Skip to comments.Cardinal Ratzinger Discovers America
Posted on 12/12/2004 8:54:32 AM PST by Land of the Irish
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John Rao, Ph.D.
REMNANT COLUMNIST, New York
Cardinal Ratzinger has discovered America. Troubled by the total secularization of European lifereflected, most recently, in the battles over European unification and the continental chorus of criticism accompanying Professor Rocco Buttigliones reiteration of the Churchs teaching on homosexualitythe cardinal now suggests that the United States may perhaps offer the better model of Church-State relations for a desacralized world. According to a November 25, 2004, report on Zenit.com, the Cardinal, responding to the secularization of Europe, made the following comments on Vatican Radio:
I think that from many points of view the American model is the better one. Europe has remained bogged down. People who did not want to belong to a state church, went to the United States and intentionally constituted a state that does not impose a church and which simply is not perceived as religiously neutral, but as a space within which religions can move and also enjoy organizational freedom without being simply relegated to the private sphere One can undoubtedly learn from the United States [and this] process by which the state makes room for religion, which is not imposed, but which, thanks to the state, lives, exists and has a public creative force. It certainly is a positive way.
This, of course, was the position of the Americanists of the 1890s, who argued that things spiritual thrived in the United States to a degree that Europeans, passive and obedient to their manipulative governments, could never match. Cardinal Ratzinger has apparently arrived at a similar judgment in typical contemporary Catholic fashion: much later than everybody else, and naively uncritical.
It seems to be the fate of the post-conciliar Church to take up the banner of erroneous causes just as their poisons are beginning to become somewhat clearer to the rest of the outside world. I hope that His Eminence has been misquoted. If not, I pray that a deeper study of the system in the United States will reveal to him just how much the so-called religious character of America is, at best, heretical, and, at worst, a spiritualized secularism emerging from errors inherent in Protestant thought.
One still hears the argument that the threat of Americanism was exaggerated at the time of Leo XIIIs encyclicals against it, and that, in any case, it disappeared shortly thereafter. Certainly many people in Rome as well as the United States wanted to make believe this was the case, using the Modernist crisis, and undoubted American loyalty to the Papacy throughout it, as proof positive of the countrys orthodoxy. But the crises warned against by St. Pius Xs pontificate precisely involve the sort of philosophical, theological, and exegetical issues that Americanism sweeps aside as a horrendous waste of time and energy. Modernisms intellectual character stood in the way of the Yankee pragmatism that simply wanted to get the job done without worrying about anything as fruitlessly divisive as unpaid thought. It was part and parcel of all that pretentious European cultural hoo-ha responsible for the Old Worlds ideologies, revolutions, wars, and bad plumbing. Americans could recite the Creed and memorize catechisms better and in larger numbers than anywhere else. Confident in their orthodoxy and the Catholic-friendly character of their political and social system, they could move on to devote themselves to the practical realities of daily life. Criticisms of what the practical life might actually mean in the long run could be disregarded as unpatriotic, communist, and useless for short or long-term fund raising.
America, with Catholic Americans in lock-step, thus marched forward to nurture what St. Cyril of Alexandria called dypsychia: a two-spirited existence. On the one hand, it loudly proclaimed outward commitment to many traditional doctrines and moral values making it look spiritually healthy. On the other, it allowed the practical life, to which it was really devoted, to be defined by whatever the strongest and most successful men considered to be most important, silencing discussion of the gross contradiction by laughing such fruitless intellectual quibbles out of the parlors of a polite, common-sense guided society. It marched this approach into Europe in 1945, ironically linking up with one strain of Modernism that itself encouraged Catholic abandonment to the direction of anti-intellectual vital energies and mystique. Vitalism and Americanism in tandem then gave us Vatican II which, concerned only with getting the practical pastoral job done, has destroyed Catholic doctrine infinitely more effectively than any mere straightforward heretic like Arius could have done. Under the less parochial sounding name of Pluralism, it is the very force which Cardinal Ratzinger is criticizing inside the European Union, and which is now spreading high-minded moral values, freedom, and democracy around the globe through the work of well-paid mercenaries and five hundred pound bombs.
If, heaven forbid, Cardinal Ratzinger honestly believes that true religion prospers under our system better than under any other, he is urging upon Catholics that spiritual and intellectual euthanasia which Americanism-Vitalism-Pluralism infallibly guarantees. The fate of many conservative Catholic enthusiasts for this false God, in their response to the war in Iraq, should be one among an endless number of warnings to him. No one is more publicly committed to orthodoxy than they are. No one praises the name and authority of the Pope more than they do. And yet never have I heard so many sophistic arguments reducing to total emptiness both profound Catholic teachings regarding the innocence of human life, as well as the value of the intellect in understanding how to apply those teachings to practical circumstances, as I have heard coming from their circles.
