The Shepherd fires a curve ball at the sheep

“We worship not the Graces… but Fashion. The head monkey at Paris puts on a traveler’s cap, and all the monkeys in America do the same.”

So wrote that keen observer Henry David Thoreau in his 1854 classic Walden.

Then there is the 32 year old young fogey, Toronto diocese priest,  freshly minted from the seminary who said that he would never wash women’s feet  during a Holy Thursday liturgy. The famous Johannine story is only mentioned in the Fourth Gospel.It is of course a powerful parable of the servant Christ.

This sad priest is not very different from those bishops who continue to outrage Catholics by doing the same.

But wait!

The “head monkey” in Rome Pope Francis has just fired another shot across the calcified bow of the Holy Roman Church by (gasp, can it be true) washing female feet (and say it isn’t so, Muslim feet) at a juvenile detention facility in Rome.


This is against Roman church policy though most intelligent pastors reject it bit it would be worthwhile to find out how many putative leaders in Canada continue this outrageous discriminator practice.

Now it will be interesting to watch “the monkeys in america” these reactionary bishops who slavishly follow Rome’s outmoded dicta.

My guess is like all unimaginative  bishops they will quickly follow suit now that “head monkey” Francis has set such an inclusive example. And so it will be when we start ordaining women. The sheep will all chorus,”I always believed this but…..”



  1. 1

    You need healing, buddy. You need healing. You take a beautiful gesture like this and turn it into something that drips with cynicism, anger, ridicule, condescension, and it ends with a non sequitur. You need healing. Once that takes place, you’ll be able to teach once again with credibility.

  2. Let us be thankful that we now have a pope who is making a big effort to show us how to live Christ’s message in our current time. There is no need to denigrate bishops, many of whom are most likely sincere, who followed outdated dicta.

  3. 3

    Pay the begrudgers no mind, Ted, and keep on firing those curveballs, yourself.

  4. 4
    wmgrace Says:

    Thanks Ted. It’s always reassuring to see and hear someone who loves the faith (and the church) enough to speak out against the many outrageous – even criminal – actions and policies of those who have been entrusted with caring for and governing the Catholic church. And at considerable personal risk and cost – I have no doubt about that. Of course you walk the talk as well as anyone. We cannot, unfortunately, say that about many of our church leaders.

    Just to keep the baseball metaphor going, I hope Francis can keep his eye on the ball, maybe get a hit or two, knock in some much needed runs to get the thing back in the game. Home runs are a bonus. He’ll need excellent defensive skills – that goes without saying. No, we’re not talking World Series here, just respectability.

  5. 5

    “My guess is like all unimaginative bishops they will quickly follow suit now that “head monkey” Francis has set such an inclusive example. And so it will be when we start ordaining women. The sheep will all chorus,”I always believed this but…..”

    You know, I guess you are all right. We should have listened to Pope Ted all along. He’s the real Brass Monkey! But it will take many more years before we reach the level of his mind. You’ll just have to be patient with us slow, dull witted, criminal minded, right wing, unjust, patriarchal, exclusivistic, misogynistic morons for another 10 years or so. But we’ll get there. And if it takes longer and Pope Ted is dead and buried, we’ll go to his grave site and have a para liturgy, we’ll hold hands, smudge our faces with mud and ash, light incense, beat on the drum that recalls the sound of the heart of mother earth beating in rage at the misogynistic spuds heads in the Vatican who failed to heed the prophetic voice of Pope Ted of Toronto. And he’ll be canonized someday: St. Ted, social justice activist, courageous prophet, who boldly stood up and looked the hierarchy in the eye and spat. If only they would listen to him now. But all the great prophets were ignored and despised by the establishment.

    Pope Ted: Thank you. You are a true Monkey, the real McMonkey. I was blind, but now I see.

  6. 6
    Joe Schmidt Says:

    Long life, Yed Cannot imagine the journey without your light on the trail Joe Schmidt

RSS Feed for this entry

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: