Monday, December 20, 2010

Does Cardinal Sean's Blog Reflect What He is Doing With His Time?

BCI has top ten suggestions to improve Cardinal Sean's Blog.

Purportedly, Cardinal Sean's Blog is dictated by the Cardinal and put together by an affable and faithful Catholic, Antonio Enrique, editor of The Boston Pilot.

A PR disaster among the many in the Boston archdiocese, BCI pretty accurately describes the impression left by the entries with respect to what the Cardinal is doing with his time as the foundation of the structure of the diocese is crumbling.

In the Cardinal’s most recent post it took digging through 53 pictures and photographs and 35 page-downs to learn what Cardinal Sean did in Paraguay: he stopped in Buenos Aires en route, celebrated a number of Masses, visited the nuncio and his menagerie of animals, received an honorary doctorate degree and medallion, gave a talk on Catholic education, met with some Paraguay bishops, had a service at a Capuchin church, flew on a small prop jet to the City of San Pedro, received a key to the city from the mayor (in appreciation for benefactors in Boston who supported initiatives to feed local-area poor families and children), and met with the U.S. ambassador to Paraguay and President of Paraguay.

A lot of activity and photos in one trip, but one might ask, how did any of this help the Archdiocese of Boston, or even Paraguay for that matter? We cannot tell from the post.....

We recognize we are not exactly Shakespeare ourselves so are not exactly in a position to criticize the writing style of others. Still, in the wording of these posts and in others as well, it is no doubt unintentional on the part of the Cardinal or his writer, but the wording causes the Cardinal to come across sounding somewhat awestruck by the trappings of wealth and fame he is exposed to....

Let us for purposes of this post give the benefit of the doubt that maybe the Cardinal or the people who photograph his every move and/or help him write the blog just do not realize how the blog is making him appear: increasingly detached from the day-to-day needs and governance of the Boston archdiocese and increasingly associated with the rich and famous.

It is a must read. The suggestions for improvement are excellent, including a suggestion by a commenter to institute a "Cardinal Come Home" Program. Go ahead and laugh, but I'm afraid it couldn't be any closer to the fix that's needed in this diocese.

There is more coming tomorrow.

Check it out.


Terry Nelson said...

I don't know what is wrong with me, but I expected a Capuchin Cardinal Archbishop to have more going for him. I wonder if Boston is cursed?

Carol McKinley said...


Cursed is one word for it. :)

This is a tough place for a Cardinal, any Cardinal, but especially one who doesn't like confrontation. Too many people here who will take advantage of it. The more they realized it, the more they took advantage of it.

breathnach said...

Cardinal Sean's blog is puerile.

I go back every few months and check the content-page after page of pictures of the Cardinal. I expect that sort of self infatuation from a Paris Hilton not a Shepard of the Church.

Kelly said...

Breathnach, I think that the self-infatuation is unfair to our Cardinal. As fellow Catholics called to be one-holy-catholic and apostolic it is important for us to witness how our Cardinal is spending his time and sharing with other Catholic communities. Along with the Cardinal I am far from perfect, but I hope to represent my Church well and I believe that the Cardinal means the same.

Anonymous said...

Kelly, you right but doesn't Charity begin at home?

Anonymous said...

Maybe all those Frequent Flyer Miles can be given to the Retirement Fund?

Carol McKinley said...


It is like a parent, a father let us say, whose children have been abandoned, putting up a blog post about his travels with throngs of people groping for his handshake and living it up with the rich and famous in the manner which the Cardinal's blog demonstrates, while his own children are starving, being abused in various ways crying out for his help and he ignores them.

I cannot come to a conclusion about the reasons why he is doing what he is doing - but knowing what is going on in the Archdiocese, and looking at his blog, the observations people are making should not be pooh-poohed. It would be like telling the abandoned children as they cry out to not make judgments.

The father has abandoned his flock and the blog is a terrible reflection on how he is spending his time as his children cry out for help from the tyrants he has put in charge. I know it is difficult to hear, but I would be horrified to see a blog put up like that about me, especially knowing I was abandoning my most important obligations to my own children. Something is going terribly awry.

breathnach said...

Kelly, I understand your point and if the Church was flourishing in a more benign environment, I might agree with it. However, Saint Theresa of Avila did not mince words when confronting the clerics of her day (including the Pope) and as lay apostles we are required to do the same.

I have great admiration for the great Archbishop Fulton Sheen, however in his day he was rightly criticized for having an affection for the trappings of his office and hobnobbing with the elite. Ultimately, he had little regard for worldly possessions, and was more concerned with using the prestige of the elite to bring converts to Christ. I only wish Cardinal Sean could find a way to use his propensity for self involvement to better effect for the Archdiocese.

Michael said...

This excerpt from Pope Benedict's recent book, speaks eloquently to what I see as the main problem with the Cardinal's blog-it is almost entirely a public relations vehicle.

