Connected Catholics “Cook Up” Month of Prayer for PZ Myers

29 07 2008

Yes, PUN INTENDED! 😉
No comment, except don’t you love it when a theme comes together?
Even as these Catholics believe they’re defending and being obedient to never-changing universal Church traditions, these same hyperconnected individuals help create chaotic change pressures with every keystroke:

“August 2008 Is Officially Pray for PZ Myers Month”

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29 responses

29 07 2008
sam

Maybe instead of praying for PZ they should spend the month praying for an end to killing of innocent people based on personal belief. Of course, I don’t really accept prayer as a valid tool considering I don’t believe the person they claim to be speaking to exists, but maybe if more believers were praying for peace then we could get it. I have to imagine the person whose body they claim to consume would be happier with those prayers than prayers for a cracker killer.

29 07 2008
Nance Confer

It can be a test, Sam. If PZ suddenly converts after this month of prayer, it will have worked. If not, then not. Science-y enough for a prayer vigil anyway. 🙂

Nance

29 07 2008
Richard Froggatt

Don’t worry Sam. Prayer for Dr. Myers won’t exclude your concerns. As Christians we believe that not only should we pray for peace but we should be an instrument for peace, by God’s grace.

In Christ,

Richard

29 07 2008
Obi-Mom Kenobi

It’ll be a lovely joke when September rolls around and PZ is still completely, well ya know… *cough* PZ.

29 07 2008
JJ

Beautiful avatar, Richard. 🙂

I stood awed in the presence of this human masterpiece on my only trip to Europe. It was behind protective glass by then, because of this vandalism (desecration?) but no less awe-inspiring for that, at least to me as a lifelong power of story disciple.

I saw his biblical David in Florence on the same trip, felt the same awe and inspiration.

Yes, completely without belief in either codified bible story on the factual level, or in the artistic genius creating them as anything more than beautifully human, I still felt deeply and authentically.

But call it prayer or meditations, academic study, storytelling or collective wisdom, if I were to dedicate a whole month of my inner life to peacefully overcoming vandalism, I’d focus not on Lazlo Toth, PZ Myers or any individual church-victimizing vandal.

I’d set my sights on overcoming the institutionalized vandalism of (Howard Gardner’s) truth, beauty and goodness right here on earth. I’d seek to conquer it (organized religion as human governance) both with my private meditations and every way I can connect to collective wisdom at work in the culture.

To me it is the *institutional* vandalizing of the human mind and spirit — by the obvious fictions and self-serving strictures and petty power plays of human institutions — that we must protect our human masterpieces from . . . got something bulletproof but beautifully transparent we could put our kids behind?

29 07 2008
Daryl Cobranchi

They have their excuses all ready:

However, we should come up with something quick if God decides not to intervene and convert PZ and make him the next Paul to lead us into his glory. We have to get ahead of the atheists on this one.

1) God doesn’t just do what we ask him, when we ask him; 2) Science has made him prideful; 3) Because PZ does not have faith, God could not come to him; 4) It was God’s will at this time to take a pass at saving PZ; 5) PZ dying before being saved and the punishment henceforth is part of God’s plan.

Or my explanation 1) There is no God.

I think Occam would side with me.

29 07 2008
JJ

LOL – Occam would hate me, wouldn’t he Daryl? No doubt this explains simply and elegantly, why the hardest part of my dissertation, the part that took almost two years, was narrowing the damn question to something so uninterestingly simplistic that it COULD have a simple answer!

29 07 2008
JJ

Hmmm, the National Prayer Car didn’t win, or at least it didn’t appear to win!

I proffer Explanation (6) then — God DOES change PZ in response to the prayer month, but his assigned penance is continuing to say and do all the same things, while remaining outside the earthly comforts of the Church and secretly suffering inside himself for his earlier sinful insufferability. Saints have to really, really suffer, right?

29 07 2008
Daryl Cobranchi

Sounds like Br’er Cephalopod.

29 07 2008
JJ

The Conservatively Religious Right would hate me too, check this out from the bitterly reactionary and ironically named American Thinker site (It so reminds of the “We Stand for Homeschooling” debate!) calling Obama “postmodern” so they can hang that around his neck and try to sink him:

This sort of post-modern, contextual concept of truth, although horrifying to many of us, is actually quite in vogue on the Left. A deconstructed, evolving narrative – far from being seen as evasive or dissembling – is seen as a “higher truth” that the flyover folks in Kansas and Nebraska obviously don’t get.

The fact that Mr. Obama blatantly contradicts his own factual assertions is immaterial to the fact that he “gets it”.

This late in the game, no one really knows where he stands on anything.

The beauty of shamelessly appropriating all sides of an issue is that you’re never really wrong. The problem is — should Mr. Obama get elected – he will have to pick one side.

