I’ve written in the past about my feelings about the real and honest purpose of religion… especially the Catholic Church… and its place in the world but not in very much depth.
In light of some recent goings that concern the Catholic Church contracting some parishes and the closing of some churches in the NYC area I think the time has come for that lack of depthness to end…
Wha’s it all about, Timmy…
News item… The Catholic Mass celebrated every Sunday inside the Southbridge Towers in lower Manhattan was small and informal… but it was like a godsend that was started about 25 years ago to accommodate disabled seniors who could no longer make it to church.
But that is no more…it has become part of the Archdiocese of New York’s sweeping church reorganization being made mostly under the auspices of saving money…
News item… last Friday, during and between celebrations of the Mass, workers began changing the locks on the doors at Our Lady of Peace Church.
And that pissed off a lot of the faithful in attendance who were
already pissed beyond compare due to the fact that their place of worship was being closed down.
The church is but one of about 24 that have been told they need to close down even though some of the places of worship have been around for nearly100 years.
All of which is being made mostly under the auspices of saving money…
News item… after 90 years St. Joseph’s Church on the Lower East Side is closing… as are many other churches throughout the city of New York due to being consolidated with other parishes… yep that old Archdiocese of New York bugaboo conveniently titled “significant restructurings”… being made mostly under the auspices of saving money…
One 90-soemthing year-old parishioner who had attended St. Joes since he was about ten said, “How do I feel? Sad. Very sad. I’ve been coming here all my life, every Sunday. I don’t know where I’ll be going now. I can’t walk far. This may be the last time I go to church.”
News item… As part of the massive church reorganization, 112 out of 368 churches will be merged with a neighboring congregation… 9 in Manhattan, 6 in the Bronx and 4 on Staten Island. The rest of the closures are in counties north of the city.
Before I start in any further on what I am about to say, allow me to reestablish that I am not a church goer nor do I belong to any formalized religion… in fact.. I won’t go as far to say that I despise religion but I essentially don’t believe that any religion has any closer relationship or knowledge of a god than any other religion… or that any religion is the one true religion… and… that if there is a god, then god and myself can communicate very well on a daily basis without the help of anyone else…
Having said that…
I recognize for some that religion can, and usually is, a salve for many persons and they find a welcoming sort of grace when they participate in certain religious ceremonies such as the Catholic Mass. They find a certain solace and peace and fulfillment in their attendance at Mass with other people of like beliefs. And, for them that is all well and good… and… if, they do it with good intentions with no ill feeling towards anyone else’s way of communicating with god… then… hell, go for it…
That now being out of the way…
The “Mass” began when early Christians gathered together in their homes to share a meal in memory of Jesus… just as the bible says he asked us all to do when he celebrated the Last Supper the night before his death.
There is nothing in the bible that specifically says folks are obligated to go to Mass on Sunday.
Fact was that those who called themselves Christians… or followers of Christ… got together to pray, hear them some bible read and then share a meal as Christ asked to be done in his memory
Over time the meal and the meetings and what transpired got more and more formalized until something akin to what we now know as the Mass was established. And… for whatever reason the Catholic Church eventually imposed a rule that keeping holy the Sabbath meant going to church and hearing Mass every Sunday and it was obligatory.
Once more… slowly… the obligation to attend Mass on Sunday is a law, or rule, of the church and is not a commandment of Christ’s teachings or of the bible in any shape, manner or form.
However… once the church established that Catholics need to and shoed attend Mass every Sunday some people took that Church order to heart and need that weekly mass as a part of their ever continuing spiritual growth… it became a crucial and needed part of their lives.
When he took over the reins of the Catholic Church he disdained the opulent apostolic Vatican palace to live in more rustic surroundings … albeit still better than most so-called Catholics’ homes. He also chose to get about town in a modest Ford Focus rather than any luxurious Pope mobile… and… he denounced overspending by church leaders.
In fact, he specifically said at one point, “It breaks my heart when I see a priest or a nun with the latest model of car. Cars are necessary, but take a more humble one. Think of how many children die of hunger.”
He also spoke despairingly about “airport bishops” who spend more time traveling around the world doing this and doing that and accomplishing so very little when their real jobs should be tending to their parishioners. And, finally, he told his church leaders they should forsake the “psychology of princes.”
Frankie simply declared to his bishops throughout the world that they should live like the people they supposed to be taking care of spiritually and spend less time in palaces and hobnobbing with the hobgoblins and more time in the streets where administering to the poor, the weak, the hungry or those that sin and need their help the most.
