Charity degrades those who receive it and hardens those who dispense it. George Sand
Just as in an old cowboy-and-indians B-movie, the echoing tom-toms in the arid Sheeple's Republic of Tradistan are beating out an ominous warning: multiple, rapacious fundraising campaigns are galloping across the sede desert wasteland.
So circle the wagons and hold on to your wallets, Gerties. There's a triple-threat charity-warparty rushing headlong to scalp you!
The first threat raised its savage head in the "Bishop's (?) Corner" for the week of May 3:
Fr. Cekada has concluded his Seminary teaching trips for this school year, and just in the nick of time. The sanctuary heating/air conditioning unit goes on by itself, as though haunted, ever since it was struck some time ago by lightning. Here the story becomes impossibly complicated, all caught up with big brother regulations and smoke detectors which never worked correctly in the first place, and companies gouging churches for great quantities of wasted money, backed up by the government oversight. Much patience and a cool head is required to navigate these waters.Undoubtedly you'll recall that His Profligacy had earlier been complaining about the sanctuary's heating-and-cooling system. Imprudently he opted to go to Mexico and then replace a perfectly serviceable organ instead of fixing the HVAC unit. Deferred maintenance is always a stupid idea and, evidently, His Spendthriftiness has never heard of a rainy-day fund. (Deacon Dan has no business running any adult enterprise, even the SGG cult: Imitation Catholicism meets inept stewardship.) Mark our words: very soon Dannie'll be asking for donations not only for a new heating/AC unit but also for the non-working smoke detectors.
Before yielding to the temptation to donate, you should remember who was responsible for buying all this junk in the first place. Cheesy and "One Hand" designed and built the ramshackle cult center; they made all the choices. You should ask Dan-O why all that money was used for the lavish Mexico vacation, the new organ, and reprinting a second edition of Cekada's amateurish, error-filled Work of Human Hands when the cult was facing the prospect of a major infrastructure repair/purchase. (Has this man-child ever heard of deferred gratification?)
The cult masters alone are responsible for this mess, so don't allow them to put the blame on the "authorities." Building codes were written to protect innocent citizens from the perils of slipshod construction, incompetent architectural design, and greedy, short-sighted corner-cutting.
Moving on now to the second and third threats, which sharp-elbowed their way into last week's "Corner." The second menaced:
Pray for strength for Fr. Nkamuke. He had just returned from visiting his very sick mother, when his father had a stroke and was paralyzed. The family, of course, look to him for help. Anyone who wishes to give Father something for these extraordinary expenses may simply mark the offering with Father’s name.And the third assault on your bank account followed terrifyingly on the heels of the second:
...Fr. Nkamuke will be covering the remaining courses for Mr. Abraham Chuku [sic], who is now living with him and assisting him. I am now soliciting regular offerings for his supoprt until ordination, called a burse. To help a seminarian, especially one we know and who is so close to ordination, is surely a great grace. Their life is poor indeed, the Nigerian clergy, and they ask only the most basic necessities, as they seek to share “the inestimable riches of Christ” with souls. Your alms deeds let you get in on this blessing.We'll leave the second cup-rattling offensive to your discretion as you evaluate the worthiness of the appeal. (HOLY TOLEDO! Ma sick, and Pa becrippled? And both at the same time? Sheesh, it almost sounds like another Nigerian internet scam, doesn't it?) We'd suggest that, if you are naïve enough ... er, ah,umm ... we mean, uh, .... moved... to contribute, you must demand proof that the funds have been accounted for and transmitted in their entirety. Don't take anybody's word. Give on condition the cult masters allow you to audit the contributions and then personally inspect the money-transfer document.
As you may have noticed, the third case is much more aggressive. "One-Hand Dan" is actively and personally strong-arming the solicitation himself -- for regular offerings, mind you! If you've got any sense at all, you'll conduct a little due diligence before attempting to "get in on this blessing," as Dannie, in his best impersonation of a sleazo car salesman, so crassly put it.
The first question that comes to mind is:
Who is Abraham Chuku?
And if this man is, indeed, the same MHT "seminarian" Abraham Chukwu about whom he wrote -- the same Abraham Chukwu who appears in this (click here) photograph printed in the February 2013 "MHT Newsletter" -- then you need to ask yourself why he's not still attending the fetid swampland "seminary," particularly since his ordination was "so close."
Why is this strongly independent-minded young fellow now "studying" independently (i.e., privately) under a "priest" who was only recently ordained? Why didn't he -- or why couldn't he -- remain at Most Holy Trinity "Seminary" in Brooksville until ordination. Why would the rector have suffered a pesthouse inmate "so close to ordination" to leave if the only problem was a little bit of tuition money?
