Wednesday, April 20, 2005

God Part II

The lead in today's Guardian is pretty strong stuff. Once again the church is getting hammered on the AIDS crisis in Africa. As I've already said I think it's wrong (and deliberately misleading, I believe) to cherry pick the condom issue when, if church teaching on sex and sexuality was followed to the full, there would be no such thing as an AIDS epidemic.

I think I would have liked to have seen a Latin American pope but that's irrelevant now. Pope Benedict needs to be given a chance. Slating a papacy as "[continuing an] orthodoxy which could seem so harsh in its impact", before it's even started, just smacks of standard Brit Catholic-bashing.

The piece finishes by saying "this Benedict takes the top job... as a theological pugilist who is willing to sacrifice popular appeal in the cause of doctrinal purity." Well, good. A-la-carte catholicism is pointless - you either believe or you do not. Yes, women should be equal partners within the church, even if the Church stops short of women vocations; yes, homosexuals should be treated with love, dignity and respect, even if the church does not agree with or support that lifestyle choice and, yes, social justice should be a leading theme. But doctrine should not be watered down to suit the personal agendas of the affluent west.
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