Thursday, August 30, 2012

A Public Service Announcement from your Good Friends at Triablogue

For those of you who may be inclined to be on the lookout for various ad hominems that you can avoid in discussions, I’ve noted that Bryan Cross has exhibited a severe dislike for the phrase “the boys at Called to Communion”. This is from a while back at Tim Prussic’s blog:

One thing that Mr. Stellman wants to make clear is that he was REFORMED before his move to Rome. This is, or course, part of the polemic. Protestant Christian, rest assured that Jason Stellman KNOWS your position better than you do. HE WAS TOTALLY REFORMED. In Mr. Stellman’s words:

… blather here, etc., etc., ...

This is the uniform pitch from the boys at Called to Communion. They were more Reformed than you. After all, did you graduate from Westminster… the bastion of Reformed verity?! You might think you know the Bible and Reformed theology, but these boys at CTC know Reformed better than you do, cuz they were totally Reformed.

Bryan, as is frequently the case, provides the first comment on the blog post:


“Boys”? I’m 43. How old are you? Are your arguments and evidence so poor that you have to resort to this sort of patronizing name-calling?

In your opinion, what, exactly, about Reformed theology did those of at CTC not know?

After several denials on Tim’s part that any harm was intended, Bryan helpfully explained (as he often does):

Here’s what I see quite commonly among Reformed pastors. Men who agree with you are called men. Men with whom you disagree strongly are called boys. That’s why the federal vision defenders are frequently referred to (by those who disagree with them) as “FV-boys.” There is a reason for this selective use of the term ‘boys.’ It is derogatory. If it weren’t, they would use it equally of men with whom they agree, and men with whom they disagree. When called on their use of it, they can, of course, always claim that they meant it as “fellows.” But, their selective use of it only in reference to those with whom they disagree shows otherwise.

In all, the word “boys” was use some 38 times in this post and comment string, a testimony to the truly offensive nature of this moniker.

Now, I myself have aroused some ire using the phrase “the Jason Stellman gang”, in a March 1, 2009 email, with that subject line. It began:

Subject: "The Jason Stellman Gang"

From: John Bugay
To: [names withheld]
Date: Sun, Mar 1, 2009 at 10:36 AM

Hi all -- This email is to introduce you to the "Called to Communion" website, .

I apologize for being provocative in my subject line, but I can't help but be provoked by the roll call of names that have put this together:

# Andrew Preslar
# Bryan Cross *
# Jonathan Deane (?)
# Matt Yonke *
# Neal Judisch *
# Sean Patrick *
# Taylor Marshall
# Tim Troutman *
# Tom Brown *
# Tom Riello

These individuals say, “We arrived in the Catholic Church in diverse ways but through a similar path involving spiritual formation within the Reformed tradition of confessional Protestantism.”

An Asterisk (*) denotes those who also arrived on this website via Jason Stellman’s blog.

Now, this was my own email to somebodys other than Jason. Of course, I was asked for some proof that these individuals didn’t know each other before they started communing on Jason’s blog. Which I was not able to produce. But Jason caught wind of it, and it really seemed to have raised his ire at the time.

If you wish to avoid the charge of ad hominem when dealing with the stalwart defenders of Roman Catholicism over at Called to Communion, I urge you to avoid using the phrases “the boys at Called to Communion” and “the Jason Stellman gang”.

Thank you.


  1. Would they prefer 'the over-sensitive girls over at Called to Communion'?

    1. Hi David, some of them are kind of "prissy", but I do think they see themselves as more the "stalwart defenders" types. :-)

  2. Mr. Cross is the 'academic editor' of CtC, don't you know? You don't call academic editors 'boy' and not expect to get a strongly worded.

    1. "and not expect to get a strongly worded...."





  3. Let's just say 'all of the above'

  4. An Asterisk (*) denotes those who also arrived on this website via Jason Stellman’s blog.

    Wow . . . they went to Rome by first discussing issues at Jason Stellman's blog??

    1. Ken, no, they were already RCs to some degree, but they all congregated for some months at DeRegnis Duobus, prior to starting up CTC.

    2. Thanks; that helps clarify. Wow; that is still amazing.

      Thanks for your diligence in keeping up with all this massive amount of stuff and argumentation and com box tons of arguments at both CtC and Green Bagins, etc.

      It is like drinking from a fire-hydrant. Your articles give me the bottom line, and even then I cannot read them all or keep up.

      Press on - John 15:1-16; Philippians 3:7-14

    3. Hey Ken, thanks for the encouragement :-)

  5. Replies
    1. That's TOO close to be a mere coincidence.

  6. I had a thought. Maybe, bear with me here, it's a paradigm thing. The 'delicate paradigm' as opposed to the 'thick skin paradigm'. I'm not sure.

    1. Let's try it on: "the Bryan Cross 'delicate' paradigm"...

      It has some merits :-)

    2. Just as long as you know when you're critical of the 'delicate paradigm' using arguments that only make sense in the 'thick skin paradigm', you're begging the question. It is a paradigm issue. One needs to evaluate which paradigm better fits the evidence, and boy o boy that's as sticky as treacle.

      I find it helpful to think about Paul and the Judaisers and then ask myself 'if Paul found a Judaiser what would he say?'. Or if Paul's too downstream for comfort, to be really sure I ask 'what would Jesus say to a self-righteous pharisee?'.

    3. Andrew, I think you've got this "paradigm" thing down...

  7. Cry me a river/somebody throw that prima donna a opened can of puppy chow. His milk teeth aren't ready for sound doctrine or adult food. While he might have a point in general, that wasn't what Prussic was all about.
    I will admit that the FV, kissing cousins of Rome and its congruent merit get called boys also, but maybe that's because of the immature and boorish antics by Meyers and Horne and Jordan when he doesn't know he's on the record.

    Bob S.

    Blogger is a drag. If you don't sign in under the google account, your post disappears.
    Further off topic, I vote for none of the above. That way I don't have to hold my nose.