Some bishops… even before Frankie became pope.. understood their true role and changed the way they lived and how they did the Church’s business… i.e., the saving of souls and tending to the faithful.
In Boston, Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley, who is now the pope’s closest American adviser, sold his elaborate housing that had been home to those bishops before his tenure and moved into a more austere cathedral rectory.
In Philadelphia, Archbishop Charles J. Chaput sold the mansion of his predecessors and moved into an apartment on the grounds of a seminary.
In Pittsburgh, Bishop David A. Zubik lasted two weeks in that diocese’s mansion before he decided that it should be sold and that he should move into a seminary apartment.
This brings us to NYC… and… Archbishop/Cardinal Timothy Dolan… he leads the whole shebang of US bishops with the largest and most ornate home of them with the 15,000-square-foot mansion on Madison Avenue, in one of the priciest corridors of Manhattan, that he calls home.
CNN has reported that they hired Vanderbilt Appraisal Company, a New York firm, to estimate the building’s value, said they reported back that it’s worth at least $30 million.
Now of course, Cardinal Dolan does not live in the neo-Gothic mansion, which is reportedly filled with thick red carpets and priceless antiques, by his lonesome… he lives with three other priests…
When faced with the questions of why a prelate of the Catholic church would need to live so opulently some of Dolan’s reps said that the residence also functions as a place to hold fundraisers and business offices as well as the staff needed to administer the daily goings on or business of the parish.
In fact Joseph Zwilling, spokesman for the Archdiocese of New York, has said that’s the case with Dolan’s mansion, which connects to St. Patrick’s Cathedral and he also inferred that it’s on the National Register of Historic Places… meaning it can’t easily be sold or converted to other uses.
Maybe not… or… maybe, instead of closing down all of those places where the Catholic faithful need to hear the word of Christ delivered to them… places where they find solace and peace from the travails of their everyday lives of trying to make ends meet… to earn their daily bread… on a daily basis… that maybe instead of closing down those places they could turn the Diocese of NYC mansion into a museum that the city could manage and then they could sell off many of the furnishings as well as priceless art pieces and other jewels or valuables that are utterly unnecessary to the running of the church to better administer to the various parish needs.
Maybe by selling off a lot of those valuable accouterments those previously mentioned 112 out of 368 churches being merged with neighboring congregations… 9 in Manhattan, 6 in the Bronx and 4 on Staten Island… might not need to have anything done with them except to stay open and conduct the business of being there for the faithful like they are needed to do. Because suddenly… magically… by selling off the useless stuff that just collects dust and does no one any good except to look pretty… the funds to manage all of those places could be now had…
And those elderly folks who used to have had the church come to them to say the Mass? Maybe they could continue to have a priest make his way over their way every Sunday and continue that simple yet wanted and therefore needed practice.
Sister Sally Butler, a Catholic nun who ministers in Brooklyn housing projects and has clashed with bishops over their response to the church’s sexual abuse scandal has said that Catholics tend to be a generous sort of folk… even when they some of them can’t do so easily they still tend to be that way… they still manage to give something into the Church’s collection boxes and baskets… but… that they expect their donations to pay for stuff like feeding and helping the poor ( or those poorer than themselves), caring for those that need caring for… like the sick and infirm…and training priests and for their children’s educations… and not for maintaining multimillion-dollar estates.
Or… in the words of the Rev. Steven Avella, a Catholic priest and professor of religious history at Marquette University, “There’s no reason a bishop has to live like a prince or medieval monarch, even if he inherited the place from his predecessor. They should convert the mansions to museums and move into rectories.”
CNN has reported that “A century ago, Catholics celebrated the success of their church in the United States by building mansions for their archbishops, historians say. It was a way of saying, ‘We’ve made it, and we’re here to stay.’”
Maybe now it’s time to say that the church in America has made its point and that it’s time they got back to where it all once began… being in the streets with the poor, the sick and infirm, the hungry, the drunks, the prostitutes and the sinners…
Just like some dude back about 2015 years ago did when he was supposedly sent here to bring about the salvation of all our souls.
I mean… maybe that’s just me but ain’t that what it’s all supposed to be about, Timmy?
Some peeps just don’t get it and probably never will…
Michael B. Jordan and Kate Mara while doing a round of pressers for their film “Fantastic Four” were asked some rather odd, and to some folks some sorta offensive questions, from Atlanta’s Rock 100.5 Morning show peeps.
They first dealt with how the characters of Johnny Storm (Jordan) and Sue Storm (Mara) were brother and sister in the film, but somehow are depicted by a black person and a white person.