You can’t simultaneously support and abandon Iraq. You can’t prohibit the Iranians from acquiring nuclear weapons but refuse to consider using force to stop them. You can’t have it both ways — ask George Bush, I’m sure he could give you an earful on the topic of hard choices. . .

29 07 2008
JJ

Okay, Daryl, I’ll bite — do you mean cephalopod as in my skin changes color when I get nervous? 🙂

Or their social communication intelligence?

29 07 2008
Nance Confer

PZ likes octopuses. 🙂

Nance

29 07 2008
JJ

Duh – thanks Nance.
When Young Son plays the bagpipes, it’s exceedingly octopus-sy, shall we count that? 😉

29 07 2008
Daryl Cobranchi

Okay, Daryl, I’ll bite — do you mean cephalopod as in my skin changes color when I get nervous? 🙂

Yeah, I was imagining PZ saying to the Catholics, “Oh please don’t make me live like a heathen.”

30 07 2008
Lynn

From the linked blog: “Pray that he will become our next St. Paul — an Apostle of the Eucharist.”

Now, who says Catholics don’t have a sense of humor! LOL “Apostle of the Eucharist.” Can you imagine all the fun that PZ and friends could have with that one? Hey, I wonder if they’d let me photoshop the images… 😀

30 07 2008
JJ Ross

Oh. My. God. FINALLY! Check this out —
“Crackergate, Big Donors and the UCF Medical Enterprise”

And may I note, I read on a Catholic blog condemning the student and linked here last week, that Cook’s Catholic father is himself an MD. This is finally making more sense.

AND – note this comment, which confirms what I’ve suspected from the start. This was a clique of college friends, folks who knew Cook and didn’t like him long before he showed up in the student union that night. Michelle Ducker in particular was just enough of a self-important ninny to push it and get away with it because she’s a girl and had official status there as the PR intern. They were determined that night to shake Cook up, show him just how much they resented his lack of esteem for their chosen status in the Church and his high-handedness when HE was in control, lording his student government senator status and pecuniary powers over their campus “ministries”:

You haven’t met the guy. I’m an undergrad at UCF and I’ve had dealings with Cook.

We tried to get a bill passed to go on a trip (I wont go into details, rather not be recognized), and Cook took it upon himself to not only insult our group, but try to get policy passed and belittle our bill by taking it from 250 dollars a person, a fairly normal amount of our senate, to 185 dollars a person, an unheard of low amount. He the proceded to vote against us in every single tally.

The guy is an idiot that giggles and whisper to his friend whenever he votes no, and I’m glad he is impeached.

I’m probably biased because he picked a bone with my group, but I’m not the only one at UCF who dosen’t like former senator Cook.

Posted by: UCF Student | July 30, 2008 9:26 AM

I’ve seen hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of real Florida legislators at “work” over the years, and this is how they do business and why they are disliked but stay in power btw.

Cynically but objectively, I say not only shouldn’t he be impeached, but this proves Webster Cook is *perfect* for secular professional politics. 😦

30 07 2008
watercat

Ms Ducker has a contact email up on the CCM page:
http://www.ccmknights.com/ccmWeb2007/contactus.php
Maybe someone who is more eloquent (courageous) than me could write her a polite note and elicit her side of the story.

30 07 2008
JJ

Lynn, what about you? IMO you’ve got the background, passion and the chops to give watercat’s fine suggestion a try.

30 07 2008
JJ

Okay, I went to Lynn’s and conveyed the request under her post about the REAL Church tragedy, in Tennessee Sunday:

“So what do you think? Willing to give it a go? My bet is that she isn’t saying anything to anybody, probably they’ve got her under wraps in some undisclosed location like Dick Cheney, until this is all over and classes start again in the fall, but — it seems like a fair and reasonable outreach instead of me just continuing to speculate and suspect.”

30 07 2008
Lynn

Hi JJ,

Sure, why not 🙂 Sounds like you’re following the story more closely than I, so I’ll have to get up to speed. I’m also curious about Cook’s friend, against whom the University is also taking action?

The Tennessee Church shooting is interesting to me in that they don’t happen more often, frankly. Apparently, the guy had books by O’Reilly, Savage, and Hannity. Rush, too, I think. (Do you suppose he was just too sexist to read Malkin and Colter? It’s probably also noteworthy that you can hate liberals [enough to want them dead] and not be a religious nut, as in this case.) The inflamers go on-air everyday with this scapegoating and hatemongering (in Robertson/Falwell post 9-11 fashion); it’s no wonder these meltdowns aren’t more frequent. Maybe they’ll increase as the economy continues to weaken. Another terrorist attack would do it, too.

30 07 2008
Lynn

Oops. Coulter is with a “u.”

…maybe my mind was thinking “Colson” (as in Chuck Colson, BreakPoint)… since I was talking about hatemongering, that is…

I never give it a rest, do I?? LOL

uh,… is hatemongering hyphenated?

