Monday, June 4, 2012

Sexual Ethics - Vatican Inquisition Continues to Persecute Nuns

Benedict the Rottweiler and his Inquisitors are out for Nuns' blood.  They have recently sent a "Notification" to Sister Margaret Farley, a Sister of Mercy, and Professor at Yale Divinity School who has achieved numerous scholarly accolades during her career - and chastised her for not strictly adhering to Catholic teaching about sexual matters, as they define it.  She wrote a theological, scholarly book on sexual ethics in which she expresses enlightened views on masturbation, homosexuality, same sex marriage and divorce and remarriage.  Naturally, the Vatican "thought police" didn't like it and came down hard.

You can read the article here.

I am not going to offer my thoughts on the merits of the book, the sister who wrote it or the Vatican.  You can guess.

What intrigues me is, Why is the Vatican going after the nuns so viciously?  The book in question was written in 2006.  Why now?  I think the Vatican and much of the church hierarchy are running scared.  They are losing credibility at every turn and losing their ability to influence the course of world events.  And, along with their loss of Power, they are losing Money.  They've been paying out hush money to victims of their abuses, settling humongous law suits, paying lawyers, paying to influence elections and referendums, and having banking problems and embarrassing leaks to boot.

The various orders of women religious have, under their stewardship, vast amounts of real estate: convents, novitiates, retreat facilities, schools, colleges, hospitals, homeless shelters and other places where services are provided.  The Vatican has no control over these properties.  But if the inquisition can force the women religious to renounce their canonical orders by putting them between a rock and a hard place (choosing between conscience and virtual silence), it is possible that the hierarchy can then confiscate all real property that the religious orders now control.  This could mean the Vatican and the Bishops could sell off some prime real estate to the highest bidder.  And some real cash would be returned to the dwindling coffers.

In this day and age, it seems everything is about MONEY and the bottom line.  Why should the Catholic Church hierarchy be any different?  Yes, maybe they always have been, but now it is becoming so much more blatant.

Now, I believe they are poised to rob nuns.

Can you say cannibalistic?


Bob said...

Hopefully the church will simply fold in on itself with all their scandals and payoffs and double standards.

Anonymous said...

Reading that the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith is pissed makes me want to read her book.

I think it's a little more than that though. Because the Sister Religious could up and secede and take their property with them. A court of law would take a very dim view of a property grab on that scale.

Russ Manley said...

Of course it's all about money and power - especially power. Which is rapidly going to dry up and disappear, I think - who but the most diehard, reactionary little old ladies and men in the pews can put up with all this much longer?

Mark said...

Fred is a cradle Catholic but hasn't been to Mass in about a year. I think he has grown tired of it. Sadly, I'm starting to feel it too.

Frank said...

I will keep you all posted.

Will said...

Instead of grabbing the nuns' land and selling it, they could give up the jeweled vestments, rings, lace, silk and satin, Cardinal Dolan's Jameson's Whiskey and cigars and sell that all off. They're supposed to be living in a state of poverty, chastity and obedience any way so why do they need all that luxury drag?

Frank said...

I agree that the Pope and Cardinals could lose some of the accoutrements and sell some jewels like John XXIII did. But most clergy do not take a vow of poverty, only men and women in most religious orders take vows. Certainly we expect Bishops and Cardinals and lower clergy to be of modest means as an example to others, but there is obviously no requirement that they do so, in fact it seems quite the opposite.


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