"He instinctively can find the shining greatness of our American culture and does a good job of highlighting it (although he also does have those rare lapses when he writes about hockey, but that is something caused by impurities in the Eastern waters or something)." Erik Keilholtz
Under the patronage of St. Tammany
Mark C. N. Sullivan is an editor at a Massachusetts university. He is married and the father of three children. Email
Thursday, July 25, 2002 On the VOTF, a challenge to St. Bloggers to do more than criticize
Artist Maureen Mullarkey writes: Your comment about the various agendas within VOTF is, sadly, too true. One workshop, "Creating a Sexually Safe Parish," was given by Debra Haffner, a former Director of Counseling, Education & Public Affairs for Planned Parenthood. Yet that significant item in her CV was omitted from her bio in the conference brochure.
Support for abortion was a sotto voce but real presence in the literature rack. [e.g. Michele Dillon's "Catholic Identity: Balancing Reason, Faith & Power" was on sale. After speaking on the panel "Who & What Will Shape the Future Church," she made herself available for book signings. As did Leonard Swidler and others.] Dillon's book is sympathetic to Catholics for a Free Choice. And she quotes a theologian: "Abortion . . . is an area where there's a lot of biological issues that have to be sorted through about what a fetus is and all of that." Oh? Neither Prof. Dillon nor her theologian seem to have ever seen a sonogram.
James Carroll--sententious and juvenile--raised his voice like a closed fist to celebrate the fact that now, at Mass, we longer kneel. My heart fell hearing him.
At the same time, Mark, if VOTF is hijacked it will be, in part, because young, thoughtful Catholics--like the parishioners of St. Blog's—would prefer to disdain its intentions. It was formed, essentially, to confront the ugly abuse of power [the Cover-up] at the heart of the Situation. It is not enough to deplore the sins against justice and charity committed by our hierarchy. Those sins have to be recognized for what they are, checked and guarded against.
But how? Where are the ideas from the St. Blogger's? All that is offered is condescension. There were a few under-40's in attendance. Their contribution was largely of the we-want-a-liturgy-that-is-relevant-to-us stripe.
I am not one of those good women you refer to, Mark. At the same time, I am uncomfortable with the pious hauteur of younger members of the online congregation. When our Church begins to look like the Portrait of DorianGray, it just isn't enough to pose in the choir loft as superior to those recoiling--perhaps ineptly--from the sight.