Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Heart Speaks to Heart


I tried reading this, it was just too much effort. I've got sinusitis, I am sure it is that, not the document.
What do think? Let us try and be positive.

Added later
It really is dreadful, the hard copy arrived earlier this morning. Too much text, too many words, too much waffle.
If a document was designed not to be read, this is it.
I really do think we must be concerned abour our peoples' hard earned money being frittered away by an incompetant administration during this visit.

Who wrote this?
Who designed this?
Who sanctioned its publication?
No wonder the Catholic Church in the UK continually fails to proclaim the Gospel.
I am I being hard. See the document yourself and judge, someone needs to be sacked over this.

35 comments:

Thomasso said...

I'm trying very hard to be positive. But, having reed through it, I'm finding it even harder to stay positive.

Ah well, maybe things will get better - that's being more positive...I hope.

Annie said...

I had hoped to be able to say at least it was short, but it's not. Who precisely is it aimed at?

dominic said...

I'm afraid I'm finding it hard to be positive too.

Three points

(a) Newman didn't use that expression in English: to use the actual words would have been more appropriate.

(b) they should have got a good editor to cut and rewrite a lot of the text. Some of it rambles needlessly.

(c) Some of it seems too "defensive", written as though Catholicism is something to be ashamed of, precisely because it is at odds with the modern world and much contemporary and also more historically founded English/British establishment culture. Whereas in this context one would for something more unequivocably positive...

I wish I were surprised by the fairly dire quality of much of the leaflet, but alas...

georgem said...

Okay, Father, I'll be positive and just leave it to Barnum (or Lincoln).

Hestor said...

The slur on Fr. Faber is unwarranted IMHO.

E Y Steward said...

Hestor, Fr Faber's antics are well documented. Clearly, he must have been barking for Cardinal Newman wouldn't even be in the same room as him, and even left a Mass early to avoid seeing him.

E Y Steward said...

Talk about being repetitive - they make the point it's a State Visit at least 3 times on the first page. I think we get the point.

"Pope Benedict XVI arrives here
on September 16, 2010 at the invitation of Her Majesty the Queen. Her welcome makes this a
State Visit."

"Now 2010 will see a Pope address the entire population, at the request of the Queen."

"This is the first time a Pope has visited the UK at the invitation of Her Majesty the Queen."

Volpius Leonius said...

The cover is so abysmal I cannot even bring myself to bother reading it.

The match program from my local football team which gets about 500 people attending to watch them is better presented than this.

Lucy said...

It is dull. It has typos. I don't get if it is aimed at Catholics, or the general population. There is a lot of dry information to wade through and lots of repetition which makes me wonder if it was written by committee. I suppose it does at least explain again why the Pope is spending so little time with his people here. I gave up at the section about different faiths, so I can't really give a considered opinion

Sussex Catholic said...

This is the manifesto of a group of people who neither asked for nor want this visit to happen. They completely reject from an ideological point of view the Catholicism of Josef Ratzinger which they see as steeped in pre-conciliar and outdated concepts which have no place in the modern world. In its place they would propose a new Catholicism built from scratch and designed to reflect the ideology of the day incorporating those elements from historic Catholicism which are palatable to modern sensibilities. In that sense they are a fraud because they have no right to present this manufactured faux Catholicism as authentic and realise only too well that it is at odds with the version handed down over the centuries which this Pope is keen to preserve. It is only because they hold power over the Church in this country that they can presume to effect this deception but in the end it will be exposed for what it is.

Dominic Mary said...

It's turgid, repetitive, and all the other things people have said . . . and it's also unlikely to win friends at the Palace when the authors/editors/proofreaders can't even remember the elementary protocol that it is Her Majesty The Queen, not the Queen.

I'm sorry; I can't think of anything positive to say about it except that presumably it has provided work for a number of people.

Hippolytus said...

