Leading Up To Ash Wednesday Are Now Festivals of Debauchery
At LaSalette, France, the Blessed Mother, in a fully Church-sanctioned apparition, once warned of severe natural chastisement because men were not keeping Sunday holy. Things did not change, and a blight, famine, and plague -- this was 1846 -- came as a result (for those who don't believe in chastisements).
Now, we are getting to the point where it is far worse. In France in the 1800s it was a matter of working on Sundays. We in our time are now so busy that we have no time for church on Sundays because there is not only too much work but errand-running and shopping-until-you're-dropping. Change the oil. Buy a car. These days, there is nothing you can't do on Sunday (except go to Mass).
Perhaps more directly insulting, we have surrounded holy days with desecration. We hate to be negative, but look at "fat Tuesday": the traditional celebrations before Ash Wednesday have turned into a pagan debauchery in the otherwise rather devout city of New Orleans, where the Mardi Gras displays directly demonic costumes (if you want to see the devil, walk up Bourbon Street), while down in Rio, there is the incredibly Babylonian-like festival.
"Topless muses, nude dancers, and masked revelers will stumble home following dusk-to-dawn Carnival parades on both sides of the globe over the next 10 days," said one report. "The larger parades, Mardi Gras and Rio Carnival, will witness above average arrests according to police. 'At first New Orleans officials had said that baring women's breasts or anyone's genitalia would not be acceptable in public, but police refused the label of 'Morality Cops' and insisted that there be no 'new nude crackdown.'''
Okay: let anything go.
"If you think the Super Bowl is the midwinter pagan festival," noted one reader, "you should come here to Louisiana, specifically down to New Orleans, and witness the Mardi Gras. Sodom and Gomorrah would blush."
We can fast. We can do it. Let us fast, pray this Lent, and lessen the darkness! But dark it is...
In Australia the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras draws approximately 700,000 party goers each year, billing the parade as "the world's biggest queer gathering."
Back we go to the Greeks and Dionysus!
Greece, Babylon, ancient Rome -- or Sodom? Take your pick. In Rio it's nakedness and feathered serpentine costume. Angels and demons. Really, it's mainly demons. Such carnivals have erupted across the Caribbean and last year, at the Super Bowl, also tried to erupt at half time. Thank goodness, not this year.
But we are tempting fate. Oh, how we are tempting fate! A carnival in Sao Paulo was attended, for the first time, by a bishop! -- Most Reverend Dom Mauro Morelli, 69, from Duque de Caxias. Like its counterpart at Rio de Janeiro, the Sao Paulo Carnival features semi-naked women and mock orgies.
The Church has not commented on the bishop's appearance but the Archbishop of Rio de Janeiro has condemned "the sad show that carnival has become."
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