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Nicholas Frankovich on Several Things

At National Review Online. Like so many other writers I’ve discovered at the magazine over the years, Nicholas Frankovich has become the guy to go to for the Catholic culture overview.

On Trump’s intrusion into sports:

The Boston Red Sox won the World Series in 2004. A few months later, they went to the White House for the traditional round of presidential congratulations. Manny Ramirez was a no-show. Why? He didn’t like the president, George W. Bush, a baseball man himself, a former part-owner of the Texas Rangers? Sox officials said Ramirez was visiting his sick grandmother. Boston won the Series again a few years later, and the president invited the team back to the White House. Again, no Ramirez. Bush’s response? A shrug, a teasing smirk. “I guess his grandmother died again,” he said.

On the decline in Catholic Literature:

The traditional Catholicism that is the setting of that backward-looking novel included a lot of looking backward itself, of course. That’s what made Catholicism traditional. For believers immersed in the faith, the past was alive no less than the present. They could see ghosts. A heavyweight from the Norman Mailer generation of American letters once commented on the Catholic writers of her generation. They were sure of themselves, she recalled, though not preachy. Spend time with them and it was hard to escape the impression that they knew something you didn’t. That’s gone. So the flowers in the garden aren’t what they used to be? Blame the flowers if you like, but it remains the case that the soil has been depleted.

Here he is on reasoning behind the Novus Ordo:

In the 20th century, Church leaders began to advocate an effort, more deliberate and thorough than in the past, to enculturate the faith among the various nations of the Third World: Catholic missionaries should learn, and learn to love, local customs and languages and to translate the faith into forms that would be meaningful and appealing to indigenous peoples. Implicit in their argument was the need for the Church to pour the Romanità out of Catholicism so that vessel could accommodate the new wine of non-Western cultures.

Read Sacrosanctum Concilium (1963), the Vatican II blueprint for liturgical reform, and you will notice a lot of concern for the mission lands. References to them dot the document, and in their glow the reader is led to imagine that the point of the many broadly sketched recommendations is only sensible and moderate, generous but not extravagant.

In the mission lands, let bishops adapt the liturgy to local cultures. Trust their circumspection and sober judgment: “Provisions shall also be made, when revising the liturgical books, for legitimate variations and adaptations to different groups, regions, and peoples, especially in mission lands, provided that the substantial unity of the Roman rite is preserved; and this should be borne in mind when drawing up the rites and devising rubrics.”

No sooner had Western Catholics digested and largely shrugged in agreement to the gist of this plan for liturgical reform than they discovered that Rome now counted them, too, as inhabitants of mission lands, in effect. In America, English was introduced into the Mass by increments, which meant of course that Latin was ushered out at the same pace, until the process was complete in the fall of 1970.

The movement away from the sacred, classical language and toward the vernacular was accompanied by a corresponding change in tone and style, from solemn and formal to less solemn and less formal. William F. Buckley Jr. recorded for posterity a typical reaction of many a Catholic: both a sense of loss and a glum resolve not to be sour about it. Surely some good could come of this?

Crystal Blue Perdition

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Anyone getting psyched for the first of Breaking Bad‘s final eight (8) episodes could do worse than revisit this post from two years ago by a friend of Korrektiv. The commentary contained therein is still relevant, as is the link to the New York Times profile of the show’s creator, Vince Gilligan — a lapsed Catholic, in case you didn’t know (which reflects at least a few faint photons of glory on us). As an Extra Added Bonus, there’s a YouTube embed of an old (i.e., young) Bryan Cranston commercial for J.C. Penney that — at least for those of us not too familiar with the man’s pre-Walter White résumé — constitutes a real-life flashback as paradigm-shifting as anything on the show.

In case you didn’t click the first link above, here it is again.

And Hank exits the loo in 3… 2… 1…

Coming Soon to the Prytania Hotel

Conference attendees in full regalia at the Prytania.

Music Video We Couldn’t Pass Up

More here.

 

Inter: Ference

I seem to be running into Ference a lot.

[rimshot!]

BTW: The Franciscan Sister who threw the Boss into the trashcan was Sister Martina, who by the time I attended was principal of St. Rose. And, yes, she was all that. Fearfully wrought and simmering with equal parts love of God and Dies Irae…

The priest who allegedly knocked the Boss down while serving Mass could very well have been Monsignor (then-Father) Thomas Coffey, who retired from active ministry in 1990. I too served under him, a meaty Irish priest with an inscrutible depth of reserve – even for a descendant of Hibernia… It is this which makes me wonder either a) what Mr. Springsteen could have done to warrant arousing the emotions of Msgr. Coffey or b) perhaps it was not Msgr. Coffey at all, but some anonymous assistant pastor.

BTB: Note that DT is under new management and y’all could do worse than subscribe to the magazine if you haven’t already. Lots of good stuff in this issue, which is, as always, a gorgeous gift to the eyes, the ears and the mind…

Also, the new look to the website – what can I say? It’s built for speed…!

Tradition!

Just what you’ve all been waiting for:  another installment of Lickona and a Jew talk Christmas.

Round One:  Positively Irenic!

Round Two:  Grumpy, Grumpy, Grumpy.

And now, Round Three:  A Jew’s Favorite Christmas Movies.

Today in Poetry

My daughter thinks that I should move

The tendrils from Our Lady’s face

But I demurred:

Grace perfects our fallen nature

But nature may obscure the grace

Or so I’ve heard.

Yelping with Cormac

On Ikea:

Doctors told us my daughter in law is depressed on account of the baby but I think it’s cause of the chairs. And ever other damn thing in that store. So many things to decide on and not a one of them matters. Hell, it was enough to give me the depression and I was only in that store for three godforsaken hours.

Cheesecake Factory:

A Tiramisu teetered like the oldest prostitute in a mining town, reeking of saccharine liqueur. The faint scent of virtue lost amid the hellish musk of ten thousand outrages.

From EDW Lynch, the “world’s first Corporate Manglomerate”:

Part­ner Man­age­ment is a spe­cial divi­sion of the Social Resources Depart­ment con­cerned solely with man­ag­ing roman­tic social equity: girl­friends, muses, and affairs. The highly spe­cial­ized Part­ner Man­age­ment staff care­fully eval­u­ate Poten­tial Roman­tic Oppor­tu­ni­ties using sophis­ti­cated algo­rithms.  Key roman­tic met­rics include rel­a­tive adorable­ness, humor index, and half-asianness. If the stan­dard­ized roman­tic rubric indi­cates favor­able con­di­tions, the Poten­tial Roman­tic Oppor­tu­nity is expe­dited to active part­ner man­age­ment.

Babies having babies.

A propos of nothing.

“It is sad that there are what you might call professional Catholics who make a living on their Catholicism, but in whom the spring of faith flows only faintly, in a few scattered drops. We must really make an effort to change this.”
Pope Benedict XVI, Light of the World