"Interviewer: A “culture of doubt” is very much in these days, and it has found a comfortable nest even in media outlets associated with the Church. In many cases, editors simply take over uncritically the slogans circulating among the usual critics of the Church. Bishops follow the lead of their media consultants, who recommend a soft line in order to avoid any damage to the bishops’ liberal image. And when, on top of that, huge media concerns belonging to the Church remove religious books from their main sales lists – doesn’t this raise doubts as to whether we can still speak credibly about new evangelization?

Pope Benedict: These are all phenomena that one can only observe with sadness. It is sad that there are what you might call professional Catholics who make a living on their Catholicism, but in whom the spring of faith flows only faintly, in a few scattered drops. We must really make an effort to change this. In Italy – where there are far fewer enterprises run by the Church as an institution – I observe the initiatives arise, not because they are set up by the Church as institution, but because the people themselves believe. Spontaneous new beginnings arise, not from institutions, but out of an authentic faith."

Anonymous said...

I am not a part of the Archdiocese of Boston, but have any of you ever considered that His Eminence's hands are tied by some sort of blackmail?

I know that the wise thing to do would be, if this is so, for him to say "To hell with it!" and let the chips fall where they may, especially in light of all the rancid smut that comes to light on a daily basis regarding our Catholic clergy. I mean, how much more scandalized can any of us be by what we find out?

Just a thought. And, for the record, I am no head in the sander, nor am I a pollyanna looking at the "bright side" of things. All of these churchmen are too smart to be so stupid, so there must be a very exceptional reason why they aren't doing what they are supposed to be doing.


non-faithfulcatholicschools said...

In response to what Anonymous said about there being a "very exceptional reason" for them not doing their job...there is. It boils down to the fact that they are intimidated by the Government, intimidated by the left wing "Catholic" liberals, intimidated by the "political correctness" that they think is necessary and they don't really care about their duty. They have achieved their sucess and that was their aim. A real good example of a Good Bishop was Scranton's Bishop Martino. He made some people very nervous by asking some tough questions (about Catholic Colleges) and basically told the USCCB to 'butt out' of his Diocese. He abruptly was "asked" to retire at only 63...virtually unheard of. (We will discuss his replacement at another time.) Only 83 out of 200+ had the guts to stand up against Notre Dame...just 83. VERY poor showing.
It takes real courage to be a true Catholic. Just read some of these Blogs and see how hard and deep real commited Catholics love their Faith. People of old died for this Faith...somehow, I feel we may be in the same boat.
Jesus Is Lord!
Tim M

Anonymous said...


So they are career men? What a pity. I wonder, though, what turned them. What I am saying is that at one point in their life they certainly had high ideals. Somewhere along the line those ideals were shattered by the reality of our Church. Now all they have to live for is tinsel.

For those of them who have any supernatural faith left, I wonder how they sleep at night?

Yes, people of old died for this faith, it is true. People today are dying for it too, but it is a dry martyrdom for those of us who remember saner days and have watched our faith and church being dismantled bit by bit. At this point, at the very end of the year 2010, at least for me, it is unrecognizable.


non-faithfulcatholicschools said...

Dear Veronica,
The fact that the American Catholic Church has sort of been the step-child of the Vatican as far as direction and leadership is concerned could be a good reason for their turning to "the dark side". I would expect them to have been Faithful in the beginning because, like a bride to her groom, it was 'new and exciting'. As time went by and they became jaded because of the heresy fomenting within their ranks by the Saul Alinski croud, they fell apart. Their Faith just wasn't deep enough or strong enough and the power got to them. The easiest way to change something is slowly from the inside. That's the Alinski way. He was very clear about it in his books..the Bible for socialism with out the large "S". That way the subtle changes won't be as noticable and those who do notice can be sluffed off as paranoid. Just look at Washington...It almost worked.
If you look at the way most of them "shepard" (small "s" for a reason)their flocks, you will see they sit behind their desks and tell the minions what to do, or the minions tell them what to do. Cardinal Sean a prime example. Rarely do you see a Bishop out and about and the ones who are doing it are very committed to the Church. Again, I refer to Bishop Martino...a very committed man they couldn't stomach. He wanted to do it right. I figure from what I'm seeing in my research, they are trying to hide behind the 'traditions' of the Church to do things the way they think is PC. Whether they are right or wrong doesn't even enter into the equation. Small "t" meaning procedural rather than Capital "T" for Meaningful Church Tradition. If you want to see what other Bishops are or are not doing, stop by my Blog and read what the schools are all about. That should pretty much turn your stomach. As far as sleeping at night...? That's what Lunesta is for...
Please be mindful of the Christians/Catholics in the Middle East that are physically dying for their love of Jesus. Remember them in your celebration of Christmas, the Day or Lord and Savior was Born!
Jesus Is Lord!
Tim M