Monday, March 06, 2006

If the Gather Hymn Book was a...

Many people will be aware of the fact that the Gather Hymn Books are responsible for bringing us the the songs of Haugen, Hass, and co.

But have you ever asked yourself; "what if the Gather Hymn book was something else?"

If the Gather Hymn Book was an animal it would be...

Or it maybe...

If the Gather Hymn Book was a Star Wars character it would be...

If the Gather Hymn Book was a hair style it would be...

Or maybe...

If the Gather Hymn Book was a vehicle it would be...

Or maybe one of these...

If the Gather Hymn Book was food it would be...

If the Gather Hymn Book was an album cover it would be...

Or maybe this...

If the Gather Hymn Book was a movie it would be...

If the Gather Hymn Book was a pet it would be...


Brian Michael Page said...

LMAO - that "pet" is pretty dang homely (but then, so is Gather)!


Brian Michael Page said...

BTW, check out my post - there's this really pretty lookin' kitty cat as "Worship" and a really homely looking cat with big orange bug-eyes as "Glory and Praise".


Fr.Dennis said...

That was the funniest post that I've ever read. I was laughing so hard that I was crying.

too true. too true all of it...

Andrew said...

The painted vans from the 60s really fit well!

michigancatholic said...

Destined to be a classic. Thanks.

Christine said...

What would you make of the paper handouts that I get every week at Mass? You know, with the gender-nuetral words in the old songs and the Haugen songs filling most of the space?

I don't even get the Gather hymnal.

Kenneth Fisher, Founder & CRCOA said...

Marty Haugen is a featured speaker at the annual gathering of the heterodox, the Los Angels' Religious Anti-Education Congress!

Are you willing to come an join the Concerned Roman Catholics in peaceful, prayerful demonstration on April 1st at the Anaheim Convention Center?

If so, for more information call or email to: 714-491-2284 or

God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
Kenneth M. Fisher, Founder & Chairman, Concerned Roman Catholics of America, Inc.

Carolina Cannonball said...

jar jar binks, 60's hippy van, and swing that gospel axe... absolutely perfect & hilarious post!

Gerald Augustinus said...

Excellent stuff.

Kenneth Fisher, Founder & CRCOA said...

A Church Already
In Ashes

By Gabriel Garnica

A recent ABC /Washington Post poll revealed that American Catholics’ favorite “sacraments” are, in order, 1. ashes on Ash Wednesday, 2.Baptism, 3. “that day when we get to bring in our pets for blessings”, 4. annulment, 5. confirmation and 6. marriage.
The folks at ABC and The Washington Post, not exactly pillars of Catholic support, must have been rolling on the floor on this one, assuming they realized how pathetic those results really are. After all, it is possible that these pollsters actually think that ashes on Ash Wednesday, blessing pets or annulments are Sacraments. Anyone who doubts that today’s typical American Catholic is about as clueless as anyone even pretending to be a member of any religion can be need just look at this poll.

Brazenly Clueless Ignorance

I never cease to be amazed by those segments on Jay Leno where Leno asks everyday people really tough questions like which country is north of The United States only to get “Mexico” or “Spain” as an answer. It occurs to me that the only thing worse than ignorance is brazenly clueless ignorance where someone’s answer is so pathetically imbecilic yet that person seems to have no clue just how imbecilic and just how fundamentally dysfunctional their ignorance really is. It is one thing to not know what 2 + 2 equals, but it is quite another to then be publicly giddy in declaring that 2 + 2 equals 5! These so-called “Catholics” are so ignorant about that what they claim is their faith that it is painful to read. However, what is more painful is the realization that they are not the exception, but the rule. They are the product of a dumbed-down, twisted, warped, and often heretical Catholic education and upbringing which are a shadow of the glory days when children learned to be good Catholics and were taught by people who likewise knew. What do you expect from Catholic schools that featured posters of John Kerry noting he is supposedly “Catholic” and CCD programs so diluted that they make water look like thick soup. Simply put, today’s American Catholics know about as much about their faith as John Kerry knows about rap music and they practice that faith about as well as Ted Kennedy practices proper lifeguard rescuing techniques.

Deer in The Doctrinal Headlights

When you read that someone like Katie Stanbury of Phelps/Dawson Public Relations say “I miss Mass quite a bit but I never, ever miss this service (ashes)”. How about Maggie Oliver, a retired teacher, who says that she likes Baptisms and Confirmations because they are a “great chance to take some pictures and see relatives I haven’t seen for awhile. Oh, plus we all go out and eat afterwards, which is fun” My favorite one was Kenny Daniels, who discovered that he had arrived too late for ashes but just before Communion. “I could have stayed for Communion, but I came for the ashes, so I just went to Starbucks instead. Oh, well, there’s always next year.” It’s nice to see that typical American Catholics equate their faith with missing Mass, favoring ashes over Mass, photo and food opportunities, and Starbucks. Put it this way, if your typical bus driver, airline pilot, or chef were as ignorant about their jobs as Catholics are about their faith, you would have a lot of dead passengers and food poisoning emergency visits.

