Bless Me Father

Has anyone seen any of this comedy series- Bless Me Father?

And if you have would you deem it appropriate for a Catholic to view?

Or is it similar to Fr. Ted which isn’t very respectful toward the Church and the Priesthood?

Many Thanks
FAH

Bless Me Father was fairly standard late seventies British sitcom fare, some double entendres, and some jokes that an American audience would have missed altogether. I’d rate it as a PG-13 if it was a movie, and give it two of four thumbs-up for comedy merit. Not exactly entirely family-friendly, but there’s far worse on TV nowadays that probably a lot of kids watch.

It wasn’t exactly inappropriate for the average Catholic to watch, but if you tuned in thinking you’d find something uplifting, you could have saved your time and watched something else.

I never saw Father Ted so I can’t make a comparison.

Used to read condensed excerpts from the books in Reader’s Digest back in the '70s and they seemed pretty funny… never saw the series.

There's nothing offensive about "Bless Me Father". It's set in 1950 outside of London and relates tales of newly ordained Fr. Boyd and Fr. Duddleswell, the old priest to whose parish he is assigned. The stories are largely autobiographical, written by a laicized priest.

I used to watch “Ballykissangel,” which was a soap opera (I guess that that is what you call it) revolving around an Irish village. The last episodes centering on Fr. Clifford and the barkeeper Assumpta Fitzgerald (both actors left the show at the same time; they fell in love, she died, and he decided to leave the priesthood) is a bit distressing on try to something a little more light-hearted. I have heard of Father Ted recently and hope to buy the series on video or D.V.D. Though it may be somewhat irreverent (my own humor can a little irreverent at times, but it is never crude or blatantly disrespectful), it sounds hilarious! Now, I’ll just have watch “Bless Me Father,” too, especially since the old priest is played by Cpt. Mainwaring from “Dad’s Army” (another classic British comedy)!

I also used to watch Ballykissangel and remember that episode well. Bless Me Father is nothing like that.

I watched the priest who taught in our high school fall in love with and marry a clerk at the Five and Dime store so* Ballykissangel* kind of struck a chord for me. Bless Me Father simply reminds me of the priest who was my dad’s best friend and who was in our parish for 38 years. That’s how I imagine him being if he’d been lucky enough to have a curate to take some of the parish’s weight off his shoulders.

[quote="Phemie, post:6, topic:249811"]
I also used to watch Ballykissangel and remember that episode well. Bless Me Father is nothing like that.

I watched the priest who taught in our high school fall in love with and marry a clerk at the Five and Dime store so* Ballykissangel* kind of struck a chord for me. Bless Me Father simply reminds me of the priest who was my dad's best friend and who was in our parish for 38 years. That's how I imagine him being if he'd been lucky enough to have a curate to take some of the parish's weight off his shoulders.

[/quote]

Interesting! Would this scenario be anything like the film "Going My Way" (with Bing Crosby as the young priest)?

It’s been years since I watched “Going My Way” so can’t really answer your question. I suggest you just watch an episode of “Bless Me Father” and see for yourself. The main characters are
Fr. Duddleswell, the old priest
Fr. Boyd, the newly ordained curate
Mrs. Pring, the housekeeper – who doesn’t take any guff from Fr. Duddleswell (nor he from her) but whom you can see has great affection (reciprocated) for him and a familiarity that stems from over 3 decades of having been together in this parish.
Mother Stephen, the mother superior of the local convent whose main goal in life is to have the founder of her order declared a saint. She’s a major pain in Fr. Duddleswell’s backside.

Okay. Thanks for the information!

Thank you all for your informative replies. I intend to buy the complete series as it's quite cheap online.

God Bless
FAH

[quote="Phemie, post:8, topic:249811"]
It's been years since I watched "Going My Way" so can't really answer your question. I suggest you just watch an episode of "Bless Me Father" and see for yourself. The main characters are
Fr. Duddleswell, the old priest
Fr. Boyd, the newly ordained curate
Mrs. Pring, the housekeeper -- who doesn't take any guff from Fr. Duddleswell (nor he from her) but whom you can see has great affection (reciprocated) for him and a familiarity that stems from over 3 decades of having been together in this parish.
Mother Stephen, the mother superior of the local convent whose main goal in life is to have the founder of her order declared a saint. She's a major pain in Fr. Duddleswell's backside.

[/quote]

I loved 'Bless Me Father'! Used to watch it every Saturday evening on the local PBS channel; that was the 'Brit-Com' [British Comedy] night! :D

I also remember the condensed articles in Reader's Digest written by Neil Boyd, who was the young curate in the series. Unfortunately, he left the priesthood. If I'm not mistaken, 'Neil Boyd' was a pen name, not his real one. His 'real name' was Peter DeRosa. He wrote most, if not all of, the episodes.

One character you forgot-Billy Buzzle, the local bookmaker (yes, that's legal in Britain). He lived near St. Jude's Parish, and he had a black Lab named 'Pontius' [as in 'Pontius Pilate', obviously a dig at Fathre Duddleswell]. One of the funniest episodes was when 'Pontius' came into the church during a ceremony of 'blessing the bells' and he jumped right into the Bishop's lap! I laughed myself silly! :D

Nice thing about the series was that there was always a 'serious' note at the end, usually a lesson from 'Father D' for his young curate.

Another thing-the theme music for 'Bless Me Father' is an actual hymn that's sung in Catholic churches in England: 'Faith of Our Fathers', by Father Frederick Faber (fellow convert and disciple of Blessed John Henry Newman). The tune you hear on the series is different from what we sing here in the States.

When I visited the Carmelite Shrine in Aylesford, England in 1997 (in my days as a member of the Secular Order of Discalced Carmelites-OCDS), I attended a meeting and Mass of the local chapter of the Lay Carmelites (TOC). At the Mass, I heard 'Faith of Our Fathers' in the very tune I remember from 'Bless Me Father'! I had all I could do to keep from busting out laughing! :rotfl:

Going back to my above post regarding the episode where Billy Buzzle's dog 'Pontius' jumps into the Bishop's lap, the choir up in the loft sings 'Faith of Our Fathers' using the tune that is the show's theme song.

That’s all right…you’re forgiven…:smiley: :wink:

I think the series was based on a book-or books-written by Peter DeRosa (alias Neil Boyd). That accounts for the articles in Reader’s Digest.

That said-I loved that show! But the TV volume had to be turned up at home while watching it because everyone talked too fast and too low! Couldn’t hear at times! :smiley: :o

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