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Saturday, March 10, 2012

My Anonymous Friend and the Hound of Heaven

I have an anonymous friend who comments on almost every post I write. Since I don't know whether my friend is a man or a woman, I'll use the generic he to talk about him. My friend has a consistent style composed of a personal attack on me which includes name-calling with lots of colorful adjectives and generally an extraneous comment irrelevant to the post, e.g., an attack on the pope or priests or whatever. I stopped posting his comments about a week ago, but every day, there he is like a moth attracted to a flame.

Now, I'm curious about my friend because he spends so much time on a blog with which he vehemently disagrees. Strange. I occasionally comment on an unfriendly blog when I'm searching for something, but rarely sign up or return to see the reaction. It's predictable, why bother? But my anonymous friend comes back again and again and again to launch the same old attack against me. What's the point?

Awhile back I decided to pray a Hail Mary or a Memorare for him whenever he leaves a comment.
I've totted up quite a few at this point so I know he has Mary's attention and probably did already. Those who are most vehement in supporting evil are closer to God than the lukewarm, after all.

I believe my friend is fleeing the Hound of Heaven big time. Whenever he hears those "strong feet that followed, followed after," he puts on a burst of energy. But God never gives up and, like St. Augustine says, "our hearts are restless until they rest in [Him]." Anonymous is bashing his head against a brick wall (Scripture and Catholic tradition which compose the deposit of the faith). It's futile and hopeless. He can't win a fight with God. And that's who he has a problem with, not me. He doesn't like God's teaching as promulgated by the Church he founded. I think his frenzy over my blog comes from his hostility toward a truth that conflicts with his desires. And so he attacks the messenger.

I try to speak the truths of the Church because that's what Christians are called to do. I know I don't do it very well which is why I go to Confession frequently. We are apostles, witnesses to a culture immersed in evil and we must blow the warning trumpet or be condemned ourselves. The angry response of those stung by the truth is no surprise. Look what they did to the martyrs.

Despite Anonymous' attack on my Christianity, I love him in the Catholic sense of wanting his ultimate good. I refuse to tickle his ears to make him "feel good" and be more conformed to the world. In the words of St. Thomas More I want the two of us to "meet merrily in heaven." I have no idea of the state of his soul, but I know that certain sins are grievous and they are the sins he champions.

Please join with me in praying for my anonymous friend, that he turns to face the Hound of Heaven. We are all sinners and I certainly spent time fleeing from those pursuing feet. But what a joy when one finally turns and faces the "bruit" and hears His words of love:

 Lo, all things fly thee, for thou fliest Me!      160
  Strange, piteous, futile thing!
Wherefore should any set thee love apart?
Seeing none but I makes much of naught’ (He said),
‘And human love needs human meriting:
  How hast thou merited—      165
Of all man’s clotted clay the dingiest clot?
Alack, thou knowest not
How little worthy of any love thou art!
Whom wilt thou find to love ignoble thee,
  Save Me, save only Me?      170
All which I took from thee I did but take,
  Not for thy harms,
But just that thou might’st seek it in My arms.
  All which thy child’s mistake
Fancies as lost, I have stored for thee at home:      175
  Rise, clasp My hand, and come!’
  Halts by me that footfall:
  Is my gloom, after all,
Shade of His hand, outstretched caressingly?
  ‘Ah, fondest, blindest, weakest,      180
  I am He Whom thou seekest!
Thou dravest love from thee, who dravest Me.’


  1. Well, I am about the only one who bothers to comment.

    Keep your condescending prayers to yourself. they're not needed nor wanted. Anyways the only purpose for those "prayers" (or to be more precise, lying about them) is to make you look more Christian, to shine your hypocrisy.

    Oray for the women and men you insult daily, whose reputation you drag through mud. People you aim to hurt. people whose oppression and discrimination you advocate.

    Pray for the victims of your hatred.
    But you won't. because for you even your prayers are just an act of hatred.

    I comment because people like you need to be challenged, their hatred exposed and their hypocrisy pointed out to them. Every day.

    You are my enemy.

  2. But you said I don't pray for my enemies. And not only will I continue to pray for you, but I'm calling in the "big guns," the Poor Clares, to join me and a group of French monks as well who will be praying a Mass for you. Your days as my "enemy" are numbered. The Hound is at your heels. God bless you, friend.

  3. Mary Ann, I will post too, and you do not have to post this if you do not want to do so. May the Hound of Heaven follow this poor soul until he or she converts and arrives in heaven. Nevertheless, it is best not to argue with someone who harasses you, and that is what this person is doing. Pray for them, but it is best not to argue with them, as it just becomes a merry-go-round and goes nowhere, as we cannot convert anyone unless they are open to the grace of God. Sometimes it is best to just delete their posts and not even read them or to block them. Thank you for keeping us informed on the issues of the day. Although I, and I am sure others, do not always comment, we are reading and learning and often put what we learn to good use. If this person continues to harass you in a worse way, tell the police, preferably an officer whom you trust.

  4. Apparently your anonymous friend doesn't understand that it is a Christian duty to admonish the sinner. Moreover, he or she confused admonishment with hatred. That suggests a conflated world, shrinking and diminishing in size when the world we are given is expansive and spirit filled.

