BCCT: Some Internet Writing Advice

BCCT: Some Internet Writing Advice January 17, 2022

THE COMMENT

I got this comment recently from a reader. Well, from someone who should be a regular reader but isn’t. Here she is explaining why she is not a regular reader of the Catholic Bard.
Mark’s posts are very long, in part because they are mostly made up of him quoting many different people regarding many different things during all of history. His subject matter changes acutely during the very same post. There are way too many directions he pulls you in because he puts up so many different links and videos which may have very little to do with one another. People usually find learning about one topic concisely during online posts. If it is too long and  too scattered people will quickly lose interest.
Most of what Mark writes are long quotes as a matter of fact, he does more cutting and pasting, thus adding to the post, then he does actually writing information himself. It’s not that I don’t like quotes all together, it is when one calls himself a writer and 90% of what he has “written” are not his words at all.-Kristin Wilson-The Carmelite writer of the Catholic Bard.

The Response

Every feel that your brain is just so much mush and dust from all the daily activity that you go through everyday? If your a writer or someone who wants to write, composing new original material can be a challenge as it is for a beaver to give a dam without any building materials, when your chief instrument, the brain, is not fully working correctly. The desire to want to write, create and compose is still running in your veins although your inner treadmill has no power.
Ok Go - Go GIF - Go Music Video Dancing - Discover & Share GIFs
I’m not the only one who feels this way when it comes to writing.
As someone who has made his living for years writing thousands of articles, a guy who believes writing is a craft, not a manifestation of the muses tickling your brain when they happen to feel like it, it bothers me how little content I’ve been able to put out lately.

Steve SkojecLet’s Get Raw & Real For a Hot Second 

But as you surf the intergalactic international interdimensional information superhighway, you come across a video, a meme, a GIF, an article that captures your imagination, your interests, your inner hunger for good digestible thoughts that make you wonder, ponder, reflect think and laugh. Stuff you don’t want to easily forget because it made a point in words you couldn’t think of, or made the point of making you chuckle and pee your pants.  You don’t want to keep this little bit of cyber treasure all to yourself, you want to share it with your friends, family and sometimes your enemies.
Especially if shows how dumb he is and how smart you are with your new found wisdom. Take that you Cotton Headed Ninny Muggins, Scruffy Looking Nerf Herder.
But sharing neat, cool, good stuff  is the point of the continual number of posts I edit together and distribute on my blog, where I pluck quotes from various individuals, gather them together in  somewhat of an organized fashion and create something you can also share and distribute. And just perhaps you will gain an insight or funny moment you will want to remember and muse upon later.
So take that nitpicky complaining ungrateful reader (dear lovely wife) who is currently practicing her new hobby as a Tin Whistler.

BCCT

Every post of quotes always goes back to this particular quote which sums up why I create long posts with lots of quotes. I mean other then the other reasons I stated above.
The diversity of thought within Catholic teaching, like variety within the strictures of sonnets,  is one of its most beautiful features. It is nevertheless important to listen, as much as we can, to a broad chorus of Catholic thinkers. I have found great consolation in the fact that someone holier and smarter than myself has likely asked my questions already; my job is to find them and to listen, and then to make as many people as possible read block quotations about it.

THE QUOTES

Sorry Wife if this is long…
When you share things online it’s tempting to want to share content that you actually despise and hate. You share it so you can comment about how much you despise and hate it and thus get others to despise and hate it also. It’s quite an adrenaline rush to talk about how dumb someone’s stupid comment is and to focus in on it. While it is true that some things are worth mocking and ridicule. Things like this…
A former Utah tech executive and prominent GOP donor said Tuesday that he believed Pope Francis was secretly a Jewish agent installed to help distribute the COVID-19 vaccine around the world in an effort to create “totalitarian rule.
But what if…
There’s this idea that “silence is consent.” And that’s true.

But it doesn’t mean you have to respond to every ridiculous take on Twitter or address every issue directly.

