The two of you who remember will recall my post when I came out badly worsted from suggesting, on his blog, that Damian Thompson might not have understood something. He is a very talented journalist with a gift for summarising complex issues into succint stories. There were various things I didn't like about his blog, and his aficionados, but I have found more and more over the last few months that his postings were hitting the bull time after time, and if his tone was at times a bit off-putting, his message was spot on.
We learned today via Fr Ray Blake that the Hierarchy is putting pressure on the owners of the papers he works for to tone Damian down. Fr Z (whom God preserve) has picked up on this as well.
I might have minded only a bit about this, but, by one of those coincidences, I spent yesterday reading Fr Aidan Nichol's "Looking At The Liturgy". (My Mother-in-Law is staying for Christmas and New Year: she always sends me money to buy books, but a few days before Christmas we remembered that I'd have to have something she could wrap with my daughter and give to me on Christmas Day. I'd thought of a couple, but Amazon recommended "Looking at the Liturgy" so I ordered it without even looking at the summary.)
How could I have missed this book previously! It is the most devestating and unanswerable summary of where, why and how a liturgical disaster occurred in the Church in the second half of the 20th century. Reading it - I went straight through it and then reread it straight away! - opened a window on how things should be and why they aren't.
One of the reasons for why things aren't as they should be is that the mindset which infuses the Suppository (The Tablet - geddit?) is the same mindset which infuses the Hierarchy of England and Wales. It knows that it is right and has a condescending attitude to the poor ignoramuses who are tied to old ways. One of the "South Coast" Bishops recently rebuked me (indirectly) for asking for more Masses in school: "we need fewer Liturgies of the Eucharist, and more Liturgies of the Word". It is a mindset which uses the authority of the Episcopacy when threatened by critics who revere the institution of the Episcopacy.
Damian has felt unthreatened by mere Bishops because he is defending mere Catholicsm. So they have decided to use mere bullying to take him on. This is shameless on their part!
So, although I think that Damian and I might not last longer than a single shared glass if we met at a do, I have decided that this issue is binary: it's him or them. And I'm siding with him.