Spanish Inquisition–torture, corruption, having to pay for forgiveness of sins, political manipulation.
Today-Pedophiles, Women do not have equal respect or representation. Priests are treated well, Nuns have to work more. Our Father is not equal to Our Mother.
Wouldn’t we eliminate a huge percentage of deviance from the Catholic church if we treated men and women as equals and let them lead. My grandfather was courted by the church and was going to be a priest. He fell in love with my grandmother. They raised 6 beautiful Catholic children. My grandpa was very deep in his faith–he would have been perfect to lead the church…yet by not allowing that you have men who like to fondle little boys leading the church instead of men who truly love and respect women and children.
Why do you follow the church despite ugly traditions and principles and history. Why do you not let healthy hetero sexual men who love and cherish and respect women and children run the church? How do you forget the spanish inquisition?
Maybe if you had an accurate picture of what you call ugly and terrible you wouldn’t have to ask the question. The is more beauty in the Truth guarded by and preached by the Church than the ugliness you have painted on the Church with an unfair broad brush. The truth matters more any individual failings of Church members.
There are sinners in every organization. Even hermits have to encounter other people from time to time, and the people they meet might not be perfect in every way.
It’s true that some Catholics or people saying they were Catholic have done things that nobody is proud of. This doesn’t mean that Catholicism is incorrect - in fact, it proves that when the Church tells us not to do these things, She knows what she’s talking about!
Most Catholics are ordinary decent people. The vast majority of priests are holy men doing a difficult job - and most of them have great respect for women. Women hold more paid positions in the Church than men do, as a matter of fact. Women are very instrumental in the day to day running of most parishes - the Church doesn’t denigrate them at all. Women also hold a lot of volunteer positions in the Church, probably equal to the number of men.
Where to start? So many falsehoods in one small post!
Fact: More heterosexuals married family men than priests abuse children.
Fact: Children are safer in and around Catholic priests than any other institution.
Fact: the priesthood is one of service not power. Women are equal in Catholicism.
Fact: there is less deviance in the Catholic church than in any other Church.
Priests are treated well, nuns have to work more. Not sure what this means. Priests aren’t “treated” at all. If by “nuns” you mean sisters - non-cloistered female religious - then like priests they are called to a life of prayer and service. Nuns are the equivalent of monks - and they follow the same rule, way of life etc.
Inquisition: Product of the time.
Fact: no-one ever had to pay for the forgiveness of sins. Ever.
I am going to quote from a couple people who have posted here, (Sorry, I don’t have the names),
Objectively speaking, the only valid reason for rejecting a teaching is because it is not true, not because people may abuse it.
The Catholic Church has both Saints and sinners. Some folk want to judge us by our sinners - by the people who fail to uphold the Catholic Faith. That’s hardly fair - judge us by our Saints, who do uphold the Faith. We have many such Saints to offer as examples of faithful Catholics.
And to clear up some things, men and women ARE equal, in dignity, but this does not mean they are exactly the same in every way.
This is an inaccurate portrayal of the Catholic clergy. To answer the question of your subject line, we believe because our faith is not grounded in the failures of the Church’s members. We don’t abandon Christ because of Judas.
The pedophile thing is actually a great example. Yes they were there, but pedophiles certainly do not reflect all of the priests and in most cases didn’t touch peoples’ parishes. My parish hadn’t had any who were accused. The few bad apples don’t speak for the vast majority of good ones, and to automatically dismiss the good ones off because of the bad ones who they had nothing to do with is unfair, don’t you think?
We need to ask: how do we define the Church? Catholics of the 2000s recognised it as the Church of John Paul II. We are not the church of John Geoghan (the infamous pedophile).
Priests are treated well and nuns have to work more – I don’t believe that’s the case. I’m sure others here in the know will agree with me, priests have extremely busy lives and work for very, very low pay (like minimum wage where I’m from).
Yeah there was the Inquisition. But there was also Thomas Aquinas and Teresa of Avila, and a flurry of other saints who contributed to doctrine and were kind people, not torturers.
To put it another way, if you are an American, you certainly understand patriotism. What defines the US? The Constitution, July 4th, victory in World War II.
Also in American history was slavery, suppression of minorities, no voting for women, sexual immorality conveyed in the media, mass shootings, creating wars. But do those things define the country? No.
The Church defines itself with its heroes, not its failures. It must work hard to protect against failures, but we Catholics do not define our institution by them.
Instead we look toward Mother Teresa who ministered to the poor, John Paul II who helped destroy Communism, Katharine Drexel who ministered to the black and Indian people who were being ignored by the US.
There are always going to be mess-ups, but remember Ephesians tells us that Christ loved the Church – so shouldn’t we?
^People forget that punishment that way was common in government. They’ll recall that the Church did it but conveniently forget that so did probably every king (think dungeons and the Tower of London). Bias?
Those mistakes shouldn’t be forgotten but they were a way of life.