If Mr. Chukwu needed funds to complete his formation there, couldn't Li'l Dan Dolan and Big Don Sanborn together have "solicited regular offerings for his support until ordination"? That way, Big Don's cash-strapped "seminary" would have benefited directly from others' charity, as usual, and the young man could have continued his "studies" uninterrupted until his dubious ordination at the hands of "One-Hand Dan."
These are fundamental questions upon which you should ground your giving.
In this post, we've assumed that Chuku = Chukwu. The misspelling must surely be just another example of His Deficiency's clueless insouciance. Dannie, you'll recall, did refer to the man's "remaining courses" and his proximity to ordination. Accordingly, it's not too far a stretch of the imagination to infer he means the courses the man had not yet completed before leaving (or being invited to leave?) the MHT pesthouse.
And that's the biggest part of your problem as a donor.
If you do decide to contribute to Dannie's appeal for Mr. Chukwu, wouldn't you be guilty of supporting another one of those "untrained and un-Tridentine," canonically unfit rascals whom Tony Baloney Cekada vilified in what His Hyperbolicalness described as a "landmark study"? Certainly, if you did contribute to his support, you'd be actively encouraging the willful violation of canon 972.1, which Checkie solemnly quoted in section I, "Canonical Fitness," of his monograph:
“All candidates for sacred orders … are obliged to live a seminaryObserve that the ol' Checkmeister didn't stop there in his insistence on training at a brick-and-mortar institution. Later in the same article, the Cheeseball devoted an entire section (§V) to refuting arguments in favor of private study. Son now, make no mistake about it: studying under a very busy missionary "priest" in a challenging, sometimes hostile territory is actually worse than studying on one's own. Don't forget what Phony Tony, again citing canon law, wrote:
[sic! Insert "in" after "live," Ed.] at least throughout the entire course of their theological studies.”
“The theological course of studies must be taken, not privately, but in schools instituted for this purpose according to the prescribed course of studies laid down in canon 1365.”At least under home-study conditions, the learner can devote many reflective hours each day to careful reading, memorization, review, and painstaking research. How much really can be taught and tested when the "teacher" is preoccupied with so many other cares and duties?
Not a whole lot, that's for sure.
Let's face it: Mr. Chukwu's studies will always come last under the current circumstances, now made intolerably burdensome by the ill health of "Father" Nkamuke's dependent parents.
For the life of us, we wonder how Double-Standard Daniel can ask the Gerties to support someone who will never complete "a seminary academic program which properly tested his knowledge in Latin, Philosophy or Theology according to the mind of the Church as set forth in canon law and papal documents," as His Hypocrisy himself wrote in this nasty gram to the faithful of Chambéry, France, who had inquired about a young Frenchman. Ask yourselves, What makes Mr. Chukwu an exception to Dirtbag Dan's and Phony Tony's hard-and-fast principles, which they have doggedly insisted everyone else honor? (BTW, the same question is still pending for Uneven-Steven McKenna.)
So...before filling Dannie's cute, little "burse," you've got to do some leg work. We first suggest contacting the rector himself (email@example.com) to learn the reason for this candidate's leaving the pesthouse when he was "so close to ordination." Did he exit independently of his own free will or was there some other intervening factor beyond his control?
At the same time, ask Donnie if he approves of priestly formation outside a seminary. (Don't be shy. He may have changed his mind, as the cult masters so often do. Their views are elastic, to say the least. After all, he took Uneven-Steven with him to Europe as his bag boy a short while ago.) Also ask him whether he was aware of what Dannie is doing through his encouragement of essentially private study for the priesthood. Did Daniel ask Donald's permission and, more importantly, did Donald give it?
If Big Don won't answer you, why not ask Lurch or the Forlorn Finn. We bet they know. (And so does Dannie. Just ask him -- and watch him squirm!)
Probably His Forgetfulness and the Blunderer don't remember -- or don't care-- what they wrote, so they can't help you make a decision. Consistency has never been their strong suit. (Self-interested inconstancy seems to be their hallmark.) Besides, their malignant sense of entitlement to your money means they'll ignore your questions anyway and probably kick you out for asking. Therefore, since you won't listen to us, we suggest you be guided by Tony's earlier written advice about the "untrained and un-Tridentine":
First listen to Pius XI: “One well-trained priest is worth more than many trained badly or scarcely at all. For such would be not merely unreliable but a likely source of sorrow to the Church.”Then save the Church from further sorrow by keeping your money in your pocket. Your refusal might turn back the other panhandling raids as well. Then hitch up the horses, load up the tearful womenfolk, toss the bawlin' young'uns into the back of your arrow-pierced Conestoga, and get outta Tradistan pronto.