I Will Stop Just Short of Saying “All Catholics Are Crazy”

cute nun.jpgJesus was a cool dude.  He talked to anyone and everyone, from hookers to farmers to gladiators to fisherman.  I bet he’d even talk to Cub fans. 

He had long hair.  He had no earthly possessions.  He was nice to everyone.  He was compassionate, well-spoken and he didn’t judge others based on their ideas or actions; he left that up to his daddy.

So after two thousand years I have to ask: where did all those ideals go?

Catholic church, I think it’s about time you get over yourself.

The Tigers’ home opener is on a Good Friday, during holy hours?  This offends you, Catholics?  Whaa whaa whaa!  Cry me a river so I can walk on it and impress my friends with my mad Jesus skillz.  What!?! 

Exactly.

Your hardline is just as insane.

Take it easy on the Tigers, will ya, Catholics.  They’re in terrible shape and the last thing they need right now is a religious scandal scarring their opening day attendance.  Besides, have you taken a look at the empty industrial shell known as the city of Detroit?  Do you think the city or the team actually cares about what offends you and what doesn’t?  The Tigers organization (and I can’t believe I’m defending them here) is a business. Business.  How many other businesses will close during your precious holy hours just because you think they should and you will be offended if they don’t?  Will McDonald’s close its doors?  How about the crack dealers?  Will there be a moratorium on rock sales during the holy hours?  Will you police that if they don’t?  And what about Little Caesars?  Do you think they’ll shut down shop during your holy hours?  No, sir, not while there are $5 pizzas that taste like crap to sell in order to pay off Gary Sheffield’s walking papers to the tune of some 14 million bucks! 

But the story doesn’t end there, does it?  You’re always in a tiff about something.  Whaa whaa whaa, we don’t want Barack Obama, the leader of the free world, to give a commencement day speech at Notre Dame because he supports stem cell research — an effort that only aims to help people, heal people, give people hope.  You don’t want Obama on your campus because he promotes progressive thinking, the freedom to choose, the American dream… and I guess all those awful, terrible ideals just don’t have a place in the rigid backwardness of the Catholic church, do they?

No, not as long as your higher-ups continue to challenge the existence of the Holocaust; not as long as your bishops suggest more Catholics died during the Holocaust than did the Jews; not as long as your elders continue to diddle little boys and get away with it.

Ask yourselves this, Catholics: What would Jesus do?

I’m pretty sure Jesus would say: Play Ball!

Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeffy

20 Comments

Hmmm…this is a tough one Jeff – I am a Catholic, BUT I do not blindly follow the “company line”. I can understand the concern – it is one of the holiest days in the Church calendar and no matter what you might feel about the men who run that institution today, Good Friday is not about them; it is about the suffering and death of Jesus – who if you believe – suffered and died for us mere mortals. And Jeff – sadly there were plenty of deaths to go around during the Holocaust. My father’s family are Catholics from Poland and some of them died then also. And like it or not, a Catholic College/University can invite who they want. While I personally think there should be stem cell research, a private institution can invite who they want or not. It’s much in the same way we have a problem here at Boston College – people are complaining because there are crosses in the classrooms. Hello! You are attending a Jesuit school, what do you expect?? There is plenty of blame and anger and hate to go around. If only life could be as simple as saying “Play Ball.”

Julia
http://werbiefitz.mlblogs.com/

The problem, Julia, is that that private institution DID invite him. It’s the outside Catholics whining in the institution’s ear. And didn’t Jesus die in Central Asia? What time is 1pm in Central Asia? That’s when they should stop all business if they really want to. They can’t expect any business to shut down just for them. We still play baseball on the Sabbath. You don’t hear Jews whining about that. Television programs will still be broadcasting during those “holy hours”, magazines will be sold, books will be read. If a believer wants to take those few hours to reflect on Jesus’ sufferings, fine, do it. That’s an individual’s right; but said believer shouldn’t force me to do the same… or a baseball team or any other business/person. We all have the right to live our own lives… mine will not be dictated by a religion I don’t practice… so no one else’s should either. As for the holocaust, sure, lots of people died… but let’s face it: the Jews were the ones who really got the raw end of that deal. The problem here is, these bishops are belittling the sufferings of the Jewish people, which is a big slap in the face. It’s embarrassing really.
–Jeff

As a St. Louis fan and fellow Chicagoan, I frequently enjoy your banter and comments on this blog. What a great opportunity to bring forth the reality about the Cubs.

It’s very chic to be anti-Catholic, and I commend you for such an original and well researched theological attack on Catholics. You don’t really quite understand that Jesus started the Catholic Church, but with some additional research, you’ll see the connection (might I suggest Matthew 16:13-19 ). And another somewhat important point: Jesus did place judgment on the world around him; him and his dad have a partnership, you’d say. See, they bat for the same team. Have you heard of them? The Holy Trinity.