Father Ray - you are such an "extreme catholic" cf page 26 of the doc. I jest. This is a compliment. Am I being cyncical to associate this phrase with the use of the exact same phrase I have come across before to dismiss those with whom liberal catholics disagree.......you know those sort of extreme things like praying the rosary in public, eucharistic adoration, fidelity to the magisterium, preaching the Gospel of Life in its entirety including outright condemnation of the intrisic evil of contraception..and so on...well I'll end off now in case this starts to come across as a 'rant' but the booklet is really dreadful........i'd rather have sinusitus than have to read it again.

pelerin said...

Fr Ray says let's try and be positive about this document. Have tried but failed. It is an impossible task.

E Y Steward has pointed out the repetition on the first page that it is a State visit - as if we did not know it already - and it is just as if whoever wrote it had to produce x number of words so let's say it again, and again and again. Definitely far too much waffle and no, Father Ray, I do not think you are being hard. You are being truthful.

Physiocrat said...

The typographic design makes it very difficult to read at all. What a bunch of philistines. What happened to the great tradition of Catholic typographers?

Rarely can such a amateurishly produced piece of typography have been printed in such large numbers

Volpius Leonius said...

From the cover you wouldn't even know it was catholic that irks me most upon reflection especially as I suspect that is a deliberate choice given that avoiding anything that identifies something as Catholic seems to be the standard form which must be met to receive the go ahead by the English branch of the Church.

pelerin said...

As Fr Ray has put in his title, and as I have discovered from all sites referring to Cardinal Newman, his motto in English is actually 'Heart speaks to Heart.' I wondered why the word 'unto' was substituted and why it reminded me of something and it suddenly came to me! The Bishops must have been influenced by the BBC whose motto is or was 'Nation shall speak unto nation.' More secular influence in what should have been an inspiring spiritual document to prepare us for Pope Benedict's visit.

Sonia said...

I would guess this publication is not meant for the well informed or committed Catholic, cradle or otherwise, but is, perhaps, meant to address the misinformed consumer. The Queen's approval, political discipleship, ecumenicalism, evangelisation and history lessons in thirty odd pages with only scant jargon might allow the average anti-papist with an opinion and an audience to ponder some important facts and figures (something they are sometimes better at pretending to come to grips with than more subtle communications). It seems to be trying to take the opportunity of the media focus on the Papal visit to give some depth of response to the facile and just plain erroneous media rhetoric with regards to faith and the church expounded by likes of Hitchens, Fry etc. and all those who have tried to convince equally virulently uninformed 'consumers' of sound-bite Catholicism of it's disposability. The historical background, the placing of the Papal Visit under the aegis of the Queen of England, the highlighted quote from Cardinal Newman, "Catholicism is a deep matter - you cannot take it up in a tea cup", seems to be addressing the deriding and desposing of Catholicism and the faithful by media joustings and jokers who have absolutely no educational or traditional standing upon which to say anything about the historical and social faith and charitable community that is the Catholic Church. Hopefully people will take the time read it - it's not quite a teacup, more a large mocchiato, but worth the short sitting to consume if the average 'outsider' is genuine about getting some balance with regards to what they've been told to dismiss with an uninformed self-righteous flick of the wrist. If nothing else the understanding that the sudden disapperance of the Catholic Church would remove a great chunk of the charitable, green and educational presence on the face of the planet should give those who wish to peek behind the sound-bite pause before they start getting het-up over the Pope's visit.

gemoftheocean said...

IT seems aimed at a young teenage audience who know bupkis about the faith or history. So my guess is that it is a guide for journalists who will be covering this event.

Considering the dripping condescension, I expect the average person reading it would throw it against a wall shortly after scanning the "chapter" headings.

FWIW I don't recall anything similar produced in the US when the pope came over here a few years ago. I think the general attitude was "hey, the pope is coming let's have a good time and go see him if we can." So the pope went to see GWB and the White House remembered it was his birthday and gave him a nice reception complete with cake and all, and then he went on his pastoral visit to various places and a splendid time was had by nearly all. [Save for curmudgeons who hate the pope and the church anyway.]

Mick said...

Was going to read it, won't bother now. Thanks everyone, I'll say the Rosary instead.

df said...

E Y Seward wrote: "Fr Faber's antics are well documented. Clearly, he must have been barking for Cardinal Newman wouldn't even be in the same room as him, and even left a Mass early to avoid seeing him."

