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The bishop of Gubbio’s message to the world

So, I’ve been away for a few days, visiting a Carthusianesque monastery waaaaaay far away from everything. But sort of vaguely in the vicinity of Gubbio, of St. Francis-and-the-wolf fame.

I *knew* I was going to find the world more annoying after three days in the monastery. I knew it. Why didn’t I think it would be this painful? Why am I so dumb?

So, Maurizio the super-duper-nice taxi driver comes to pick you up at the monastery to drive you back to Gubbio where you can get the bus back to Perugia. It’s a bit early so you have a bit of time to kill, two hours in fact. You don’t really have the energy or inclination for museums, so you think, “Hey, I’ve been praying for three days, why stop now? There are churches in this town, right? and it’s only 11 am, so they’re prolly open.”

Yeah… sort of…

You climb waaaaay up to the top of the town to find a quiet place to say your mid-day Office. The Cathedral, right? Sure, you think, the cathedral is prolly good. And it’s so far up the hill there aren’t going to be many tourists.



This is what the diocese of Gubbio thinks is a good idea. The two big double doors open, so you can look in, down the nave, but blocked off with a railing, containing various tourist brochures and a request for a donation for the upkeep.

And each door on the sides with this sign.

It says, essentially,

“F__k off.”

(“If you try to open the door, an alarm will sound, so don’t even try, you worthless plebes.”)

How do I hate you, Modernia?

Oh, there are so many ways.

And, contra the logic, ALL of the reasons are the most heinous, the most revolting, the most depressing, the most disgraceful, the most offensive. All. of. them.

Modernia, do not I hate thee, who hate the Lord? And do I not loathe thee who rise up against Him? With a perfect hatred do I hate thee;

Thou has become mine enemy…

I related elsewhere the story of the local parish curate where I live. Nice enough guy, I guess. Speaks English because Indian. (Dot, not feather.) He welcomed me to the area and we chatted a bit. I noticed that there was, with four or five churches locally, no daily Mass at any of them, and then made the mistake of asking him where and when Confessions were scheduled:

“Oh, just call me.”

A bit taken aback, me.

“I have to make an appointment?” (With strongly implied exclamation points.)

“Well, just come to Mass a few minutes early…”

Yeah, thanks, but I think I’ll make other arrangements.

Either the Modernian Novusordoists want us to go to Hell, or, as has been said, they just don’t believe in any of this Catholic… err.. “stuff”.

Now, I deserve hell for my sins, that’s a given. But I’d sure like the opportunity to try not to, you know?

UPDATE: I went to the nearest bar (not the same as a bar in North America; in Italy a “bar” means a coffee shop where you can get a sandwich, but that also serves alcohol, and is an institution in Italy with a social role similar to the village pub in England) to get a soda and a sandwich to find a shady place to sit and kill the time.

I asked the friendly bar-guy: “When are the Masses at the cathedral? Is there a daily Mass?”

“No, no Masses are said at the Cathedral now. It’s being reconstructed.”

“Oh, was it damaged in the earthquakes?”

“Not really. Not so you’d notice.”

“So, reconstructed?”

“Oh, just to refurbish, you know. Modernize it.”

I decided to have a pint instead of a soda.

I hate everybody. And everything.