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Faithful should distinguish between Catholic faith and Vatican state [Vatican - the Last Monarchy?]
The Irish Times ^ | September 21, 2012 | JOHN MANNION

Posted on 09/21/2012 7:00:01 AM PDT by Alex Murphy

THE PUBLIC response to the recent Vatican embassy closure indicates that many devout Catholics are unable to distinguish between the Catholic faith and the Vatican state.

Central to the former is our belief in Jesus Christ as God incarnate, but nowhere in our creed do we profess a belief in the Vatican state, of whose origins and history we know practically nothing.

Given that Taoiseach Enda Kenny travels to Rome this weekend to meet the pope, it may be timely to try lift the veil on these matters.

To do so, it is necessary to go back to AD313 when the Roman emperor, Constantine, legitimised Christianity but left Rome shortly afterwards for a new capital in present day Turkey, Constantinople. Gradually the pope stepped into the power vacuum in the West and rapidly acquired land and wealth.

The Lombards, a pagan tribe who moved into northern Italy in the late sixth century, gradually converted to Christianity, grew powerful and began to tax the Roman citizenry. In 752 pope Stephen II travelled north and appealed to Pepin the Short, king of the Franks, to save Rome from the Lombards using the “Donation of Constantine”, a document claiming Constantine had given his palace and extensive territories to the pope.

Pepin, having routed the Lombards, handed all the conquered lands to the pope; thus began the papal states. That the document was a forgery became public only in 1517. In the meantime it had been influential and the only English pope, Adrian 1V, used it to justify giving Ireland to Henry II of England.

As papal power increased, so did the struggle to influence and control the election of the pope. Equally the power claims of the papal office increased until, by the end of the reign of Gregory VII in 1085, he was “vicar of Christ” with power over the whole world.

The clergy and people of Rome had elected the pope since apostolic times. However, following disputed papal elections the Lateran synod, in 769, barred the laity from voting and decreed that only deacons and cardinals were eligible to be elected.

Later, in 1059, pope Nicholas II decreed that in future, cardinals only would elect the new pope. And so the office of cardinal, previously with merely liturgical duties and with no basis whatever in the Bible, became a source of power and influence in the administration of the papal states.

The pope alone chooses the cardinals and if there was a papal election tomorrow, 124 would be eligible to vote, of whom 30 are Italians, 37 from other parts of Europe, and only 21 from all of Latin America, which has the highest Catholic population on the globe.

It may also be relevant here to say something about justice.

Current Catholic justice has its origin in the Roman Inquisition founded by pope Gregory IX in 1232, which ushered in one of the most shameful episodes in all of human history. It formalised the practices of killing, burning or imprisoning heretics. Modified over time, it still exists under a changed name (Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith), but its rules owe much to its history and very little to contemporary standards of justice.

Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was its head for a quarter of a century before he became pope in 2005. In its mode of operation the suspect gets very little information. There is no independent judge, prosecutor or jury. An unknown defender is appointed from within the system. The accused is denied access to all documents related to the charge. All who take part in the trial are bound to secrecy, and there is no right of appeal.

Recently, Pope Benedict on his visit to Cuba pleaded for freedom for the Catholic Church there, but freedom within the church is a different matter.

At the time of the unification of Italy in 1870 the papal states stretched from Rome across to the Adriatic Sea and north to the river Po. Jesus Christ might have said “my kingdom is not of this world”, but Pius 1X ordered a military defence of the papal states, shedding the blood of many, including Irish soldiers recruited by the Irish bishops, precisely because he could not function as vicar of Christ unless he had an earthly kingdom.

After unification, the new Italian parliament guaranteed the independence of the Holy See and offered compensation for lost territories, but Pius IX rejected the offer. In 1929 the Vatican state was set up by agreement between Mussolini and pope Pius XI, and Italy compensated it for the lost papal states.

The bishops of the second Vatican Council (1962-1965) proclaimed the church as the people of God, but failed to address the paradox inherited from Vatican I in 1870. At that time Pius IX persuaded the council to declare that “the pope has supreme, full, immediate and universal ordinary power in the church and he can always freely exercise this power” (canon 313 of the current code of canon law).

This contradicts the model of church in the Acts of the Apostles. So the ideals embodied in Vatican II have been essentially sidelined in the subsequent years because, as an English commentator recently noted, “the Vatican is the sole remaining absolute monarchy in Europe”.

Even the college of bishops is cut off because absolute power is vested in one office only, the papacy. Lord Acton said “power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely”. A convert to Catholicism, he was writing about the papacy.

