The Peanut Gallery

I noticed that Fulton Sheen’s beatification is delayed. Apparently the devil’s advocate or whatever they call the process in Rome, wasn’t satisfactory to “several” US bishops. Lots of Catholics up-in-arms about it, pinning the blame on their favorite prelates, the ones from Chicago, San Diego, or New York. By the way, is Francis Spellman still in the USCCB?

If these bishops are indeed anonymous, I don’t know why the skeptics wouldn’t have been from places like Lincoln or Saint Louis. And I mean during their golden age, 2005-13, not this moment. Fulton Sheen was the first US prelate to speak out against the Vietnam War. He was also an advocate for race relations in my hometown (where he was bishop 1966-69). Anti-war, anti-racist–I’d think Republican bishops are behind this. If we’re talking politically motivated.

Supposedly, there was an event in which Bishop Sheen walked in on a priest having sex with a woman. It’s not clear to me how “several” current bishops would be in the know about that. The timeline of the man’s duty in ArchNY was 1951-66. It’s pretty well known Cardinal Spellman wasn’t a fan.

My take is that right-leaning Catholics are working on short fuses these days. I moseyed on over to theNCReg the other day to see what their film reviewer had to say about “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood.” It was equal parts entertaining, amusing, and sad. Neither the main protagonist nor the actor portraying him were Catholic. Tom Hanks must be a bad guy because he took a paycheck for playing Robert Langdon. Fred Rogers was a white supremacist. Stuff like that. Except for Deacon Greydanus’ defense of these two celebrities, the most edifying comment was the last: “Comments are no longer being accepted on this article.”

It’s really too bad that more Catholics don’t follow that guideline.

As for saints, and saints-to-be, we’ve dodged a bullet or two recently. Fr Maciel chief among them. Bishops are not a very popular lot these days. And even the one who do generate a following, often have a strident and vocal minority chewing off on anything they say to anyone else.

My thinking is this … Peoria and New York had their own turf war over the deceased’s remains. There’s been a surprising amount of tussle over the guy from Peoria who made good. A lot of his colleagues were envious of him–that strikes me as personal more than political. And who knows what motivates bishops these days.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in the Pacific Northwest, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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