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The Pope and the Catholic Church

By TheChas ·
Rather than risk corrupting Oz's positive thread in respect of Pope John Paul II, I am starting this thread for open comments on the teachings of Pope John Paul and the Catholic faith.

On sexuality:
Catholic teaching on sexuality provides that sexual relations are a gift from God to be shared between one man and one woman.
Further, sexual relations must not preclude the possibility of creating a child.

If one follows the teachings of the church, there is no need for birth control or abortion because one would only have sex with ones partner when a pregnancy would not cause a problem.

On Gay rights:
Pope John Paul was very forthright in the concept of love the sinner, hate the sin.
People and governments should not discriminate against Gay individuals.

However, homosexual intercourse is a sin.

The Catholic Church is very willing to accept anyone who is willing to repent and forsake their actions that could be considered sinful.

On medical research:
Artificial conception, embryonic stem cell research and cloning are considered to be inappropriate.

This is all to do with the teachings of the sanctity of the human body as a temple of the Lord.

As I do, the Catholic Church does not support the concept of the ends justifying the means.

Yes, there is potential good that might come from embryonic stem cell research. However, since life begins at conception, taking one life in attempt to save another is not right.

I am no theologian, nor am I as well versed in Catholic doctrine as I would desire. Still, I will come back from time to time and respond to those comments I can.


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On Marriage

by TheChas In reply to I don't agree with the Ca ...

There is a general misunderstanding on the Catholic Churches position of marriage.

Yes, once consummated, a marriage is forever.

That does not mean that one cannot leave an abusive or otherwise failed relationship.

It does mean that you cannot start a new relationship. Unless, your spouse has died.

The Catholic Church does have 1 option for those in failed marriages. That is the annulment process.

Basically, to get an annulment, one must prove that:
1. The marriage never existed in the eyes of the Church.
2. The marriage was never one that should have been sanctified by the Church.

An easy process? No!

The annulment process takes the marriage off of the books as if it had never existed.


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edicts for priests

by jck In reply to I don't agree with the Ca ...

again...I'm not forgive the ignorance...

Didn't God tell mankind to "be fruitful and multiply" in the beginning of the world?

If so, where does it say in the Bible that a priest must give up that original decree of God to be a holy man?

I just think there's a lot of mumbo-jumbo in modern religion. Man is imperfect, and therefore he's had centuries to screw-up, twist and maim the Word of God. And not just one religion...all of them...where man's influence has been, so has his imperfection.

My biggest example of this: from the time I was young, I was told you are supposed to tithe 1/10th of your earnings. Well, when did God start needing 10%? Did he consult his accountant on this? I heard later that the tithing number came from some edict back in the middle ages or something when kings were head of the church and it was a way to get money for the king in the name of God. That's just what I heard tho...never researched it.

I think the concepts behind most religions are that of humanity...kindness...happiness. That's what I try to focus on.

two more cents added...

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A Priest's workload

by TheChas In reply to edicts for priests

The last time I was involved in a serious discussion on marriage for Priests, one reason for the Church holding on to it's stance has to do with just how busy a Priest is.

In most parishes, the pastor is fortunate if his workload is less than 2 full time jobs.
He is on call 24/7 to minister to the sick and dieing.

Were a Priest to have a family, both the parish and the family would suffer.

Yes, I know that most Protestant Ministers have families. However, all but the largest Protestant congregations are much smaller than the average Catholic parish.

In the US, it is not uncommon for a single Priest to minister a flock of over 1000 families.

As to tithing, I believe there is a passage somewhere in the Old Testament that prescribes giving back 1/10th of your earnings.


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tithing and congregations

by jck In reply to A Priest's workload

The tithing thing...I then to think was added as someone told me...simply because...God, being the omnipotent and all-powerful soul, would not need a specific percentage amount of your money. Sounds more like an accountant came up with a specific number and someone put it in. All throughout the Bible, God has those think and give with their heart...except for that one place that involves money? Seems suspect to me.

