Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Blacks, Jews, gays, and Anglo-Catholics

  • A modest proposal. From Takimag: "Race is just a construct," so I'm becoming black. Sure; I like r&b and the Philadelphia sound, so... what's the matter? I mean, if a transvestite can legally be a woman, and that German-Brazilian boy can get plastic surgery to "be Korean"... We live in a new world where technology enables you to be anyone you can afford to be. Actually, says the Cathedral, you don't even need tech; say you're a woman and you are. (Commonly called pretending.) But they still can't rewrite your DNA (a Y-chromosome-ectomy, for example) or make trans men real fathers or trans women real mothers. A politically correct fellow once said, about that, that my view is disgustingly materialistic. I should hope so; otherwise sex wouldn't be much fun. C.S. Lewis: "God likes matter. He made it." Vive la différence.
  • Classic Catholic article: Why present-day Judaism is not Old Testament Judaism. As the mainstream says, since the Temple was destroyed in 70, all Jews have been Jews manqué, winging it. Without that, its priesthood (the Cohens are descended from the kohanim) and its sacrifices, it's not really Judaism. That and, of course, Jesus. (The Incarnation, the biggest example of God interacting with his creation, the material world, which is the flashpoint of all rebellion against God.) "Before 3 p.m. Good Friday, the head of the church on earth was Caiaphas; afterwards, it was St. Peter." No to two covenants so no to the well-meaning evangelicals who support modern Israel no matter what, and there are judaizing conservative Protestants (such as the messianic movement but also well-meaning gentiles like the evos I mentioned) doing things (imitating modern Judaism) settled in the Book of Acts. None of this is a reason to persecute, of course; I share the evos' reverence for the Old Testament people and of course the church's and modern society's respect for them as human beings, covenant or no more covenant.
  • A kind of openly gay I have no problem with. Fr. John Jay Hughes is like that: if you ask, he'll tell you he's bisexual (it's in his autobiography) but normally it doesn't come up; he doesn't attack the teachings of the church. Classic (pre-Gordon Reid) St. Clement's was too. "Recreating the 1950s." Guilty as charged of course. As the Anti-Gnostic says, without that normal society's reproduction, homosexuals would be a one-generation experiment. On that note, "gay people are rare." Naturally. Reminds me: I understand the ancient West, as in biblical times, didn't think of it as an identity, just a kind of vice. (The commenter's point: it's not his whole identity.) If I recall rightly, likewise bisexual Camille Paglia (met her; funny lady) is common-sense about that too.
  • ἀναστόμωσις (anastómosis), an Anglo-Catholic-themed blog. So much good here I can't link to it all. I had to look up the Greek (I can sound out Greek but don't understand much of it): it means "a surgical connection between two structures." A graft of Anglicanism and Catholicism. But Anglicanorum Coetibus is not a concession to Protestantism, which of course would be impossible. "Anglican liturgical patrimony is that which has nourished the Catholic Faith, within the Anglican tradition during the time of ecclesiastical separation, and has given rise to this new desire for full communion." In my view that covers both the English Missal (Tridentine Mass) and the American hybrid missal with a lot of 1928 Prayer Book in it; all a pre-Vatican II ethos. (The ordinariate Mass - Anglican Use? - and Msgr. Steenson here are of a similar ethos but high-church conservative Novus Ordo/Prayer Book hybrids.) British Anglo-Catholic alumni (the ordinariate) shouldn't be made to be Prayer Booky; for years they have used the Roman Missal to show they believe in the church's teachings. And as Msgr. Barnes has written, Protestant Anglicans used the Prayer Book against them, while in America, the Prayer Book was an "icon" of pre-Sixties, pre-conciliar culture that many A-Cs rallied behind, even though they didn't use it in its pure, Protestant form. The ordinariates aren't really an ecumenical rescue but a way for Catholics to backtrack, learning from them to undo the effects of the council. "A dry run for the Lefebvrists" as one wag put it. Let's hope so. I have no jones for the Prayer Book such that I'd need it every week, partly because I've read English history. So I'm Tridentine, like St. Clement's Jr.

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