December 06, 2009

Adoration Chapel Censorship

Gentle Reader:

If you've read my blog for a while (sorry for the time you've wasted) you know that I have a standing hour of Adoration every week at my parish. We are a small parish but we've managed to have Adoration every Tuesday for about 5 years. For those of you in small parishes who don't think you can do regular Adoration. Yes, it can be done. We only do one day/week. But, you can start small. A regular time each week before Masses, or once day/month. Just do it! The benefits are immeasurable.

Ok, that was not the topic of this post but I always get carried away talking about Adoration...where was I? Oh, yes....[throat clearing]

Last week I had to go straight to Adoration from work because I was running late. Also, I'd forgotten to put some reading materials in my car. I spend most of my Adoration time in prayer and just gazing upon the Lord. But, sometimes I need a meditative help or something spiritual to read. We have a bookshelf with materials in our Adoration Chapel.

I decided to go see what was on the shelf. It had been a while since I'd looked at what was there. It's very rare that something questionable is on it. Our priests usually keep a close eye on it.

I know some of you are getting cranky. You know who you are. The free speech crowd is starting to get irked...I see you!

I looked at the shelf and I saw that a work by Garry Wills had made it onto the shelf. I immediately got a big headache. I'm very familiar with Mr. Wills and his work. I've actually heard him speak twice. I'm still wondering why he is a Catholic. Well, he claims he is anyway.

Well, I was stunned (and not in an optimistic way) that he'd written a book called "The Rosary". I know God has an excellent sense of humor and so do I so I picked it up for laughs.

It didn't take me long to read it. I've seen worse. But, anything Mr. Wills said about indulgences (I know. The book is supposed to be about the Rosary but he found the time to rant about indulgenced prayers from back in the "old days") was very revealing of the opinions he shares with Martin Luther and every other person who doesn't understand what indulgences are and are NOT that I've ever read. He does not seem to grasp the Tradition of the Church. He complains about the Stations of the Cross being, in some instances, non-Scriptural. Since when was the Catholic Church solely reliant upon Scripture only? Never. I always find it interesting when "progressives" find Scripture that suits their purpose but then complain when there isn't a Scriptural basis for something they want to gripe about as an example of how Holy Church is doing something "wrong". He also complains about St. Dominic and how it wasn't really St. Dominic who "started" the Rosary? Who said that it was? Really. St. Dominic helped promote it. When anyone doesn't even bother to cite St. Louis de Montfort or St. Alphonsus when writing anything about Mary or the Rosary, I'm immediately suspicious-especially when their sources include Raymond Brown (several times) and (wait for it) Rowan Williams.

I don't even want to talk about how he butchered one of St. Augustine's sermons.

Long story short.

I confiscated the book. I took it out of the Chapel. I practiced censorship. Me. librarian. Aren't we all as profession supposed to be free acess to everyone all the time?

I was always in trouble in library school classes. I was one of two other people who thought it was wrong to allow children uncensored computer access. I thought it was wrong not to have web filters on all the library computers. History has vindicated me somewhat. Some of my local colleagues filed and won a lawsuit in which they succesfully proved they were in a hostile and offensive work environment when they could see the porn patrons were surfing on the web in the library.

I draw the line at allowing dissenting work in the Lord's Adoration Chapel. Period. Sue me. I've also tossed out literature on Medjukajagoogoo and Sister Touchie's Reiki and Channeling sessions. Too bad.

If you want to talk about energy, ok then, I don't want any of the bad energy in the room while I'm trying to pray to the Lord. Call me selfish. Fine. Sadly, there are probably plenty of other churches you can pass this junk around in. Not mine.


Blogger Tom in Vegas said...

This guy - and Father Richard McBrien - should accompany each other on the way OUT.

I don't mean this pejoratively or in a way that implies intolerance for views different than mine. I'm simply saying that if you're not happy being Catholic, why not go some place where you are happy? Oh wait, I know why! If you make a living bashing the Catholic Church, or flaunt beliefs that scandalize the Church because they are coming from supposed Catholic adherents, it makes great publicity if you are a writer or a speaker on the television-talk circuit.

December 06, 2009 3:08 PM  
Blogger Joe of St. Thérèse said...

I've done the same thing at other parishes, if I see something that dissents from Catholic teaching, I eliminate it.

December 06, 2009 3:26 PM  
Blogger Shirley said...

Someone gave me that book for Christmas a couple of years ago and I must say, the only thing I like about it is the Tintoretto artwork.
Lucky you- we have a weekly "Adoration" which is fully orchestrated with prayers and speeches read by the priest, and muzak ( I can't call it inspirational)when there should be silence. I consider it an Hour of Reparation- reparation for my sins that I have to subject myself to all that distraction when I would much rather be silent and prayerful and listen for God's Voice within. Sigh.