One of the so-called DJs said, “Am I missing something?”
To which Jordan, said, “No.”
But onward and upward the dunce did go as he persisted with… “You’re white and you’re black. How does that happen?”
Jordan tactfully yet firmly said, “They could be raised as brother and sister. There’s a whole bunch of family dynamics that could be without the obvious adoption.”
And ya know what? there are a whole spectrum of things that coud lbe occurrig for this reality to be… welll… real… but why belabor the point when its really not that damn important to begin with?
Eventually, the radio peeps left that racial issue alone… however… the dumbness didn’t stop…
One of the DJs then turned to Ms. Mara and said… “You’re way, way hot. Why’d you cut the hair? Your hair was beautiful.”
Being an old hand at answering stupid, sexist and ignorant questions, Mara simply smiled and said that her hair was cut for a movie.
But wanna know something … going back to this whole black and white superhero issue?
Jordans says that when he went online to see what peope lwere saying about his casting for the film.. .this is some of the stuff he found…
“’A black guy? I don’t like it. They must be doing it because Obama’s president”
“It’s not true to the comic (book).”
”They’ve destroyed it!'”
Can you hear that odd sounding banging though your computer screen? It’s just me banging my head against the wall because I can’t believe this stupidity that I have to point out that some peeps really find a need to spew out of their mouths.
Whose lives matter more?
Recently NYC’s Empire State Building displayed a snow leopard, a manta ray and even a cousin of King Kong last Saturday night as part of an epic video display designed to draw attention to the plight of endangered animals.
“It blows me away,” said a tourist as she took pictures of a tiger craning its neck toward the building’s spire.
ANd another person said… “Really incredible.So beautiful to see it on such a grand scale.”
The images were generated by 40 stacked, 20,000-lumen projectors perched on the roof of a building opposite the skyscraper and the project cost over a $1 million… funding was mostly from private donors according to the New York Times
Now… I point this out because a few folks I know about have said that the killing of these animals is not as serious as is the killing of people… especially black people by cops and others.
All taking of life for stupid reasons makes no sense to me… but… I do agree that some peeps really got up in arms with the unnecessary and archaic killing involved in so-called sport hunting a lot more than they did with how cops tend to use deadly force with minority folks.
And… how come we never saw no pictures of black folks whose lives were taken from this earth inappropriately on the Empire State Building as we saw with them there animals?
Honest question and I’d like an honest answer.
“Finding Your Roots” series remains in a timeout…
“Finding Your Roots” is a PBS series that is hosted by Dr. Henry Louis Gates and traces the ancestry of celebrities.
Seems Gates did a piece on Ben Affleck and his ancestry and found that one of Affleck’s ancestors owned slaves. Affleck asked for that little piece of info be edited out of the episode that was show about his genealogical past.
Affleck and Gates have since apologized by saying the editing was inappropriate and ill-advised.
And dumb and stupid and ignorant and who the hell cares what anyone’s ancestors did or did not do except for the curiosity effect of it all.
We are not defined by what any of our relations did in the past unless we allow their past actions to define our present.
Affleck was stupid and Gates was even more stupid for succumbing to Affleck’s stupidity
Its hard row that Fitty needs to hoe…
Fitty Cent, whose real name is Curtis Jackson, filed for bankruptcy last month while Lastonia Leviston was suing him for posting her sex tape online. A Manhattan jury recently awarded her $7 million in damages.
Despite testifying in his sex tape case that he didn’t have a fleet of cars, and a lot of the fancy smancy stuff like jewelry and clothes and all… that he rents it… his new bankruptcy papers says he actually owns seven cars, including a Rolls Royce and three Chevy Suburbans.
Also, the rapper has filed in Connecticut bankruptcy court that his monthly expenses are $108,000, with a monthly income of $184,969, from mostly in royalties and interest on investments. Fitty says he pays $72,000-a-month on a 50-room mansion, including $14,200 a month for utilities and $30,700 a month for mortgage, property tax and insurance, $14,600 a month to support two children and his grandfather, $9,000 for security, $5,000 for gardening,as well as $3,000 a month on his wardrobe and another $1,000 in personal grooming.
Ummmm… I know the dude been trying to sell that albatross of a 50 room mansion in Connecticut for awhile now but ya think maybe he could cut back a little on some of that other bullshit?
I mean just a tad?
Ever think about hat happens when you drink a coke?
A whole new meaning to riding a wave…
This weeks gratutious pictures…
Rita Ora (24) is a British singer, songwriter and actress…
Anther thousand words…
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