03 July 2012

Fortnights & Our Lady

I do wonder who got paid for the 'clever, clever' title for the current campaign in the U.S. Catholic Church: 'The Fortnight for Freedom'

The vast majority of U.S. Americans never use the word 'fortnight' and do not know what it means.  Seriously.

I was asked by a Catholic priest if there was some historical Catholic reason for choosing such an obscure, British title...   *crickets*   

I can safely observe that U.S. American Catholics &  U.S. Americans would have responded more strongly and emphatically to a title that at least sounded like it belonged in the U.S.A. in our times i.e.,


It already sounds like the sort of title employed by FoxNews and CNN when covering something momentous.

Ah well, one wonders if the laity in Christ were consulted for a response to the title. 

How would one consult the Laity without a budget to hire Rasmussen or Gallup.  It is so easy your teenage nephew could get it done in one day.   

Use a cell phone with a CallAnywhere sort of plan.  Call a random number in each U.S. telephone area code, and ask some simple questions.  (1) When you hear "Fortnight for Freedom", does it mean (a) four nights for freedom (b) a nightime freedom celebration at Fort Sumter  (c) two weeks for freedom  (d)  Fourth of July celebrations at U.S. forts.      *ahem*

Well, I suspect it was meant to evoke the Founding Fathers of the USA who were still able to speak English.  (I do like "Una Quincena por la Libertad" but I do not know how well 'quincena' is known among Spanish-speaking U.S. citizens.  I have heard it in Spain and in Mexico City, but never in northern Mexico or Texas.)

I will say that the USCCB struck the right "rally round the flag" note in its logo appearing on one of its resources for the Fortnight.  Perhaps the choice was driven by the 'catchiness' of the logo.  It even works in the number 4 in red from the website address with its obvious relationship to the culminating day on the 4th of July.

But would it have been wrong to intersperse between those secular stars a Cross, then a Star of David, then a Daoist emblem, then a ...  Isn't that the point? ... Freedom of Religion in the USA being transformed into Soviet-style freedom of worship ...

It was indeed clever to think up such a thing starting with feast days for St. Thomas Moore and St. John Fisher going forward through St. John the Baptist, SS Peter & Paul onward to the Fourth of July.  But it is after all just something 'made  up' by the bishops to rally the faithful around a cause that takes our thoughts away from the sex abuse criminals and crisis.

If the bishops really want to lead American Catholics in something important that will gain us help from heaven, they would reinstate a most important fortnight in the Church long since abandoned:

Our Lady's Lent

— the fourteen days before the Solemnity of the Assumption.

Should they reinstate the Lent of Our Lady and should the bishops corporately publicly repent for their corporate failure and sin in not protecting the Laity from priest-predators, and should they "invite" (but not insist) that the Laity join them in an act of corporate repentance and reparation for the sins of the people of the USA  ... AND should they entreat Our Lady of America, the Immaculate Conception for her maternal forgiveness and install the statue of Our Lady of America in the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C. ... ah, well then, sports fans, we would see Heaven move the earth in the righting of wrongs, and we would see such an outpouring of grace that an unheard of spiritual renewal in the nation would be born and blossom as the rose.

+Lord, in thy mercy, hear our prayer.