Wednesday, July 3, 2013

About that "Cosmos-Liturgy-Sex" blog I was following...

Calumny by Botticelli (c. 1494)

Last year, someone was kind enough to contact me to inform me that a blog I had in my Blogger follow list under my profile - Cosmos-Liturgy-Sex - seemed to have lapsed and was taken over by a steamy picture of a woman trying to sell something that ought not be sold (I won't be linking to it since someone pedaling sex has "parked" at the defunct site).

When an owner loses a website, sometimes because they cannot afford to pay the registration fee, or because it has a good credit card number, but an expired date on file, people with evil intentions wait to take it over.  This is especially true if the original site was religious, and even more true if it was Catholic, Christian or speaking largely about moral issues.  Pro-life sites may turn into abortion-promoting sites.  I think you get the idea. I've seen it happen to people who didn't check on an old domain months or years later, and they had no idea.  Once it was taken over, there was nothing they could do about it.

For this reason, parishes and others need to make sure there is a back-up plan and a team of people with access, lest it fall into the wrong hands after a period of dormancy when the only one with access ends up in a body cast for months on end.

I had intended to remove that particular site from my "follow" list after it suffered an  unfortunate lapse, but got distracted and completely forgot about it (probably because I did not know how to get it off and had to set it aside for when I had more time to deal with it).

After spending a pain-staking 10-15 minutes tonight getting familiar with Blogger's new process for adding and removing websites for following (something that changed a long time ago, but I never dabbled with), the fake Cosmos-Liturgy-Sex blog is now gone from my list.

I removed it tonight after another kind reader emailed me rather concerned about it.  It seems people were warning her about me and my credibility on the basis of what was in my follow list.

This judgment of me and my blog is sad on several accounts and I offer these questions for those who care to make use of reason:

  1. Does it makes sense that a Catholic running a Catholic blog about Catholic topics would knowingly link or remain  linked to a site pedaling immorality?
  2. Which is more in line with the Gospel: Trashing me and my blog on the basis of the bad link, or going to my profile and sending me an email to bring it to my attention through a friendly inquiry?
  3. How many more people could have been spared seeing that disgusting page had someone contacted me sooner rather than discussing the matter behind my back with other prospective followers as a means to discourage them from following me?
I think you get the idea.

Let me throw this out for thought.  The "Follow List Litmus Test" does not work the way it did back many years ago when Catholics used to screen out good sites from bad by seeing who they were following.   People these days - solid, orthodox Catholics included - do not just follow like-minded people and trustworthy sources; they follow those who put forth opposing arguments so they can track them and address things at times.  How do you think Catholic bloggers and Catholics in social media like Twitter find content to object to if they aren't tracking things like, "Hell's Bible" (New York Times), or largely dissenting sites like the National Catholic Reporter (not to be confused with the National Catholic Register, owned by EWTN).  I don't pay too much attention to what goes on at that dissenting rag, but John Allen, who writes for the Reporter is considered very solid on Vatican issues and he is read across the spectrum by orthodox and dissenting alike.

I need to discuss the blog in question, which went defunct, I think sometime in 2010.  

The Cosmos-Liturgy-Sex website was the work of Dr. David Delaney.  From the bottom of a guest-post at the Texas Nuns blog:

Dr. Delaney is Professor of Systematic Theology at the Mexican American Catholic College in San Antonio, Texas.  He previously wrote for the now defunct Cosmos-Liturgy-Sex blog.
I began following it at a time when there was much online debate about Christopher West and his presentation of Pope John Paul II's Theology of the Body.  Dr. Delaney had made some posts and I was interested in following the discussions.

The name of the blog can raise an eye-brow, but what was the blog about? The best answer I can give you, is to make use of the Wayback Machine (an internet archive system which archives websites) and go back to a snapshot in time when it was still active. Keep in mind, this is a snapshot so you can scroll and view, but clicking around will not work like a blog.  You can view it in this link from 2010 and probably even find some of those discussions I was following:

Here is a snapshot I just created using the image in that link, which some of you might recall seeing in years past.  Over to the right under the picture of Our Lady, you will get an idea of how the blog got it's name. It's a JPII thing.   Either see it in the link above, or click this pic to hopefully enlarge.

With that, I end this post and hope you found it informative, whether you avoided this blog on the basis of that link in my follow list, or have been a long time reader.

For the sake of transparency, I am announcing here, that I not only removed the defunct Cosmos-Liturgy-Sex blog from my follow list, I have removed my follow list from public view.  It is no longer visible in my profile.  I felt the need to do this since some feel the need to judge me and my blog on what is in that list and I am purposely following some opposing sources of varying natures. I wouldn't want to scandalize anyone.

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