Kicking & Screaming!

There are some things you just can’t make up.

This is in from LA News with my emphases and comments:

Kicking & Screaming: Journo Dragged From Near Air Force One


Updated 9:08 PM PDT, Thu, May 28, 2009

A reporter for a small newspaper was forcibly removed from a press area near Air Force One shortly before President Barack Obama arrived at Los Angeles International Airport to depart California early Thursday.

Airport security officers carried the woman away by the feet and arms as she protested her removal.

She later identified herself as Brenda Lee, a writer for the Georgia Informer in Macon and said she has White House press credentials. The newspaper’s Web site says it is a monthly publication, and a Brenda Lee column is posted on it.

Calls to the newspaper and the White House press office were not immediately returned.

Lee said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press that she wanted to hand Obama a letter urging him "to take a stand for traditional marriage."  [Wait for the irony moment… and set down your beverage NOW… you have been warned….]

She said she asked a Secret Service agent to give the president her letter, but he refused and referred her to a White House staffer. Lee said she refused to give the staffer the letter.

"I said, ‘I’ll take my chances if (the president) comes by here,’" said Lee, who identified herself as a Roman Catholic priestess who lives in Anaheim, Calif. "He became annoyed that I wouldn’t give him the letter."  [I wonder if Joan Chitister will speak out now and say that these sorts of protests are out of line!  I mean…!]

Lee, who was wearing what she described as a cassock, said she protested when she was asked to leave.

"I said, ‘Why are you bothering me?’ They escorted me outside the gate," she said.

She said security officers allowed her to return when she promised she would not yell or wave, but then other officers arrived and told her to leave.

"I said, ‘I’m not leaving,’" she said. "They tried to drag me out." 

Two officers then picked her up and carried her out. An Associated Press photographer photographed the incident.  [PULITZER SUBITO!]

"I was afraid you could see under my clothes," she said, her voice choking up.  [With the ray-gun from the mothership.]

Lee, who said this was the second presidential event she has covered, was later released.  [I can hardly wait for the next one!  Will she replace Helen Thomas, I wonder?]

The incident occurred about 10 minutes before Obama arrived at the airport by helicopter to board Air Force One. He had been in Los Angeles to attend a Democratic National Committee fundraiser in Beverly Hills on Wednesday.  [You would have thought that to be a better venue for this.]


So now we finally know what priestesses do after ordination!

Bring on the big puppets!

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in Just Too Cool, Lighter fare, SESSIUNCULA. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Andrew, medievalist says:

    (In my ironic voice) I think they should have let her stay. Somehow I think the “priestess” and the President would have got along. Dialogue would have ensued.

  2. Ad Orientem says:

    From what I have heard the poor woman appears to be mentally unbalanced. She is tolerated at her RC parish but the priest issued a statement making it clear that the RCC does not and never has ordained women. His references to Ms. Lee were oblique and it sounded like he was trying to be as charitable as he could be to someone with more issues than Time Magazine.

    After this she will probably wind up on the Secret Service watch list which should keep her away from presidential personages.

    In ICXC

  3. Patrick says:

    I wonder if she has taken over for the late great Nina Simone, the High Priestess of Soul.

  4. Southern Orders says:

    Brenda Lee(the priestess, not the singer)attends my Church when she’s in her hometown. She always wears an alb and chasuble to Mass, but sits in the congregation. It’s always the wrong liturgical color which really drives me crazy. Needless to say, she has issues and needs our prayers.

  5. Stephen says:

    I don’t get it. A Roman Catholic “priestess” supporting traditional marriage? I thought the far left was against that. Something’s rotten in Denmark.

  6. Peter says:

    Maybe, despite all her other wacky ideas, she actually believes this part of the divine and natural law. Even heretics can hold some or even much of the truth.

  7. Peter says:

    Maybe, although she has some issues, she is indeed in accord with ‘us’ in respect of this part of the divine and natural law

  8. Buongiorno, Father:

    After reading all the Catholic news over the last three months I do have to ask you this favor: You will let us know when we might use the word “laughingstock” to describe the Church, won’t you?


