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  • irishtimes.com - Posted: April 10, 2010 @ 11:43 am

    ‘The Church is an anvil’

    Pól Ó Muirí

    Some of the comments from the last posting on the documentary on the Rosary (did anyone actually watch the programme in question?) brought to mind this quote from Philip Jenkin’s fascinating book, The Lost History of Christianity, which explores the destruction of ancient Christian communities in the middle and far east – not by the media or blog but by fire and sword. Hopefully, it might temper the mood of all those involved in the argument about the Catholic Church at the moment: those who worry about press persecution destroying their faith and those who think that violent anti-Catholic sentiment might actually win the day.

    This short passage is from the chapter on How Faiths Die:

    “Responding to a threat of persecution, 16th century Protestant Theodore Beza urged a foe to “remember that the Church is an anvil that has worn out many a hammer”. The history of all the great world faiths proves that religions are highly resilient, and difficult to eradicate. History is littered with false claims about the imminent deaths of religions, claims that in retrospect make almost comic reading. The first known contemporary reference to the Jewish people is an Egyptian inscription boasting that “Israel is laid waste: his seed is no more.” Mark Twain remarked on how often the world had turned out for the burial or Roman Catholicism, only to find it postponed yet again, “on account of the weather or something … Apparently one of the most uncertain things in the world is the funeral of a religion.” ”

    • kynos says:

      Church knows that outrage rarely lasts more than a single human lifetime. Church plans in 200 year timeframes. Church is hardly bothered by what the moth doth eat and the rust doth corrupt and yet She’s mighty fond of money how much less can she care for the flesh? She’s in the biz of saving souls. Apparently.

    • Patrick says:

      The RC religion is not the problem but the RCC administration is the problem. The game plan of the RCC by way of the church administraters is to CONTROL the membership by MAN MADE RULES that if violated is SIN where as the member has guilt until they receive forgivness through THE ADMINISTRATION OF THE CHURCH. Why is not the confiteor area of the mass have a simple GENERAL CONFESSTION segment? What bussiness is it of any priest to know what you think you did was sin? If you told three different priest the same tale , you get three different respons.The membership whould be in for a shock if they just new the history of confesstion for it came from Ireland in 1300s monk to monk until shut down by RCC for about 50 years then started up provied the priest was the one you told sins to. How many RCs are baptized by their choice and free will? What was done with DEAD UNBAPTIZED BABIES in holy IRELAND? How many RC know and FULLY (100%) agree with the TEACHINGS OF THE RCC? When the first reading is done at mass, how many RCs can tell you what it was about? Why is it at the offertory at mass that it is said THAT SINS MAY BE FORGIVEN instead of THAT SINS WILL BE FORGIVEN? I could go on but I feel that it time the RC membership knew the history of the RCC and ask questions. There are many good people in religious life of the RCC but the church has a lot of bad apples from top to bottom. The RCC administraters that silents the truth of the sexual abuse and rape of children so that the image of the RCC whould not be damaged are 100% wrong and must resign for covering up these crimes. Thoes that commit the actual crime of the child must be totally remove from religious life in the RCC. It is time for a new pope and then VATICAN III to turn the RCC around.One real leader in Ireland that stood up for the TRUTH no matter what is Bishop Martin of Dublin. He did what CHRIST whould have done. The RCC administraters all must ancer three questions. 1. WHAT DID YOU KNOW? 2. WHEN DID YOU KNOW? 3. WHAT DID YOU DO WITH WHAT YOU KNEW? To all you RC members that do not want to hear of the abuse cases and look the other way are a big part of the problem of the sexual abuse of children in the RCC. DOMINUS VOBISCUM.

    • Liam says:

      a new peace needs to be made between church and state imo. I live in a country where some people feel compelled to convert to catholism to get into their local schhol. RTE did a piece on it last week, and there have been discussions about this in the parental secions of sites like boards.ie
      Seperation of church and state ftw

    • One of the more absurd aspects of the zeal with which atheists such as Dawkins and his fellow-travellers attack Christianity and other religions is that they do so in the fervent conviction that all religion is a delusion (i.e. untrue, invalid). Yet the very foundation of their materialist atheism is the denial of the possibility of any transcendent reality. If they cannot see, touch or measure it, it does not exist.
      But if every transcendent reality is a delusion then so also is the apprehension of “truth” a delusion. No rational atheist can borrow –without contradiction- from the lexicon of realism to pronounce a judgement of truth or error on any proposition whatsoever. Even the ground-rules of experimental science depend on the validity of axioms such as the principle of non-contradiction.
      Truth is nothing if not transcendent. If the ferment in Dawkins brain is simply a subjective manifestation of his own neurological processes, why should he seek to proselytise that experience with the zeal of one who distinguishes “truth” from “error”? Or why should he expect anyone else to pay a blind bit of notice to anything that emerges from his particular neurological processes? Why should he care? Is not every material experience equally “real” and thus equally “valid”?
      Could it be that atheists realise that we are, after all, inescapably seeking “truth” itself? And if so, where does that leave their materialist crusade?

    • kynos says:

      Something about what you bind on earth is bound in heaven and what you loose on earth has its divine corollary also. That’s the logic behind telling priests your sins Patrick. Or what you think are your sins. I had nothing spectacular enough when I made my first confession (that I was willing to say) so I told the priest I killed a horse. Think he gave me not only an Our Father but a Hail Mary AS WELL. Obviously thought I needed a bit of pull in high places even at the tender age of 7. Ah well start as you mean to go on. I reckon I’ve still got one left in the locker. I ain’t never killed no horse.

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