Simcha Fisher is one of my favorite bloggers and just about the only “Mommy Blogger” I read apart from The Crescat who is a kind of the chupacabra of mommy bloggers. Simcha writes here about her approach to blogging and her reactions to the mommy bloggers whose output is more pretty than gritty.
It got me thinking about my own approach to blogging as I am not exactly a Daddy blogger, but a Father blogger i.e. a priest blogger. So what are my ambitions as a priest blogger? First of all, I never compare myself to other priest bloggers because everybody’s different. I don’t always agree with my fellow bloggers, but I have a personal promise that I will not attack or criticize a fellow priest in public, in my writings or in my words or actions. I’m afraid I do not always succeed in this promise, and have written about other priests from time to time in a critical way. For such lapses I am always sorry and seek to make amends.
Why do I blog and what am I trying to do? The answer is in the title of my blog. Standing on My Head is a reference to the Chesterton quote from his book on St Francis that “a scene is most often best seen when it is seen upside down.” The blog is therefore an attempt to stand things on their head in the light of the gospel. If I take what seems to be a conservative stance then it is to stand on its head all the smug, politically correct liberal attitudes. On the other hand, if I point out the hypocrisy and extremist attitudes of the traditionalists, then it is also an attempt to stand on my head and see the world upside down.
The gospel is bigger than all our little categories, and it challenges all our expectations. If you like, the gospel is never good news unless it’s subversive, and the blog is my way to try day by day to turn things upside down, and if I am not constantly self critical through the blog, then I have no right to criticize others. I’ve got to stand on my head if I am to encourage others to do the sa
In addition to this, I began blogging because there was stuff I wanted to write that would not be published anywhere else. Who would publish my alter egos or my poetry or my personal stories? Who would publish the pictures and quotes and little stuff? Who would publish the more outrageous or controversial opinions? No one. So the blog provides an outlet for musings and rantings that would otherwise remain the stuff of my mutterings and splutterings. Do people care to read such drivel? Apparently some find it amusing and informative.
Readers should always remember the immediacy of blogging. I sit down in the middle of a busy day to write my blog posts. They are pretty much off the cuff. I do very little research or proof reading. If I get it wrong sometimes and offend, then it is the same kind of offense when you say something unguarded and the person you were talking about is in earshot. Whoops! Red faces. Sorry about that! If you say something which is incredible, daft or illogical, people will quite rightly pick you up on it in the combox. If you make a mistake and post something which is wrong or stupid or offensive–go back and edit it or take it down. Remember the blog is personal and immediate. There are no editors or censors. That’s why it is an exciting new form of writing. It’s me. Straight up. No filters. Take it or leave it.
The blog is an exciting new form of writing which offers instant global communication, immediacy and interaction with readers. It’s a way to preach the gospel that is entertaining, maddening, informative and fun. It’s so effective in preaching the gospel because of its immediacy and personal touch. This is me writing today–right here. Right now. This is me, a Catholic priest trying to live out the gospel the best he can and sharing that experience with you.
I’m going to keep going. I hope you’ll continue to tune in.