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View Diary: Pope Francis Surprises Again (119 comments)

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  •  I wouldn't necessarily take this to mean that (65+ / 0-)

    he is taking input from the membership in order to help (re)form Catholic doctrine, but it is a positive sign that he cares what people think, even if just to measure the distance between that and official positions.

    I like this pope.

    So I see only tatters of clearness through a pervading obscurity - Annie Dillard -6.88, -5.33

    by illinifan17 on Tue Nov 05, 2013 at 04:38:58 PM PST

    •  I really like him, too. (32+ / 0-)

      I have some Catholic gay and transgender friends in the Philippines who are really enthused about him and think that his stances are going to have a big impact there.

      This survey definitely could give him some ammunition when he's confronted by the more conservative elements of the church.

      "A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle" - Mohammed Nabbous, R.I.P.

      by Lawrence on Tue Nov 05, 2013 at 04:43:28 PM PST

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      •  It's hard for me to imagine an institution as (19+ / 0-)

        conservative as the Catholic Church having 2 Popes in my lifetime that I really respect. Pope John 23 was a great breath of fresh air and Francis has been a total surprise. Also the retired Pope and Francis seem to be working together for change and who could have foreseen that.

        Never promote men who seek after a state-established religion; it is spiritual tyranny--the worst of despotism. It is turnpiking the way to heaven by human law, in order to establish ministerial gates to collect toll. John Leland

        by J Edward on Tue Nov 05, 2013 at 05:42:34 PM PST

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      •  How is the fight for divorce going there? (4+ / 0-)

        I was shocked to learn a year or so ago that there is no divorce for any reason in the Philippines.  There is annulment, but only on grounds that the marriage was invalid initially.

        You're married to somebody who deserts you and is openly living with somebody else?  Tough luck ... no divorce.  You're married to somebody who regularly beats the crap out of you?  Tough luck ... no divorce.

        I'm pretty sure that the Philippines is the only country left in the world that doesn't have divorce, and it leads to some horrible inequities (and what is de facto polygamy in many cases, where somebody is legally married to one person but openly living with someone else).

        I would hope that this Pope would tell the Catholic hierarchy in the Philippines to back off their opposition to divorce.

        Bin Laden is dead. GM and Chrysler are alive.

        by leevank on Tue Nov 05, 2013 at 06:18:36 PM PST

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        •  I've always thought the problem (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          LSophia, MichaelNY, white blitz

          Isn't so much divorce so much as it is remarriage.

          •  There's no remarriage because there's no divorce (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Lawrence, MichaelNY, sturunner, jts327

            I know of a case where a Filipino seafarer arrived home after 9 months or so at sea to find his wife obviously pregnant (but not close to being ready to deliver) and in an open relationship with another guy.  He left her and after a couple of years moved in with somebody else, but they couldn't get married, and if they had children, they would be considered illegitimate.  And I know there are lots of women whose husband leave them, and who aren't free to enter a legal relationship with another man.  It's a truly brutal system that simply refuses to recognize that human beings are fallible, and that a decent legal system would recognize that.

            It is astounding to me that a people as kind and decent and tolerant as the Filipinos I've known would tolerate such a brutally intolerant system.

            Bin Laden is dead. GM and Chrysler are alive.

            by leevank on Tue Nov 05, 2013 at 08:46:54 PM PST

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        •  The Philippines is a strange country in the sense (8+ / 0-)

          that society is very rapidly outpacing the legal structure.  It has a lot to do with the fact that the Millennial Generation just recently became powerful and is now about to become the dominant force.

          There are few LGBT rights for example, but being transgender has become accepted to the extent that it is almost normal in many places.  It's not uncommon to see a group of transgender women walk into mass or go to a restaurant in some village and the daughter of the restaurant owners who is working as the waitress is transgender.

          Divorce still is not legal, and it is leading to increasing amounts of people not marrying or, as you said, having "live-in" partners.

          Pope Francis can have a big impact in the Philippines and things likely will be changing very rapidly there soon.

          "A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle" - Mohammed Nabbous, R.I.P.

          by Lawrence on Tue Nov 05, 2013 at 06:55:03 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Was the marriage a sacrament? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Yoshimi, Oh Mary Oh

          That's the issue. If it was defective in any one of a number of ways, it wasn't sacramental and thus can be annulled in the Church process.