As for the average size of a congregation, I think it depends on geography. I can tell you that you will regularly find Baptist churches in cities Oklahoma and Texas with better than 1000. In fact in my hometown in Oklahoma of about 15000, the First Baptist Church as 1500+ people or 10% of the city. In the larger cities, there are a number of churches over 5000 people. So, I don't doubt there are large Catholic churches as well. But, I tend to think there are small ones just like with any other religious affiliation.

there's two more cents...

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Priests can't have sex or enter marriage.

by tbragsda In reply to I don't agree with the Ca ...

I would need to get to the source at home, but read a book touching on this subject. The main reason for the no marriage/sex rule was to break the legacy that priests were creating. They were becomeing wealthy landholders, and this broke that chain.

Again, for a complete recap of the forces behind this, I would need to get at my books at home. If anyone can put a little more light on this, please post.


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In the UK

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to Priests can't have sex or ...

they gave it to the church. So it looked like they were giving up someything but the church didn't lose out. Fortunately a lot of them remained catholic, so big Harry and Good Queen Bess got to take it back, when they were at least foolish enough to look like enenmies of the state. The really rich catholic families got robbed blind. Still when you tell your King he's an offense to god for not doing what the pope says, you can expect a little pay back.

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In my denomination they can..

by TomSal In reply to Priests can't have sex or ...

I was raised Lutheran (in an area where everyone and their mother is Catholic btw). Over the years because of changes in family situations, etc. I now go to a Methodist Church (my sister's father-in-law is the pastor).

Very laid back church, very well grounded folks. And yes both Lutheran and Methodist Pastors can marry and have kids (sex).

So it definitely has to be something specific to Catholic faith I'd assume anyway.

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Eastern Rite chuches permit married priests

by Montgomery Gator In reply to Priests can't have sex or ...

Eastern Rite churches (such as the Maronite Catholics of Lebanon) permit their priests to marry, even though they are subject to the authority of the Pope. I do not know the whole story, but I guess it was a compromise so that they could keep their local customs when they switched allegiance from Constantinople to Rome.

Also, (I do not have the exact year), but Roman Catholic priests were allowed to marry until about 1000 years ago when the Pope at the time changed the rules.

My tradition (Anglican) allows priests to marry, one of the changes when the Anglican church separated from Rome. Bishops are also allowed to be married. This goes along with Paul's letter to Timothy, where he said a Bishop should be a man with one wife. (I Timothy 3:1-7)

The Orthodox churches allow their priests to marry, but if an Orthodox priest has hopes of becoming a bishop (Metropolitan), the priest needs to remain single. A local Greek Orthodox priest explained to me that was to prevent bishops from passing power to their children, similar to what you said. This priest said he loved his wife too much to remain single, so he is happily married with a son, and thinks the tradeoff is well worth not being eligible to become a bishop.

Most Protestant traditions have no barriers to their ministers getting married.

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Two cents = your life ..or not?

by free_lo2002 In reply to I don't agree with the Ca ...

The most important thing about all this is not Catholics and or their rules but your relationship with God. If we have to talk about rules and all there is a book (the Holy Bible) which you can consult on God's rules and leave if you want the entire world behind. But... (and the but is always) don't let your opinions on some other people (Catholics) influence your relationship with God.
You'd be misled and you'd miss the point of all.
There is no "They?" in the God-man relationship but you and me.
You are an adult and you can have an opinion on your own and not borrow one from others.
So try to read, to get to know? to open your mind and you will understand that just like some bad days will not stop you from believing the sun can heat everything up, some persons can not decide if you want to hear anything from God or not.

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Strangely enough I almost agree with you this

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to Two cents = your life ..o ...

time. Now if we can get the church and the bulk of those who follow it's teachings slavishly without any self examination to agree with us, we'll be laughing all the way to heaven.

Slight (major understatement) disagreement on using the bible for rules though, which bit , which bible and whose interpretion of what it means. You might get guidance from it if you pick and choose, rules definitely not.

Anyone who starts quoting Thou Shalt Not Steal at me I refer to the Should intellectual property exist thread.

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