Again, what shocks me the most is not the totally imbecilic ignorance of one’s own faith or the brazenly open indifference for what is really important that these people show, but the amazingly clueless perception of just how dysfunctional and destructive their ignorance really is. I equate this with the sight of a plumber hopping down the street singing proudly about how he just connected the toilet to the refrigerator.

The Cherry on The Clueless Cake

Much has been written on the causes for the clueless condition of American Catholics, and certainly one of the causes is the callous confusion caused by clerics who collaborate in this catastrophe. One need only read the profound words of one Fr. Allen Bannion of St. Peter Claver Church in Boston who likened receiving ashes in addition to Communion to “Bonus days at the Clinique counter when you not only get the perfume you went in to purchase, but a kick-ass red lipstick as well.” With profound moral and theological insight like that, how can American Catholics go wrong? I researched for days, but I could not find Thomas Aquinas or Theresa of Avila ever equating Communion with perfume and ashes on Ash Wednesday with a “kick-ass red lipstick”.

Sadly, we have legions of moral and doctrinal morons who are tragic victims and products of a systemic deterioration in Catholic catechism and education. As we search through these piles of bubbling fools, we realize that we have sheep jumping off cliffs to perdition being led by many clergy telling either telling them that there is no cliff, that the fall is not too deep, or that jumping off cliffs is fun.


Sometimes I feel as if I am watching one of those pathetic movies which get even more absurd just when I thought they had reached the lowest point of human stupidity. I cannot count how many times I thought that I was touching the low point on American Catholic clueless existence only to realize that I was indeed on yet another precipice with far more imbecilic depths below and, worse still, surrounded by legions of giggling “Catholics” only too eager to Bungee-jump even further down to hell. There is one bright spot to this country’s tragic Catholic consciousness. It occurs to me that if Judas had been an American Catholic, he would never have betrayed Christ, for upon arriving late at The Last Supper, he would have opted to go to Starbucks for some “kick-ass” coffee instead.

Gabriel Garnica can be reached at:

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Nârwen said...

Actually, I found the pet picture unfair. The late "Sam"- champion in the Ugliest Dog Contest- couldn't help the way he looked. The people responsible for "Gather" are quite probably less innocent.

Brian Michael Page said...

"A recent ABC /Washington Post poll revealed that American Catholics’ favorite “sacraments” are, in order, 1. ashes on Ash Wednesday, 2.Baptism, 3. “that day when we get to bring in our pets for blessings”, 4. annulment, 5. confirmation and 6. marriage."

Yup - #1 was blogged upon by Maureen Martin.

And #4 is listed as a Sacrament at St. Joan of Arc in Minneapolis. (Why am I NOT surprised?)


Christine said...

Marty Haugen is doing some big musical thing in (I think) Charlottsville, VA. Our parish has had the ad about it in our bulliten for nearly a month. Somehow I don't feel compelled to drive all the way over there and go.

Andrew M. Fanco said...

At least it isn't Voices as One Vol, 2 featuring "Prepare Ye (John the Raptist)" With VAO the jokes make themselves.

Gilroyan said...

Great, great post! While the roadkill possum was painful to look it, the mugshot of former House Representative (and current convict) James A. Trafficant may be even more painful. lol

Kenneth Fisher, Founder & CRCOA said...

Satirical Blog
Reveals Much
About Our Church

By Gabriel Garnica

Caught By Apparently Fake Story

I recently wrote a piece sent out by Dr. Frank entitled “A Church Already in Ashes”.
which was based on an apparent news story which I read from one of many Catholic mass mailing list emails that I receive daily. Since I had never had any problems with the accuracy of its stories, I wrote the piece based on the site’s own reporting and discussion of that apparent news story.

The story described a poll supposedly conducted by The Washington Post and ABC News revealing that receiving ashes on Ash Wednesday was the favorite “sacrament” of American Catholics and included an assorted and sometimes absurd list of other favorite sacraments including annulment. The story also described a priest’s outrageous effort to justify and explain the popularity of ashes on Ash Wednesday and concluded with a description of how one man preferred going to Starbucks after missing his ashes rather than waiting for Communion.