          Annulment in the Church does not "make the children bastards" or any of that nonsense.  A valid civil marriage often is not sacramental because the parties weren't mature enough to enter into a sacramental union. Or never intended the marriage to last their lifetimes. A lot of folks these days think, oh well, if it doesn't work out I can get a divorce. Not and have a sacramental marriage, you can't think that way!

          If a person marries another because of the person's wealth or status, for instance, that doesn't have anything to do with creating a sacramental union, so the marriage is defective from the get-go, from the Church's point of view.

          "Shotgun" marriages, entered into only because the woman is pregnant, likewise aren't going to pass sacramental muster.

          Any forced marriage, or marriage for reasons such as marrying so my kids will have a father-- these don't make the grade, either.

          But most folks don't understand Canon Law, including most "traditional" Catholics, so you get civil laws that don't honor Canon Law but pretend to be "faith-based."

          Yeah, it can be a real mess. But then there's Jewish law, and Islamic law as well, on marriage, that also create anomalies in civil society.

          I must be dreaming...

          by murphy on Tue Nov 05, 2013 at 08:42:18 PM PST

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          •  I'm not talking about canon law (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            I'm talking about civil law.  There is no CIVIL divorce in the Philippines, even for non-Catholics.  One of the pressures for change is that there are increasing numbers of non-Catholics (or at least only nominal Catholics) in the Philippines who don't necessarily want to be governed by a government-imposed version of what is essentially canon law.

            Bin Laden is dead. GM and Chrysler are alive.

            by leevank on Tue Nov 05, 2013 at 08:51:24 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  The big issue on the Sacrament of Marriage in (0+ / 0-)

            the church's view is whether the couple plans on having children. If the couple does not, the church sees this as not a blessed marriage and will annul without any problem.

            And this also goes to the church's opposition to gay marriage. In their eyes, a gay couple can't have children (little do they know) so there is no sacrament.  

          •  I've never understood (0+ / 0-)

            why Christianity abolished the divorce, considering that the Hebrew Bible explicitly permits not only divorce but remarriage for both of the divorcees.

    •  The Church is not really taking input (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      OHdog, petral

      The papers for 'surveying the flock' are out .. and it is not about asking for input ... it is all about how do we make people obey Church Teaching, particularly on matters of sexual conduct ...

      For example, one of the questions concerns 'Natural Law' .. the grounds for no artificial methods of birth control .. and quite bluntly, the question says "how do we get the laity to agree to only 'natural' forms of birth control?

      after reading most of the document, I have to say that is about making the laity obey the rules that the Church has set down, not asking for input on incorporating new scientific principles into theology... it is very sad...

      But really, asking how the Church can convince people to have more children!  This is not a step toward being responsible stewards of this earth ..
      Yes, Francis wants more emphasis on concern for the poor, but he also wants women to remain second class members of the Church, he has done nothing to stop the persecution of US nuns, he doesn't want gays getting married or having anykind of physical relationships ...

      and he not anything close to the inclusiveness of the Episcopal Church ...
      but damn he does know how to make everyone think he has new plans and new ideas .. he may have chosen the name Francis, but believe me, he is a Jesuit in the worst sense of that order

      Give your heart a real workout! Love your enemies!

      by moonbatlulu on Tue Nov 05, 2013 at 09:22:28 PM PST

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    •  Yeah ... Don't get your Pope's up! ... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      ... After all, he'll still be the head of perhaps the biggest, most corrupt religious groups in the History of the World!

      "Sigh" ... "Nod."


      Appraise the Lord! : Tax Church Property. O <-- Circle of Trust. YOU are Here: ------------> x

      by Great Ape on Tue Nov 05, 2013 at 10:25:22 PM PST

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      •  Putting on my CT cap. (0+ / 0-)
        Stuart MacKenzie: Well, it's a well known fact, Sonny Jim, that there's a secret society of the five wealthiest people in the world, known as The Pentavirate, who run everything in the world, including the newspapers, and meet tri-annually at a secret country mansion in Colorado, known as The Meadows.

        Tony Giardino: So who's in this Pentavirate?

        Stuart Mackenzie: The Queen, The Vatican, The Gettys, The Rothschilds, and Colonel Sanders before he went tits up. Oh, I hated the Colonel with is wee beady eyes, and that smug look on his face. "Oh, you're gonna buy my chicken! Ohhhhh!"

        Charlie Mackenzie: Dad, how can you hate "The Colonel"?

        Stuart Mackenzie: Because he puts an addictive chemical in his chicken that makes ya crave it fortnightly, smartass!

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