Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Thank You Sir, May I have Another!

Wow...Two posts in one day. There's too much going on out there to cover it all! It surely must be a gathering storm...

In a stunning display of why certain religious groups should have their tax exempt status revoked, Catholic Archbishop Raymond Burke called for the "banishment of gay-supporting politicians". Ouch, that hurts worse than a ruler to the knuckles...

Speaking at's 14th Annual Partnership Dinner, Archbishop Burke is quoted as saying: "neither Holy Communion nor funeral rites should be administered to politicians who support abortion or same-sex marriage. To deny these is not a judgment of the soul, but a recognition of the scandal and its effects. … It is not possible to be a practicing Catholic and to conduct oneself in this manner."

Big words coming from a guy wearing more gold than Liberace.

This quote was explained as being a shot at the funeral of Ted Kennedy and his support of rights for GLBTQ peoples. I guess Mr. Kennedy got in just under the ecumenicle wire...whew! Its also a digg at Boston's Cardinal Sean O'Malley who attended Mr. Kennedy's funeral. How tacky is it to attack the deceased and those who went to pay their respects?

..."to deny these is not a judgment of the soul"....Oh Really...What the heck is it then? Oh wait! I know!....Holy extortion, thats what. Now any political leader who happens to also be of the Catholic faith will have to chose between his concience and his faith. I believe that freedom to worship is an important right and if Archbishop Burke choses to withhold his blessings thats his business...but...when you make a public announcement and direct it at our government leaders you have crossed a line and are attempting to influence government with religious coersion. I believe Mr. Kennedy would have respectfully ignored Archbishop Burke.

I really really try to refrain from going on the offensive when I hear of Religions behaving like this. I believe that most people who can rub two nuerons together and spark a thought can separate out that The core of Christianity has absolutly nothing to do with what People like the new Pope and Archbishop Burke are doing with their positions of power. I believe there are people of Concience in all faiths. But therein lies my problem here. Its no longer o.k. with the Catholic Church to live your life from a place concience, you must now march lockstep with the party line. How much longer before the call simply removes the word "politician" from the above statement and embraces everyone of the Catholic faith? Should you really be denied last rites because you attended a gay wedding? What if the grooms returned your gift? (har har) Will Straight individualls be prohibited from supporting their Gay family members under threat of excommunication? The same individualls that want to bring religion into the halls of power, wouldn't be so gung ho if Muslims where getting elected and transfering their faith tenets onto our government. How about if a budhist requires everyone to meditate on the buddha for an hour everyday? My point is not to vilify these beliefs but to point out that the same people that espouse that our government was founded on religious faith would consider it the end of the world if any of those example occured. It would be armed revolution.

So...The Catholic church is throwing its weight around again, and with that much jewelry on, I wouldn't want to be standing in its path. It seems that as the question of gay rights gains ground, the more overtly hostile religions are becoming. "culture war" they call it. What a sad way to spend our spiritual lives. I think we need to send a message to our elected officials that whatever religion they practice is entirely fine by us, but that it is a private and personal matter that has no place in the offices of government,or they simply will not be representing us any longer. Thats the way the system is supposed to work... and that, is for everyones protection.


  1. Like already said in previous post, i Don like the church, burn it. rebuild it. Don´t listen ignore it and it will go away ( probably not but we can try)

  2. It is exactly because of people such as his emminence here that I have always believed it takes more faith to question one's religion than to follow blindly. If more people believed this the archbishop--and others like him--would not have such a foothold.

    But, alas, it is because enough people in their churches don't have a close enough connection to the issues that they DON'T question and we all know where that gets us.

    I still don't believe in throwing the baby out with the bathwater (yet)...I mean look at some other churches which have (ever so slowly and with mixed reviews) come around: the Episcopals, the UCC, the MCC, and most recently the Lutherans.

    Great post! You're quite adept at relaying the issues and clearly analyzing them without reverting to the other extreme.


  3. Thanks Eirene!...high praise!

  4. Burke by name, berk by nature.

    "Now any political leader who happens to also be of the Catholic faith will have to chose between his concience and his faith."

    Tony Blair, the former British PM, converted to Catholicism (his wife's faith) shortly after leaving office. I think that goes some way to explaining why the UK has civil partnerships rather than marriage equality.

  5. I wrote a comment to a news article in the Bangor Daily News 9/28/09 about Maine’s Catholic Bishop Malone’s antigay statement, in support of Marriage Equality and challenging the his ignorance about human sexuality and the bible. Maybe this might add some support to Marriage Equality against Archbishop Burke. The hierarchy all say the same thing very little thinking or knowledge that must be why they are afraid to join a discussion and answers questions. I think so many of us are feed up with this type of abuse from the hierarchy.

    “...Same-sex marriage is a dangerous sociological experiment that many of us believe will have negative consequences for society as a whole,” said [Bishop] Malone in the message, according to the Bangor Daily News. “Children need the love of a mother and a father.”

    This statement is cruel and untrue. People against Marriage Equality do not base their public statements on facts either from science or the bible. It is a repeat of the time the Vatican was condemning Galileo, because they insisted that Galileo was going against the bible that it is the sun that revolves around the earth.

    Children need people who are honest and truthful. Children are not safe around people who publicly speak out against Marriage Equality, because in truth these people have had no formal study in human sexuality or the bible and yet they without any intellectual thought speak out and harm innocent people. This is irresponsible adult behavior, which is harmful for children to witness. This has been proven to have “negative consequences” for children, consult developmental psychology.

    With all due respect, it is without a question that Bishop Malone would not be able to pass graduate course exams on human sexuality, sexual orientation, and gender identity or biblical studies. Prove me wrong!!!

    And if Bishop Malone cannot pass these exams today, than before God he needs to publically retract what he said against Marriage Equality. If not, then Bishop Malone needs to go back to the seminary to study moral theology.

    The best thing to do for the well-being and safety of all children would be if people against Marriage Equality spent their money to academically study human sexuality, sexual orientation, gender identity and the bible. This is what children need the truth. People speaking out on such life and death issues should not speak out of ignorance and fear, thus spreading hatred and violence that indiscriminately is severely harmful to all children.

    The truth will set you free - not ignorance and fear.

    With all best wishes,

    Fr. Marty Kurylowicz