Apparently, this news story and the poll it mentions were concocted by a blogger whose link is provided below. It seems that this blogger whose pen name is Maureen Martin entertains herself by writing fake and satirical stories which are then floated in the internet for fun. Most of the stories concocted by this site are so preposterous or absurd that anyone can easily see them as fake satires. I will assume that the blogger is female by her biographical comments although, at this point, who knows.

Tragically, The Fake Was All Too Real

Unfortunately, the particular story in question was similar to other stories that I have read over the past few years detailing just how distorted and confused most American Catholics really are regarding their faith. I have seen numerous polls similar to the one cited in the fake story whose findings are no less mind blowing than the findings of that concocted poll. Believe it or not, most American Catholics have no idea what a sacrament is much less what The Seven Sacraments are. Most American Catholics do not attend Mass and, if they do, either never receive Communion or receive The Eucharist without going to confession. Many see Baptism, Confirmation, and First Communions more as social events and family gatherings than sacred rites. Yes, many would leave church to go get coffee or watch a favorite T.V. show.

Given what I have heard and read coming out of the mouths of typical American Catholics, little if anything in this fake news story sounded far-fetched. Perhaps the only part that really stretched the envelope was the part about the priest comparing receiving Ashes and Communion at one service with getting a “kick-ass lipstick” as a bonus with perfume. However, I have heard priests say similar or even worse things than that, so not even that outrageous comment made me suspicious.

Perhaps people like myself would be the most susceptible to being fooled by a story like the one cited in my article because I have been exposed to so many absurd and outrageous cases of ignorance, heresy, blasphemy, and sheer distortion of our faith and doctrine that this bogus news story considered absurd by its author was all too real for me.

The Real Tragedy Here

While this blog site may be intended as some twisted form of entertainment by its anonymous author, its sheer existence and the reactions to its creations reveal much more about the sad state of our Church than one would want to know. The fact that such a satirical and mocking site even exists tells us what research already shows, which is that most American Catholics see their faith as a source of humor, irony, unrealistic expectations, and a basic isolation from reality.

Since the Catholic faith for many American faithful has been a theatre of the absurd, it is natural that those Catholics would find solace and comfort in portraying their faith in that very manner to others. A common thread running through this site and its links seems to be the common experiences of people who grew up Catholic. Sadly, there is little positive nostalgia here but rather memories ranging from stressful to forgettable.
Secondly, the fact that the writer can make fun of the contradictions and ironies that exist in the American Catholic Church merely points out that perhaps she fails to realize just how profound, tragic, and distressing those problems really are. If ignorance is bliss and laughter is the best medicine, then this blog site and those like it seek laughter as medicine precisely because they are ignorant of just how unfortunate the present state of The American Catholic Church really is. One almost gets the impression of a clueless person laughing at cancer while that person’s close friend is dying of that dreaded disease.

The blogger titles her site as “The philosophical musings of a serious Catholic writer” and claims to love the Church. She contends that her parodies and satire are not meant to make fun of the Church, but rather “the various blogging celebrities who have cropped up and the absurdities among the faithful and not so faithful.”

Suppose that I mock and make up stories about my mother and her behavior supposedly as an attempt to poke fun at others. Further suppose that my mother is presently being attacked from all sides. Can someone please explain to me how mocking my mother pokes fun at others or shows my love for my mother, especially when she is already under attack by her enemies? If anything, by publicly mocking my mother, I will likely increase others’ disrespect for her so how precisely is this showing love? Obviously, The Catholic Church is our mother, and she is presently already being mocked and attacked by her enemies from all sides. Given this situation, it is beyond belief that anyone claiming to love the Church could add fuel to that mockery under the guise of poking fun at others or the absurdities of the faithful. Given the sheer hypocrisy and imbecilic nature of this paradox, one can see why the “serious” Catholic writer of this blog site would want to stay anonymous.

The greatest tragedy regarding this site is the fact that with our faith already so mocked, so distorted, so diluted, and so confused in the minds, eyes, hearts, and souls of many Catholics, we do not need some satirical wannabe further stirring the pot and blurring the lines between an already absurd reality and an increasingly real fiction.

The Unanswered Question

The only reason that I found out about this whole situation was that a fan of the site emailed me to make me aware of the fact that I had been had. She noted how she found my article hilarious knowing that being funny had not been my original intention. When I went to this site that I had previously been unaware of, I found mocking commentary on my piece as well as two comments by readers of the site. One could not believe that someone had thought the story was real and asked “what is the world coming to?” The other commentator went a step further, saying that I had “made an ash” of myself by believing and writing on the story.