December 06, 2009 5:04 PM  
Blogger Adoro said...

Never heard of the guy, but I applaud your actions. It's not "censorship" when the stuff on the shelf in the chapel contradicts what you're there to do...grow closer to God in Truth.

I figure if people want to read heretics they can do so on their own time...not God's.

Oh, wait...we're ALWAYS on God's every. single. moment.


December 06, 2009 5:21 PM  
Blogger swissmiss said...

Almost did this at Barnes and Noble today. It was a book titled, Roman Catholicism, and all it did was bash the Church. I found the chapter on Mary particularly offensive. Looked for a corner or display where I could "accidentally" drop the book behind, but my MIL was with me and I knew she would think my behavior was weird (more than usual). Am gathering some green scapulars to drop behind and underneath the locked tarot display at Borders :)

December 06, 2009 6:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Cathy,

I am with you. I won't turn you into the ALA if you don't turn me. With all my kiddies I have long practice cenorship. There is stuff I do not allow my children to read or view. We work on "custody of the eyes, and ears." I hope your new job is going well.

Pax et Bonum,


December 06, 2009 7:04 PM  
Blogger Ray from MN said...


Do they have to lock up the tarot cards/books displays? Wouldn't it be great if they had to lock up the Catholic displays because so many wanted to read them they were willing to commit a venial sin to get them?


Great post, as usual. I'm sure that has to be categorized as a Spiritual Work of Mercy in keeping someone from having access to false and misleading information.

December 06, 2009 7:07 PM  
Blogger Christine said...

good for you my friend!

December 06, 2009 7:15 PM  
Blogger Terry Nelson said...

Welcome to the apostolate. I used to put out "How To Pray The Rosary" cards and rosaries - many, many, at the Peace Garden kiosk near the gay cruising area at Lake Harriet, and they wre always, always removed. (!970's - '1990's)

We do what we can.

December 06, 2009 8:17 PM  
Blogger nazareth priest said...

Good for you, Cathy! Good for you!
Keep up your apostolate...get that garbage out of the way of those who might unsuspectingly pick it up, read it and believe it!
Yeah, the road is long and winding, and we can get weary, but it's worth it. It's definitely worth it.
Our Lady gives you a big kiss for that!

December 06, 2009 8:57 PM  
Blogger Angela M. said...

You GO, Girl!

December 06, 2009 9:22 PM  
Blogger SafeLibraries said...

Please tell me more about that legal case. Consider guest blogging on my blog about your library school experience. Thanks.

December 07, 2009 2:02 AM  
Blogger Lynne said...

Good on you! I did the same thing a few years ago when I volunteered to revamp the parish library. There were several books by several heretics/dissidents which never made it back to the shelves... :-)

I threw them out. No sense in donating them somewhere so someone else's faith goes off the rails...

December 07, 2009 9:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a fellow librarian (library tech, actually), I heartily agree with you. Bravo!

December 07, 2009 9:12 AM  
Blogger LarryD said...

You did the right thing - I've done the same at our Perpetual Adoration Chapel too.

December 07, 2009 5:37 PM  
Anonymous Brother Juniper said...

Right on! I would have done the same thing if it had happened to me.

We need more orthodox Catholic literature. Not the junk that floats and is touted as Catholic literature. You know what I mean?

December 07, 2009 8:53 PM  
Blogger nazareth priest said...

Cathy, dear.
A blessed feast of the Immaculate Conception of our Blessed Lady to you!
Keep up the good work.
You are doing great work for Jesus and Mary!! My prayers.

December 07, 2009 10:08 PM  
Blogger Laura The Crazy Mama said...

I've done it, too. I know that people slip in garbage but there's so much GOOD stuff out there to reflect on while at adoration...why offer the junk to the newbies who don't know any better?

December 10, 2009 8:23 AM  
Blogger Sanctus Belle said...

At our parish I've taken down flyers posted in our "gathering space" AKA the narthex. Most recently took down an ad by one of the School Sisters of Notre Dame (SSND) "sisters" who was advertising her "services" as a Reikki master. My conscience has never accused me of any wrong doing when I've done similar things in trying to avoid scandal being given to others.

December 10, 2009 12:43 PM  
Blogger Lynne said...

This is like True Confessions! lol

I took down a Voice of the Faithful flyer from the vestibule of a parish run by two *very* orthodox priests. I was really surprised to see the flyer there but they've only been at the parish for about 2 years and I guess it was heading down a bad path prior to the priests' arrival.

December 10, 2009 5:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Isn't it nice that God has appointed you all to be censors! Pathetic.

December 12, 2009 9:29 PM  
Blogger Cathy_of_Alex said...

Ah, I knew a hater would come by eventually.

December 13, 2009 8:08 AM  
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