Also, I wonder if a daring blog such as yours would take the next step to be anti-Muslim or anti- atheist? If people of other faiths choose to honor their God (or lack there of), and miss a treasured game of baseball, we respect their religious freedom. Catholics always seem to get the short end of the stick ball.

How dare any Catholic voice that President Obama should not be HONORABLY acknowledged at a treasured Catholic educational institution! Because Catholics are JUST offended by his position on stem cell research?! A small gap in your research. Hey, spring training is pretty much over, you’re behind. Just for starters, Obama has spoken openly about his support of FOCA (Freedom of Choice Act) which would deny ‘freedom of conscience’ to medical providers and institutions. FOCA would require mandatory abortion services by doctors even if the doctor chooses not to perform such procedures in alignment with his conscience. Sounds like a sincere slap in the face to the hundreds of Catholic hospitals and health care providers around the country whose missions are in alignment with their founding Catholic principles. Oh wait, religious freedom is cool, just not for Catholics. Let’s just be polite, and sit idle while President Obama insults our medical and educational institutions. He is the new messiah after all, and we should probably honor him for dying on the cross on Good Friday, too. How dare Detroit insult Pres. Obama on Good Friday!

Ya know, I hear China’s got some religious persecution and denial of civil liberties all of its own. I understand you’ve spent some time living and researching China. http://tinyurl.com/chinabishops. Did you run into anything about denial of civil liberties to Catholics who wish to practice their faith in Communist China? I doubt any of them are super concerned about Detroit’s schedule, but being Catholic in China is criminal (with or without steroid use).

Baseball is good, in fact I love it. St. Louis will always be my team. But, Jesus’s sacrifice on Good Friday trumps both. You’ve got to admit, the Resurrection could be good for Detroit, too. And, I’m looking forward to celebrating with Catholics from Detroit, Notre Dame, China, St. Louis and Chicago. In fact, let me know if you’d like to join in. I’ve got the best seats in the house.

Peace,
Jayne

P.S. You might want to check out which MLB team has its city named after a French King (also Catholic Saint), and team name of a bird species which were named after the red vestments of Catholic Cardinals. I’m sure you wouldn’t back such a team! The Catholic fans in St. Louis and St. Louis’s Catholic tradition might not appreciate such religious persecution.

You’re stirring up all sortsa crap.
http://www.paullebowitz.com/

It’s not the fact that people are choosing not to go to the game; it’s that they’re whining about it to the newspaper. If you don’t want to go to the game, then that’s fine and I totally respect that. But this nonsense is national news and the articles keep quoting the same four people. The Tigers are not intentionally insulting Catholics.

~Katie
http://tigerfan22.mlblogs.com

Jayne — Okay, I’ll do more research. I’m afraid it won’t change my opinion though. I like your style, Jayne. At the end of the day, I’d like to take you up on those “best seats in the house”… but in the meantime, I’d prefer if the Muslims, the Jews, the Christians (Catholics), whatever, stay out of my affairs and allow me to live how I would like to live. I don’t see why this Tigers game is such a big deal honestly. The Lions play every Sunday… so what? You’re totally entitled to your opinion, your faith, your everything… but again, the issue here is that those ideals should not be forced on me or anyone or any baseball team and how they handle their business. And if Christians/Catholics are upset with ND for inviting the “messiah” to speak, they should take it up with ND. That’s all I’m sayin’. There are a lot bigger issues going on the world that need such attention. On to China… yeah, I know a thing or two about those persecutions, and it is terrible… still, I think the Chinese have a much better system of religious freedom which is roughly: believe what you want, practice what you want… the ONLY rule is, don’t try to press your ideals on others. Is said persecution wrong? Absolutely. But if the missionaries would just mind their own business and quit trying to tell people they’re going to rot in hell if they don’t believe in Jesus, the persecution wouldn’t exist. Right? I’m not saying it’s the best way, but if everyone stuck to their game, things would be fine. Whew. It amazes me that after millions of years of evolution, we human beings still can’t get along. Do your thang… just don’t expect that everyone will follow suit, nor should they. Still, I think you’re a pretty cool person to take the time to write all of that and you make a good argument. I give you mad props and tip my proverbial hat. Sincerely. No joke.
Prince — Guess you would know, yeah? Ha!
Katie — I agree :-)
–Jeff

I am a Catholic. However, this is a holiday for all Christian people. Obama is also Christian. A Christian is a follower of Christ. You ask, what would Jesus do? He would love his enemies as well as his friends, pray for his persecutors, forgive, do good to those who hated him, walk the extra mile, promote good over evil, life over death, and want us to do to the least of all people that which we would want to do for our loved ones. He wants us to know we are loved and to share that love with all through service. Its easy to talk about and hard to truly do.

Ask yourself this: Would you choose the Tigers over a dear close family member’s or friend’s funeral? This memorial is the foundation for a Christian. It is a passover from death to new life. The Tigers need prayers for new life. Thus one who wants to pray in a church and then cheer on the Tigers should be given that choice.
Nevertheless, I wish you peace and goodwill for you and the Tigers in 2009.

