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Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Boycott FAIL

Normally, when someone or a group of folks are unhappy with an organization or business, they call for a boycott of that outfit. If it's a store, they put out the call to not shop there. If it's a political party, a protest is fairly routine. If the offending party is a television program, then the advertisers of that program or network are sent letters designed to pressure them into pulling their support of that network. Sometimes the boycotts work, and sometimes they don't. At the very least, these actions draw attention to issues that might have otherwise been unknown to the general public. Thus, their success can be measured in different ways.

For the life of me, though, I cannot see the logic in this Irish woman's boycott, because it fails on every level.

From the Irish Times: Monk's Mother Calls on Women to Join One-day Boycott of Mass

AN 80-YEAR-OLD woman is organising a one-day boycott of Sunday Mass “by the faithful women of Ireland” next month.

Jennifer Sleeman from Clonakilty in Cork said she wants “to let the Vatican and the Irish church know that women are tired of being treated as second-class citizens”.

She has called on the Catholic women of Ireland to “join your sisters on Sunday, September 26th. On that one day boycott Mass. Stay at home and pray for change. We are the majority. We may have been protesting individually but unremarked on, but together we have strength and our absence, the empty pews, will be noticed”.

She said: “Whatever change you long for, recognition, ordination, the end of celibacy, which is another means of keeping women out, join with your sisters and let the hierarchy know by your absence that the days of an exclusively male-dominated church are over.”

This idea is as daft as screen doors on a submarine. The only thing this boycott is going to accomplish is that a bunch of blue hairs are going to commit mortal sins. Premeditated mortal sin - excusing themselves from receiving Jesus Christ in the Eucharist by turning their backs on fulfilling their Sunday obligation. Normally, when folks are mad at the Church or their particular parish, they withhold tithing, but they still show up for Holy Communion. Priests don't wring their hands over empty pews nearly as much as they wring them over empty collection baskets, sad to say.

Their "pew out" means diddly-squat - scores of women stay home from Mass every Sunday nowadays because they already disagree with Church teaching on female ordination, celibacy, contraception and other various excuses. I don't see 'faithful' women staying home, because they're, well, faithful. Those who submit to Church teaching will see this action as nothing more than inane and silly.

Since this woman's son is a priest, maybe he'll talk her out of it...

She said she looks at her “children and grandchildren and see no future for the Catholic Church. Some of the grandchildren go through the rites of sacraments but seldom, if ever, visit a church afterwards. Some of my children are actively looking for a meaningful spiritual life but they do not find it in the Catholic Church.” But, she said, “I must except my eldest son who is a monk in Glenstal Abbey, another place that helps me keep some shreds of faith.”

She noted her son, Fr Simon, was supportive of her in her action.

whoops - guess not.

As to the condition of her children and grandchildren - ma'am, if you want them to return to the Church, or find a "meaningful spiritual life", I have some advice for you: get your 80-year old butt in Church every day, before the Blessed Sacrament, and pray with every ounce of your soul for their salvation. Make reparation for them. But don't do this boycott. In fact, if you're going to boycott anything - boycott sin. That'd be the best thing you can do.

And someone should go smack her priest-son upside the head, too.