Monday, March 21, 2011
The Vox and the Vortex
Vox Cantoris and Michael Voris after Sunday Mass at Kinkora
Even before over 600 Catholics were told to "strive to be so holy that you sweat holy water!" the guest of honour at the Celebrate a Real Catholic Man Gala had everyone in the room won over. That probably happened a year ago, a month ago or a week ago when those in the audience discovered Michael Voris on the Internet. What they discovered was a Catholic man from Detroit giving, as so aptly written in last week's Catholic Register, a "voice to the voiceless."
The Gala was organised by Father Paul Nicholson, and many behind the scene, as a fund raiser for pilgrims to World Youth Day. Father Nicholson is a priest of the Diocese of London and two parishes are under his spiritual and pastoral care; the parishes of St. Patrick's in Kinkora and St. Vincent de Paul in Mitchell and I will tell you, they are lucky to have him in more ways than they can even now know. The food and wines were befitting a Solemnity celebration of Canada's Patron Saint with over 600 Catholics rising in song to Great Saint Joseph, Son of David lead by yours truly. The hall nicely decorated and the auction a great success with a picture of Michael Voris going for over $3,000 to say nothing of the private dinner for ten with Voris and a more intimate, dinner for four, which went for even more!
Saturday's gala dinner was a success in every way and I dare say, at twice the price, the hall would have still sold out. There, in a working class suburb of Kitchener, over 600 Catholic men and women gathered at a surprisingly elegant Church hall to hear a pep-talk from a layman who, with his talented and dedicated staff, are taking lay Catholic evangelism to a new level. St. Michael's Media and Real Catholic TV are seen around the world on the Internet and have reached people who not only the secular press, but the Catholic press have ignored.
Saturday evening was about Catholics coming together to be "proud of being Catholic" and to reflect on just how "great it is to be, Catholic" as Voris reminded us. He reflected on the need for all of us to use our "talents" to stand up for the Church and to defend Her and to evangelise and not to fear those who call us "nutjobs" as Voris frequently hears or "extremists" or "Taliban Catholics" as some were called recently in the National Post and Toronto Star by a Toronto-based Basilian cleric last week. "Know that if they hated me, they will hate you also" were the words of Our LORD which Voris used to aptly emphasise the situation that the laity endures for standing up and speaking out over the state of the Church.
There have been larger Catholic dinners; the "Cardinal's Dinner" or the "Ordinandi Dinner" in Toronto for example are well attended functions of over 1,800 people. But these are "official" diocesan and sponsored events. But this was different. Every ticket was sold by word-of-mouth on Facebook and by Bloggers and some selective spot ads on LifeSiteNews and the Catholic Register and posters. No arm twisting, no corporate tables. Just John and Mary Catholic coming to hear one of their own embracing the responsibility of the laity to rebuild His Church at a time when so many of Her shepherds have succumbed to political-correctness and doublespeak.
They came from as far away as Quebec and from New York State, from Michigan and from Windsor, London, Orangeville, Barrie, Oakville, Mississauga, Hamilton, Toronto, Markham, Peterborough...from all over southern Ontario to stand up and be counted for the Catholic faith. Their presence sent a message; time will tell whether or not it has been heard.
Now, let's bring him to Toronto.
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