Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Who Says Men Don't Like To Play Dress Up?

I am not and never have been Roman Catholic, so all of this is a little exotic to me.  On the other hand, Protestants and Evangelicals are hardly immune to ecclesiastical vanity (think of the gold stamped leather bound Bibles with gilt edged pages, the expensive suits that make Christ's Apostles look like bankers, and rival pastors comparing megachurches like schoolyard brats comparing penis sizes).

So here is a portfolio of everyone's favorite ecclesiastical fashion plate, the Cindy Crawford of sacerdotal man-lace, Cardinal Raymond Burke.

I enjoy the contrast between the prince-bishop splendor and the laxative-failed-to-work demeanor.

On the other hand, smiling Cardinal Burke would spook a Jack-O-Lantern.
Just in time for Halloween:

The Capa Magna always makes me think of Cleopatra unrolled from a carpet in front of Caesar.

And here is His Emminence in a fedora dodging the paparazzi.

The face of the contemporary Catholic hierarchy, over-dressed, elderly, and sour; irritated when the peasants don't show due deference to their spiritual lords.

Splendid as His Emminence may be in his spiritual vestments,  here is someone who will always out dress him, Nuestra Senora de la Esperanza Macarena de Sevilla starting out on her annual stroll to the Cathedral of Seville.


Grandmère Mimi said...

You have pictures of the cardinal that are missing from my collection. I must steal them.

What would a humble Jewish woman make of the extravaganza in her name? Even the statue looks pained. Is it just me who thinks there are not enough candles?

Counterlight said...

The Spanish Catholic aesthetic; Too much is not enough.

I think she wears too much makeup. She should take a hint from her sister in Seville, Nuestra Senora de las Aguas.

JCF said...

The Capa Magna always makes me think of Cleopatra unrolled from a carpet in front of Caesar.

Ew, don't give him any ideas! }-X

[All trolls enjoy spewing up]

Counterlight said...

Our usual troll has been consigned to his usual place in the spam folder.

MarkBrunson said...

Strangely, all I can think of in the top two photos, is one of those obsecenely-rich, extremely fat old women dressing in the most gaudy designer dresses, dyeing their hair, slapping makeup on with a trowel and convinced that that transforms them into a willowy, authoritative, much younger femme fatale, while the red-carpet photos show something like a marzipan toad stuffed into a Christmas ornament.

Sid said...

The first picture is the oddest - like a daguerreotype rendered into color - and with the contrast you memorably capture in your "laxative" line.

IT said...

And it looks like his arms are too short. In fact,he reminds me of a baby swaddled up with the too-cute clothes that new parents dress them in.

rick allen said...

One has to admit that Catholic prelates are most likely not chosen for their looks. Having just finished a biography of Lorenzo de' Medici, I suppose I can now think of at least one reason in favor of having teenage cardinals.

From Raphael's portrait of the Magnificent Lorenzo's son Leo X, to just about any image of Blessed John XXIII, traditional ecclesiastical garb is frequently unflattering, especially if one doesn't have much to work with in the first place. But of course the point is to mark the office, not flatter the man.

Erasmus once said, about a flattering Holbein likeless, that, if he really looked like that, he would have certainly have had a wife. But I prefer the Durer engraving, which notes, in a handsome Greek, that the likeness is better shown by his writings. That is probably true of most.

Counterlight said...

Yes but Leo X looks every inch the epicure that he was.
And John XXIII looks both kind and intelligent, which he was.
There's something else besides Mr. Toad looks that makes Cardinal Burke and so many Roman hierarchs these days so unattractive.

Grandmère Mimi said...

John XXIII may not have been a handsome man, but he had wonderful look about him, as Counterlight said, kind and intelligent. He looks like the saint that he is...except in his own church, where he, along with Oscar Romero, is still a saint-in waiting.