Oh wait. No, I'm wrong. Somebody else did go after this one; and in as predictable a fashion as I would have expected.
Any Catholic who attended church in Canada this morning will likely have heard some version of Pope Benedict's harsh criticism of "the exclusion of God from the public sphere" in Canadian society. From Lifesite:
He acknowledged the "false dichotomies" such as 'tolerance' giving way to homosexual 'marriage' and 'freedom of choice' to abortion, "within the Christian community itself." It is "particularly damaging," he added, "when Christian civic leaders sacrifice the unity of faith and sanction the disintegration of reason and the principles of natural ethics, by yielding to ephemeral social trends and the spurious demands of opinion polls."
That is an interesting point. To what degree should Christian, and especially Roman Catholic political leaders, be influenced by their religious values? Lifesite notes that "until the current Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper, all Canadian Prime Ministers since Trudeau in the 1960s have been Catholic except for the very brief reign of two months by the Conservative Kim Campbell government."
Moira McQueen, Professor of Theology at the University of Toronto, says in a Globe report:
"Any Catholic politician who was moving along the lines of same-sex marriage and totally ignoring what Pope Benedict was saying, isn't really following their conscience from a Catholic perspective."
James Loney and his partner Dan Hunt consider themselves to be Catholics. (Source: Record - Sept. 9)
But Loney and Hunt say they remain Catholics partly because they find beauty in the traditions of their church.
They attend a monthly healing mass to support people affected by HIV and AIDS, but they haven't found a parish where they feel spiritually nourished.
Hunt said he loves the church's social teaching to help the poor. He also said the church's teaching on the supremacy of following one's conscience enables them to remain Catholic while contradicting church teaching.
(I'm not sure if the Pope sees it that way, but whatever.)
Locally, some Catholics are upset about Bill Clinton coming to speak at the Catholic Counselling Centre, because of the obvious dichotomy of viewpoints between those of the former American President, and those of the Church.
So, what makes a Catholic "Catholic"? Is it a birthright? Is it a convenient label when asked what your faith is? Is it a beautiful ceremony? Is it a comfortable pew?
Or is it some kind of worldview; some set of precepts which helps guide the individual through the path of life? What do you think?
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Update: Seems that Suzanne was not pleased with this 'scolding'. Interesting comments follow.
She links to an earlier Lifesite entry that says Dalton McGuinty is a Catholic too! What is it with politicians and Catholicism?
The Ontario Bishops think McGuinty's o.k. apparently, because he "included a provision protecting religious objectors to same-sex “marriage” from prosecution. All other Ontario citizens are not protected by the legislation." So, the Bishops supported it because the clergy were protected. (From Feb. 23/05)
VERY IMPORTANT UPDATE!!! Please read Phantom Observer's The Liberal Faith Report. H/T to Suzanne.
I had no idea the Grits were so pious.
More at Blogging Tories forum. Anyone can join in. Even the Pope.
Sames-sex marriage topic.
Message from Bishop Fred Henry.
Man forced to marry goat. Funny, but still...