I understand there is a branch of Judaism that prays daily for the destruction of the Jewish state because it does not conform to the Old Testament model of Israel. Maybe the time has come for Catholics to pray for an end to the Vatican state for the exact same reason.


TOPICS: Catholic; Moral Issues; Religion & Culture; Religion & Politics
KEYWORDS: catholic
Central to the former is our belief in Jesus Christ as God incarnate, but nowhere in our creed do we profess a belief in the Vatican state....

....The Lombards, a pagan tribe who moved into northern Italy in the late sixth century, gradually converted to Christianity, grew powerful and began to tax the Roman citizenry. In 752 pope Stephen II travelled north and appealed to Pepin the Short, king of the Franks, to save Rome from the Lombards using the “Donation of Constantine”, a document claiming Constantine had given his palace and extensive territories to the pope. Pepin, having routed the Lombards, handed all the conquered lands to the pope; thus began the papal states....

....At the time of the unification of Italy in 1870 the papal states stretched from Rome across to the Adriatic Sea and north to the river Po. Jesus Christ might have said “my kingdom is not of this world”, but Pius 1X ordered a military defence of the papal states, shedding the blood of many, including Irish soldiers recruited by the Irish bishops, precisely because he could not function as vicar of Christ unless he had an earthly kingdom. After unification, the new Italian parliament guaranteed the independence of the Holy See and offered compensation for lost territories, but Pius IX rejected the offer. In 1929 the Vatican state was set up by agreement between Mussolini and pope Pius XI, and Italy compensated it for the lost papal states.

1 posted on 09/21/2012 7:00:04 AM PDT by Alex Murphy
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To: Alex Murphy
So the ideals embodied in Vatican II have been essentially sidelined in the subsequent years because, as an English commentator recently noted, “the Vatican is the sole remaining absolute monarchy in Europe”.

Jesus Christ never intended that the Church he instituted be a democracy. If this author is supposedly Catholic then he is a heretic and should be excommunicated.

2 posted on 09/21/2012 7:10:47 AM PDT by frogjerk (OBAMA NOV 2012 = HORSEMEAT)
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To: Alex Murphy
...nowhere in our creed do we profess a belief in the Vatican state.

"One Holy, Catholic and Apostolic..."

That's without trying

3 posted on 09/21/2012 7:11:49 AM PDT by Last Dakotan
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To: frogjerk

Written by a retired priest in Ireland.


4 posted on 09/21/2012 7:13:54 AM PDT by Jedidah
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To: Alex Murphy
but its rules owe much to its history and very little to contemporary standards of justice.

Like contemporary justice for Anders Behring Breivik - 21 years for killing 93 people. A little over 2 months per life.

5 posted on 09/21/2012 7:16:51 AM PDT by frogjerk (OBAMA NOV 2012 = HORSEMEAT)
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Comment #6 Removed by Moderator

To: Alex Murphy

“To do so, it is necessary to go back to AD313 when the Roman emperor, Constantine, legitimised Christianity but left Rome shortly afterwards for a new capital in present day Turkey, Constantinople. Gradually the pope stepped into the power vacuum in the West and rapidly acquired land and wealth.”

This is the first time I have heard a Catholic say this. But leave it to the Irish! They enjoyed Christianity for a long time before Catholicism took over the island. I pray that they do again.


7 posted on 09/21/2012 7:30:55 AM PDT by RoadTest (There is one god, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.)
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Comment #8 Removed by Moderator

To: frogjerk

or modern “rights” as the right to gay marriage,
or the right to have a late-term abortion.
-
probably the author thinks the Church should give
more support to “social justice”.
the religion of socialism, will cure all the evils
of the world...
-
“Wherever politics tries to be redemptive, it is promising too much. Where it wishes to do the work of God, it becomes not divine, but demonic.” Pope Benedict XVI


9 posted on 09/21/2012 7:32:45 AM PDT by Elendur (It is incumbent on every generation to pay its own debts as it goes. - Thomas Jefferson)
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To: Jedidah

A “retarded” priest, that isn’t nice. j/k


10 posted on 09/21/2012 7:35:19 AM PDT by tiki
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Comment #11 Removed by Moderator

To: RoadTest

He’s talking about the origin of the Vatican state, not the origin of the Catholic church.


12 posted on 09/21/2012 7:38:25 AM PDT by Campion ("Social justice" begins in the womb)
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To: RoadTest
They enjoyed Christianity for a long time before Catholicism took over the island.

Reality check: Ireland was converted by St. Patrick, who went to Ireland with a papal commission to preach the Gospel to the Irish.

