Skip to comments.The Catholic Position [why the Church is blamed for everything]
Posted on 04/20/2002 5:56:22 AM PDT by heyheyhey
A few weeks ago I tried, in my feeble way, to express why I fell in love with the Catholic Church. I received many gracious and grateful responses from others who felt the same way, some of them converts like me.
Inevitably, there were also a few jeers, directed not so much against me as against the Church. Some dredged up old scandals of wicked popes, or supposedly shocking utterances of Catholic saints, or mere clichés of traditional anti-Catholic polemics. Most of these were meant to embarrass, not to persuade; the usual ahistorical nuggets.
What is startling is the perpetual passion of anti-Catholicism. Youd think that by now people who reject Catholicism would calmly ignore its teachings as old and irrelevant superstitions. After all, the Church has none of her old political power, adherence is now totally voluntary, and she has enough trouble getting her own children to listen to her.
But Catholicism still has a strange moral authority, and many people are unable to achieve a calm and assured disbelief. They are still driven to discredit the Church - perhaps for the same reason so many of us believe in her.
Catholicism offers a complete and comprehensive morality, one which most of us still recognize as the faith of our fathers. Bit by bit, the world, including other churches, has abandoned much of this morality; the Church continues to teach it, even when some of her own priests scandalously violate it.
A few generations ago, nearly all Christians shared the same sexual morality. They abhorred artificial birth control, for example. Many state laws banning the sale of contraceptive devices in this country were passed by Protestant majorities while Catholics were politically weak.
Gradually, however, Protestants ceased to oppose contraception, and Catholicism almost alone continued to condemn it. What had long been a consensus became censured as a "Catholic position." We now see the same process well under way with abortion and homosexuality.
If cannibalism ever becomes popular, and the rest of the world, led by its progressive-minded intellectuals, decides that anthropophagy is a basic constitutional right, opposing cannibalism will become a "Catholic position" too. Catholics will once more be accused of wanting to "impose" their "views" on everyone else (even when they are far too weak to do so), and the reformers will cry, "Lets keep government out of the kitchen!"
I dont defend the Churchs morality because I am a Catholic. I became and remain a Catholic because the Church maintains a consistent morality - while the rest of the world keeps veering off into moral fads. My conviction that she is right is only strengthened by the worlds strident demand that she change along with it, as if it were a sort of moral duty to change ones principles, like underwear, with reasonable frequency.
"The world" includes many nominal Catholics who side with the secular world against their own Church. These are the Catholics you are most likely to see in the major media. They deny the Churchs authority to keep teaching what she has always taught, yet they cant rest until she approves their pet vices - contraception, sodomy, same-sex marriage, and all the rest.
Notice that the proposed reforms usually have to do with sex. When the Church refuses to change, she is accused of being "obsessed" with sex, when its really her critics who are obsessed with it. Catholic morality recognizes seven deadly sins, of which lust is only one; but this happens to be the one the modern world cant stop thinking about. Nobody demands that the Church "change its outdated teachings against sloth."
At any rate, the Church cant change. She can no more change her teaching about lust than her equally emphatic teachings about pride, gluttony, and sloth, because God has made the world as it is and no human will can repeal its moral order. These arent the Popes personal opinions; they are objective truths.
Powerless, hardly able to keep her own flock in line, and betrayed by many of her shepherds, the Church is still treated as a threat. All she really threatens is the false comfort of the dormant conscience; but this is enough to make bitter enemies.
After all, her Founder warned her not to expect gratitude from men for trying to save their souls. She is the mother of Western civilization, and to this day, all too often, she is blamed for everything and thanked for nothing.
Using that logic we all should have renounced our citizenship and left the country when those cowards in the Senate failed to convict Clinton. Sounds like they placed their faith in men rather than in God.
Tried and convicted (if guilty) and sent to prison for a long time.No one in the right mind would question that. But you be careful not to fall for what the massmedia want you to fall, to create in your mind a new criminal category: the Roman Catholic Church :-)
Every single one of them.
Catholicism still has a strange moral authority, and many people are unable to achieve a calm and assured disbelief. They are still driven to discredit the Church - perhaps for the same reason so many of us believe in her.
Nobody demands that the Church "change its outdated teachings against sloth."
SNORT...How many Catholics still don't eat meat on Friday?
The Church had better change its postion on how to deal with pedophiles within its ranks before it becomes a modern Sodom & Gomorrah.
The RC church must change. If homosexuality is a sin and there is punishment for committing a crime than the RC Church doesn't believe in objective truth. It knowingly has a huge contingent of homosexual priests. Far too many of these priest prey on adolesents and then the crime is covered up in the name of forgiveness.
The objective truth of this matter is that the RC Church has lost much of the moral authority it claimed to have.
How many Catholics still don't eat meat on Friday?In fact, many of us don't. The meatless Friday requirement was limited to the time of Lent. On any other Friday it is replaced by a deed of Christian charity.
...before it becomes a modern Sodom & GomorrahThere is a blessing in the old scandals' hype; the more "conservative" Bishops who denied admissions of sodomites to the priesthood are being reinforced in their convictions, and the sodomite-friendly ones are (hopefully) becoming less sodomite-friendly.
My, my, do I detect a bit of Protestant bashing?
If homosexuality is a sin and there is punishment for committing a crimeI'm sure you realize the difference between "sin" and "crime." The "sin" category is fairly universal, it never changes, the "crime" category changes constantly. Only sometimes these two overlap.
Of course there is difference. The point I was trying to make is that; if the RC church considers homosexuality to be a sin and somewhere between 30 and 50 percent of the priests (numbers from priests themselves) are in fact homosexual it raises the question as to why these priest are tolerated in the first place. Moral authority implies a certain level of consistency between your dogma and real life, otherwise you get the label of hypocrite.
As far as crimes go; again if one is claimimg moral authority yet does not turn in these predators they lose said authority. The fact that forgiveness is an important issue does not allow these predator off the hook. They can be forgiven in or outside of a jailhouse.
somewhere between 30 and 50 percent of the priests are homosexualFar out! I've been a Catholic since I was 1 month old, I got to know many priests and your numbers do NOT match my experience, not even remotely :-)
It should say "requirement was limited in the recent years."
Well, I doubt the priest are actually letting the flock know they are homosexuals. Do you? The number of 30 to 50 percent is a number that was stated by a RC priest that wrote an opinion piece in the wake of the troubles in Boston. I thought the number was very high as well, but who am I to argue with someone in the know?
BTW, how many homosexual as a percentage of priests does your experiance indicate there are? If the doctrine of the RC church is that homosexual activity is sinful, why does the church not defrock these men and tell them are unfit for ministry after it have become clear that these men have not merely backslide but are in fact indulging in this sin as a practice.
Well, I doubt the priest are actually letting the flock know they are homosexuals.I can smell one from a good distance :-)
how many homosexual as a percentage of priests does your experiance indicate there are?Very, very few from my experience. It may depend upon a particular diocese, and it REALLY SHOULDN'T. On another thread I read the following,
For Father John Canary, rector of the University of St. Mary of the Lake Seminary in Mundelein, outside Chicago, homosexual "orientation" does not necessarily exclude a candidate. But Father John Folda, rector of St. Gregory the Great Seminary of the Diocese of Lincoln, Neb., said simply, "We don't take homosexual candidates." The reason, he said, is the same as that given by the Holy See. "Because of the way of life a priest lives, there would be a great deal of temptation for someone like that," he said. "You'd be calling a man to something unsuitable for his circumstances."I am looking forward, with a great hope, to the outcome of the media-orgy. I think it will be, in the end, v. good for the Church :-)