Showing posts with label Mundane. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Mundane. Show all posts

Sunday, March 25, 2012

"Ale Mary" Dive Bar Uses Monstrance and Chalices for Drunken Revelries

Edit: A definition from Wikipedia is useful here: Blasphemy is irreverence towards religious or holy persons or things.[1] Some countries have laws to punish blasphemy,[2] while others have laws to give recourse to those who are offended by blasphemy. 

[Fell's Point, Baltimore, MD] There was a show called "Cheers" on television years ago.  It was bawdy and vulgar yet there were some borders it was not safe to pass in the early 80s when the show first aired.  It depicted a homey place, reminiscent of an unpretentious neighborhood bar with a hint of old world ambiance and Boston charm.  The heavy wooden furniture and the bar spoke of permanence, elegance,  and  that favorite piety of secular artists, human dignity. It was not always clear who the show's buffoons were, but you knew them when you saw them, and sometimes, it was a comedic mailman who could be the most noble in the simplicity of his fears.  Some other writer said something about irony being lost on a society which had no shame.  That's why we'd like to wield a metaphorical hammer.  Perhaps there are others who can put a better finish on the details of what we will tell.

Satirical painting: priest displeased with Nun?
All we can say is that sometimes evil is really mundane and some of us don't realize that we're not only bufoons needlessly offending  people's religious sensibilities, but far worse than that, we're offending God.  Even the name of the bar, a pun on the Blessed Mother's name seems calculated to be offensive.

Would you like some candy?
 We're not talking about this place, but it's not far from Boston, but it boasts a similar unmistakable charm you'd expect in New England with friendly folks. One of the features of the bar, and there are many, is its unmistakable Catholic ambiance. It's called, Ale Mary's and is located in Fell's point Maryland. One can just smell the faint aroma of the ocean as you think about it. The food is inexpensive, but if you're Catholic you might find it too expensive for the peace of your conscience to see the sacramental elements of your religion appear for the sake of decoration in peculiarly deliberate ways.
Chalices Used for Holy Sacrifice Being Abused by Patrons

It's not surprising, but it's not acceptable either that chalices which are used in Catholic Mass for the consecration of wine which becomes the blood of Christ, are used by patrons to drink (and get drunk from). They're made of precious metals, sometimes jewels, but their use in such a secular setting is strange and unsettling. No less than the inexplicable painting of a priest with a stole, looking aghast or in surprise at a nun who has her back to him. The most disturbing thing in the restaurant is the monstrance which is behind the bar used as decoration. The monstrance is large ornate disk, often resembling the sun, which is surmounted in a long stand with a heavy base. It contains a crystal compartment at the center of the disk where a consecrated communion Host can be placed inside and it allows the priest to elevate the entire object by the stand for the veneration of the Sacrament it contains. Seeing this monstrance here in this bar, covered with mardigras beads and a mustached smiley face where the Host would normally be is a little bit like finding family heirlooms in the hands of people who not only use them for purposes for which they were never intended, but use them in disrespectful ways.
Mustached Smiley Face Seems Particularly Malevolent
We found out about this recently and the individual who sent this to us wrote an e-mail complaining about the display of these religious items and even offered to purchase them. Far from being treated with the respect she deserved, her concerns were met with derision. 

Despite the bar owner claiming that no one cared about this clearly blasphemous display of religious artifacts, he asked her to remove an entry she made under the bar at a public site allowing comment on establishments. As he berated our friend, the proprietor insisted as an argument to justify his sacrilege and disrespect for Catholic sacramentals, that there were even Bishops and priests who thought that his blasphemous inclusion of religious articles was comical and that there was nothing wrong with this display.

Apparently, there's some truth to what he says, because Catholic clergy, including senior, does frequent this place.

We'll be praying a Rosary in reparation for having seen this blasphemy.  Hopefully, the proprietor can be persuaded to part with these items before word of this affects his business either spiritually or financially.

Give them a call:

Corner of Fleet & Washington Sts.
Fell's Point
Baltimore, MD.

Other Sites Linking

Angelqueen, Catholic Forum [Excellent Commentary]