13 posted on 09/21/2012 7:40:50 AM PDT by Campion ("Social justice" begins in the womb)
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To: Last Dakotan; frogjerk; Alex Murphy
But it's true that the Vatican "state" (as distinguished from the See of Peter) is not essential to the Catholic Faith.

The Catholic Faith existed in Jerusalem and Antioch --- where Peter exercised leadership in these Apostolic communities ---before he finally arrived in Rome where he was imprisoned and martyred; the Church existed for several centuries before its administrative center/patriarchal see was called "the Vatican"; it existed during the seven papacies ---- 65 years --- when it was administered from Avignon in France; it will exist if the Vatican, and all of Italy, and all of Christ-abandoning Eurabia, were vaporized in an atomic blast.

It can be a tricky thing to disentangle, but the primacy of Peter, the Petrine ministry of "strengthening the brethren," and the Church founded on the rock of Peter, are distinguishable from the geographic/quasi-state/diplomatic entity, temporarily housing certain aspects of Church administration, and known, often confusingly, as "the Vatican."

Ubi Petrus, ibi Ecclesia!

Ecclesia semper Reformanda!

14 posted on 09/21/2012 7:41:04 AM PDT by Mrs. Don-o (The Holy Catholic Church: the more Holy it is, the more Catholic it is.)
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To: RoadTest; Religion Moderator

Perhaps you need to read the Religion Moderator’s guidelines.

Click on his/her name anywhere.


15 posted on 09/21/2012 7:47:55 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Campion

They enjoyed Christianity for a long time before Catholicism took over the island.
Reality check: Ireland was converted by St. Patrick, who went to Ireland with a papal commission to preach the Gospel to the Irish.

Right. But he was not Catholic, nor did he preach Roman Catholic doctrine. That is not true that he went by papal commission.


16 posted on 09/21/2012 7:48:20 AM PDT by RoadTest (There is one god, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.)
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To: Campion

“He’s talking about the origin of the Vatican state, not the origin of the Catholic church.”

Same thing.


17 posted on 09/21/2012 7:50:59 AM PDT by RoadTest (There is one god, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.)
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To: fidelis; RoadTest
Chick publications are not allowed at all - do not even mention them.

Click on my profile page for more guidelines to the Religion Forum.

18 posted on 09/21/2012 7:52:15 AM PDT by Religion Moderator
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To: Alex Murphy

“This contradicts the model of church in the Acts of the Apostles.”

If the author knows this he knows that so much more also, “..contradicts the model of church in the Acts of the Apostles.”

Having a priesthood/laity, crusades against “heretics”, wars defending a papal state.


19 posted on 09/21/2012 8:01:50 AM PDT by count-your-change (You don't have to be brilliant, not being stupid is enough.)
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To: Campion
Very true. But as Bede recorded, the Church in Ireland was not the same as the latter church in England.

There was an old thread that suggested that the original Irish church was much more like an Eastern Orthodox church than (for lack of a better term) a western Roman Catholic church. The style of monk's hair cut, calculation of Easter (Pascha), and some of their views on original sin were much closer to what the Orthodox believed than the Roman Catholics.

But, as with all things from that period, we are dealing non sympathetic records from over a thousand years ago. The wars were more than likely fought for secular reasons, and given a religious sheen later, and the English were never known to be very sympathetic to Irish concerns.

20 posted on 09/21/2012 8:05:38 AM PDT by redgolum ("God is dead" -- Nietzsche. "Nietzsche is dead" -- God.)
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To: RoadTest

St Patrick wasn’t Catholic. That’s a new one. Thanks for the laugh.


21 posted on 09/21/2012 8:15:54 AM PDT by pgyanke (Republicans get in trouble when not living up to their principles. Democrats... when they do.)
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To: Alex Murphy
This article conflates opinion, history and screed. Look no further than the paragraph below to see how biased and ridiculous it is. I won't claim to know the full history of the Vatican state (with more time, I would look it up) but I can say that starting around the middle of the article, it turns into an anti-Catholic screed.

Current Catholic justice has its origin in the Roman Inquisition founded by pope Gregory IX in 1232, which ushered in one of the most shameful episodes in all of human history. It formalised the practices of killing, burning or imprisoning heretics. Modified over time, it still exists under a changed name (Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith), but its rules owe much to its history and very little to contemporary standards of justice.

22 posted on 09/21/2012 8:19:20 AM PDT by pgyanke (Republicans get in trouble when not living up to their principles. Democrats... when they do.)
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To: Alex Murphy

“Current Catholic justice has its origin in the Roman Inquisition founded by pope Gregory IX in 1232, which ushered in one of the most shameful episodes in all of human history. It formalised the practices of killing, burning or imprisoning heretics. Modified over time, it still exists under a changed name (Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith), but its rules owe much to its history and very little to contemporary standards of justice.”