  9. Joanne says:

    Are people here actually being derisive of this woman? When was the last time anyone here got carried away by security (or arrested) for witnessing to an issue that involves the Truth? True, if she was “kicking and screaming,” that is unfortunate. She could have been dignified about the way in which she was led away, although it’s hard to hold her accountable for that given her apparent mental health problems. But – her efforts to speak the Truth, as well as her willingness to make a spectacle of herself for the right causes, put most genuinely ordained priests, as well as the majority of us laypeople here I’d imagine, to shame.

  10. I am not Spartacus says:

    I volunteer to buy her a Tin Foil Biretta.

  11. Paul Haley says:

    She has issues? Egads, more than that she has serious mental problems (the priestess bit) and deserves our prayers for a return to mental health. I’m a little concerned about the discipline in her local parish if she is allowed to attend Mass wearing an alb and chasuble. Can you imagine what would happen if she tried this in an SSPX venue? Methinks she would find herself in a similar predicament with respect to being “asked to leave”.

  12. Maureen says:

    Re: X-ray

    Now, c’mon, Father. Any woman wearing a skirt who gets picked up from the ground, especilally by guys who aren’t necessarily being careful about it, is in danger of accidentally flashing the rest of the world. Also, there was a time not long ago in this country when some news photographers were fond of taking pictures, if only for their own amusement, which showed the presence or absence of women’s underwear. Even Princess Di in her most demure days suffered from having her lack of slip under her heavy jeans skirt exposed.

    So yes, it’s a relief that the photographer deliberately took photos from the side, and not from directly in front and below the lady. That’s what she was talking about.

    Sheesh, Father, you wear a cassock. Don’t you worry about showing your boxers to the world in a strong wind or from the wrong angle? Or is this only a paranoia thing for females?

  13. Maureen says:

    Re: wearing vestments in church when not a priest

    If she’s actually insane, albeit harmlessly, and everybody in the parish knows she’s got mental problems, it wouldn’t really be a scandal that she wears weird clothes to church. So the pastor may have decided it’s better for the lady to be under his eye and receiving the graces of the Sacraments than to scare her off.

    And you can hardly count someone delusional as a heretic. You have to know what you’re doing to be disobeying Church teaching.

  14. TJM says:

    Wow, at first I thought that was Joan Chittester back from vacation! Tom

  15. Ohio Annie says:

    I think Maureen is showing a lot of charity here. I deal with people with mental problems all the time and what Maureen suggests is helpful.

  16. JohnE says:

    Only mentally unbalanced people support protecting traditional marriage. I think that’s the main point the media will want you to take from this.

  17. irishgirl says:

    JohnE-I was thinking the same thing!

    The NY Daily News showed another photo of her being hauled off….but the story didn’t say anything about her being a ‘priestess’.

    Oy vay….

  18. Henry Edwards says:

    Southern Orders: It’s always the wrong liturgical color which really drives me crazy.

    Priceless! (And pretty conclusive proof of a serious problem. Unless she just has one chasuble, in which case obviously it would often be the wrong color.)

  19. Fr. Totton says:

    “Pulitzer Subito!” ROFL – this was hilarious! GREAT! Despite the myriad surprise ironies in this article, I have to say that Fr. Z’s acclamation, “Pulitzer Subito!” in contexts takes the cake! GREAT!

  20. +10 for trying to defend marriage as God instituted it.

    -100 for calling yourself a ‘Catholic’ priestess.

  21. catholicmom3 says:

    I am not Spartacus “tin foil biretta”!!! I cannot stop laughing! Thank you for the belly laugh this morning. Everytime I think of it I cannot stop giggling.

  22. cathguy says:

    I don’t get it. Why is this a story? I am not sure it was charitable to post this in the manner it was.

    This poor woman has some issues. Let us pray for her, and let us pray for the priest at her parish, who apparently is doing everything he can to protect and to help her.

    Mental health issues are not a laughing matter. Those suffering should not be held up for scorn.

  23. jarhead462 says:

    “Irony can be pretty ironic sometimes”

    Semper Fi!

  24. Andy F. says:

    “bring on the big puppets” is by far the funniest thing I have ever read on this site. Father, you cause a chuckle in me.

  25. Dino says:

    Well, I think technically any baptized person may wear an alb, but any vestment of real ordained clergy a resounding “No”.