May God save His Eminence from adulation of a system that waves the flag of moral righteousness and then tells us that we are simply not permitted to use our faith and reason to recognize a wicked, fraudulent war for the anti-Catholic disaster that it is; an evil that a number of Catholics are some day legitimately going to have to apologize for having helped to justify. May God save His Eminence from a religiosity which will eventually line fundamentalist Catholic terrorists against the wall along with other divisive enemies of the system who cannot live or die under a regime of dypsychia.
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Dear Grey Ghost II,
"Then what recourse does the constitution provide for when the Supreme Court acts illegally and the legislative and executive branches are essentially acting in concert with the judicial branch?"
The people may remove the executive and the legislature, and replace those who serve in each. If the people will not act to remove them, then the Constitution will not assist.
No form of government can guarantee the virtue of the people.
Leo was wrong.
These things are the result of the rebellion against traditional European culture, which was Catholic, hierarchical, and monarchical. If monarchy is to blame for Communism, than the Catholic Church is to blame for Protestantism.
I cannot believe that people who have witnessed the disastrous effects of abolishing monarchies in Europe, Africa, and Asia can be so disdainful of monarchism.
I have been trying to do exactly that for many years. That's where the constitution has failed me. It only works if one is in agreement with the majority of uninformed idiots who vote.
"My kingdom is not of this world."
Sound familiar? Christ didn't lift a finger to establish an earthly kingdom WHILE HE WAS ON EARTH.
He doesn't intend that His followers do so now.
Dear Grey Ghost II,
"I have been trying to do exactly that for many years. That's where the constitution has failed me. It only works if one is in agreement with the majority of uninformed idiots who vote."
That's not so far off from correct.
Forms of government will not substitute for the virtue of the people.
Austria attacked Serbia because the heir to the Austrian throne was murdered by a terrorist whose organization had ties to the Serbian government. Perhaps the two people I've pinged would like to comment further on the origins, causes, and development of World War I.
The following historical facts are undeniable:
(1) Germany attacked the Lusitania in 1915 because German intelligence had discovered that it was carrying arms to Britain in violation of international law and Wilson's alleged "neutrality." Therefore, Germany had every right to do so, and this cannot be considered a justification for American entry into the war.
(2) The Wilson administration made the abolition of the German monarchy a condition of peace. The Allies made it very clear that they wanted the German and Austrian monarchies abolished. Therefore, it is entirely appropriate to blame Wilson and the Allies for the disastrous consequences of the abolition of those monarchies.
"(2) The Wilson administration made the abolition of the German monarchy a condition of peace. The Allies made it very clear that they wanted the German and Austrian monarchies abolished."
This is one of the best pieces of empirical evidence against abolishing monarchies willy-nilly. What an assinine mistake this was.
So you not only disagree with Leo XIII, you disagree with St. Augustine and 1700 years of Catholic history. Go play with some Protestants - you all will get along just fine.
Pretty hard to argue with. The biggest problem has been that our government has stopped being neutral. Consider public funding of religiously insulting art and promotion of policies that are in opposition Christian and Jewish tradition. These, of course, are a twisting of the intent of our Constitution, Declaration and the beliefs of our founders. And mostly, a violation of the democratic process.
It does appear to be changing.
Did Christ advocate for the establishment of an earthly kingdom or not?
But of course even then you'd still be wrong
19 Going therefore, teach ye all nations; baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. 20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world.
