[ACMPress] – BETHESDA – What began as a simple confirmation process for a new Worship Committee chairperson at Sts Bartles & Jaymes quickly turned complicated yesterday, when allegations arose that the nominee was a sacramental wine binge drinker as an altar boy more than thirty years ago.
Bob Mondavi, known for having originalist interpretations of Redemptionus Sacramentum, was considered a shoo-in for the position, despite objections by some liberal Parish Council members. However, the day before the confirmation vote, Council member Susannah Balbo produced a letter written by a man who claimed witnessing Mondavi drinking bottles of sacramental wine when he was a teenage altar server. Balbo received the letter, from a Mark O. Abella, in August, in which he stated he was an altar server with Mondavi.
“This needs to be fully investigated,” Balbo told the council. “The Worship Committee’s integrity must be preserved, and choosing an alleged drunken alcoholic to lead it sends a terrible message, and sets an awful precedent. And while Mr Abella can’t recall which church this happened in, or in what year it occurred, his claims are credible. I believe him.”
Mr. Mondavi has vowed to fight the allegation rather than voluntarily rescind the nomination. “This is a blatant attempt to keep orthodox Catholics off the Worship Committee, so liberals can do what they want with the Mass. I’m neither quitting nor letting my good name be smeared by baseless, false accusations. I mean sure, I liked wine. I still like wine. But not sacramental wine. C’mon – everyone knows that stuff is awful.”
Parish Council President Ken Dahl-Jackson reluctantly agreed to hold an investigation, but left no doubt this development displeased him. “These last-second theatrics on the part of Ms. Balbo denigrate the distinguished, venerable role of the Parish Council. This is ludicrous. It’s not like Mr Mondavi is being considered for, oh, I don’t know – a seat on the Supreme Court. It’s just the Worship Committee.”
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