Your life can be a witness against many bad takes, and sometimes ignoring is the best option.-Fr. Casey, OFM@caseyofm

You don’t need to get hooked up in internet drama.

If you were reading Sacred Scripture and the Doctors of the Church, along with the Catechism, going to Mass and praying the Liturgy of the Hours, would you even know the names of the men and controversies you’re wrapped up in?
No. They need to be sought out and the controversies need to drawn down upon oneself unnecessarily.-William C. Michael
It may make you a happier person if you don’t seek out the drama.

Scott Hahn is a Catholic leader with a target on his back. He’s not the only one. So are Father James Martin, Bishop Robert Barron and the Holy Father himself. So are the National Catholic Register for some and the National Catholic Reporter for others.

Every side follows the 13th of Saul Alinsky’s famous “rules for radicals”: “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.” He explained: “Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions.”

What to do? The philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein famously said, “Whereof we cannot speak, thereof we must be silent.” Catholics might take up the rule, “Of whom you need not speak, of him you must be silent.” Nothing would be lost if the mob put down their pitchforks and torches, and much gained. The chance to listen and learn, for one thing.
David Mills-The mob comes for Scott Hahn (and others) – Our Sunday Visitor (osvnews.com)

I am not an enemy of traditional Catholicism or the Latin Mass just because I proclaim what the church teaches to the best of my ability and defend the other forms of approved liturgy and Canon Law. It’d be nice if Twitter wasn’t so crazy with the black and white thinking.
Holly �@HollyMRodriguez

Here are some rules for discussing on Twitter (and probably elsewhere for that matter)

Film Twitter rules to consider:
1. Tweet about Paddington and/or The Rocketeer.
2. When tweeting about other topics, think about how to make them about Paddington and/or The Rocketeer.
3. Why aren’t you tweeting about Paddington and/or The Rocketeer already?
Josh Spiegel@mousterpiece3:35 PM · Dec 5, 2021
Deacon Steve comments on this comment..
The rules are good. More broadly: Tweet more about what you’re excited about and less about what makes you angry.
-Deacon Steven D. Greydanus @DecentFilms
It’s sad that at times, writing about things you like can have not so good results as evidenced by extraordinary and excellent musician John Michael Talbot on his FB page.
I tried sharing from other interesting groups that I follow, but was quite disappointed by the responses I got. I thought posting from Bishop Robert Barron would be fairly down the middle as a Catholic, and something from our Coptic Christian brothers and sisters in Egypt from which much of Christian monasticism was birthed would be interesting. Generally, I’m rather eclectic in trying to find the very best from all the various traditions of the east and the west of Christianity from my Catholic Christian monastic base. That’s an essential part of who I am both as a musician and as a founder and spiritual father of the Brothers & Sisters of Charity at Little Portion Hermitage. But based on the rather negative response I got I won’t be doing that in the future.  I ended up deleting the posts. I must confess my disappointment in the state of our culture as represented on FB.
I know what you mean and I agree it’s very sad too see the level of infighting. I’m glad I’m not trying to convert to Christianity now, or else I may never have become Catholic after seeing how they act on social media.-Suzanne Westra Greydanus
Despite the very disappointing feedback from others on what is otherwise very good content, not all Catholics respond to what is troubling them with vile and toxic negativity.  For example this response to the Pope’s decree on the TLM.

At my TLM this morning, the pastor did not use one harsh word or make a passive-aggressive slight. He did not address the dubia at all. Some traditional priests, believe it or not, do not use the liturgy & pulpit for culture wars.He simply & faithfully preached today’s Gospel.There are some on here who I’m sure are waiting for the stories of TLM priests exclaiming “We must resist! We must disobey! We are in the right!” I want to stand witness that I have not heard that once. I went to Mass and I heard the Gospel. Simple as.
it’s Em-mardi gras season Performing arts @EmilyKath319

You don’t have to be a Jerk for Jesus to be a committed witness for Him.

