his door and invites street people to his birthday breakfast. This Roman pontiff specializes in kissing babies and embracing the sick, disfigured broken bodies, and the abandoned of society. A pope who knows how to use a telephone, and uses it often. A pope who waits in line for the coat check at the Vatican, lines up for coffee, and introduces himself: “Sono Francesco. Come ti chiami?” We sit back, smile and utter: “What simplicity!” “Wow!” “Awesome!” “Finalmente!”

I think the word is “humble”, but I digress…

So I am reading this and then…it clicked. Why this is something about which I wrote way back in December of 2014 in a post titled The Modernist’s Magic Words (see here). Here is the relevant text… bah, here’s the entire section:

The Magic Words

So now that we found out how Francis diagnosis the problems, let’s see what solution he offers. Here we can observe Francis’s solution to the “Catholics leaving the Church” problem in the following passages:

Francis: I don´t like the “dropping out” image because it is all to close to proselytism. I don´t like to use terms connected with proselytism because that´s not the truth. I like to use the image of the field hospital: some people are very much injured and are waiting for us to heal their wounds, they are injured for a thousand reasons. We must reach out to them and heal their wounds.

I don´t like the word “strategy”, I´d much rather speak about the Lord´s pastoral call, otherwise it sounds like an NGO. It´s the Lord´s call, what the Church is asking from us today, not as a strategy, because the Church isn´t into proselytism. The Church doesn´t want to engage in proselytism because the Church does not grow on proselytism, it grows on attraction, as Benedict said. The Church needs to be a field hospital and we need to set out to heal wounds, just as the good Samaritan did. Some people´s wounds result from neglect, others are wounded because they have been forsaken by the Church itself, some people are suffering terribly.

So there you have it. The Modernists are in search of their very own Magic Words. The resolution to the problem, as Francis sees it, is that the Church needs to “change the words” and use “new imagery”  and that will remedy the problem.

Let that sink in for a minute.

Just to draw an analogy. What Francis is saying is that if you change the label of the meat that you are serving at the Buenos Aires Greasy Spoon from “Hamburger” to “Salisbury Steak”, people will come back to your establishment and eat it. Yes? But that’s not even the whopper. No pun intended, but I just couldn’t help myself…

The rest of the post can be read here.

So there you have it. Confirmation that the FrancisChurch is not just one long never ending journey of spontaneous “eye-catching tango masses buzz-causing puppet mass externals and great photo opportunities placing beach balls and soccer jerseys on altars, abandoning the red shoes and clown noses, that were never an official part of the papal wardrobe, dressing modestly, paying your own lodging bills on your entire floor at the Domus Sanctae Marthae, driving around Vatican City in a Ford Focus like a NGO CEO, Father Ricca bringing jam sandwiches to on-duty Swiss Guards at your door after you fire their commander, inviting street people, but not the FFI to your birthday breakfast, specializing in kissing babies, schismatic heretics and embracing the sick, disfigured broken bodies, and those slaughtered for being Christian the abandoned of society, knowing how to use a telephone, and using it often to call Clelia Luro, waiting in line for the coat check at the Vatican, lining up for grappa coffee, and introducing yourself: “non è Sono Francesco. Come ti chiami?”.

No, no no. It is not a spontaneous act of the “god of surprises” Holy Spirit who has created a  “moment of kairos, the appointed time and hour, when the Gospel story is unfolding before us once again in the life of Pope Francis.”

No sir. This “moment of kairos” is a perfectly crafted re-branding exercise, a conscious strategy “Lord’s pastoral call” that is being executed by such crack professionals as Fr. Rosica.  But he couldn’t do it without… I will let him give the shout-out to his co-conspirators… mates… colleagues:

Many of my colleagues in the media industry have said that Francis has made it fun to be a religion reporter and journalist again. He has done such a magnificent job in changing the image of the church that our prestigious graduate schools of business and management could use him as a case study in rebranding.

The Pope has said that will not be a captive of forces at work inside the Vatican. He has appointed people who support his vision. One of them is sitting before me in a brown Franciscan habit. Thank God Pope Francis has Cardinal Seán on his team of the C8!

Well, what can one say other than, I’m glad that when Father Rosica is not threatening legal action against Catholic bloggers, he is having a grand old time with his mates colleagues in the media.

And is it any wonder that these mates colleagues of Fr. Tom are not reporting his hilarious high-jinx with those pesky Catholic bloggers.

Besides, how can they?

They must be too busy having a grand old time.

Carpe Diem!

UPDATE: Monday 23 February 2015 13:12

Speaking of crack professionals executing a highly crafted strategy Lord’s pastoral call, here is the proof from the EX MAGNA SILENTIUM or EX MAGNO SILENTIO blog: (see here)

Pope Francis had a small crowd gathered around him today at the midday Angelus on this Ash Wednesday 2015, with a reported “more than 9,000″ there to hear his words to the Faithful.  Two years ago, at least 50,000 were present for Pope Benedict XVI’s final Angelus on Ash Wednesday.  I was unable to find a printed number of attendees for last year’s Angelus on March 5, 2014.

“By their fruits…”

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