Aaron
http://mlbtribefan.mlblogs.com

Here is a compromise. During the pregame hold optional services. Then Catholics get to go to church and the game. Its a twofer

Aaron — In short, no, I would not choose a baseball team over a loved one, but to me — a non-Christian — this is not a valid comparison. If it is for you, that’s great. I have no problem with that. But realize that there are millions of us who aren’t going to be spending those hours doing that, so we (and the Tigers organization) should be allowed to do whatever we want. That’s all. And for the record, Al is the Tigers fan. My heart is set on the birds on the bat ;-)
–Jeff

Wow. Look what I missed today. You do stir the pot, Jeff, and you manage to do it with your usual intelligence and wit. Hats off.

- http://janeheller.mlblogs.com

Oh Mr. Lung, I do love your opinions. I think it’s pretty unreasonable for the Catholic church to be asking to change the time of the game. Like you said, football is on every Sunday. I mean, major Jewish holidays aren’t even acknowledged and don’t get any kind of breaks. The idea that the world should be put on hold because there are people out there who are offended by something coinciding with the time that Christ died is absolutely irrational. I commend you for taking on such a topic.
Emily
http://deconstructingthoughts.mlblogs.com/

Jesus strikes me as more of a contact hitter. A little bit of a slugger, but a complete player. He’d probably bat around .340 I’d say. That is Lou Gerhig’s career average. I’d say Lou Gerhig is baseball’s Jesus.
http://homerfoodandhistory.mlblogs.com/

I agree with you, Jeff. People need to prioritize. If you’re Catholic and that’s important to you, don’t go to the game during holy hours. It’s ONE baseball game. I understand it’s the home opener, but get over it. It’s baseball. Yes, baseball’s a huge part of my life, but if my religion was more important to me, then I’d sacrifice baseball. I’m not very religious anymore, so this is a moot point for me. Maybe it’s because I wasn’t raised Catholic so I don’t know, but why isn’t there an uproar because football is played on Sundays, baseball and basketball is played on Easter, and the NBA has a game or two (I have no idea how many) on Christmas? I’m sure there are players on the Tigers who are Catholic, and I haven’t heard any of them say they won’t play that day. Catholicism is not the only religion in this country, and I don’t think non-Catholics should have to live by Catholic rules. I never would have known the Tigers game was during holy hours if people hadn’t started complaining. I don’t know when holy hours are because the Lutherans didn’t teach me that. They just gave me a day off of school. And in college, the Jesuits gave me three days off. Only you guys could irritate people like this, which is why I love RSBS! :)
Jen
http://ajroxmywhitesox.mlblogs.com

Skipping church to go to a Tigers game? Isn’t that the kind of thing you go to hell for? Oh, wait…
-Erin
http://plunking-gomez.mlblogs.com

Wow, Jeff I am in awe of the way you can find a nerve and then without any real malice apply 10,000 volts of well thought out electricity to it. It’s impressive.
In our world where people are expected to move in packs or at least groups of two, people think it odd that I often go to baseball games by myself. My response is always, “Baseball is like church. You don’t need a date.”
I consider myself a “believer” and bear the Christian label, but I totally understand what Annie Savoy in Bull Durham means when she says, “The only church that truly feeds the soul, day in, day out, is the Church of Baseball.” At times, I feel more connected to my Creator at the ballpark than I do in church. So, Good Friday may find me at church, or it might find me at home following the Cardinals. Either way, my mortal soul will be fed.
-Kathy
http://redbirdchatter.mlblogs.com

This sounds like a this is turing into some drama. lol Well that’s a good blog cause it did it’s job. You’re getting a reactions out of people and getting comments about it.

~ King of Cali
http://kingofcali.mlblogs.com/

whoa am I worn out after that one. Jeff my vision of world tolerance and don’t force your ways upon me view, certainly has been passed on to you. Good job and keep up the good work.

Jeff,

Imo, the brief article on the Tiger game conveys more individual Catholic fretting than influence, let alone any institutional coercion. There’s a priest who says the game will cut into his sermon and a torn dude who thinks the game time “kinda” insults Catholics. All 30 teams play on Good Friday and MLB (inherently interested in appealing to large demographic groups) obviously doesnt care.

It just seems like poor soil from which to sprout off on Holocaust denying, pedophilliac bishops, etc. and something more akin to the garbage I usually write :-)

Still love ya,

Matt
http://diamondhacks.blogspot.com/

Thanks Matt. In my own defense, I spent like 45 minutes researching this topic. I also invoked the spirit of D’hacks to find my voice and write some crap you might be proud of ;-)
–Jeff

You raise some good points here, I don’t have time at the moment to go into full detail on what I think about this post, but I’ll just say… if faith is truly based on a God who forgives, I think he’ll be OK with one baseball game being played on Good Friday.
Cheers,
~Casey
http://fantoday-sportscastertomorrow.mlblogs.com/

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