In his excellent and gracious comments, Father Z asks that we quit writing to him about John Corapi, and quit speculating/arguing/commenting/discussion/dissing/supporting/defending/harassing (or any other gerund) with regard to the subject. He’s very right. The discussion is precisely what Satan has in mind, the bickering and vitriol is part of his brilliant plan. He’s out to get us all. As Father Z said, “The Devil hates priests and bishops.”
On his blog, my husband posted this very funny video about the ruckus. It’s pretty much just quotes from Corapi’s own video, with some mildly snarky comments from a second character interspersed. It’s hilarious. It just makes the whole situation look like exactly what it is—a silly, silly, baffling mess. Father Z would probably not approve, as it does poke fun at John Corapi. I think it’s a great way to stick it to the Devil. Make the whole situation appear as dumb as possible, in an effort to get people to quit taking it all so seriously and just move on.
But it’s interesting nonetheless, and it’s on my mind. Joseph was so right to point out the prudence of a wonderful order of priests we both know. One of their number was on the Catholic conference speaking circuit for a while, and gave phenomenal talks. He really did. He was popular, he was well known, and then he suddenly stopped doing conferences. A family friend of ours got to talk to him some time later, and she asked why we never saw him giving any talks any more. With grace and humility, he told her that he had been getting too big for his britches. That his superiors thought it prudent to nip in the bud any “cult of personality” and keep both the priest from danger of ego and potential followers from the danger of “losing sight of the Creator as they focus on his creation.” That his place was as a priest of God, bringing Truth—not his great wit and snappy speaking style—to all hearers.
What a powerful witness! And that example is so perfect! Many of us now know the story and admire the priest for it all the more—but what one of us among his “fans” would reveal his identity, or set up the very cult that he and his superiors strove to avoid? By his example of humility, this wonderful and inspiring priest both preserved his own ego (meaning, preserved it in humility), protected well-meaning laypeople from misplacing their admiration, and at the same time gained a silent and powerful following of those whose actions remain cloaked in humility. For we strive to be like Christ, who spoke no word, and opened not his mouth.
Please pray for John Corapi, for he truly must be a troubled man. Go to Joseph!