There's one trait that marks true professionals in every corner of the world:
THEY SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF.From medicine to movie production, it's attention to apparently minor details that makes the difference between amateurism and greatness.
For that reason, we Readers are always on the lookout for the cult masters' blunders, the telltale emblems of their masquerade. Many of their howlers we pass over in silence. But the goofs that cry out loudly against the sede "clergy's" unprofessionalism — that convict them of carelessness and malformation —will always find a place on these pages. To the extent that, in life, the little things really do matter, the faithful have a right to know into whose hands they've (mis)placed their spiritual welfare.
Last week's SW Ohio cult bulletin delivered a classic example of sede incompetence at its worst, one that calls for extended analysis. On the front page of $GG's August 13 Pentecost X bulletin, right beneath the Missal-setting notice for the next week, we came across this odd, "orphan" notation (emphasis ours):
In Greek, the tax collector uses the definite article in describing himself as “the” sinner! He chooses the lowest place and humbly offers himself to God in his lowliness; Jesus exalts him (Lk 14:11 [!]).We say "orphan" because the italicized snippet, which reads so disjointedly out of place, bears no caption.
The second anomaly that caught our attention was the blurb's embarrassing conflation (= confusion?) of two separate parables of Jesus, viz., (1) the "Parable of the Last Seat" in chapter 14 of Luke (the Gospel pericope for the 16th Sunday after Pentecost, which will occur on Sept. 24 of this year [!]) and (2) the "Parable of the Pharisee and the Publican" in the same Evangelist's chapter 18 (the Gospel pericope for the 10th Sunday after Pentecost, which fell on Aug. 13, the date of the $GG bulletin).
A cursory glance at the two Lucan chapters will remind you that in chapter 18, the tax-gatherer — remaining in the temple and not attending a supper —is described as "standing afar off," which verbally is not the same thing as choosing the "lowest place" at the dinner table.*
Moreover, in Luke 14, Jesus, after observing how his unmannerly fellow guests at the Sabbath dinner "chose the first seats at the table" (in Gk., πρωτοκλισία = "place of honor at a dinner"), takes advantage of their boorishness to make a point about the Kingdom of God. It's important to remark that the Gospel setting of Luke 14 makes no mention at all of an individual in attendance at the dinner who actually "chooses the lowest place and humbly offers himself to God in his lowliness." That's cult fiction. (As anyone with some Greek will tell you, Christ's advice at 14:10 "to sit down in the lowest place" is joined to a clause of future contingency.) A competent commentary might say the lesson to be drawn from what appears on the surface to be instruction about table-manners is that God invites to the Kingdom those who acknowledge their lowliness. But that's something different from the bulletin's assertion that the revenue officer selected "the lowest place."
Where this scandalous mixup came from is anybody's guess. It's hard to imagine the cult got it, as printed in the bulletin, from any reputable source. You could surmise an $GG idiot might have found in some commentary a note about the individualizing use of the Greek definite article at 18:13 (what some grammarians term the par excellence usage), and then, perhaps after looking away from the copy for a moment, mistakenly inserted the reference to 14:11 after he returned to copying from his source. In fairness — and PL is always fair — we'll grant it's possible both parables could've been discussed together, since each concludes with the identical logion, viz., "because every one that exalteth himself, shall be humbled etc." at 14:11 and 18:14.
But parablepsis facilitated by homoeoteleuton doesn't explain where $GG got the wrongheaded notion about the tax-collector's choosing "the lowest place." That's patently fictitious, and we doubt the error came from an authoritative source. It smells like the sloppy work of a lazy cult ignoramus thoughtlessly condensing his source material to fit into the space available. (Maybe that's also why there was no caption???)
Defenders of the cult might argue the flub was the fault of a semi-literate lay compiler of the bulletin. But, then, why didn't the $GG fake clergy catch this serious blooper before going to print? Don't the cult's theologasters proofread the bulletin, at least the portions dealing with Sacred Scripture? Since Protestants often criticize Catholics about their knowledge of the Bible, you'd think the sedes would be especially conscientious about making sure their scriptural references were 100% accurate.
Or did this giant boo-boo come from the imitation clergy in the first place?
Whatever the answer, long years of following this and other blogs have proved to you that cult sedes are not skilled professionals. What kind of professional would perversely mistranslate infallible papal teaching? What professional would have made such errors as PL brought to light out of that darkling mess Work of Human Hands. What professional Catholic organization would have published an ordo so filled with mistakes that it took PL a year to cover them? What professional would have occasioned this exposé from the Readers? But in Tradistan, professionalism counts for zilch, zip, zero, nada. The depraved cult zombies are so clueless they don't even notice flagrant mistakes, nor do they care to learn the truth from better-schooled heads.
The Readers guess today's erroneous tidbit found it way into the bulletin because someone wanted (A) to impress the gullible Gerties with a faux-learned reference to the koinē text and (B), probably, to suggest that cultlings put themselves last and the grasping "clergy" first. The result was neither the edification of the faithful nor good P.R. for the cult masters. It's a horrible mishmash of the New Testament at which any thrush-infected pulpit-thumper from a storefront Bible-belt "cathedral" would twang in anti-papist derision.
If the SW Ohio cult can't manage to summarize the Word of God correctly in a tiny bulletin item, how can traditional Catholic laity trust the cult masters in the large matters of faith and morals? Getting the minutiae right is a warrant that someone can handle the big stuff. Disraeli was wrong: small things affect great minds. That's why the little stuff matters ever so much to professionals. It's proof they have the skills and knowledge to deliver what you're paying for.
It was bad enough when Tony Baloney wrongly altered the sense of Pius XII 's teaching in Sacramentum Ordinis (click here, see VI-VIII). Now someone at the cult is altering the content of Christ's very words. If the gross error featured in today's post were only one of a kind, then we'd be wrong to harp on it. But it isn't.
Everybody in TradWorld knows it isn't. **
*And the Greek isn't close either: μακρόθεν ἑστὼς is certainly not ἀνάπεσε εἰς τὸν ἔσχατον τόπον. Nor is the Latin: a longe stans ≠ recumbe in novissimo loco.
** If you still think we've been too harsh in our judgment of the sede sub-sub-amateurs, — and we know some of you do — then ask yourself why, with Checkie's library "filled with scholarly books"(which you'll recall the YAGGIES visited on Cheeseball's boring tour of the cult center), couldn't $GG have printed something with the same message but without the error? Take our word for it: there's no end to professional English-language commentaries on "the" special sinner of Luke 18:13, even from the years before an approved popular Catholic translation printed "the sinner" (Confraternity) rather than "a sinner" (Douay Rheims).
For instance, in his 1906 The Gospels of the Sundays and Festivals (which contained both the Greek and Latin pericopes for the priests of yesteryear who could read both languages), Cornelius J. Canon Ryan wrote the following:
... the publican ... directs attention to his own sins only. He says: "Be propitious to me, a sinner," or as it is still more forcibly put in the Greek: "Be propitious to me, the sinner." The pharisee considered himself alone in a class: he was the saint, and all others were sinners. On the contrary, ... the publican in his appeal to God calls himself "the sinner,' the transgressor by excellence, in comparison with whom all others are just (vol. ii, p. 217).Now, then, all $GG would've had to do is add a caption, say, NOTE ON TODAY'S GOSPEL, and they'd've had a professional bulletin entry. So close, yet soooo far.