Sunday, June 07, 2015

Safe Place for a Dove

Before we begin, let me just say that the following should be filed under "things that probably mean nothing", because I certainly don't take my spirituality or theology from such signs - but then again, I keep them in mind, as well.

Recently we posted an article here in which, among other things, we noted that doves being released by the pope from St. Peter's were frequently killed by crows or other birds almost as soon as they were released.

In 2012, Pope Benedict XVI attempted to release a dove as a prayer for world peace. The dove refused to fly away and instead returned to Benedict's window. The same thing occurred in 2011, as well as 2010.

On January 29, 2013, Pope Benedict XVI released two doves from St. Peter's as part of the "Caravan of Peace" celebration on Holocaust Remembrance Day. The doves were supposed to represent peace. Both were viciously attacked by seagulls and barely managed to escape.

Enter Pope Francis. Following the turmoil in the Ukraine, Pope Francis and two Ukrainian children released two doves symbolizing peace in January of 2014. The doves were immediately attacked by a seagull, but managed to escape. However, after escaping from the gull they were set upon by a crow! Again, both managed to escape, though severely disoriented and somewhat mauled.

Anyone who has been to Europe knows that in places like St. Peter's where there are lots of tourists there are an insane amount of pigeons and seagulls. There is a perfectly natural explanation for these events; there's just a lot of mean birds around.

However, one cannot but be struck by the irony of it all. A Church, increasingly caught up in the affairs of the world, sets loose doves as prayers for world peace - and those doves are brutally attacked by predatory birds - birds which in the parables of Jesus represent the devil and his demons. A Church that increasingly compromises with the world and in many places refuses to make a clear stand on her moral teaching, especially in the wake of homosexual militancy.

But meanwhile, we have an embattled archbishop in San Francisco who, whatever his previous faults, is courageously standing up for the Church's moral teaching and taking tremendous flak for it. He has been offered zero public support from the Vatican. And, yet, at a picnic of support for Archbishop Cordileone held on May 16th, 2015, we see the following:

This probably means nothing. It's just an amusing coincidence. Right?


Well, at any rate, it has been said that the real Gospel is being found lived "at the peripheries". This may prove to be true, although not in the way many expected.

H/T to James Larson for making me aware of this story.


Philip said...

This is something to file with the lightning bolt striking St. Peter's. Along the lines of the Cordileone picture, if my memory serves, some years ago a statue of our Lady of Fatima was being carried from city to city, and some white doves followed it and rested at the feet of the statue wherever it went.

Anonymous said...

You can also add to your list the Paul VI ferula that broke during the trip to Bosnia, tied together with masking tape.

Not That Guy said...

I believe this is a sign to the faithful confirming for them what they're suspecting with their own good Catholic sense, a little guide post to help them understand where the narrow way is.

Boniface said...

I love God's little signs. They are beautiful to me.

Anonymous said...

Benedict seemed to "live under signs". He was first child Baptized with the newly blessed Paschal Water, when he was ordained a lark began to sing inside the cathedral, when he was elected Pope a full rainbow appeared " framing " St. Peters, and the day he announced his abdication lightning struck the dome, not once but twice.

Boo! said...

See, a danger of believing signs like this is that they confirm what you already believe. Anon above actually thinks of Pope Benedixt XVI as a saint, perhaps a modern Pius X? We are in a bad ways indeed.

But maybe I am jealous, because the only thing birds land on me is their waste.

Anonymous said...

I don't think signs are useless. Have you not seen a picture of a statue of Mother Mary standing amidst a neighbourhood left in rubble or the picture of a Church standing very close to the impact of a nuclear bomb or the priests who showed no signs of radiation? At the very same time atheists deny that these signs have any meaning.

When the Dome of St Peters was struck twice I had the feeling that God was going to punish us for chasing away his vicar. The same people who hated Benedict love Francis. Take that how you may.

Boniface said...

Signs are a tricky can be selective in their interpretation or in just what phenomenon one chooses to define as a sign. I would never base any judgment on a sign alone, nor insist on my interpretation of a sign. But they are not nothing; they are little reminders that God is in control.

c matt said...

the Paul VI ferula that broke during the trip to Bosnia, tied together with masking tape

Sign or not, what a striking metaphor.

Mick Jagger Gathers No Mosque said...

Dear Brother Boniface (yeah, the progression of vowels is melodic) The modern Pope scandalise teal men with these cheap for-the-camera stunts while ignored are hundreds of years of Papal Encyclicals and Prayers that teach that Peace can only be obtained in the right ordering of society beneath the Kinship of Jesus Christ.

Sadly, modern Popes act on their beliefs and so we see them acting the part of epicene ecclesiastics; who knows what they really believe deep down in their souls? Raider Fan doesn't know - but, they do not pass the eye or ear test.

The are fearful of being hated and rejected by modern man if they teach the truth to them; the next time a Pope enters a Synagogue or Mosque and proclaims the Gospel and seeks the repentance and conversion of his audience is the last time that happens.

k said...

I was at work today. I work with many old men, all of which I love because of different reasons. One of them has been a worker all his life. It's just becoming summer here in Scandinavia, and we haven't had a spring, just grey skies since october last year. I was enjoying life. The old men were discussing around the table at fika. They talked about old jobs and somehow got into childhood pranks, throwing stink bombs into stores in the 1950's. This lead to disgusting smells and they discussed different disgusting smells they had suffered through their many years of labour.

It was very entertaining. Presently the one I love most of them all spoke up about amputated fetuses. Amputed fetuses, I thought, what does he mean? "That's what you call it, right?" He had worked as the stoker during the 60's for the hospital in our town, a large city block with just hospital buildings, all getting their heat from the furnace room where he made his living. Another one of the old men corrected him. "Aborted fetuses."

"Ah yes, aborted fetuses, of course", he laughed. "Yeah, back then they used to bring all of the aborted fetuses down to the furnace room and throw them into the furnace." He looked right at me as he said this, his clear blue, beautiful eyes staring right at me. I felt as a bucket of cold water had been emptied over me and tried to hide of them, all but one of which are secular if not hostile to religion. I'm not a very good Catholic, not good at all in fact.

Anyway, God's little signs, proving he's in charge. I guess it's true. It's very hard, though. I don't understand why my small people deserves this punishment though. Just a useless, small people at the edge of the world, wanting to mind its own business, having to be dragged through all of the shit. I wish I was safe in delusional and had become a Muslim so I could believe God wanted me to put the sword to the neck of every beliver, instead of this miserable position I am in. What is manly about "not having the authority to dispense justice, punishment, etc"? I wish I was born in a less clear age when the rules were less clear. This is hell.

It's a living hell. It's also off-topic. I just needed to vent somewhere because I am half-drunk and planning on getting piss-drunk tonight. It will be a short stint of happiness in a life that is and has always been misery except for short, wonderful escapes. I apologise for choosing your corner of the Web.

Boniface said...

Some signs come from the dark side to show us how wicked sin is...please don't get piss drunk though. And we will pray for you.

k or h said...

Thanks, P. i'm gonna try and stay half-drunk

Anonymous said...

Dear K,

16 But Jesus called the children to him and said, 'Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs.

17 In truth I tell you, anyone who does not welcome the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.'

We share your anguish. Please let us pray for you, for those children and that old man.


Anonymous said...

Dear K, we too in North America are drowning in excrement. The only thing holding the faithful up above it are the arms of Jesus and Mary. The smells your old men were talking about are the smells belching up from Hell. Pray the Rosary. Our Lady Mary will make you a good Catholic if you leave it all to her - but the deal with her is YOU GOTTA SAY THE ROSARY! She will never let you down.