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April 23, 2005

MoDo on Catholicism.

I’m sorry to harp on about Benedict XVI and how both his and the Church’s views get misrepresented, but this Maureen Dowd column just gets my goat, yanks my chain. At a guess, given the name, she was raised a Catholic herself so she should know better:

The two leaders are a match - absolutists who view the world in stark terms of good and evil, eager to prolong a patriarchal society that prohibits gay marriage and slices up pro-choice U.S. Democratic candidates.

Viewing the world in terms of good and evil seems something of a prerequisite for a religious leader. It is what the thing is about, after all. To ask that having viewed the world in such terms, such a leader then does nothing about what he sees as evil is, to my mind, asking a little too much.

W.'s Doberman and John Paul's "God's Rottweiler," as the new pope was called, are both global enforcers with cult followings. Just as the vice president acted to solidify the view of America as a hyperpower, so the new pope views the Roman Catholic Church as the one true religion. He once branded other faiths as deficient.

Well, yes. The job definition of Pope includes the idea that one is the guardian of the one true faith, that the Catholic Church is the only one that has actually got the will of God correctly captured and detailed. You may disagree with that, may think it to be untrue, but to criticise someone who is convinced that he and he alone is privy to the secrets that will save your eternal soul for actually attempting to tell you how to save that soul is a little odd. You can criticise him for his belief in his monopoly upon the truth, but not for his actions in trying to explain them to you.

Cardinal Ratzinger did not shrink from advising American bishops in the last presidential election on bringing Catholic elected officials to heel. He warned that Catholics who deliberately voted for a candidate because of a pro-choice position were guilty of cooperating in evil, and unworthy to receive communion. Vote Democratic and lose your soul.

Not quite MoDo. Vote for abortion and lose your soul. Again, you don’t have to agree with this or believe it, but to criticise a man for trying to save what he thinks is the most important attribute of you as a human, your soul, is bizzare. What do you want him to say? Yes it’s a sin, go ahead and lose your soul because John Kerry’s a nice guy? It’s worth losing eternal paradise to defeat George Bush?

No, I’m not a practicing Catholic, nor any other form of religious, I just get fed up when people criticise those who are doingthe job they signed up for, in the Pope’s case (and of course in all the 60 odd years he has been a priest) attempting, as best he can, to explain the revelaed truths and save your soul. Believe him or don’t, your choice, but don’t moan at him because his advice conflicts with your views or desires.

April 23, 2005 in Religion | Permalink


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I'd rather admire the Pope if he were to drag Catholicism closer to Christianity, but I don't suppose Ms Dowd would.

Posted by: dearieme | Apr 23, 2005 3:15:08 PM

"I’m sorry to harp on"

"No, I’m not a practicing Catholic, nor any other form of religious, I just get fed up"

These days the British feel they have to apologize and establish their secularist bona fides before defending a Christian from a personal attack or agreeing with an Christian argument.

Just an observation.

Posted by: Charles R. Williams | Apr 23, 2005 8:35:15 PM