Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Plug This: Bad Catholic

In resurrecting a former Tuesday feature highlighting little-known participants in the Catholic blogosphere, why would we here at mwbh pick one that is affiliated with the "Catholic Channel" on Patheos, and therefore already invited to sit at the cool kids table? (Oh, and we hear they get paid, which makes them "professional Catholics." Or something.)

Good question. Because when it comes to "Catholic blogs," most of them read like this:

Yada yada yada Roman Catholic yada yada Pope Benedict yada yada Mother Teresa yada yada yada feminist nuns yada yada yada Latin Mass yada yada yada Obama is the antichrist yada yada yada yada cute pictures of my homeschooled kids yada yada ...

They all say they're about bringing the Faith into the culture as a way of life, of viewing the world, as opposed to mere "church chat." The closest most of them get to life outside the sanctuary door, is when they talk about politics, and then make that an excuse for "church chat." Go from one to the other. After awhile, they all start looking (which is to say, reading) alike, especially when some of them do a lot of linking to each other's stories. The result is a form of inbreeding, which if it were people, would be illegal in most states.

On the other hand, there's this guy: Bad Catholic

This week's pick certainly doesn't need our help in filling his combox, not with two or three hundred readers ready to pounce on anything the previous guy wrote, or "obviously" was inferring.

At some point, he manages to explain himself. Marc John Paul (which doesn't include his last name, and it's already a mouthful) is a nineteen-year-old cradle Catholic -- not a convert; how refreshing! -- from New Jersey, currently a student at (where else?) Franciscan University of Steubenville, where he majors in literature, at least until he changes his mind -- again. That's him in the photo, on the left.

(That girl he's with, she cleans up pretty nice, doesn't she? No danger of inbreeding here.)

This is a Catholic blog, true, but it’s neither a ministry nor an apostolate. Catholicism is not something I write about, Catholicism is the only thing that makes the world make sense, and thus the only thing worth writing about. I don’t know if that distinction makes any sense.

Of course it makes sense, sonny boy! Take a look at your own writing. Stuff like "5 Things No One Knows Are Ridiculously Catholic, But Should." Or even "In Case You Needed Another Reason to be Catholic ..." Who the hell else writes stuff like this? I mean, besides Dr Thomas Woods, and, uh, moi? And who would ever drop a bomb like this one: "I believe in God because the Jews terrify me." Why do they terrify him? For once, it's not because they supposedly own all the banks. Read for yourself.

If there is to be another voice in the Catholic blogosphere, we have our fill of ecclesiastical gadflies, dumb Photoshop tricks, and converts who become experts on the Faith overnight. Let it be someone who not only has something to say, but who takes what others say, and turn it on its ear. It is not enough to get attention; anybody can with a desire to do so. The hard part is keeping attention, or specifically, giving the reader cause to pay attention.

In at least one case, being "Bad" isn't so bad. All of us are bad; not all of us want to be good. The saints were among the first to admit it, which is one reason that they are saints.

There's always room for more, don't you think?

Or don't you?

(Images of Patheos trademark and Marc John Paul are used here without permission or shame.)

1 comment:

Gail Finke said...