    It has bothered me to see Confirmation candidates wearing liturgical-type stoles, and in one otherwise traditional/conservative parish the ushers are decked out in deacon’s stoles.

    Having read some writings of the”priestess” and noting that the monthly publication that carries her commentary prefaces it with a disclaimer, it appears that she is in need of a lot of prayers.

  26. Sean Cleary says:

    I’ve known a number of mentally ill people who have come to Mass dressed wildly inappropriate or even cursed at the priest once during a homily. I don’t think turning a mentally ill woman away from the Mass, even if she is in vestments, SSPX or not, is the right attitude. This is mental illness, not faux pas…

    Now, on another note, it’s nice to see that the RC priestesses are coming around to a more traditional way…

  27. Ohio Annie says:

    I think we would find that this lady is not part of the liberal political group that tries to ordain women illicitly as a political act. It appears she has declared herself a priestess. We need to be helpful and charitable and not mock her.

  28. Obama has finally found a Catholic not in line with the Magisterium that he WON’T welcome with open arms.

    That said, I agree it appears the woman is more of a hospital case than a heresy case.

  29. Augustine says:

    Here’s a link to Ms Lee’s own story of her ‘ministry’ and ecclesial status:'s%20Up%20by%20Brenda%20Lee.htm

    [Works if you cut and paste]

  30. I am not Spartacus says:

    I hope Prof. Kimec can arrange an audience for her with The One. If he can, I think that Brenda Lee, Priestess, will be allowed to pitch her tent on Obama’s Common Ground after singing an apology:

  31. Rancher says:

    Everybody is missing the point. This happened in California. That well known, outspoken, expert theologian Nancy Pelosi has, from her extensive study of the subject, concurred that the woman priesthood is not inconsistent with orthoox Catholic teaching and approved her participation in this event.

  32. Rancher says:

    that should have said orthodox

  33. This is so bizarre it is difficult to fathom…

  34. Jayna says:

    “It’s always the wrong liturgical color which really drives me crazy.”

    I don’t know why, but this statement came off as really quite hilarious. The alb and stole, alright, she’s a bit off – but in the wrong color, it’s not to be tolerated!

    (Not mocking you, I swear, it was just really funny.)

  35. Maureen says:

    Oh, dear. The lady thinks God picked her to be a bishop. She also told an Orthodox bishop that the East and West had already been fully reunited by some folks who say Mass in nursing homes. The Orthodox bishop was apparently very gracious to her, which gives me a good opinion of his poker-playing abilities.

    It’s obvious that she does have some serious problems, but her writing is pretty lucid, as compared to a lot of these sorts of truly mentally ill folks who get on the Internet. She seems to have her heart in the right place. I’ll keep her in my prayers.

  36. Danny Mary Joseph says:

    “tin-foil biretta” “wrong liturgical colours” LMAO!

    But seriously, I think we all know how to deal with people like that, if you know what I mean. Not that violence is always justified, but…

  37. Tony says:

    Here is some video of the priestess at the airport.

  38. “Comment by Andrew, medievalist — 29 May 2009 @ 2:44 am”

    The President of the United States is bound by statutory law with respect to the Secret Service or any other detail charged with his protection. Their actions are generally not subject to his discretion. If they tell him he has to get into the car, or to walk away from the rope line, in the course of his protection, he is obliged to do so. True, he may not always listen to such direction. Then again, it is difficult to argue with people who have agreed to take a bullet for you.

  39. JG says:

    What a bunch of nasty and uncharitable posts. May none of you have a family member with mental health issues. It isn’t funny. Those that end in suicide are the most tragic. Shame on all of you….MOST of all a Catholic priest.
    Save your replies. I won’t be back.

  40. Mary says:

    To everyone commenting about disrespect to the mentally ill: may it be noted that Ms. Lee’s health was only brought to our knowledge by Ad Orientem’s comment. It is not in the article and presumably Father Zuhlsdorf did not know of it and, yes, made fun of her, but without that knowledge. Some other posters may also have not read the comments before replying.

  41. chris p says:

    I think I’ve seen this woman at OLA Cathedral here in LA.

Comments are closed.