Ecclesiam res et talia sermocinamur -

We talk about the Church, stuff, and such

Monday, February 27, 2006

Actually, now that you mention it

Does the [C]hurch "have the last word on the mysteries of political, social, family and sexual life?" the 980-word letter asks. "In these matters, the official teaching of the Church has shown itself more than once to be wrong."

Uhm, hate to break it to you, fellas, but, well, it does. And that thing about being wrong . . . yeah, that's not right either.

Apparently, there are some priests in Quebec who have been felled by the world-wide dissent pandemic. The particulars of their beef are old hat: "all you mean bishops and curial officials hate gays! wah!" But that's not what I find interesting -- or even amusing, really. Rather, I'm always tickled by people, often people within the Church, who complain about the Church's authority or "right" to do something in particular. "Why can the Church tell me what to do?" "That's just something the Church made up to oppress people like me." "My conscience tells me I don't have to do that."

First off, get yourself a conscience that isn't a cricket, and maybe you'll stop having those weird messages. Second, the list of things the Church can't do consists essentially of "change the ten commandments." This isn't a government of, for, and by the people -- there's no plebiescite on morality, the Church doesn't derive authority from the popular will. It derives authority from God, who gave unto it the explicit power to bind and loose on earth and in heaven. He didn't say "bind and loose until people get whiny, or until you face organized opposition from an insidious lobby group," he said "bind and loose" -- period. So, if you ask "does the Church have the final word on x, y, or z?" the answer to your question "on earth, you betcha."

(ht, Curt Jester)

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