I would rather a Christian be kind yet bad at apologetics than be a jerk who wins every debate (ideally we should kindly win debates!). That’s because the damage caused by mean-spirited behavior sticks around way longer than the damage cause by not being able to answer objections
Trent Horn@Trent_Horn

Scripture tells us this is so.

 Welcome anyone who is weak in faith, but not for disputes over opinions. Why then do you judge your brother? Or you, why do you look down on your brother? For we shall all stand before the judgment seat of God. Romans 14: 1,10

And Saints as well echo this.

“Beware of condemning any man’s action. Consider your neighbor’s intention, which is often honest and innocent, even though his act seems bad in outward appearance. —St. Ignatius Loyola”

This should be the overall attitude of Christians everywhere.

But even this simple piece of advice is met with objections.

Michael: Faith is much more than a mere feeling. Of course our love for our neighbor should deepen by following Christ, but truth is truth and not undue judgement.

ThereseThis meme is not pitting love against truth. True love necessarily involves the truth. It specifically states this is what Christianity should *feel like* to Christians. If, in their everyday lives Christians overarching feelings towards others is “Those people are so wrong and I am so right” then they are *not* living Christianity correctly. The overarching attitude and feeling towards others, even those who *are* wrong should be one of loving them more and more. And I, correcting them in truth *because you love them too much not to correct them.* This is really not about wishy washy “love” vs truth. This should absolutely be non controversial to *all* Christians.

As these statements shouldn’t be either.
Being Pro-life and Doing Justice means:
Visit prisoners.
Adopt orphans.
Love the elderly.
Respect women.
Feed the hungry.
Protect the unborn.
House the homeless.
Welcome immigrants.
Speak up for the abused.
Care for Pregnant mothers.
Advocate for minorities of color.
Rondell Treviño@Rondell_Trevino
The “here comes everybody” variety is not necessarily wrong tout court. Indeed, conservatives such as myself, who have spent our entire adult lives reacting against the ecclesial culture of the seventies, need to avoid becoming dismissive of the great truth that resides at the heart of the latitudinarian approach out of a false antiquarian reduction of our own to binary ways of thinking. Pope Francis might be autocratic, erratic, a bit vindictive, petty, and thin-skinned, but that does not mean that his central vision of a Church suffused with mercy, is without merit.  Because I too (and don’t we all?) adhere to all kinds of theological truths that I scarcely embody myself.

Theologically I think Pope Francis is orthodox, but in very undistinguished and conventional ways.  I just don’t think theology concerns him that much, and we see evidence of this now and then when he lets slip a snide remark or two about the “theologians” and their silly head games.  This explains the seeming disparity between his frequent affirmations of theological orthodoxy and his pastoral actions which do not seem to use that orthodoxy as much of a reference point.

For example, he tells the Germans through the CDF, “No, you cannot have intercommunion with Protestants,” but then at an audience he tells a Lutheran woman to just follow her conscience with regard to receiving the Eucharist with her Catholic husband at Mass. On the surface this seems to make no sense and comes across as a simple contradiction, an inconsistency in his thinking, but in reality it makes perfect sense within the thought world of post-conciliar pastoral thinking. There are “doctrines” on one side, and “real people” on the other.  And since Jesus did not care much for the “religious rules” of his time, neither should we. I do not say this at all in an accusatory or defamatory way, even though I disagree with it, since many wonderful and holy people I have known in my life think this way.  I think they are wrong, but not maliciously so, and so I can break bread with them and recline at their table.

Larry Chapp- Pope Francis vs. the Traditionalists: It was Never About the Liturgy | Gaudium et Spes 22

VIDEO RESOURCES

It is possible for us Catholics to witness our presence online to others. To get into discussions without being passive aggressive and being jerks to other believers baptized into the faith in whom Christ died for.  We either Learn to Get Along Here, or in Purgatory.

Here is a good resource for learning more about this topic.

And here is something better to do then going online and correcting others. I speak to myself as much as to anyone else.

LASTLY

Let’s not try to always argue,correct and debate, but let’s also just laugh and enjoy one another too.


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