Daily Archives: November 5, 2008

Developments Up North – St Mary’s South Brisbane and Fr Peter Dresser

Well, these guys are certainly forcing our bishops to act like bishops.

Cathnews reports

1) that St Mary’s South Brisbane looks like they have dug in their heels and won’t budge.

2) Bathurst priest Peter Dresser has declared that a human being can’t be God and so Jesus wasn’t God.

Re the first situation, Bishop Bathersby appears to be put in a spot he would rather not have had to deal with. Goodness knows how Bishop Pat Power would deal with the situation if he had too. On the one hand, I find it hard to understand why Fr Kennedy and his parish have refused the fairly simple request to use the authorised prayers for the Eucharist, put on an extra piece of clothing for the Mass, and having your lay people preach at events other than Mass? Heck, you could give way on all those things and still get on with your usual heresies – thousands of others are doing exactly that.

But of course, you and I know that there is a reason the Universal Church insists upon these things. And so does Fr Kennedy. Give him his due. Like the joke PE quoted in a recent combox:

Q. When did you stop being Catholic?
A. When I realised I wasn’t one.

For more stories on this, see I’ll excommunicate you: archbishop (The Australian, 3/11/08)
Brisbane church faces axe over liberal practices (ABC News, 2/11/08)
Bishop backs gay move by parish (Canberra Times, 3/11/08

But I wonder if (jumping to the other story now) Fr Peter Dresser is even aware that he isn’t Catholic any more? In an interview on Livenews (30/10/08)(‘Jesus was not God’ priest speaks to LIVENEWS.com.au ) he claims that he is “a very sincere Catholic” and said “I cherish my Catholic religion very much” – but if that is so, he has a funny way of saying it, viz:

“This whole matter regarding Jesus being God … not only does violence to my own intelligence, but must be a sticking point for millions of people trying to make some kind of sense of the Christian religion … No human being can ever be God, and Jesus was a human being. It is as simple as that.”

I would have thought that the doctrine of the Incarnation was a pretty basic factor in his cherished “Catholic Religion”. After all, isn’t that what it is all about?


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Resurrection of Cooees on All Souls Day?

Well, here’s something nice that happened while I was away: Cooees in the Cloister has become active once again. It seems that Hardman Window (sometime commentator on this blog), Hound of Heaven, the Warden and Mr Public Opinion are all back at it again since a new posting last Sunday.

Visit their blog here for a truly informed inside look at the Australian Church…

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And now for something completely different from the US Elections…

As I have said before, there is a Monty Python sketch for every occasion…

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The Birth of the Messiah?

Well, they (by which I mean a large percentage of Americans – Republicans and Catechism Catholics excluded) are celebrating like it’s Christmas over on the other side of the big pond.

And I must say that they have picked the more attractive candidate. As far as one can form an impression from this distance (and believe me we have had no shortage of media coverage of the election for World Leader), there wasn’t much to like about Senator McCain. And as much as I loved Sarah Palin and would really have enjoyed seeing what they made of her in Washington, I think that for her sake and for the sake of her family, she is far better out of it (although I have heard speculation that she might run on her own ticket in four years, I can’t really see it…)

But the thing about good leaders and responsible statesmen is that they really don’t need to be “likeable” or “popular” or even “attractive”. They have to be good governors who will preserve their nation in peace and prosperity while protecting the liberty and rights of every individual member of that society. When leaders have legislative authority they also need to be able to make good laws for the well being of all.

Today I listened to an edited version of the Acton Lecture by Father Robert Sirico given in Sydney when he was here for WYD. His basic thesis was an

explicit defence of that old liberal view, that the state is not God, and that the state that pretends to be God is the beast, or the anti-God, the anti-Christ. This [the separation of the ius sacrum (sacred law) from the emperor’s ius publicum (public law)] becomes then not just a strategic truth, but a doctrinal truth as well. The state no longer bears the burden of being a surrogate religious authority that reaches into the depths of conscience, its moral basis must refer to something outside itself, something beyond the state

What I wonder, with the rise of President-Elect Obama, is whether the voters have perhaps forgotten this separation, and whether many of them are looking to their new president to provide for them what only the Messiah (the real one) can really provide. There is a strange sense that the generation who could not abide their parents “Not Yet” and demanded (in answer to the question “When do we want it”) “We want it NOW”, have lost any sense of the eschatological and imagine themselves to have finally lived to see the dawn of the New Age itself…


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Been away…

Hi folks! Sorry about that “break in transmission” – I spent Reformation Day, All Saints, All Souls and the Monday and Tuesday of the 31st Week in Ordinary Time with my family and the families of three very good Lutheran-Pastor-friends (yes, I still have them!). More blogging tonight, I promise!


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