Do all bloggers turn 'nasty' in the end?
Blogged by James Preece on 10th October 2013
In some ways it's reasurring, but it's also very depressing.
There's a pretty well established pattern when it comes to Catholic blogs. They all start out (as did I) with a plan to do something positive. I wanted to write about curry and review Jackie Chan films and occasionally talk about religion in a way that might explain Catholicism to my evangelical friends.
I've always felt I could be doing more outward looking posts aimed at explaining the Church, but I never seem to get around to it. I'm always getting bogged down by internal matters. It's very hard to convince strangers on the internet about the beauty of Catholic teaching on human sexuality when your Archbishop is giving it the "who knows whats down the road" treatment.
Over the last couple years I've watched as quite a few members of the Guild of Blessed Titus Brandsma have evolved. It starts out with "don't let's be hasty, maybe there's some other explanation, I'm sure the Bishops wouldn't..." and turns in to "what? another one? are they doing this on purpose?" until after several "issues" have passed by, it becomes full blown "they are doing it on purpose and they have been for years".
I mention all this because this morning I noticed the latest in a long line of converts to nastiness and I'm hoping I can talk him out of it.
I've been very very impressed over the last couple of years with Deacon Nick Donnelly of the Protect the Pope blog. While I've been getting bogged down, Deacon Nick has been doing an awesome job of hammering away at all sorts of secularist claims against the Church.
Sadly, I'm sorry to say, Protect the Pope is turning in to one of us.
I think it began with posts about ACTA which necessarily involved criticising members of the clergy. Then he started having a pop at bishops in other countries. Now he's going after Archbishop Nichols himself and publishing histories of dissent and posts that make him sound like a conspiracy theorist.
Like I said, in some ways this is reassuring. It's not just me. I'm not just naturally nasty, it happens to everybody. But.. it's also very depressing.
I wish I knew the answer. I wish I knew how well meaning bloggers could "perform a work of great value for the evangelization of the world" but I don't. I'm stuck. My friends, family and the strangers who read this blog are not going to accept the two faced, lying, deceitful, cover up merchants who currently run the Church in this country and there doesn't seem to be much I can do about it. I've been blogging about it for ten years.. there's always another liberal Bishop, always another ACTA..
In the meantime, I miss the old Protect the Pope. The work Deacon Nick was doing to oppose secular agendas was unique and highly valuable. So I'm going to ask him to do what I failed to do myself. Please Deacon Nick, don't let the dissenters drag you down. Stay focused. Fight secularism. Do the work you were originally called to do.
And if you find a way do do it.. let me know the secret?