This is simply not a balanced picture of the oft-maligned Fr Faber (and doesn't reflect too well on Newman either). Besides which the fact that the two convert priests did not always see eye-to-eye does not make one barking, nor does it make one moderate and one extreme.
It is worth noting that thousands turned up to Faber's funeral, as they did to Newman's, and that he received many hundreds of pious souls into the church and that his books on the spiritual life were wildly popular, and constantly being reprinted due to demand until his style fell out of fashion. Moreover, he was lauded in his life and at his death by the prelates of the Church both at home and abroad. These are not the results of one who is 'barking'.
It seems that E Y Seward and the author of the booklet under discussion fall into the same trap as many others, who either out of ignorance or out of malice believe that to present Newman as a Saint Faber must be portrayed as a a crazed extremist. Aren't we Catholics? Why does it have to be Newman OR Faber? We should celebrate Newman AND Faber.

GOR said...

I just couldn't stomach it - especially when they got to how 'eco-friendly' and 'green' the Vatican State is...!

Physiocrat said...

@Sonia

Almost nobody will read it, the task is too difficult. The text is just a mass of grey print that swims in front of your eyes.

Sonia said...

@physiocrat

A wee bit like shovelling gravel but a wee sit in the sun half-way through lends to a more philosophical approach.

Just another mad Catholic said...

I'm afraid I must second Dominic Mary

Richard Duncan said...

This is a fairly good explanation of what Newman (probably) had in mind when choosing “Cor ad cor loquitur” as his motto.

In Ecclesiastical Latin, “ad” + the accusative can be used as a substitute for the dative case, and can be legitimately translated either by “to” or “unto”. The idea that it reflects a secularist or BBC plot is ridiculous.

mikesview said...

Father Ray - Yes, it is a load of tosh and let that truth be noised from the rooftops. From what most of your 'posters' say, if you didn't have sinusitis before reading this book, you almost certainly would have had after.

Independent said...

As Fr Blake has pointed out Pope Benedict is not a 19th century ultramontanist. Neither was John Henry Newman, but Ward, Faber, and Manning were. It is interesting that the pamphlet leaves out Manning.

Richard Reeves said...

I think it's fair to say that Cardinal Newman found Faber to be a thorn in his side. Hence the long and bitter dispute between the Birmingham and London Oratories which began in 1855, and was only resolved when Cardinal Newman travelled to Rome and begged Pope Pius IX to give London a seperate foundation brief. He didn't want to be associated in any way with Faber and the Ultramontines.

Edward P. Walton said...

It is not perfect but I rather enjoyed it, especially the part about Bonnie Prince Charlie. The Church in England was never a national church.

nickbris said...

Bit like High Mass under the old rite.

df said...

Richard Reeves - I think you misunderstand the Newman-Faber argument, which had nothing to do with Ultramontanism, and everything to do with a personality clash over the interpretation of a small piece of Oratorian legislation.
It's simply untrue to say that Newman "didn't want to be associated in any way with Faber" and misleading to lump Faber in with "the Ultramonines".
Again - one doesn't have to bash Faber to be approving of Newman.

Edward P. Walton said...

The lighted candle is preeminently a Catholic symbol. It reminds one of Penal times when a lighted candle was placed in a window, as a signal that it was safe for the priest to come into the house.

The IN PRINCIPIO - A light shining in the darkness and the darkness was not able to overcome it.

independent said...

Fr Ker, in his massive biography of Newman,( p 472)clearly does see the Newman Faber clash as part of the struggle with the ultramontanists. He says "The quarrel between Faber and Newman was to some extent only part of a larger split in the Catholic Church which was to widen finally into a chasm ....".

Certainly they were very different people and Newman was ever aware of Faber's real value while saying that he did not trust him. As Newman said (Ker p 477)" I found that there was that in Fr Faber, with all his good qualities and talents which made it impossible to trust him".

Mena said...

"The lighted candle is preeminently a Catholic symbol."

I thought this wa a ref to Elton John and Princess Di!

Edward P. Walton said...

Does anyone still remember CANDLEMAS DAY?