Church and State


#1

This is something that has been on my mind for some time. My aunt and I have discussed it off and on for months and I would like to have some input from you guys and hopefully someone here can refrence me to a good book or two on the issue.The issue goes like this:
That relgion and faith play an important part in the life of a country. That once an area went away from God that it really suffered (note Russia, a country with vastly superior resources than us, suffered immensly under the soveits style which is aithiest in nature) and that people that are close to God successed (note th '50 in the U.S. which was rather religous). As Metternich said, “The downfall of empires always directly depends upon the spread of unbelief. For this very reason religious belief, the first of virtues, is the strongest power. It alone curbs attack and makes resistance irresistible. Religion cannot decline in a nation without causing that nation’s strength also to decline, and the fall of states does not proceed in arithmetical progression according to the law of falling bodies, but rapidly leads to destruction.” newadvent.org/cathen/10245a.htm

Your thoughts and opinions, and any books to look at the issue (both sides of the issue in a non-biased, please) please. Thanks and God bless.


#2

Might I suggest the Old Testament? It tells the story of Israel, how it grew powerful when it was in communion with God, and how it was destroyed when it turned away from God.

Notworthy


#3

you might want to research the history of Poland and of Mexico, both countries where anti-Christian revolutionary governments supressed the Catholic Church, and where the faith of the people remained strong during that oppression and where a strong Catholic faith is still a notable feature of the life of the people.


#4

The thing that becomes a problem with Christianity and state, is that it really gets away from the message of Christianity. When the Church becomes the state, then the people in the Church start to worry about power, which starts to corrupt the system.

Now as Chesterton points out, as much as we might superficially like a church that is wrong when we are wrong, but a church like that is useless & is not needed. We want a Church that is right when we are wrong.

Look at it this way, we’ve all heard that absolute power corrupts absolutly. We’re apart of a democracy and we have checks and balances to try to keep that from happening. Now there will be a problem when the State has aboslute power, there is no one to check them. Its almost cliche to say it, but look at Nazi Germany, would you want a State drift into that without a check?

As far a book, Cardinal Ratzing goes into it a bit in Salt of the Earth.


#5

jman507.
But, I remeber hearing from one of my many conversatoins with the older people the corruptions on the U.S. such as this, There was this gentleman of whom the police while the gentleman was gone placed some drugs in his car and left. A man who had seen it went and looked. When he found the drugs he got rid of it. When the police went to search it, tearing the car up in the process, found nothing of course and never fixed the mans car. This was in the '70s and I never understood why? But, the police never had absolute authority. There was also the various corrupt bargins in politics, the election that Adrew Jackson lost in where the winner (I can’t remeber their names at this moment) was decided when none of the candidates had enought electorates to win and it went to the House of Reps (I think it could have been the senate) and the two other parties left Jackson out by allowing one to become president and the other to get the sectratary of state I beleibe which was pretty much a stepping stone to the presidentcy. As well certain presidents knew how to get what they wanted done (T.R. and Lyndon Johnson come to mind) which shows that one could get past the cheacks and balances if one knew how.
Plus Queen Elizabeth (the origonel) never became all that corupt dispite her imense power and there are numerous Popes that were never such either during the time of the Papal states (8th- 19th century) or during the Roman empire when they yeilded large amounts of power. As Well during the Pax Romanum (Roman Peace) there were what are known as the five good kings who where in no way corrupt (and they were desopts to the extreme) but, my question wasn’t of the best form of Goverment but, rather the proper and best relation of the Church and state and any historical referances (more than showing that there were bad dictators 'cause one could just as eaily show bad others in any other goverment or show good kings which are two numerous to count).
Thank you for the book I will look into it.


#6

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