Friday night we took Barb's mom to see The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, a very pleasant British movie in the style of many such British movies, with a stellar cast and some witty dialogue and a lovely story. Not a great movie, but very entertaining and enjoyable, sweet and fun. Although I realized it's the second time I've seen Bill Nighy and Penelope Wilton as a couple, and that time they didn't end up well, either (although to be fair, at least this time they weren't turned into zombies).
After the movie we went out to iHop for a late dinner, then home to put the pork shoulder into brine and bed; I got up early, got the pork into the crock pot and headed off to work. I brought the donuts, and was pleased that it seems the "new" Dunkin Donuts realized their strength was donuts. They were the best I've tasted since the stores re-opened.
Pork shoulder cooked all day, simmering nicely until I pulled it apart into shreds and spiced it up. The dog got some lovely treats as I fished out all the bones and peeled off the thick fat cover. I roasted corn and asparagus on the grill to go with it and it was a lovely dinner.
Somehow I managed to get out of bed first thing in the morning so we could take the dog hiking. It's getting hot early now so we were glad to be done with the hike by 9 o'clock. It was beautiful, though, even though it really was getting hot. The die-hards who hike the Draw were likewise clearing out by then, although there was a full house when we got there.
We did Barb's mom's shopping and brought her flowers, then I did my duty and called my own mom. Got a confirmation in THIS year's cruise -- this time for sure we're going to Ocho Rios, and we're finally back on Carnival. YAY. I will not be forgetting my passport.
I don't always agree with Maureen Dowd, but
Bishops Play Church Queens as Pawns
By MAUREEN DOWD
Published: April 28, 2012
IT is an astonishing thing that historians will look back and puzzle over, that in the 21st century, American women were such hunted creatures.
Even as Republicans try to wrestle women into chastity belts, the Vatican is trying to muzzle American nuns.
Who thinks it’s cool to bully nuns? While continuing to heal and educate, the community of sisters is aging and dying out because few younger women are willing to make such sacrifices for a church determined to bring women to heel.
Yet the nuns must be yanked into line by the crepuscular, medieval men who run the Catholic Church.
“It’s not terribly unlike the days of yore when they singled out people in the rough days of the Inquisition,” said Kenneth Briggs, the author of “Double Crossed: Uncovering the Catholic Church’s Betrayal of American Nuns.”
How can the church hierarchy be more offended by the nuns’ impassioned advocacy for the poor than by priests’ sordid pedophilia?
How do you take spiritual direction from a church that seems to be losing its soul?
It has become a habit for the church to go after women. A Worcester, Mass., bishop successfully fought to get a commencement speech invitation taken away from Vicki Kennedy, widow of Teddy Kennedy, because of her positions on some social issues. And an Indiana woman named Emily Herx has filed a lawsuit saying she was fired from her job teaching in a Catholic school and denounced as a “grave, immoral sinner” by the parish pastor after she used fertility treatments to try to get pregnant with her husband.
Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York recently told The Wall Street Journal that only “a tiny minority” of priests were tainted by the sex abuse scandal. But it’s a global shame spiral. The church leadership never recoiled in horror from pedophilia, yet it recoils in horror from outspoken nuns.
In Philadelphia, Msgr. William Lynn, 61, is the first church supervisor to go on trial for child endangerment. He is fighting charges that he may have covered up for 20 priests accused of sexual abuse and left in the ministry, often transferred to unwitting parishes.
Somehow the Philadelphia church leaders decided that the Rev. Thomas Smith was not sexually motivated when he made boys strip and be whipped playing Christ in a Passion play. Somehow they decided an altar boy who said he was raped by two priests and his fifth-grade teacher was not the one in need of protection.
Instead of looking deep into its own heart and soul, the church is going after the women who are the heart and soul of parishes, schools and hospitals.
The stunned sisters are debating how to respond after the Vatican’s scorching reprimand to the Leadership Conference of Women Religious, the main association of American Catholic nuns. The bishops were obviously peeved that some nuns had the temerity to speak out in support of President Obama’s health care plan, including his compromise on contraception for religious hospitals.
The Vatican accused the nuns of pushing “radical feminist themes,” and said they were not vocal enough in parroting church policy against the ordination of women as priests and against abortion, contraception and homosexual relationships.
In a blatant “Shut up and sit down, sisters” moment, the Vatican’s doctrinal office, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, noted, “Occasional public statements by the L.C.W.R. that disagree with or challenge positions taken by the bishops, who are the church’s authentic teachers of faith and morals, are not compatible with its purpose.”
Pope Benedict, who became known as “God’s Rottweiler” when he was the cardinal conducting the office’s loyalty tests, assigned Archbishop J. Peter Sartain of Seattle to crack down on the climate of “corporate dissent” among the poor nuns.
When the nuns push for social justice, they’re put into stocks. Yet Archbishop Sartain has led a campaign in Washington to reverse the state’s newly enacted law allowing same-sex marriage, and he’s a church hero.
Sister Simone Campbell, executive director of Network, a Catholic lobbying group slapped in the Vatican report, said it scares the church hierarchy to have “educated women form thoughtful opinions and engage in dialogue.”
She told NPR that it was ironic that church leaders were mad at sisters over contraception when the nuns had committed to a celibate life with no families or babies. Given the damage done by the pedophilia scandals, she said, “the church’s obsession, at times, with the sexual relationships is a serious problem.”
Asked by The Journal if the church had a hard time convincing the flock to follow its strict teachings on sexuality, Cardinal Dolan laughed: “Do we ever!”
Church leaders behave like adolescent boys, blinded by sex. That’s the problem with inquisitors and censors: They become fascinated by what they deplore.
The pope needs what the rest of us got from nuns: a good rap across the knuckles.
This morning they were talking to kids at that Liberty College where Romney was speaking, and one girl said she was going to vote against Obama because gay marriage is "wrong, it's in the bible, it's just wrong, and that's all there is to that." To those sorts I really want to say, "Well, it's also in the bible that you can own slaves and sell your children, is that still right?"
Argh. And Argh again.
I updated my writing blog, post 3 of 100 posts (moving rapidly, I know): nightmaresaloon