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Old 03-13-2007, 06:32 PM   #1
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Catholic politicians must oppose gay marriage: Pope says

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - The Church's opposition to gay marriage is "non-negotiable" and Catholic politicians have a moral duty to oppose it, as well as laws on abortion and euthanasia, Pope Benedict said in a document issued on Tuesday.

In a 140-page booklet on the workings of a synod that took place at the
Vatican in 2005 on the theme of the Eucharist, the 79-year-old German Pope also re-affirmed the Catholic rule of celibacy for priests.

In the "Apostolic Exhortation" Benedict said all believers had to defend what he called fundamental values but that the duty was "especially incumbent" on those in positions of power.

He said such values included "respect for human life, its defense from conception to natural death, the family built on marriage between a man and a woman, the freedom to educate one's children and the promotion of the common good in all its forms."

"These values are not negotiable," he said.

"Consequently, Catholic politicians and legislators, conscious of their grave responsibility before society, must feel particularly bound, on the basis of a properly formed conscience, to introduce laws inspired by values grounded in human nature," he said.

Gay marriage is legal in several European countries, including predominantly Catholic Spain, and Italy is severely divided over the issue of whether to give more rights to unmarried couples, including homosexuals.

Italian politicians from the right and center praised the pope but leftists criticized him.

Franco Grillini, a homosexual parliamentarian and leading gay rights activist, accused the Pope of launching a "moralistic dictatorship based on the fear of sex." Leftist Senator Rina Gagliardi called it "improper interference" in Italy's affairs.

The Pope's words were also applicable to countries like the United States, where some Catholic politicians have said they are opposed to abortion but feel bound to support pro-choice legislation because they represent many people.

In the 2004 U.S. presidential campaign, when Democratic candidate
John Kerry, a Catholic, supported abortion rights.

The Pope implied local bishops could not turn a blind eye to such politicians. "Bishops are bound to reaffirm constantly these values as part of their responsibility to the flock entrusted to them," he wrote.

Some bishops in the United States have refused to give communion to Catholic politicians who back abortion rights.

The Pope also reaffirmed the Church's law on celibacy in an all male-priesthood, calling it "a priceless treasure."

Liberal Catholic groups have called for celibacy to become optional for priests in the Catholic Church, saying this would help ease the shortage of priests in many areas.

Benedict re-affirmed that Catholics who divorce and remarry cannot receive communion. The Church does not recognize divorce.

In another section, Benedict lamented that many Catholic priests did not know Latin, the official language of the Church.

He said Latin should be used in parts of large open-air masses held at international gatherings "to express more clearly the unity and universality of the Church."

He said he wanted to see more Latin and more Gregorian chant used in Church services.

"Certainly, as far as the liturgy is concerned, we cannot say that one song is as good as another," he said.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070313/...l5S5L3e4FxFb8C
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Old 03-13-2007, 06:35 PM   #2
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This certainly can't be a surprise to anyone.
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Old 03-13-2007, 06:37 PM   #3
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No not really. It makes my blood boil.
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Old 03-13-2007, 06:39 PM   #4
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Do they always have to mention that he is German
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Old 03-13-2007, 06:41 PM   #5
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what the hell "common good" is he trying to promote? everything in that article pissed me off.
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Old 03-13-2007, 06:44 PM   #6
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Does anyone really pay attention to him though? Not just the Pope, but any of these religious head honchos.

I guess people do, but I've never understood why.
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Old 03-13-2007, 06:57 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by indra
Does anyone really pay attention to him though? Not just the Pope, but any of these religious head honchos.

I guess people do, but I've never understood why.
good point. i tend to equate him with the president: i didn't vote for him, i don't agree with him.
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Old 03-13-2007, 08:58 PM   #8
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Well I suppose that the Catholic church can say what it wants, but if I was a Catholic politician who sincerely differed from the, er, Holy Father, I'd just say so. Deny me communion? Fine, lose your tax-exempt status.

Excommunicate me? Fine, I'll deport you and seize your assets, all of them, and disperse them to the poor.

Good thing I'm not a politician.