". But, although we have not omitted often to proscribe and reprobate the chief errors of this kind, yet the cause of the Catholic Church, and the salvation of souls entrusted to us by God, and the welfare of human society itself, altogether demand that we again stir up your pastoral solicitude to exterminate other evil opinions, which spring forth from the said errors as from a fountain. Which false and perverse opinions are on that ground the more to be detested, because they chiefly tend to this, that that salutary influence be impeded and (even) removed, which the Catholic Church, according to the institution and command of her Divine Author, should freely exercise even to the end of the world -- not only over private individuals, but over nations, peoples, and their sovereign princes; and (tend also) to take away that mutual fellowship and concord of counsels between Church and State which has ever proved itself propitious and salutary, both for religious and civil interests.1 For you well know, venerable brethren, that at this time men are found not a few who, applying to civil society the impious and absurd principle of "naturalism," as they call it, dare to teach that "the best constitution of public society and (also) civil progress altogether require that human society be conducted and governed without regard being had to religion any more than if it did not exist; or, at least, without any distinction being made between the true religion and false ones." And, against the doctrine of Scripture, of the Church, and of the Holy Fathers, they do not hesitate to assert that "that is the best condition of civil society, in which no duty is recognized, as attached to the civil power, of restraining by enacted penalties, offenders against the Catholic religion, except so far as public peace may require." From which totally false idea of social government they do not fear to foster that erroneous opinion, most fatal in its effects on the Catholic Church and the salvation of souls, called by Our Predecessor, Gregory XVI, an "insanity,"2 viz., that "liberty of conscience and worship is each man's personal right, which ought to be legally proclaimed and asserted in every rightly constituted society; and that a right resides in the citizens to an absolute liberty, which should be restrained by no authority whether ecclesiastical or civil, whereby they may be able openly and publicly to manifest and declare any of their ideas whatever, either by word of mouth, by the press, or in any other way." But, while they rashly affirm this, they do not think and consider that they are preaching "liberty of perdition;"3 and that "if human arguments are always allowed free room for discussion, there will never be wanting men who will dare to resist truth, and to trust in the flowing speech of human wisdom; whereas we know, from the very teaching of our Lord Jesus Christ, how carefully Christian faith and wisdom should avoid this most injurious babbling."4 "And, since where religion has been removed from civil society, and the doctrine and authority of divine revelation repudiated, the genuine notion itself of justice and human right is darkened and lost, and the place of true justice and legitimate right is supplied by material force, thence it appears why it is that some, utterly neglecting and disregarding the surest principles of sound reason, dare to proclaim that "the people's will, manifested by what is called public opinion or in some other way, constitutes a supreme law, free from all divine and human control; and that in the political order accomplished facts, from the very circumstance that they are accomplished, have the force of right." But who, does not see and clearly perceive that human society, when set loose from the bonds of religion and true justice, can have, in truth, no other end than the purpose of obtaining and amassing wealth, and that (society under such circumstances) follows no other law in its actions, except the unchastened desire of ministering to its own pleasure and interests? For this reason, men of the kind pursue with bitter hatred the Religious Orders, although these have deserved extremely well of Christendom, civilization and literature, and cry out that the same have no legitimate reason for being permitted to exist; and thus (these evil men) applaud the calumnies of heretics. For, as Pius VI, Our Predecessor, taught most wisely, "the abolition of regulars is injurious to that state in which the Evangelical counsels are openly professed; it is injurious to a method of life praised in the Church as agreeable to Apostolic doctrine; it is injurious to the illustrious founders, themselves, whom we venerate on our altars, who did not establish these societies but by God's inspiration."5 And (these wretches) also impiously declare that permission should be refused to citizens and to the Church, "whereby they may openly give alms for the sake of Christian charity"; and that the law should be abrogated "whereby on certain fixed days servile works are prohibited because of God's worship;" and on the most deceptive pretext that the said permission and law are opposed to the principles of the best public economy. Moreover, not content with removing religion from public society, they wish to banish it also from private families. For, teaching and professing the most fatal error of "Communism and Socialism," they assert that "domestic society or the family derives the whole principle of its existence from the civil law alone; and, consequently, that on civil law alone depend all rights of parents over their children, and especially that of providing for education." By which impious opinions and machinations these most deceitful men chiefly aim at this result, viz., that the salutary teaching and influence of the Catholic Church may be entirely banished from the instruction and education of youth, and that the tender and flexible minds of young men may be infected and depraved by every most pernicious error and vice. For all who have endeavored to throw into confusion things both sacred and secular, and to subvert the right order of society, and to abolish all rights, human and divine, have always (as we above hinted) devoted all their nefarious schemes, devices and efforts, to deceiving and depraving incautious youth and have placed all their hope in its corruption. For which reason they never cease by every wicked method to assail the clergy, both secular and regular, from whom (as the surest monuments of history conspicuously attest), so many great advantages have abundantly flowed to Christianity, civilization and literature, and to proclaim that "the clergy, as being hostile to the true and beneficial advance of science and civilization, should be removed from the whole charge and duty of instructing and educating youth." Quanta Cura
You are the very definition of the term modernist (see unam, if I want to call someone a modernist I don't play word games - sinkspur is a modernist.)
