I reprint, below, a piece by Fr Ray Blake, one of the best Catholic Priest Bloggers around, whose thoughtful and compassionate earlier piece was mangled and abused by a shameless (and apparently scruffy) hack.
I was saying that the poor, the really poor, turn our lives upside down.
I know the local paper pays peanuts and expects its journalists to
create stories in order to get onto the news networks but this is just a
malicious and deliberate misrepresentation. It is very interesting to see what a disreputable journalist can do with
a few carefully chosen adjectives. I didn't 'condemn', 'complain',
'blast' etc, and I am pretty certain that some of his other quotes are
not my words, especially not, 'test my holiness', I don't speak like
that, 'only God is Holy'. Though I admit in an informal moment I might
question the marriage of the parents of someone who disrupts the worship
of an entire congregation, especially if they consistently steal from
the church or other poor people.
It is interesting to see how an unscrupulous journalist can so easily
put an entirely different slant on a simple theological reflection,
presumably even basic Christian concepts are beyond the comprehension of
Well, journalists are obviously as messy as the poor; except
unscrupulous journalists can do more damage. Perhaps Mr Gardner might
like to help on our soup run, it doesn't have to be 365 day a year, once
a week would be fine, providing he treats our clients with respect, or
maybe he could take Jason or Daryl or Pawel or Dawn out for a cup of
coffee or a meal, or just come a clear up the next time someone comes in
and vomits or bleeds all over my kitchen because he is drug or has been
Maybe next time I run out of money I could tap him for a few quid when
some vulnerable 17 year old girl needs to top up her phone to speak to
her mum because her boyfriend has beaten her up or she needs a roof over
head because she is sleeping in a tent and it is just few degrees above
zero and she is vulnerable, or maybe the next time I am arranging a
child's funeral and someone comes to the door in need of someone to talk
because they are suicidal I can send them round to Bill's place so he
can spend a couple of hours listening to them.Here, to, I am neither
complaining, blasting, lambasting or anything else, just asking.
I understand Mr Gardner's little piece has
been syndicated internationally, perhaps kind readers might, if possible
post my response.
(...and lazy blogger cuts and pastes! It doesn't take long to learn the skills of rubbish journalism!)