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Yeah.

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Colbert calls it.

Comments

  1. Plus ca change…

    For at the time of Gregory’s elevation to the papacy the Christian world was in a deplorable condition. During the desolating era of transition–that terrible period of warfare and rapine, violence, and corruption in high places, which followed immediately upon the dissolution of the Carlovingian Empire, a period when society in Europe and all existing institutions seemed doomed to utter destruction and ruin–the Church had not been able to escape from the general debasement. The tenth century, the saddest, perhaps, in Christian annals, is characterized by the vivid remark of Baronius that Christ was as if asleep in the vessel of the Church. At the time of Leo IX’s election in 1049, according to the testimony of St. Bruno, Bishop of Sengi, the whole world lay in wickedness, holiness had disappeared, justice had perished and truth had been buried; Simon Magus lording it over the Church, whose bishops and priests were given to luxury and fornication” (Vita S. Leonis PP. IX in Watterich, Pont. Roman, Vitae, I, 96). St. Peter Damian, the fiercest censor of his age, unrolls a frightful picture of the decay of clerical morality in the lurid pages of his “Liber Gomorrhianus” (Book of Gomorrha). Though allowance must no doubt be made for the writer’s exaggerated and rhetorical style–a style common to all moral censors– yet the evidence derived from other sources justifies us in believing that the corruption was widespread. In writing to his venerated friend, Abbot Hugh of Cluny (Jan., 1075), Gregory himself laments the unhappy state of the Church in the following terms: “The Eastern Church has fallen away from the Faith and is now assailed on every side by infidels. Wherever I turn my eyes–to the west, to the north, or to the south–I find everywhere bishops who have obtained their office in an irregular way, whose lives and conversation are strangely at variance with their sacred calling; who go through their duties not for the love of Christ but from motives of worldly gain. There are no longer princes who set God’s honour before their own selfish ends, or who allow justice to stand in the way of their ambition. . . .And those among whom I live–Romans, Lombards, and Normans–are, as I have often told them, worse than Jews or Pagans” (Greg. VII, Registr., 1.II, ep. xlix).

    …as it was in the beginning, is now, but NOT as it will always be.

    JOB

  2. whoops – for those who want to read more:

    http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/06791c.htm

  3. Matthew Lickona says:

    “I find everywhere bishops who have obtained their office in an irregular way, whose lives and conversation are strangely at variance with their sacred calling…”

    I’m trying to decide if “obtaining my office in an irregular way” or “living in strange variance with my sacred calling” is my new favorite euphemism.

    • Angelico Nguyen, Esq., OP says:

      His Excellency – so the rumors say –
      Obtained his office in a most irregular way.
      He had a name to make, he had bribes to pay,
      Had everything except a little time to pray
      As he leaned in his cathedra, gave his ring a kiss,
      And thought, ‘dance and drink and feast, boy:
      You know We got a benefice.’

      And the cross and the miter and the shepherd’s staff,
      Kyrie eleison and the Day of Wrath.
      When will you repent, son?
      When We’re at the end, We’ll be sorry for Our sins, Lord;
      Now We’ll have a good time till then.

  4. “assailed on every side by infidels” – is code for Vatican sex parties.

    JOB

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