Wednesday, September 4, 2013
SHOULD I FEEL GUILTY FOR NOT WEARING CLERICS?
My hip "selfie" after the colonoscopy!
This morning I went to the Augusta Endoscopy Center at 6:30 AM for a colonoscopy. Anyone who knows of this procedure, knows one must strip to an open back gown for it. So I went dressed in shoes with no socks, shorts and a shirt with no undershirt. I looked far from a priest, although most who worked there knew I was one. I was home by 8:00 AM and all went well and the colon looks marvelous, just marvelous. I was also told not to drive, drink alcohol or sign any contracts all day today. But they didn't tell me not to blog!
But I digress.
When I got home, I watched on Turner Classic Movies, The Bamboo Prison released in 1954. It was about the Korean War and an American prison camp in the north. It was about an American who feigned being a communist sympathizer so as to get privileges and be able to spy for the USA.
In the movie the communists had their own plant or spy amongst the prisoners. He took on the character of a Catholic priest and wore his cassock in the prison camp. But of course he wasn't even a Catholic let alone a priest, which interestingly enough, the script of the movie alerted the audience that not only wasn't he a priest, he wasn't Catholic. I guess the producers of this movie didn't want to offend Catholic sensibilities of the 1950's!
Eventually, this cassocked faux priest learned that the American who was feigning to be a communist sympathizer was actually a spy. The faux priest and the faux communist sympathizer were in a jeep together and the American spy knew something was up and didn't really think the priest was actually a priest. So, he said to the faux priest that he had had Latin in school and said some Latin phrase, but my anesthesia from my medical procedure has given me amnesia as I write this, so I don't recall what the phrase was. The spy was trying to see if the faux priest knew Latin. Then, and I do recall this, the spy said, "What is mea culpa mean?" And of course the faux priest didn't know, so the spy sped up the jeep, then slammed on the breaks making the faux priest go on top of the hood of the jeep with his gun and the spy was able to wrestle him and then strangle him to death and throw him down a ravine.
After he killed the faux priest he said, "You don't even deserve a burial" and departed.
But my point is that the priest who wasn't wore a cassock in a prison camp and I, the priest who is, wore shorts and a shirt to the endoscopy center. Should I feel guilty? He wasn't a priest and he wore a cassock. I am a priest and I wore shorts and shoes with no socks to boot, get it, to boot. But I digress.
And on top of that, it was presumed in this 1950's movie that all priests would certainly know Latin and any priest that didn't would be a communist sympathizer spy.
But if this faux spy priest lived today, that faux priest could not have been tripped up with not knowing the Latin, because most priests today don't know it, not even "mea culpa."
So the moral of this story is, real priests don't wear cassocks, but do celebrate the EF Mass and thus do know Latin and thus won't be strangled as a communist sympathizer and thrown down a ravine and the American spy won't say, "he doesn't even deserve to be buried."