a wholly imaginary cell-phone intercept

By Diogenes (articles ) | May 09, 2004

[Client]: Hello. Hello? This is the archbishop. Hello? Who's speaking, please?

[N/A]: You wouldn't remember my name. We met back in '77. At Fire Island.

[Client]: You're mistaken. I've never been to Fire Island.

[N/A]: Oh yes you have. Remember that tall Irish bus-boy at Entre Nous? You came back to my beach house with Donal and me and a bottle of Tanquerey. In fact I still have some Polaroids of the occasion -- a little over-exposed, but then so was Donal. Hello ... You haven't gone to sleep on me, have you?

[Client]: What do you want from me?

[N/A]: Nothing whatever. I'm just aware that you'll be asked to make some statements in the next few weeks about who can and can't receive communion, and I wanted you to know that I respect the statesmanlike way you've handled yourself in the past, and that I'm confident you'll continue to earn my respect. My confidence is well placed, isn't it?

[Client]: I ... I'll do what I can.

[N/A]: We can't ask more than that, can we?

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  • Posted by: Fr. William - May. 11, 2004 11:03 AM ET USA

    And God forbid that there are any bishops on the West Coast or anywhere else in the US who would fit this phone call. Jesus, help us. We need bishops who will lead with the mind of heart of Christ and His Church, teaching us rightly in Faith and Morals, risking their very lives to safeguard the Holy Eucharist, to safeguard the Truth of Jesus and His Church, guiding us clearly in the reverence that God calls us all to have for the Blessed Sacrament of the Altar and Holy Mother Church.

  • Posted by: - May. 11, 2004 9:16 AM ET USA

    It SHOUld be clear to anyone who is paying any attention to what is going on that Diogenes is NOT speculating. Diogenes is sort of a Catholic Drudge only better. Besides his own investigations, he obviously has a large network of religious and laity sending him info. No one has yet to disprove one item he's posted. Look at his post on the RECongress with Card. Mahoney. All facts. Diogenes' actions are pure charity. The above post is likely based on a several very real conversations.

  • Posted by: - May. 10, 2004 8:54 PM ET USA

    Well I don't know that Diogenes is speculating. Such a thing would be wrong to put in the minds of others. It appears to me that Diogenes knows something others do not know!

  • Posted by: Gil125 - May. 10, 2004 7:40 PM ET USA

    Jim E (and those who agree with him): Diogenes isn't the one who created the scandal in the Church. He is (so far as we know) neither a priest nor a bishop. If they hadn't behaved in ways that make it all too possible that this speculation might be true, he wouldn't have so speculated.

  • Posted by: Fr. William - May. 10, 2004 3:54 PM ET USA

    God forbid that such a thing could be true. God forbid it, please. What wears on the priests serving-the-Church-in-the-trenches and wears on the laypersons-in-the-pews is the politics in the hierarchy and diplomatic/self-serving actions of the successors of the Apostles. My concern is that such a scenario described by Diogenes is true. And if Cardinal McCarrick or any successor to the Apostles has done such a thing, he needs to resign from his See, for the good of Christ and His Church.

  • Posted by: - May. 10, 2004 1:11 PM ET USA

    Diogenes comments are anything but trite. His insight is better described as prescient. Just wait and see...

  • Posted by: extremeCatholic - May. 10, 2004 10:35 AM ET USA

    Blackmail or extortion has been proximate cause of nine episcopal resignations in the United States in the last 20 years as well as other instances revealed in court records in four other cases where resignation didn't happen or hasn't happened yet. Diogenes is dead on target here with his speculation.

  • Posted by: - May. 10, 2004 12:19 AM ET USA

    And this is not a closed seminar. You might be tired of hearing a point which someone new to the blog is only just discovering. One of the most important services provided by Diogenes, and he does it very well indeed, is to shed light on aspects of the Church's life which have been shrouded in mystery, thereby helping us to understand what we have been seeing. It's helpful and heartening, especially as compared to those who simply deny reality.

  • Posted by: - May. 09, 2004 8:43 PM ET USA

    Yes, it's nasty, but then it's also entirely realistic. The truth HAS been nasty lately, and some of the lack of action on the part of prelates may be as well explained by money as cowardice.

  • Posted by: - May. 09, 2004 7:50 PM ET USA

    Sorry, Jimbo. It won't work. It'll take more than false irenics to silence our hero. Diogenes dramatizes an issue that concerns us all. Prayer is our first recourse. But it doesn't hurt to keep reminding certain parties that some of the faithful are well aware of what still lies beneath the surface of the continuing (and accelerating) scandals of the modern Church. - PJRS

  • Posted by: - May. 09, 2004 6:13 PM ET USA

    There is a point behind this story which is driven home more forcefully by this kind of writing. There are members of the clergy who have, shall we say, a "checkered past." These individuals face pretty significant consequences at the present if some of the more sordid details of their life become publicly known. This kind of blackmail was legendary by the Russians during the Cold War. Why wouldn't unsavory characters want to use the same tack to influence the policy of Church leaders?

  • Posted by: - May. 09, 2004 5:04 PM ET USA

    The entry by Diogenes alludes to the danger of blackmail. It is no secret that organizations like Act Up and Queer Nation have a record of blackmailing prominent closet gays for things besides money. It is unlikely that they would blink at blackmailing closet gay bishops or Cardinals. The behavior of Cdl. Bernardin ten years ago comes to mind. He betrayed the Church by founding the "Common Ground Initiative". A sellout to the left wing of the Democrat party. Bill Clinton gave him a medal for it

  • Posted by: Eusebuis1 - May. 09, 2004 2:16 PM ET USA

    I totally agree with Jim E's comment. I have found Diogenes comments in the past to be very insightful. Recently, they have almost turned me off from reading Off the Record. We're going through very rough times in our Church. What is needed is insightful suggestions on what we -- the laity and clergy who are in concert with our Holy Father -- can do to change this situation.

  • Posted by: - May. 09, 2004 2:14 PM ET USA

    Take a bite, Jim. It's called a "reality sandwich."

  • Posted by: Jim E - May. 09, 2004 1:31 PM ET USA

    I have read the "Off the Record" and "Sound Off" features regularly and I found the comments to be generally insightful and worthwhile. However, too often of late, some comments have been banal at best and certainly not reflective of love for the truth of God. Despite the significant value of many his comments, Diogenes in particular is tending toward nastiness. Hopefully this section will again be a source of enlightenment and interest in the Truth... without the cynicism.