Thursday, 17 April 2014

The Popular Panel Show, "Ask the Laity"

The BBC reports that the Catholic Church, having polled its members on their views on such matters as sex, drugs and rock & roll, is not publishing the results of the survey. Well, naturally. I'm sure it'll leak out one day, but you do need to keep the lid on what people think as long as possible. Otherwise mayhem could break out.

The BBC reports that
Reformers said refusing to publish the results would suggest the Church was not sincere about sharing responsibility with lay people.
Well naturally. That would be akin to the BBC letting the licence payers have a say in how it's run. And think about those churches that do share responsibility with lay people. No wonder the Catholics ain't  serious. I mean, the Church of England shares responsibility with the laity. And they've had to create a system so demanding in personal time that only old, rich laity with a love of committees can get any of the share. While if the clergy get on the various synods, that's work time. Still, in a stroke of genius, the C of E has a system so complicated that nobody can ever make decisions in under 20 years in any case. The Methodists share responsibility with the laity, but then they learnt how to organise committees from the Church of England, and then went on the advanced course.

I'm sure it's useful for the Catholic Church to know what its people think. But if they start getting involved in decisions, where will it all end? Gay hamsters marrying chip shop owners and a dolphin bishop, that's where. Or even Catholics using contraception. Without feeling ashamed about it, at any rate.

We're not told if the survey asked what religion the Pope is, but I'm sure that if it had, the answer would have been filled-in in advance.


  1. Couldn't agree more. I'm not the least bit religious, but if you believe your rules on sin were literally written in stone thousands of years ago and are considered the literal word of your God, why should they be changed to suit your chosen lifestyle? It's a recipe for anarchy - or becoming Anglican, as you say.

    1. I think that's a conflation of numerous things.

      1. The 10 Commandments I think everyone quite likes. The supplementary few thousand are another matter. Not least as the book of Acts suggests that one, more or many have been supplanted by Jesus.

      2. Catholics aren't generally inclined to think of a "literal" word of God. That's the fundies. And unlike the Catholics they've only been around since the early 20th century.

      3. The word "sin" isn't in the X Commandments at all.

      4. Some people involved in this debate don't necessarily believe Moses existed at all - that he was just kind of representative of the struggle of the Hebrew peoples to achieve unity and nationhood and order. An imaginary origin-hero, if you like. Like King Arthur, Robin Hood or Simon Cowell. In which case they don't believe any of the above, albeit there is a 50/50 chance they're already Anglican,

    2. I do have a problem with the Big Ten.

      Having no other Gods is totally undemocratic. Similarly the one about graven images.

      Not taking His name in vain is just God demonstrating a bit of insecurity.

      The Sabbath? Mere housekeeping and not adhered to by most people, except the Hassidim - used the Shabbat elevator in the hotel in Israel last Friday - stops at every damned floor so you don't have to press a button. Logical extremity comes to mind.

      No murder, false witness or stealing - the hallmark of every major civilisation and the only commandments worth their salt.

      Honoring your mum and dad can only apply if they're not total idiots or child abusers - and even then there might be mitigating factors.

      No coveting? Thought crime springs to mind - an absurdity.

    3. I was thinking more Christians and Jews, rather than "everybody" everybody.
      You were lucky it was a Hassidic lift. If it were a Church of England one you'd still be stuck between floors.

    4. ...or deciding which floor to commit to...

  2. PS - heaven isn't a democracy, it's a theocracy ruled by One.

    1. They're all one, aren't they?

    2. and yet also, mysteriously, three

    3. Why not seven? A more significant and mysterious number, surely. I'm sure some sect could dig up a few more Greek philosophical concept to add to the three.


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