77. In the present day it is no longer expedient that the Catholic religion should be held as the only religion of the State, to the exclusion of all other forms of worship. -- Allocution "Nemo vestrum," July 26, 1855.
78. Hence it has been wisely decided by law, in some Catholic countries, that persons coming to reside therein shall enjoy the public exercise of their own peculiar worship. -- Allocution "Acerbissimum," Sept. 27, 1852.
79. Moreover, it is false that the civil liberty of every form of worship, and the full power, given to all, of overtly and publicly manifesting any opinions whatsoever and thoughts, conduce more easily to corrupt the morals and minds of the people, and to propagate the pest of indifferentism. -- Allocution "Nunquam fore," Dec. 15, 1856.
Call me whatever you want, pal. Your goofy monarchs will never darken the halls of the United States Capitol, and for that 99.999 percent of Americans are grateful.
How did you get "no" out of all that? LOL The dolt can't read. I guess you see what you want to see. You bore me - no arguments to refute, nothing but empty jacobin propoganda and defective protestant exegenesis. Shoo, let the adults talk.
Adults? Longing for kings and queens?
There are no arguments in favor of monarchy that Constitutional Republicans will buy.
What is "exegenesis"? Sounds like Bush-speak.
So, if the ordinary magisterial teaching, which Pope Leo XIII confirmed, which came to him from his predecessors, can be wrong, then certainly the current emphasis on "religious liberty," misinterprested by 99 % of all Catholics, could certainly be wrong.
In fact, my thesis is that this religious liberty, so-called, applies PRIMARILY to the Church's right to freely promulgate Her teachings, and has very little to do with false religions having the "freedom" to publicly promulgate their erroneous views.
No Sinky, if Leo and Pius and Gregory were wrong, then certainly Vatican II and your errant interpretation COULD be wrong, which we know cannot be.
Your theological speculation is waning, as usual...
Sinky: "My kingdom is not of this world."
Just because His Kingdom is not "OF" this world, does not mean, of course, that it is not "IN" this world.
Nice try, Sinky. But Christ definitely established His kingdom (the Church) IN this world. It is just not "OF" this world, because "this world" is Satan's abode.
"and for that 99.999 percent of Americans are grateful."
ME: Oh, but I am certain that "Americans" are grateful. But I wonder about Jesus Christ and His Father. The sin of human respect is rampant today, isn't it Sinky?
Freedom of religion is not "wrong." Nor is freedom of the press. For any American Catholic to maintain otherwise is simply unbelieveable.
So, you advocate the Pope as earthly ruler? The Papal States were a stellar example of why Popes are spiritual rulers.
There's the problem right there- he's an "American Catholic" - sorry I prefer to put my allegiance to the Church first than any man made institution.
Most "Americanists" do not believe that the U.S. is man-made, but rather that it is, in fact, a divinely ordained "shining city on a hill" with a mission to refashion the world in its image. Ask any random Evangelical.
We have inherited this view from the Puritans of the Massachusetts Bay colony, and it has increasingly dictated our domestic and foreign policy.
Sinky: Freedom of religion is not "wrong." Nor is freedom of the press. For any American Catholic to maintain otherwise is simply unbelieveable.
ME: Let's try this approach. I follow the magisterium of the Church, which includes all of the teaching of the predecessors of the current Pope, Paul VI and John XXIII. The only teaching authority they have is to "hand on" (traditio) what they have received from the Apostles. This is called the Deposit of Faith.
It matters NOT ONE IOTA whether American Catholics think Pope Leo XIII's "freedom of the press" or "freedom of religion" is wrong. It matters not, because the laity are NOT those vested with authority by Christ. It is the magisterium, which includes the "universal" and "eternal" magisterial teaching: not just your errant understanding of "religious freedom."
It doesn't matter whether or not YOU believe it or not either--even though you are allegedly an ordained man. YOU are wrong, NOT Pope Leo XIII, Pius IX and X (Saint), nor Gregory. Look in the mirror. Freedom of the press (to promulgate error) is condemned. It is counter to Catholic doctrine. Get it?
The Pope has "indirect" temporal authority bestowed upon him by Christ.
If you have a problem with it, take it up with Jesus Christ!
You read newspapers? You read all this stuff posted here?
If you do, according to you, you are participating in material sin.
It is counter to Catholic doctrine. Get it?
No, I don't get it. But, you better get off FR.
Too much freedom goin' on out dere!!!
