Wednesday, April 6, 2016

The Wrath of Joshua McElwee

I've just been unceremoniously blocked on Twitter by National Catholic Reporter's Vatican correspondent Joshua McElwee for the following exchange:

As I choke back the tears, I can't help but wonder which is more disturbing: McElwee's fawning over Pope Francis for doing what every politician/celebrity has done since forever, his knee-jerk reaction to an image of Adolf Hitler, or his overlooking my sly inclusion of Justin Bieber as a world leader.

Hopefully this kerfluffle won't damage my chances of being picked up as a columnist for NCR.


  1. Hilarious! Indeed, if you take communist tyrants, fuhrers, princes, Merkels, lamas, pop stars and incredibly humble popes, probably the ONLY thing they have in common is interacting with crowds. What an unbelievably asinine thing for that reporter to say.

  2. Glad to see you back, young man. And from me too congrats on your beautiful new baby. That is our only hope now, along with the Rosary - have babies, lots and lots of babies.

    I detect a new edge to your voice. This is the time, sad to say, when not a strident tone, but a clear, sharp tone is needed.

  3. Thank you so much, dear Barbara! Right now I'm getting ca. 4 hours of sleep each night, which might be having an effect on my mental filter. I'll try to keep a close eye on it.

  4. I did not mean my remark about the sharpness in your tone to be negative. On the contrary. Your voice has always been respectful. I meant that you can still bring all that quality to situations that cry out for plain comment.

    This seems to be lacking in many blogs, and certainly many, many comments on them. There is a not-so-fine line between sharp, clear statements, and lack of charity.

    I have been 'stuck' in my Bible reading these days. Stuck on Matthew Chapter 5. The whole discourse from Our Lord on the Mount is the way He would have us LIVE. Sometimes I wonder if He was serious - did He not see the world we would make for ourselves 2,000 years after His return to Heaven? Doesn't He see how hard it is to be charitable in the face of Pope Francis teachings?

    Is there a way to reconcile Matthew Chapter 5 with living in the modern world? Francis would say no, because we are different now, and more complex situations have arisen. But Our Lord says the opposite, that it's because we think that way that we are awash in sin and debauchery.

    If only Francis' whole document was a reflection on living the way He showed us.

  5. I'm suffering along with you, dear Barbara. This document is simply breathtaking in parts. For example, §297:

    "No one can be condemned for ever, because that is not the logic of the Gospel!"

    The same paragraph goes on to suggest that grave personal sin and even schism/heresy should not exclude a person from "taking part in the life of community, whether in social service, prayer meetings or another way that his or her own initiative, together with the discernment of the parish priest, may suggest."

    What are we supposed to do with that? I mean, really?


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