Gee, no bias there.


23 posted on 09/21/2012 8:22:26 AM PDT by vladimir998
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To: RoadTest

“Same thing.”

No, not at all. We don’t send ambassadors to churches.


24 posted on 09/21/2012 8:23:57 AM PDT by Boogieman
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To: Alex Murphy
Lorenzo Valla wrote an essay proving that the Donation of Constantine was a forgery about 1440 (apparently it didn't appear in print until 1517). When the Donation was written seems to be uncertain--it may have been later than Pepin's gift of lands to the pope which began the Papal States.

The Lombards seem to have been partly pagan, partly Arian Christians, when they entered Italy in 568. Later they all became Catholics.

25 posted on 09/21/2012 8:32:26 AM PDT by Verginius Rufus
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To: Alex Murphy
Another thing. His citation of Canon 313 is scurrilous. I've been searching off and on (between phone calls) for what he posted. I finally found the following:

Canon 313 Juridic Person. Public associations are Juridic persons acting in the name of the church, so they can only be erected by the competent authorities. This cannot be changed by the association's statutes. Authorities control them to the extent that they are public, but not very much associations. Opposition of civil law freedom and control by the church make it almost impossible for the civil structure to work. The decree erecting the association also establishes the juridic person. 'acting in name of church' more like an administrative body. Luis Navarro Marfa: church guarantees character, then must have control.

26 posted on 09/21/2012 8:36:24 AM PDT by pgyanke (Republicans get in trouble when not living up to their principles. Democrats... when they do.)
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To: vladimir998

Is it untrue?


27 posted on 09/21/2012 8:51:31 AM PDT by Boogieman
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To: RoadTest; Campion
If you look into it carefully, you will quickly see you are making a category mistake.

Vatican City/State is a diplomatic and political site which, for the time being, houses some of the administrative offices of the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church itself is much vaster: it extends across around the world, and from Pentecost until Christ comes again.

Thus, the Vatican state and the Catholic Church can be distinuished. See here (Link)

28 posted on 09/21/2012 9:15:08 AM PDT by Mrs. Don-o ("The church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.” -1 Timothy 3:15)
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Sounds like Fr. Mannion is mostly ranting about the authority of the pope and is not above using distorted history to do so.

If he doesn’t recognize the pope, he should not consider himself a member of the Church, if he still does, and certainly cannot speak for those who are.

We can get much better screeds from our protestant friends.


29 posted on 09/21/2012 9:25:46 AM PDT by D-fendr (Deus non alligatur sacramentis sed nos alligamur.)
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To: Mrs. Don-o

I think the author’s real problem is with the authority of the pope and his longing for whatever his vision is of “the ideal embodied in Vatican II.”

His closing analogy is quite revealing as well:

>>>>”I understand there is a branch of Judaism that prays daily for the destruction of the Jewish state because it does not conform to the Old Testament model of Israel. Maybe the time has come for Catholics to pray for an end to the Vatican state for the exact same reason.”


30 posted on 09/21/2012 9:35:06 AM PDT by D-fendr (Deus non alligatur sacramentis sed nos alligamur.)
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To: Boogieman

Yes.

1) “Current Catholic justice has its origin in the Roman Inquisition founded by pope Gregory IX in 1232,”

False. Current Catholic justice has its roots in the canons and decrees of the Church councils. Inquisitions already existed before Pope Gregory. What’s called the Roman inquisition was founded more than 300 years later than Gregory.

“which ushered in one of the most shameful episodes in all of human history.”

False.

No doubt shameful acts were committed but nothing done by any inquistion could even come close to being “one of the most shameful episodes in all of human history.”

“It formalised the practices of killing, burning or imprisoning heretics.”

False.

Inquistions were instituted to investigate and reconcile heretics with the Church. Secular monarchs were already burning or otherwise heretics before “the inquisition” era began.

“Modified over time, it still exists under a changed name (Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith), but its rules owe much to its history and very little to contemporary standards of justice.”

Oh, so the Church is supposed to change its institutions to suit current ideas? The inquisition helped shape modern jurisprudence. Historian and translator John Tedeschi wrote that “it may not be an exaggeration to claim, in fact, that in several respects the Holy Office was a pioneer in judicial reform”. See The Prosecution of Heresy: Collected Studies on The Inquisition in Early Modern Italy, (Binghampton, NY: 1991).


