Yesterday we saw a couple of incredible things. The day started off with the Washington Post’s breaking news headline that [shocked face] declared the Vatican would NOT “bless” homosexual marriages. Never mind that such a “blessing” would create a bizarre situation where an organization that is opposed to sin as defined in the Old and New Testaments would be offering a divine blessing of a relationship that is “intrinsically disordered,” and, I would contend, blasphemous as it mimics a Sacrament. And yet, some people who allege to be Catholic had a sad over this. See my post The Washington Post Is Shocked the Pope Is Catholic and Is Now Reconsidering Its Views on the Scatological Habits of Wild Bears.
Shortly after the announcement that the Pope was still Catholic, aging [former?] rock legend Elton John, pictured below, on the right, along with his elderly mother, took to Instagram to castigate the defense of 2000 years of Christian teaching.
Elton John called out the Catholic Church after it was reported that the Vatican remains against same-sex marriage: “How can the Vatican refuse to bless gay marriages because they ‘are sin,’ yet happily make a profit from investing millions in #Rocketman?" https://t.co/2515xljGEV pic.twitter.com/yCk06BzdXi
— IndieWire (@IndieWire) March 16, 2021
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From The Advocate:
Fact-checkers at Newsweek confirmed that, indeed, the Vatican did invest about $1.2 million in Rocketman. In 2019, the Catholic Church’s governing body made a payment of $4.3 million toward the musical production, which was split with another blockbuster, Men in Black: International.
The investment is tied to Centurion Global Fund in Malta, the majority of which (two-thirds) is funded by the Vatican’s Secretariat of State department. Additionally, a portion of the investment is from Peter’s Pence, donations to the Vatican from individual members of the Catholic Church.
Despite profiting from the distribution of a gay film, the Vatican made pains to paint same-sex unions as sinful in its Monday announcement, which received the blessing of Pope Francis.
“It is not licit to impart a blessing on relationships, or partnerships, even stable, that involve sexual activity outside of marriage (ie, outside the indissoluble union of a man and a woman open in itself to the transmission of life), as is the case of the unions between persons of the same sex,” the announcement reads.
“The presence in such relationships of positive elements, which are in themselves to be valued and appreciated, cannot justify these relationships and render them legitimate objects of an ecclesial blessing, since the positive elements exist within the context of a union not ordered to the Creator’s plan.”
Two things stand out…no, that’s what I meant, you dirty-minded little whatevers. First, according to the Newsweek “fact check,” which looks suspiciously like some ran the original Corriere della Sera article through a translator:
Corriere della Sera reported that some of the many investments made by the Vatican, along with its investment in Rocketman, came from donations made to the Peter’s Pence collection offered to the Vatican by members of the Catholic Church.
“Peter’s Pence” is the collection plate taken at the Sunday closest to June 29, the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul. This collection goes directly to the Vatican. So the Elton John “biopic” investment was not made by some wealthy individual’s contribution or bequest. It came from the pockets of the men and women in the pews.
The second thing is this wasn’t merely an ode to Elton John’s musical career (full disclosure, I’ve loathed Elton John’s music since at least the time Levon, Tiny Dancer, and Crocodile Rock got saturation airplay on Top 40 radio stations), it is, as they used to say, as gay as the holidays…NTTAWWT.
And when it came to the full-on naked sex scenes, they got fully into it. “I felt Richard’s penis… On my leg,” he said. “We shot a scene where we are both naked on a bed and we are rolling around.”
He added, “I don’t really know how much further we could have gone.”
The Catholic Church is in a period of turmoil. I say turmoil and not “ferment” because fermentation can yield something quite nice at the end of the process. Turmoil, on the other hand, rarely produces anything positive. There are huge rifts that are apparent even to folks who aren’t anxiously divining the College of Cardinals’ bowel movements for clues about the future direction of the Church. In most of Catholic Europe, less Poland and possibly Hungary, the Church is moribund. The Germans seem hellbent on doing themselves what Luther and the Thirty Years War and a few dozen peasant rebellions could not accomplish. Our leadership seems bereft of ideas for staunching the hemorrhaging of the Faithful. They are constantly searching for a “new” something, a silver bullet, if you will, that will reverse the decline and bring people back to the Church. (They also seem unable to comprehend that the more traditional the diocese, the better the attendance at Mass and the higher the number of young men and young women pursuing religious vocations.)
The underlying issue is straightforward. The Church is in the grips of a deadly heresy called Modernism.
It is what is known in Catholic theological circles as the “hermeneutic of rupture” wherein the post-Vatican II Church is seen a being the true expression of the “one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church.” Timeless Truths, we are told, must be reconciled to the secular world so that the Church may remain “relevant.” It is difficult to understate the confusion on the critical issues of faith and morals emanating from this mess.
So here we have money donated directly by individual Catholic parishioners going to produce a hagiographic movie about a gay rock musician that includes an explicit homosexual sex scene. On the whole, not very Catholic, and Elton John makes a great point. Why was it okay to invest in a movie that includes borderline gay porn when the Church condemns sex outside of marriage and homosexual sex in all cases? There is no good answer. The worst part is that no one in the Pope’s circle of advisers seems to be asking questions or demanding answers and that just adds another layer of ambiguity regarding the statements and actions of this Pope. This Pope with his coddling of known homosexual predators like former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, with his elevation of prelates associated with homosexual predation against vulnerable men in seminaries like Archbishop Joseph “Nighty-Night Baby, I Love You” Tobin, with his failure to bring into line homosexualist priests like Jesuit Father Jame Martin or Archibishops like Blaise Cupich, with his nebulous statements on homosexuality, and with his investing money on soft-core gay porn flicks is creating problems for the Chuch where none needed to exist.