Sunday, April 24, 2005

Pope Pledges Openness

Translation: Pope Benedict XVI will be just as hard line, stubborn and bigoted as he was when he was Cardinal “God's Rottweiler” Ratz. But now he will use more florid weasel words. The old Ratz wrote a letter to US bishops in June 2004. He said that strong and open supporters of abortion should be denied communion because they were guilty of “a grave sin.” He said, “an unambiguously pro-abortion" politician "is not fit" to receive communion”. The letter went on to elaborate that a priest must refuse to distribute communion “in the case of a Catholic politician consistently campaigning and voting for permissive abortion and euthanasia law.” (He meant John Kerry and the world knew he meant John Kerry.) He also said that if a voter voted for a candidate because the candidate was pro-abortion, the voter "would be guilty of formal cooperation in evil, and so unworthy to present himself for holy communion.” Please note: the word pro-abortion is Ratz's word. No politician and no thinking person is pro-abortion. However, believing that the choice must be available is an issue that politicians and thinking persons can rally behind. Using the word pro-abortion is inflammatory and inaccurate. On September 6, 2000 the old Ratz said that Protestant churches must not be referred to as “sister churches”. They should be called ”ecumenical communities”. His reason, he said, was because churches that do not have a "valid Episcopate [bishops] and the genuine and integral substance of the Eucharistic mystery are not Churches in the proper sense." This is a core Ratzinger belief. How can he say he is going to reach out to unify all Christians when he believes that non-Catholic Christian churches have no validity? In 2001, the old Ratz said the Church is waiting for the moment when Jews will “say yes to Christ.” When asked if Jews should acknowledge Jesus as the Messiah, Ratzinger said, “We believe that. The fact remains, however, that our Christian conviction is that Christ is also the Messiah of Israel.” In the eyes of the RCC, Judaism has been kaput and invalid for 2000 years. Ratz's note to self: Scratch non-Catholic churches and Judaism for the reaching-out thing. More Cardinal Ratz Quotes: “It is true that the followers of other religions can receive divine grace, it is also certain that objectively speaking they are in a gravely deficient situation in comparison with those who, in the church, have the fullness of the means of salvation.'' Translation: If you're lucky and if you mind your P's and Q's, God may grant you grace. But the only sure way to avoid going to hell where you will roast for all eternity is to be in God's religion, Roman Catholicism. “That the Jews are connected with God in a special way and that God does not allow that bond to fail is entirely obvious. We wait for the instant in which Israel will say yes to Christ, but we know that it has a special mission in history now ... which is significant for the world.'' Translation: God hasn't stamped out the Jews yet, which proves he's very forgiving, but God revealed to me he wants them to convert. They are safe for now, but God and I cannot guarantee they will be safe for long. “In the Church, priests also are sinners. But I am personally convinced that the constant presence in the press of the sins of Catholic priests, especially in the United States, is a planned campaign, as the percentage of these offenses among priests is not higher than in other categories, and perhaps it is even lower.” Translation: Americans have made up lies about pedophile priests. If there are any pedophile priests in the RCC, which there probably are not, the Vatican supports them and we have decided there are fewer of them than statistics prove there are, if there are any, which there probably are not. “Although the particular inclination of the homosexual person is not a sin, it is a more or less strong tendency ordered to an intrinsic moral evil, and thus the inclination itself must be seen as an objective disorder.'' Translation: This statement is almost impossible to translate or to cast in words that make any sense whatsoever. However, Ratz seems to be saying that homosexuals are in error and aren't thinking correctly. And while they are living the homosexual life they are morally evil. When they change, and they can change by thinking correctly, the RCC will accept them. Then, the RCC will tell God it's okay for him to accept them too. Twenty years ago, Ratz said, referring to homosexuals, “Above all, we must have great respect for these people who also suffer and who want to find their own way of correct living. On the other hand, to create a legal form of a kind of homosexual marriage, in reality, does not help these people.'' Translation: Gays hate themselves almost as much as we hate them. All gays want to be straight. Therefore, giving them equal status with straight people would not help these sociopaths who God and I wouldn't touch with a ten-foot shepherd's hook and surgical gloves anyway. Ratzinger's words will become increasingly more confusing, obtuse and hard to parse as time goes by. But the teaching of Pope Benedict XVI will not move a micrometer from the teaching of Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger.

1 comment:

DemItAllAnyway said...

A thought:
' “It is true that the followers of other religions can receive divine grace, it is also certain that objectively speaking they are in a gravely deficient situation in comparison with those who, in the church, have the fullness of the means of salvation.''

Translation: ...the only sure way to avoid going to hell where you will roast for all eternity is to be in God's religion, Roman Catholicism.'

I don't trust this new pope, but I think your translation overstates what he says in this quote. His statement uses the typically obscure language of Catholic textbooks issued post-Vatican II, the kind that made every parochial schoolchild think, "Huh?" and long for Baltimore Catechism straightforwardness. Such language is meant to obfuscate--possibly, then, to make the "mystery of faith" more mysterious; possibly, now, for the very purpose of being open to interpretation, thus malleable, in the way that George Bush's incoherence sometimes serves him so conveniently well.

Here's what I retain from 12 years in the system: anyone who is baptized and who lives a good life will go to Heaven. The unbaptized go to Limbo, a place in which they dwell "denied the sight of the face of God", until the Final Judgment which determines their eternal fate.

On a side note: being Catholic is not a sure way to avoid Hell. Catholics must also at the moment of death be free from mortal sin. Very important requisite there. Unlike the born-agains, or the predestined, we're supposed to walk the talk.