Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Burying Saint Joseph

As a lite Catholic, I enjoy some of the mysteries and rituals of the Church, despite its seriously crappy record lately in dealing with institutional problems, especially the lack of dealing with priestly pedophiles or the harsh treatment in orphanages in Ireland.  We do learn at an early age to love Catholicism; but have some problems with the insitutional church.  In that way it's analogous to the love-hate relationship that conservative and liberterian Americans have with their government: they love their country, but wish their government to be on a shorter leash!


Anyway, this observation aside, let me tell the story.


Catholicism definitely has some folk aspects to it, like the cult of the relics of the Medieval Age and the local veneration of St. Expeditus.  This can be quite discordant with the Rationalistic and Scientific traditions, and sometimes vexes people.

An occasion of this type came in the form of my sister-in-law's fervor to sell her house.  Since the housing market was "soft," she tried inducements to help make a sale.  Finally, she came home with a foot-tall statue of St. Joseph, explaining that she heard that burying St. Joseph upside-down in your front yard would help you sell your house. 

I indicated that doing that was superstitious; and it might actually incur the wrath of The Patient Saint.  I make it a iron-clad rule never to piss off guys wearing halos.

She asked me for assistance nevertheless, but I pleaded the vapors.  (Woman problems can be a convenient excuse to get out of work; they're seldom challenged.)  Her husband claimed back problems, and so she turned to my guileless other brother, who was not so religious but also not as quick with excuses.

I heard him exclaiming, "This is absurd!  I'm not superstitious; why am I doing this?  I'm a Cartesian.  What will the neighbors think?"

My sister-in-law and brother sold their house.

William of Ockham is working overtime to explain this.

4 comments:

Elvis Wearing a Bra on His Head said...

I like the wry irony is this, especially the part about not pissing off guys that wear halos.

Grenouille Fille said...

Naughty! (tee hee hee)

Anonymous said...

You were disrespectful of the good saint.

eViL pOp TaRt said...

No disrespect intended. Sunday is Fathers' Day.