    C.S. Lewis used that metaphor of shrinkage in The Great Divide to characterize hell, or Greytown and when the bus of souls came up to the vestibule of heaven they came through a pore in the grass. One poor soul, the Grumble, became finally so diminished as to pop out of existence.

    The aim of admonishment is not to hurt anyone, but to help. You cannot be helped if you have so hardened your heart as to become insensitive to your own sinfulness. This is the agenda of the modern world. We are to be desensitized to sin in the name of sensitivity to the sinner. This is the devil's work for without repentance there is no forgiveness.

  5. Being a conservative Catholic, I read and enjoy your blog almost daily but this will be my first comment. Indeed, you have been on the "right" side of the news for as long as I can remember.

    The left will despise you. The left will denigrate you and your work. The left will mock you all under the banner of "TOLERANCE."

    Imagine that, these sick self-absorbed girly-men preach tolerance but are the most intolerant of all when it comes to those with a different point of view.

    Oh the irony...

    Keep up the great work, Mary Ann.

    Yours, Cannoli

  6. It's an internet tradition. Anything vaguely touching upon gay rights or atheism in a mildly negative manner has to be obsessively screamed about.

    They're against hate and intolerance, so they spread hate and intolerance to spread the word. Whatever.

  7. Dear Anonymous Friend of This Blog,

    I have been thinking about you almost non-stop for the past two days. Over the past few weeks, when I read your comments, at first I felt hurt, upset, and angry, and my first instinct was to lash out and come back with another comment in an attempt to prove what you said was wrong. Then, last night, I read this latest comment from you. As I read it, an overwhelming feeling came over me. I believe God is working in your life in a big way. I read your words and I heard someone who is hurting, confused and looking for answers. I see a person who is very sensitive and is trying to convince him or herself that there must be some way around God's laws - some loophole that will make everything OK. As Mary Ann said, you keep running into a brick wall. It is frustrating, and maybe that's why you feel defensive and angry, and make unkind accusations about people you don't even know. I think deep in your heart, you know what the truth is about what is right and what is wrong, but it is painful and most difficult to face it, and perhaps make the changes that would have to result from finally accepting the truth. I don't know anything about you, but maybe you were hurt in your childhood, or had some awful things happen to you in your lifetime. Perhaps you were teased or picked on. You may have a heavy cross to bear, but you are not alone. We all have crosses to bear, and the cross(es) are different for each person. I have done some research for you, and there are people who can help you with your struggles. Google a group called "Courage." You might be surprised at some of the articles and information there. It certainly opened my eyes to realize that "being gay" is not a part of someone's identity - rather there are people who experience same sex attraction, which is unnatural, for a variety of reasons, and in many cases it can be overcome. I thank you for that, because reading what you wrote made me delve into an important issue that I really hadn't looked deeply into in the past. Thanks be to God, that struggle is not one of the crosses I bear - I know that homosexual acts are a sin and it is not a struggle for me to obey God in this manner, so I never gave the issue much thought. That was wrong. We all should strive to help our brothers and sisters in Christ and do whatever it takes to help them get on the right path. You mentioned the word hatred three times in your last post. There is no hatred here for you. To truly love someone, you must point out the truth. It is all too easy to "live and let live" and go about your own business not caring about the fate of others' souls. But that would be just like walking right past someone who was hanging off the edge of a cliff, waiting to fall. I have been praying for you, asking the Blessed Mother to intercede for you, and this morning at Mass I offered my Holy Communion for your benefit - in whatever way God sees fit. My prayers for you are sincere - not condescending or an act of hatred. I know you stumbled across this blog for a reason - the same reason you keep coming back. It would be nice if you would share just your first name, and whether you are a man or a woman, so we can pray for you specifically. You said Mary Ann was your enemy, and I guess you meant all Catholics and other Christians are your enemy. Mankind only has one true enemy and that is Satan, the Father of Lies, who is trying his best to convince you not to believe in God and obey his law. God loves you so much more than you will ever know, and so does your Heavenly Mother. If you are so inclined, you may say just one little prayer, asking for help and that may start grace flowing into your soul. If you have read this far, I wish you the best, may God bless you, and I will keep praying for you, whether you like it or not.

  8. Lest anyone be confused, Anonymous continues to send angry comments containing exactly the same message describing us as hateful, etc. I am not posting any more of his messages. Just go back and read the other ones and you'll get the idea. But I do encourage readers to continue praying for him. Rhonda, he had some choice words for you as well. But I thank you for your kindness and concern and encourage you to keep praying.

  9. Mary Ann,

    Thank you for letting us know the status of our anonymous friend, and for sparing me his choice words. It's sad, but that's what I expected. At least he read what I wrote. We can only hope that a tiny seed has been planted that will take root somewhere down the road. I think the Hound of Heaven will keep after him, and I will continue to pray for him, whoever he is, and wherever he is. Again, God bless you Anonymous Friend.

  10. Anonymous, I'd be happy to post any comments that "debate" the issues as you say. Your comments aren't a debate; they are ad hominem attacks filled with name-calling and slurs that you've already made. I'm not posting any more of those and this is the last time I'm addressing you in a comment. And whether you think we're self-righteous or not, we'll continue praying for you, because, despite your angry accusations, we are not your "enemy" as you call us.