Fr. George Rutler knocks it outta da park today. Rather, he would probably prefer to have hit for six. “Hit for six”, as he would know, is not only a good thing in cricket, but is also “to be hit for six” a figure of speech for being hit with devastating news.
“Sometimes you’re the Louisville Slugger, baby. Sometimes you’re the ball.” (cf. Mark Knopfler)
Several veiled references to people active today are peppered through his piece. If they aren’t knocked for six after reading this, then we have reason to question their acuity.
Rutler blasts Pollyannaism, and its often hypocritical attendant Flattery.
A couple of quotes from Rutler’s apaugasmatic offering…
Pollyanna lives on in a parallel ecclesiastical world of new springtimes, new evangelizations, second Pentecosts, conferences of “diocesan leaders” with mic’d up motivational speakers “celebrating the life and dignity of the human person”, and Falstaffian clergymen bereft of sense and burdened with unction. Catholic writers who confuse innocence with naïveté may print anodyne words that in the storms of the day become fatal to fact. They are to theology what Barney the Dinosaur is to paleontology.
I literally laughed aloud at that.
Of course, in order to identify the clergyman Rutler has in mind you have to know who Falstaff is. (cf. Shakespeare)
Flattery is Pollyanna’s protocol. There even was a clergyman in the service of the pope who said that the Church “is openly ruled by an individual rather than by the authority of Scripture alone or even its own dictates of tradition plus Scripture.”
Hmmm… who could that be? Is this the same fellow, with a penchant for CTRL+C, who recently appeared on a Jesuit (whose else?) stage to promote deaconettes?
More devastating yet, Rutler continues with references to Obediah Slope and Uriah Heep, the character, not the rock band. (cf. Trollope and Dickens)
From that point, Father transitions to the three Japanese monkeys Mizaru, Kikazaru and Iwazaru, who have absolutely nothing to do with the Nairobi Trio (cf. Ernie Kovacs)
By now you have twigged to my hint. Go read it.