31 posted on 09/21/2012 9:37:21 AM PDT by vladimir998
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To: D-fendr
Yes, you're right. Still, conflating a diplomatic quasi-state entity with an apostolic hierarchy is so easy to do; it's a common problem, lots of people do this almost without adverting to it; and it serves this author's overall rhetorical purpose.
32 posted on 09/21/2012 11:47:40 AM PDT by Mrs. Don-o (Point of clarification.)
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To: D-fendr

As I’ve often said in relation to the USCCB: an apostolic heirarchy is not the same as a clerical bureaucracy.


33 posted on 09/21/2012 11:49:10 AM PDT by Mrs. Don-o (USCCB Delenda Est.)
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To: Alex Murphy

The Irish Times is notoriously anti Catholic most because the of the Church’s refusal to jettison its teaching on abortion and homosexual behavior and gay marriage.

So I eye its reporting the same way I would a NYT piece.


34 posted on 09/21/2012 12:30:19 PM PDT by lastchance ("Nisi credideritis, non intelligetis" St. Augustine)
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To: Alex Murphy

So many falsehoods, so little time.

“Current Catholic justice has its origin in the Roman Inquisition founded by pope Gregory IX in 1232,”

No Canon law does not have its origin in the Roman Inquisition but predates it by many years. Pope Gregory certainly did not originate the canons.

“Pope Gregory IX is credited with promulgating the first official collection of canons called the Decretalia Gregorii Noni or Liber Extra (1234).”


35 posted on 09/21/2012 12:37:26 PM PDT by lastchance ("Nisi credideritis, non intelligetis" St. Augustine)
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To: Alex Murphy

The lies continue,

“In its mode of operation the suspect gets very little information. There is no independent judge, prosecutor or jury. An unknown defender is appointed from within the system. The accused is denied access to all documents related to the charge. All who take part in the trial are bound to secrecy, and there is no right of appeal.”

Any research on canon law proceedings will reveal this as a pack of lies. One has certain rights as an accused under canon law. Here are some of them,

“16. The right to vindicate one’s rights (no, this is NOT a tautology!) in a court of the church and to defend those rights in the courts of the church (canon 221, #1), with equity, and in accordance with the law (canon 221, #2).

17. The right to “be” judged (canon 221, #2). (As opposed, of course, to having those who have disposition over elements of one’s life drag out circumstances, delay, and otherwise deprive one of the clear-cut decisions to which one is entitled, and which one requires in order to get on with the basic business of living a Christian life).

18. The right to the legal process regarding sanctions; that is, the right to expect the Church to impose sanctions (punishments) ONLY in accordance with the law (canon 221, #3).”


36 posted on 09/21/2012 12:43:36 PM PDT by lastchance ("Nisi credideritis, non intelligetis" St. Augustine)
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To: Jedidah

Retired priest, My Aunt Fanny.


37 posted on 09/21/2012 12:44:15 PM PDT by lastchance ("Nisi credideritis, non intelligetis" St. Augustine)
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To: Jedidah

I apologize he was a priest. This blurb tells me much of what I need to know about him.

Archbishop orders priest to hoist U.S. flag again

“SAN ANTONIO — A Roman Catholic priest who removed the U.S. flag from in front his church was ordered to put it back up by the archbishop.

Church members at Our Lady of Grace said the Rev. John Mannion often criticized America during sermons and kept the flag at half-staff. Last week, he removed it from the church in La Coste, 20 miles from San Antonio.

‘While I respect Father Mannion’s passion for the dignity of all life and his right to his personal position on the war, nothing is accomplished by using the flag to force that view on those who are suffering the pain and uncertainty of knowing that America’s men and women of the armed forces are in harm’s way,” Archbishop Patrick Flores said.’ “

Mannion, leader of the church since 2001, declined to comment.


38 posted on 09/21/2012 1:00:54 PM PDT by lastchance ("Nisi credideritis, non intelligetis" St. Augustine)
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To: Religion Moderator

Thank you for the eye-opener!

Since Free Republic is not free in censoring free speech, I now depart from it.


39 posted on 09/22/2012 5:34:46 AM PDT by RoadTest (There is one god, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.)
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To: lastchance

Source?


40 posted on 09/22/2012 6:44:21 AM PDT by Religion Moderator
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To: Religion Moderator

Sorry for the oversight. The source is the Seattle Times.

http://community.seattletimes.nwsource.com/archive/?date=20030412&slug=warnotes12

I also found a NYT mention of him.

http://www.nytimes.com/2003/04/12/us/a-nation-at-war-dissent-antiwar-priest-removes-flag-but-not-for-long.html


41 posted on 09/22/2012 12:38:52 PM PDT by lastchance ("Nisi credideritis, non intelligetis" St. Augustine)
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