Thursday, February 12, 2015

How do Catholics do it?

How do they manage to come in near last when it comes to surveys of those faithful who are knowledgeable of their own traditions, to sustain divisions and divisiveness that would shame a baptist street corner, and do so with a cocksure assurance that Catholicism doesn't suffer from all the failings and flaws that other so called Christian traditions do?  How is it that the plain sense experience most people have when they meet average Catholics or even visit the blogosphere seems to contradict the notion that since Catholics have a real life breathing mageterium, papal authority, and the Bishops, that makes Catholicism safeguarded from such problems more than other traditions?

Easy.  Case study A.  Apparently, at some point, Pope Francis said something that suggested spanking isn't the worst thing since the Holocaust.  That parents who do so aren't murderous abusers setting their children up to be the next mass murdering psycho killers.  This, of course, dismissing the fact that fewer parents than ever in the last 50 years spank their children, while violence among young people under the age of 21 has skyrocketed during the same period.  No doubt cosmic coincidence.

For liberals - and it'ts usually those who lean left who have such a righteous indignation about the practice - it's no big deal.  It's Francis.  He's Pope.  As long as he affirms the true gospel (liberalism), OK.  But otherwise, screw him.

But for Catholics who are obedient, follow the Pope, listen to the teaching authority of the Church, we have a problem.  Enter the article in question.  It is, like so many articles about the Pope, one stacked with 'you thought it was said, but I tell you what was really said.'  Context, bad translations, the evil media (believable that), all are brought to light as reasons why we don't need to believe Pope Francis disagreed with me about something I really believe, but the really true interpretation when taken in proper context and understanding of what the Pope really meant to say happens to, out of dumb luck, validate everything I thought to begin with.

Same thing happened a while ago. when Pope Francis challenged the more libertarian/liberal leaning Catholics by coming down on the idea of legalizing drugs. A problem? Not so for the creative Catholics!  They simply did what was done here with spanking, and what I've noticed has become the cornerstone of modern apologetics in the Catholic Church, especially of the Internet variety: context, true interpretation, bad reporting, etc.  Everything that proves I'm still awesome and the latest Pope happens to agree.

So there you have it.  Why is it that Catholics tend toward dead last when, according to Catholics, they have everything going for them that Protestants and Orthodox and other traditions don't?  Easy. With all due respect to Mark Twain fans who got it wrong, the most Protestant Christians I've ever known are the Christians I've met who belong to the Catholic Church.
Pope Francis may not approve

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