30 07 2008
JJ

Don’t forget the mouthy guy pressing his impeachment vote, Anthony Furbush. I’ve read that these guys and Michelle Ducker were all “good friends” including some others there choosing to remain anonymous but not silent online, and that they all disliked Cook and expected the worst of him the moment he walked in the door.

You might want to revisit the UF taser case too, because I’m starting to see a pattern in all this brinksmanship over “disrespect” between students corrupted with newfound power to control each other and impose draconian punishments when they’re crossed (just like grownups except with immature frontal lobes!)

The UF student tasered by a six-pack of university police at John Kerry’s campus speech last year, was also singled out as “disruptive” by another student (the student in authority for that particular event.) That student’s cue was the entire basis for the police to move in on the young man at the mike, not John Kerry himself being upset.

After the fact, the same self-centered justifications were given by the student in authority at UF, as we hear about Cook –that the tasered student had been looking for trouble and trying to provoke a disruption, thus got no more than he deserved. And good riddance!

So a troubling secular question I’m seeing is: do we think it’s good public policy to empower one student to freely abuse authority over others, to sic university police on a student breaking no rules or laws but merely annoying them by daring to challenge that very authority to control them?

31 07 2008
JJ

Lynn, the Catholic Campus Ministries has a whole website of interesting stuff. I learned that they have a “sister parish” in town, pastored by Father Stephen. So it’s not strictly a by-kids, for-kids kind of religion and prayer, that would pass constitutional muster in public schools?

I also learned that they host an unbelievable slate of events to keep the kids busy and Church-centered, specifically at the expense of other campus-life activities and even the raison d’etre for UCF, the very academic studies that tuition and fees (and all Florida taxpayers) provide!

When we fisk the site’s “marketing” language targeting even non-Catholic students, we can glimpse what Webster Cook may have been protesting as inappropriate for public funding, and why Michelle Ducker would’ve resented his objections enough to bring down the wrath of Church AND State to literally “expel” his influence from her well-oiled PR mission, er, program.

For example, the UCF Catholic Campus Ministries Spring 2008 Retreat promotion says specifically that students need to retreat away from the diverse secular environment and people of UCF — not just from other funded campus activities but even from their own actual academic studies, because public university life interferes with the “most important” learning — so “the smartest decision” is to turn your back on the secular public life you enrolled for, and go off where the really cool people (all happily, homogeneously Catholic) accomplish all their student goals through getting God to bless them, rather than with academic study and community engagement:

Let’s see, to begin with, how about a weekend just to relax and not think about school? . . .College can be full of distractions that make finding time for God very difficult. . .Give God a weekend this semester and rest assured, He will bless you . . .
Basically, it could be the smartest decision you have made. . .

Is it ironic that this year’s retreat from student life was called, “Be Not Afraid?” We could ask Michelle Ducker or Anthony Furbush or Bill Donohue, but I have a feeling the Church long ago made the “smart decision” to leave out lessons in such academic inquiries . . .

31 07 2008
Nance Confer

Lynn: Maybe they’ll increase as the economy continues to weaken.

**

Too true.

This fellow was in bad shape financially — on top of everything else. Lay enough people off, support gun ownership for all (even at the workplace here in FL), and stand back. Heck of a plan.

Nance

31 07 2008
JJ

Yes and it’s not just individuals in bad shape financially. The same kind of economic fears function society-wide. It’s what makes people fear hungry, hardworking immigrants so much they demand a literal wall to keep them out. It’s what makes populist propaganda like Huckabee’s and Clinton’s and McCain’s appeal so effectively to lizard brains that they narrow their understanding of their future prospects down to one — self-destruction — and then decide their last volitional act might as well be to spread their pain around, take the rest of us down with them, just like this guy in the church.

31 07 2008
JJ

Here the case is made that The Catholic Church does the real desecrating, of what WE hold sacred:

That bears repeating: this is not the middle east; this is not the middle ages. This is a free society. And in a free society, there exists no right to not be offended.

If the Catholic church can get away with desecrating what others consider sacred (or, for those of us who have no concept of sacredness, at least special) – if they can call a loving union between two gay men or women an “abomination”, if they can call the union into which I hope to enter someday a “perversion”, then damn it, I reserve the right to desecrate what they consider sacred also.

Respect is a two-way street – if they want my respect, they must give me theirs. If they want Myers to respect them, they must also respect him (and Mr. Cook for that matter).

But this is something of which religion in general seems incapable – they always want respect, but reserve the right to give none in return.

1 08 2008
watercat

heh. I kinda had something to say along those lines.

http://www.godlesscolumbia.org/2008/07/crackergate-cont.html

1 08 2008
Nance Confer

A side I hadn’t even considered, Watercat. Respect being earned? What a concept.

Nance

1 08 2008
JJ

Freedom is a two-way street too.

And when we’re the ones getting run over in that street, it doesn’t much matter which direction the driver was heading. 😦

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