One of my regular spots on the web is GetReligion.org (which is seasoned religion reporters offering critiques and insights on articles published by real news outlets). Seeing that it has been a month since my last post…and I haven’t posted here or anywhere because, I am the Mamacita and am too busy terrorizing my family. BUT – this one just begged for the response, and I share it here, because, sometimes I like to hear myself rant.
In response to this WaPost article on some political hack who is “Catholic” and also apparently a “nondenominational minister”, Get Religion asks – can you be both?. I already know too much about him, and it’s not his fault the reporter decided this was ‘interesting”.
Here is the link to the Get Religion post, picking the journalism of the article apart…and the response I had to put out there:
Most people actually DO know what the Catholic Church teaches about a lot of things – clerical celibacy, abortion, birth control, homosexuality, and yes, I think so: keeping Catholic includes not being ordained as a “Protestant”. See, how most of the Protestant people here on this blog immediately asked the correct question – how can a Roman Catholic also be an “ordained” non-denominational minister?
And this is because – in most denominations – the process of becoming ordained is more than just going to a website and printing a certificate (hey, even I am ordained by the Dudely Lama!) or creeping tearfully backstage at a revival and confessing your intuition that you are called…but as part of a DENOMINATION – read – an active Christian Community – there are steps toward ordination designed to help people discern a call in a responsible way. As I recall, in the Methodist church, it was a multi-year process. Not just Catholics take ordination seriously.
And, yeah, by his action, he excommunicated himself. Canonically and otherwise. But that really should not be news to the average reader. Except that in this “enlightened age”, people then smirk to themselves about those antique men in Rome who still adhere to some kind of “standards.” And for dang sure, the reporter knew that. He just chose to write around the obvious, creating the cognitive dissonance that sells newspapers and sticks in the craw of hidebound conservatives like me. Because you can play fast and loose like that now, and everyone calls you cutting edge.
Bleh. Reminds me of the kind of mind games I used to play on my parents as a young, philosophically challenged teen.