The NAB a Monumental Farkleberry

Let’s not mince words. The New American Bible really is a monumental American Catholic Fuck Up — and now we are (and have been for a few years now) stuck with it as the mandatory translation for American Catholics. It merits a rare instance — on an otherwise family-oriented and clean-mouthed blog — of the F-word followed by the vertically-oriented modifier. F-U-C-K-U-P.

Check out Richard John Neuhaus’s “Public Square” column in the January First Things for a much more eloquent assessment of the embarrassing piece of shit that is the NAB. Neuhaus doesn’t come right out and say it, but he could have ended each paragraph with: “What a monumental fuck up!” Instead, he takes a philosophical view: “And yes, I know that it is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness. But sometimes it is necessary to curse the darkness as well, just to prevent our getting used to it.”

As an anonymous commenter pointed out (under Word of the Week, below), it is amazing how the Church persists despite our best efforts to fuck it up. In fact, as Walker Percy mentioned on more than one occasion, this is one proof of the Church’s divine mandate. The gates of hell shall not prevail against it, etc. I wonder if in this instance God might have allowed the American bishops to fuck it up so badly in order that it (the NAB) could turn out to be a common enemy against which faithful Catholics of all stripes could form a united front. At the same time, getting riled up about the Holy Bible might incline some of us to actually go back and read it again. (Try the Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition.) Why must we live with this piss poor bastardization of scripture and tradition? Yes, it is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness, so let’s light a whole bunch of candles — in prayer and in the form of letters and petitions and phone calls and emails — right under the butts of the American bishops.

See also this and this and this and this and this and that.

[A couple of side notes: 1. The January issue of First Things also has an article written by none other than Pope Benedict XVI. 2. Consult The Japery over at The New Pentagruel (thanks to Godsbody for the link) for additional provocative ruminations on the current state of First Things.]


  1. Thanks, but that’s “Pantagruel.” Nice to run across a good blogger who will say stuff I probably can’t even get away with saying.

  2. Oops. Musta been mixing you up in my mind’s eye with satanic pentagrams or some such. Thanks for stopping in and commenting, though. I just started reading you but I’m already a big fan.

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