The Catholic Church, because of its great age, has a unique problem among Christianity. It believes that its tradition is as valid as the written teachings of Jesus, as best they can be gleaned. A lot of its traditions are a product of its medieval heyday, when (if I can float into the ether for a moment) it became the Moreton Bay fig to the rotted husk (a pine, perhaps) that used to be the Roman Empire.
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Old 03-13-2007, 09:03 PM   #9
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I don't even know Catholic people who listen to the Pope, much less anyone else.

My mother thinks I'll get excommunicated some day because I've expressed a strong desire and plan to do pro bono work in the area of legalizing euthanasia. I don't think she's kidding either.
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Old 03-13-2007, 09:12 PM   #10
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Oh yes, euthanasia really is something I' a strong supporter for.

Only problem here in Germany, either the church says it's wrong or some moralists come and say: "But remember what the nazis did!"
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Old 03-13-2007, 09:45 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by anitram
I don't even know Catholic people who listen to the Pope, much less anyone else.

The CCLS shows the problem is him not listening to the people. But if he doesn't care what 160,000 deserters say, then why should people listen to him? It must be frustrating for catholics.
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Old 03-13-2007, 10:07 PM   #12
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Re: Catholic politicians must oppose gay marriage: Pope says

Quote:
Originally posted by U2Girl1978
The Church's opposition...is "non-negotiable"
Which is why "ecumenism" will always be an exercise in futility, unless non-Catholic Christians are interested in converting to Roman Catholicism and listening to all the Vatican's dictates.

Because, after all, they're "non-negotiable."
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Old 03-13-2007, 10:25 PM   #13
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Re: Catholic politicians must oppose gay marriage: Pope says

Quote:
Originally posted by U2Girl1978
Catholic politicians have a moral duty to oppose it, as well as laws on abortion and euthanasia, Pope Benedict said in a document issued on Tuesday.
You know, it used to be that a Catholic could never win an elected office in a predominantly Protestant region. This was because there was a fear that Catholics' loyalties were not to the state, but to the Vatican; and that a potential Catholic politician would be nothing more than a mindless drone reciting the dictates of a foreign leader that we call "the Pope."

JFK did an awful lot to alleviate such fears, and he overcame a lot of public hesitance to become America's first Catholic president by asserting that he was an independent thinker who would do the best for the United States, and not what's best for the Vatican.

Yet, it seems that this Pope is more than willing to erase decades of progress on this front in a mad grab for power. And no one should ultimately be surprised at this. His past life as "Cardinal Ratzinger" showed him to be a far-right zealot who had no problems removing any cleric to the left of him in Catholic universities. And, yet, we have far-right, cult-like heresies like Opus Dei running wild in the Vatican with little supervision and no condemnation whatsoever. Hell, their late founder ended up on the fast track to sainthood instead!
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Old 03-13-2007, 10:35 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by Angela Harlem


The CCLS shows the problem is him not listening to the people. But if he doesn't care what 160,000 deserters say, then why should people listen to him? It must be frustrating for catholics.
I think the Pope would probably say that it’s his job is to guide the Catholics around the world in a spiritually correct way, even if it isn’t a popular stance to take. He honestly believes that abortion is a sin, that contraception is a sin, and no matter how unpopular that may be with people, he will continue to say as much because he truly believes that it is the only stance to take, and the only stance of which God approves.

I don’t agree with him, I’m just saying that’s how he would look at it, and he would also say just because people choose to leave the church if they don’t agree, doesn’t mean that he should change his stance. Ultimately guiding the spiritual well-being of his flock (ie Catholics) is the mandate that he believes God has given him. (And yes, I am aware of the logical argument that if he continues to take such an unpopular stance on issues, he won’t have a flock, but he wouldn’t see it that way.)

I’m not of any religion, but my husband and his family are Catholic, and I know that some of them disagree with the Pope and Rome’s teachings, but they do come from an Irish Catholic background which has a long and honourable history of dissenting with the Church in Rome
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Old 03-13-2007, 10:43 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by indra
Does anyone really pay attention to him though? Not just the Pope, but any of these religious head honchos.

I guess people do, but I've never understood why.
I come from a Catholic family and I don't know anybody under 80 who agrees with him or has any respect for him. But then again, the Vatican has all but given up on Dutch Catholics.
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