Letters to the Bishop

Yang and Soap Suds

Your Excellency:

Right now the weather here is hotter than those vestments Pope Benedict refused to wear for World Youth Day.  By noon the sidewalks wiggle with waves of heat, and the very air leaks terrestrial perspiration.  The afternoons are too sultry to work in the garden of She-Who-Commands-My-Heart-and-My-Spade, and my preparations for teaching my fall classes are nearly complete.  With time on my hands, I surfed the net this morning, where my wandering fingers carried me to our diocesan website.

This website testifies to the gifts conferred by your teaching and leadership.  While caring for the poor and educating the young, including the worshipers of iPod and YouTube, you have also done much to strengthen the hearts of the faithful.  This past spring, for example, you asked your priests to become “slaves for the Lord,” old language which doubtless rang like music in the ears of your tougher padres.  The site also reported that 14 diocesan priests were recently trained to offer the old Latin Mass and can now celebrate “the Mass in the extraordinary form,” as it’s called.  A Catholic News and Herald article describes how Dr. William Thierfelder, president of Belmont Abby College, ordered the clauses permitting abortion, contraception, and voluntary sterilization stricken from the college’s employee health policy.  Despite protests and the threat of a lawsuit, Dr. Thierfelder...

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