And after Austria declared war, Germany invaded Belgium, in accordance with a very detailed mobilization plan arranged long in advance. I'm glad to know that you are more loyal to Kaiser Wilhelm than your own nation, if indeed you are an American. A humanitarian intervention on the side of the allies was eminently justified, as it was in World War II. Germany was the clear aggressor and disruptor of the peace.
Abortion is an injustice. Destroying the benefits and freedoms of a democratic system rather than addressing efforts to resolve this single injustice would itself be an injustice as well as an act of lunacy. I'm so glad to know that fascism is alive and well here on Free Republic. (Actually, come to think of it, wouldn't both the words "free" and "republic" be anathema to the likes of you?)
Your argument is false. It assumes that the only available options are Catholic autocracy, fascism, communism and extreme secularist democracy. The fact is there is another option, which Europeans were free to choose but have not, which is liberal democracy with full freedom of religion, as we have in this country. There is no reason that Europe had to choose either fascism or communism. And your trashing of constitutional republics makes things like fascism and communism much more likely, since it was in precisely the interwar period when propagandists incited the public against liberal democracy and those extremist ideologies grew up.
"Today's enfeebled constitutional monarchies can still serve as a rallying point, even involuntarily, for those opposed to the Brave New World of multiculturalism and the European Union. The Left understands this; we should too."
I have a feeling these royals would not want to go back to the good old days of divine rights and ultimate responsibility. And they are quite happy enjoying the quiet comfortable life and letting others dictate the agenda. It is incredible that in just a hundred years we have seen monarchies rendered so impotent.
And yes it is alive and well here at FR - neo-con philsophy is very similar to fascism.
Actually, come to think of it, wouldn't both the words "free" and "republic" be anathema to the likes of you?
We've already addressed the "free" part - you didn't hear because you choose not to hear so I won't bother to repeat it. As for "republic" sure, its anathema, I make no apoligies for that.
LOL, this is like when the Democrats accused the Bush administration of planning to attack Iraq prior to 9/11 because there were "plans" for doing so somewhere in a vault. Every government maintains battle plans for virtually any continency - the militaries of the world hire people that do very little besides create strategies and plans to be filed and likely never used.
It's one thing to have plans in a vault, quite another to get them out of the vault soon after one's administration takes power....prior to 9/11.
Actually, the Papal States WERE a stellar example of the Pope as a temporal ruler. When the Italian liberals invaded to "liberate" them, they were quite shocked to find that, instead of oppressed, impoverished slaves yearning for freedom, the people they met were cold toward them and refused to participate in their "elections" to vote out the Pontiff.
The Pope is a temporal as well as a spiritual ruler, in fact, before good ol' Paul VI did away with it, whenever a Pope was crowned they were given the title of "the ruler of the rulers of the world", because no other authority can be higher than that given by Christ Himself to St Peter.
Christ did not give any temporal authority to Peter.
I'm not defending the administration, my post is only meant to demonstrate it is patently absurd to conclude that the existance of a plan constitutes an intention to use it.
18 And I say to thee: That thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. 19 And I will give to thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven. And whatsoever thou shalt bind upon earth, it shall be bound also in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose upon earth, it shall be loosed also in heaven. 20 Then he commanded his disciples, that they should tell no one that he was Jesus the Christ.
18 "Thou art Peter"... As St. Peter, by divine revelation, here made a solemn profession of his faith of the divinity of Christ; so in recompense of this faith and profession, our Lord here declares to him the dignity to which he is pleased to raise him: viz., that he to whom he had already given the name of Peter, signifying a rock, St. John 1. 42, should be a rock indeed, of invincible strength, for the support of the building of the church; in which building he should be, next to Christ himself, the chief foundation stone, in quality of chief pastor, ruler, and governor ; and should have accordingly all fulness of ecclesiastical power, signified by the keys of the kingdom of heaven.
Christ's three-fold mission - to teach, to heal and to rule
Actually, Germany did nothing until Russia mobilized against them FIRST, just like France mobilized against Germany FIRST (truth be known it was the French ambassador who was pushing the Russians to attack Austria in the first place).
The simple fact is that the problems were totally between Austria and Servia and no one else. It was Russia, prodded on by the French, who stuck their nose in and started to spread the hostilities. When Russia, unprovoked, moved against Austria, Germany was bound to defend their ally. An ally, by the way, whose war against Serbia was totally justified. The Germans gave the French ample opportunity to declare their neutrality and keep peace in the West -they failed to do so. The French were looking for any opportunity to get Alsace-Lorraine back from Germany after the spanking they got in 1870; just as Britain was looking for any opportunity to remove German economic/colonial competition.
