Monday, April 04, 2005

Ding Dong The Pope Is Dead

Not since Pius XII's papacy during which he happily signed the Nazi Concordant, recognizing Hitler's Germany as a sovereign Catholic state, has a pope reigned over such a political and cultural move to the right within the Catholic Church.

One of the first political moves by John Paul II was to insist that all Catholic clergy resign their posts as elected officials. At that time, I was a resident of Massachusetts and Fr. Robert Drinan was serving the citizenry as the representative in Washington. Drinan is a brilliant statesman and scholar. He is a liberal Catholic, which used to be nearly redundant, who used his brain in service to his lord. Catholics in Congress were mostly liberals working during that vital and exciting time to make America great. He refused to fight against abortion, as most Catholics did in the 1970s. Not because abortion is an acceptable solution to pregnancy, but because it is a medical procedure that made the world a better place. To oppose a medical procedure for political reasons is reprehensible.

Drinan was exactly the kind of Catholic John Paul II wanted to silence. There would be no political or social liberalism in the church anymore. Drinan's absence from Congress has been a loss for America.

As a boy, I was surprised to see many Catholic priests and nuns protesting against the VietNam 'war' and it made me proud to be Catholic, because being Catholic meant standing up against injustice. I knew nuns and priests who worked in free health clinics and youth drop-in centers, and food kitchens. They were smart men and women who used their God-given brains to make the world a better place. These men and women were changing the world.

There would be none of this under John Paul II. There would be adherence to a parochialism that has placed the notion of social justice not on the back burner of the Catholic Agenda, but in deep-freeze.

American Catholics are now a one-trick pony: they want to ban abortion PERIOD. Children can go hungry, be without health care, be sent to sub-par schools, be denied a decent education, then be sent to war to die for oil, and all of this is A-fucking-OK, as long as abortion is banned PERIOD.

This is John Paul II's legacy.

I do not wish death upon anybody; but, let's hope and pray that the passing of this very fallible man will bring a more compassionate, worldly, thinking man to the leadership of the church.

If you pray, now is a very good time to make petitions for a different type of leadership in Rome.

Dick Mac Recommends:

The Separation of Church and State
by Forrest Church

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