Probably much to the blogger’s surprise, I entered my own commentary in which I admitted being fooled and then asked a very simple question. “What is the world coming to when Catholics support abortion, homosexual marriage and euthanasia and can vote for someone like John Kerry?” Not surprisingly, my comment was never permanently posted nor was my question answered. I guess my words were not amusing or funny enough to merit inclusion in the philosophical musings of a serious Catholic writer.


Perhaps you read my original piece and were startled enough by its outrageous points to seek clarification. Maybe some of the more seemingly absurd points caused you to think about just how far we have strayed from true Catholic principles, doctrine, liturgy, and teachings. By chance the piece made you meditate on just what it takes to truly be a “serious” Catholic and not some clown using her faith as a comedic prop. Know that Our Lord uses even the pranks of a fool to achieve a greater purpose. Know that the writer of this site, most likely inadvertently and certainly without even being aware of it, has reminded us just what a joke our faith has become in the eye of a mocking world

Yes, the devil smiles most when our faith is mocked, parodied, and satirized, but rest assured that the devil has never been able to smile for long. While our faith is being scourged by a hypocritical world outside and mocking, clueless Catholics inside, we can pray and fight for a future when the devil’s laughter will be silenced forever. For now, we can shed light on those who claim to love the Church even as they mock it for their own distorted purposes. Fear the one who calls himself Catholic without being willing to fight for its true teachings, but fear more the one who calls herself Catholic while laughing at its foibles, for where someone mocks the Church, there the devil can be found. Christ calls upon us to exhibit loving, constructive criticism, but the devil relishes nothing but ridiculing, destructive mockery dressed as deep commentary.

By pointing out this satirical blog site, I hope to prevent others from falling for the trap I so publicly fell for. Once again I apologize for being an unwitting accomplice to the purposes of this site’s writer. I will do my best to not make this mistake again.

The link to the site for those who want to see it for themselves is

Gabriel Garnica can be reached at:

Kenneth Fisher, Founder & CRCOA said...

ATTENTION, remember there are just 19 days left until the annual invasion of the hetereodox, the Archdiocese of Lost Angels Religious Anti-Catholic Education Congress at the Anaheim Convention Center.

Will you be there to prayerfully demonstrate against this attack on our Faith?

Tom Reagan said...

Tell us how you really feel, Ox!

Kenneth Fisher, Founder & CRCOA said...

I have a pressing question to pose to my fellow Catholics:

Now that the Vatican is moving towards dropping Free Taiiwan in favor of Communist China, where does that leave the Vatican position on China's "One Child and Aborton" policies?

All of these things we are writing about in the blog, are the reasons CRCOA will once again be prayerfully demonstrating this Saturday at the Archdiocesan Religious Education Congress. We are spending quite a lot on printing signs and tabloids, now we need the faithful to come out and help.

We will be demonstrating from 9:00 AM to around 6:00 PM just in front of the main Anaheim Convention Center entrances. all participants are asked to have a Rosary in their hands at all times.

Please, please, please come and stand up for the True Faith as opposed to what many will be teaching inside the Congress.

We also have mini recorders for those who want to go inside and monitor the speakers.

God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
Kenneth M. Fisher, Founder & Chairman
Concerned Roman Catholics of America, Inc.

Kenneth Fisher, Founder & CRCOA said...


Thanks for all you are doing to promote the prayerful demonstration tomorrow. Some of us intend to be there on Sunday as well, and we will make sure anyone else who joins us will have all the materials they need.

By the way, at last count, there were at least 40 definite heterodox speakers and many more questionable ones.

At this kind of Congress, ONE SUCH SPEAKER IS TOO MANY!

Are Our Lord and His Mother asking you to come and prayerfully demonstrate at the REC tomorrow anywhere from 9:00 AM until roughly 6:00 PM when the modernistic Mass complete with dancing girls begins?

Pleae come and join CRCOA tomorrow, we have plenty of literature and signs for those who do come. The more spiritual volunteers we have, the more we can put the truth into the hands of those who are ORDERED
to attend this Dissenter fest.

Pray that it does not rain; but if it does, the heresy does not stop so neither should Their true children. Come rain or shine, CRCOA will be there. Will you?

Kenneth M. Fisher, Founder & Chairman, Concerned Roman Catholics of America, Inc.

sdRay said...

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Knockadoon said...

and you call yourself sad...

JesusFreak84 said...

I've been exposed to two Gather hymnals: 2nd edition and Comprehensive; of the two, I'd take 2nd edition any day. More "traditional" songs and far less folk music. (The Comprehensive hymnal is about 70% folk music.) Guitars in Mass once in a blue moon didn't bug me, say I was traveling or whatever, but now that first strum goes right to my spine. >_>

I'd be grateful if the hymnal compilers (GIA or anyone else) would allow for the reality that not all of us in the congregation are sopranos... >_>

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