Monday, February 20, 2006

Choice of Venue

So because, well, you know, they care so much about defending the sacred nature of places and things (i.e. finding any possible opening to grind ideological axes), our friends on the right have gone bonzo-cubed over Bishop Randy Calvo's ordination on Friday, held at the Reno Hilton Pavilion....

The chrism still fresh on his head, the venue's location has already led to accusations of "broken communion," violations of liturgical law, and all your usual rituals of convenient demonization.

We can be sure the new bishop starts his ministry encouraged by such well-wishing.... Who appointed him, again?

Anyways, as Calvo's choice of venue has seemed to encite the (quite new) conservative message that any bishop ordained in a place which isn't his Cathedral church is basically a heterodox sacrilegious heathen -- at least, in the "faithful orthodox magisterial etc. etc." superiority complex -- then let's consider:
  • Bishop Thomas Olmsted of Phoenix -- banned pro-choice, etc. public officials from speaking on church property; issued strenuous warning on Hans Kung's appearance in Phoenix; recently mandated NFP for all couples who want a Catholic wedding in the diocese; "under obedience," ordered nine Phoenix priests to remove their names from a gay rights petition seemingly out of compliance with church teaching -- ordained coadjutor-bishop of Wichita in the Century II Convention Center, 20 April 1999
  • Bishop Robert Baker of Charleston -- recently wrote a book with Fr Benedict Groeschel; signed a 2004 letter with the bishops of his province stating that "Catholics serving in public life espousing positions contrary to the teaching of the Church on the sanctity and inviolability of human life, especially those running for or elected to public office, are not to be admitted to Holy Communion in any Catholic church within our jurisdiction"; told local paper that "Catholic public officials who consistently support abortion on demand are cooperating with evil in a public manner," etc. -- ordained bishop of Charleston in the North Charleston Convention Center, 29 September 1999
  • Bishop Robert Francis Vasa of Baker -- new darling of American Catholic right-wing: former vicar-general of Lincoln; showed up at a VOTF meeting in somebody's backyard and castigated those in attendance; known for uncompromisingly clear stances on life and doctrine issues; recently implied that pro-choicers are guilty of heresy -- ordained bishop of Baker in the Three Sisters Convention Center, Redmond, Oregon, 26 January 2000
Call me naieve, but I don't see the "Where was his Cathedral?" card being played against these guys.

However, if the Calvo Standard is to be applied in a fair and balanced manner, then I await hearing the right's declaration that every bishop ordained in a place which wasn't his Cathedral church is a raving loony heterodox.

It's nice when the facts -- and the fury -- just speak for themselves.