Frankly, I see nothing "humanitarian" about American fat cats getting rich selling arms, ammunition and all manner of supplies to the British while thousands of Germans are starving to death, all the while pretending to be "neutral". I see no sense in condemning Germany for invading Belgium when before the war, Wilson had invaded numerous countries in Latin America for the sake of American business interests. The warring powers were all on the verge of exhaustion by the time America declared war anyway, it could not have gone on much longer regardless of what the US did. All Wilson accomplished was to give the Allies overpowering force in the final days to inflict on the Central Powers the most atrocious, humiliating and ultimately dangerous peace terms they could force out.
OK. I see your point. Maybe bringing up the Bush administration wasn't a good example.
Governor OF THE CHURCH. You misinterpret your own citation.
Well, pardon me for thinking that there are some good points to democracy and human rights. I hope you enjoy your hierarchical, autocratic little fantasy world.
Oh yes, poor little Germany, put upon by all those evil democratic, popular regimes, including France, which the Hollenzollerns invaded and took land from by force. (I would note that the creation of the German Empire was not sanctioned by long prescription, but was a pure Realpolitik creation of the Chancellor Bismarck. In addition, they were not Catholic, so they don't even fit the Catholic monarch paradigm.) Yes, we shouldn't restrain the great German Uebermensch as it teaches a lesson to less advanced societies that don't practice autocratic monarchism, that most blessed of regime types! If you think democracy and America is so evil, I suggest you go live elsewhere if you are American, where your authoritarian and servile (if you are not a ruler or aristocrat) instincts will be better appreciated.
That's correct. It is.
"...a false supposition."
No it isn't.
Some very wise men, over 230 years ago, thought it was. They have been proven right.
Especially since 70% of the populace are ignorant morons.
Same attitude that kept blacks out of public life.
Loyalty to the United States constitution is contrary to Catholic doctrine? That is simply not true, and no pope has ever said that. That's just crazy!
The very fact that Emperor Joseph II, a man who attended mass daily and tried to bring the Protestant Prussians to heel, stands out as such an anti-Catholic is proof itself of just how good the Hapsburgs actually were. If Joseph II is the most radical anti-Church Hapsburg you can come up with, they must be doing pretty good.
As for the 30 Years War, the Hapsburgs fought damn hard throughout, and were everywhere victorious until some little bit of trickery turned the tables on them. Had Cardinal Richelieu cared a little more about Christendom than his own France, the Hapsburgs would probably have won. As for the Reformation, if the Pope would have taken seriously the repeated please of the Hapsburg Emperor Charles V to call a reform council, the Protestant rebellion might, God willing, have been nipped in the bud. The Hapsburgs were having to fight off the French, the Muslims and Lutheran rebels all at the same time. They beat the French, beat the Muslims, won the Knights War, put down the Peasants Revolt and yet you're still going to say they weren't trying just because the betrayal of Maurice of Saxony forced the Emperor to contain Protestantism rather than destroying it entirely? Why not just demand perfection while you're at it?
And, BTW, at the time of the Declaration of Independence, Catholicism WAS banned in all but one or two colonies. After that, it was quite easy for the US to be "tolerant" of Catholics, considering they were too few to even have a prayer of being an influential force. Anti-catholicism was one of the driving forces behind the American Revolution. When King George III allowed Quebec Catholic toleration, the Protestant sensationalists of New England immediately began to cry that George III was slipping into that "Roman religion" of royal absolutism and would bring back the Catholic Church to British lands. There was no truth to this of course, but it certainly shows what a paranoid and fanatic hatred of Catholics there was even in the idyllic American colonies. Catholics weren't even a majority in Maryland, and they founded the colony!
When Catholics did start to arrive in America in considerable numbers, the people who met them were far from tolerant as any historian can tell you.
Did I leave out anything? I'm sure I'll be told...
St Edward of England, St Louis of France, St Fernando of Spain, St Elizabeth of Portugal, St Hedwig of Poland, St Stephen of Hungary and Bl Charles of Austria, pray for us in our republican arrogance!
From Leo XIII's encyclical Testem Benevolentiae Nostrae against Americanism:
"The rule of life laid down for Catholics is not of such a nature that it cannot accommodate itself to the exigencies of various times and places."
"He alone could wish that some Christian virtues be adapted to certain times and different ones for other times who is unmindful of the apostle's words: "That those whom He foreknew, He predestined to be made conformable to the image of His Son." Romans viii, 29."
Hahaha! Hey... could I adopt you as my Auntie Thesis?