Great responses everyone…this one had my wife and I in tears…I just experienced a huge shift. I will admit I post questions from time to time that are controversial–a guilty pleasure if you will…but seeing your mature answers, not humiliating me or putting me down, makes my heart glad. God Bless to you all. Thank you. Brian and Tina…
How dare you, comming on a Catholic web site to attack them! Who, on earth have you been listening to? You sound like the typical recent graduate of an anti-catholic Evangelical or Pentachostical Divinity School, who is filled with self righteous indignation based on false information.
Where did your family go wrong? If your grandfather was a practicing Catholic, his children-your parents, should have been raised Catholic, and they, in turn would have raised you Catholic. If that is so, what happened to you?
I strongly suggest that you take heed of the answers given you before me. They are the truth and hopefully will help you, but I doubt it.
Glad we could help. Bias against Catholicism even from Catholics is common in the US. Even non-Catholic scholars say so. It’s so ingrained into American history and when you think about it, whenever you see Cardinals on TV, you have the expectation that those would be evil, conniving men who want to take over the world. The bias is that strong, presumed that much.
If you know about the Vatican having that “crackdown” on nuns, that’s a great example of the bias and sloppiness in the media. Nobody at CNN or NPR even bothered to get the Vatican’s side of the story, and everyone quickly believes and sympathises with the nuns who claim that it was because they were working too much on social justice. It’s absurd, making it as if the Vatican was punishing them for being good. I don’t buy that for one moment. But of course, nobody in the mainstream media even bothered getting the Vatican’s side, because this country is so quick to believe the worst about them. Think of all the conspiracy theories of the Vatican taking over the world – if they are, they are doing a really lame job at it. For cryin out loud, they’re still priests! They’re not different from the priests you know at home. Many of the priests who work in the Vatican do it as a second job and still work in their local parish. You probably couldn’t imagine your local priest plotting to take over the world, and it’s no different on the Vatican level.
There are still failures here and there, even the current and previous Popes weren’t all that happy about how the bureaucracy, but people are so quick to believe the stupidest stories about them because the media image is almost always bad, bad, bad.
One interesting fact that will help: in an exorcism, if the Church didn’t sanction for it to be performed, the demon won’t flee. Even if it’s a priest who performs it, without permission from the Church, the demon will actually mock him for trying. Permission from the Bishop (thus permission from the Church) is vital to make the exorcism work.
So look at that: even demons show you that the Church is what it claims to be!
Pick up the book The Rite: The Making of a Modern Exorcist. It’s also on audiobook. It’s a great read, I’ve gone through the audiobook several times. It helps on faith matters. The author wasn’t a practising Catholic before he began working on that book, but seeing what he saw reinforced his faith and now he’s more devout.
First of all, I highly reccommend watching two videos (I apologize I cannot link them now, but I will should anyone be interested). They are on the Inquisition and the Crusades, and they are by Michael Voris on ChurchMilitant.TV, available free, you just have to register a username/pw. In any case, he gives a vigorous defense of the Church during the period of the Inquisitions. The Inquisitions were set up to stop random acts of violence against heretics by unlearned lay people. They afforded more rights to the accused than any other state institution in the world. Most of the accused were either acquitted or given penalties much less severe than death. Of those accused, only 2% were put to death. During the Spanish Inquisition, 12% were put to death, and this had much more to do with Spanish internal politics, and the sample size is much smaller so the number jumps 10%. I won’t get into the specifics, because Mr. Voris does an excellent job, much better than I, at explaining these things. I highly recommend the video.
As far as the sex abuse scandal: Yes, the Church is made up of sinful people. This should not come as a surprise to anybody. Some priests have done despicable things. The Institution of the Church itself, however, the teachings of the Truths passed on from Christ and the Apostles, is stil the same, and always will be. There also always will be sinners, that in no way nullifies the Truth. They are separate issues, and while the Church can change people (I.e. Soften their hearts, open their eyes, introduce them and invite them into a deeper relationship with Christ), people do not change the fundamental teachings of the Church. It is Christ and the Church to which we owe allegiance and faith, not in fallible and sinful men whom the Lord uses to run it. And yes, some of these Priests never really loved Christ, or were lost along the way, but our faith is in God, not in men.
As far as the whole feminist ideology which pervades part of your second question, it simply is a fundamental misunderstanding of Catholic Theology. Not to mention the accusation that “nuns do more work” is ridiculous.
In any event, these are all pretty standard anti-Catholic arguments. Most people who throw out the words “Inquisition” and the like, quite frankly don’t even know what they are talking about. They simply parrot what they’ve heard from others with no real knowledge of the facts of independent research. It is sad that so many have fallen victim to, (to borrow a phrase from St. Peter) cleverly devised myths, about the true history of the Church. Some of the crimes of the past are legitimate, but some are not. Regardless, it is no reason to forsake the Truth which is taught and held within Holy Mother Church. Yes, it is disheartening sometimes when bombarded with these attacks, when we realize just how fragile and susceptible to temptation and sin we are, even those we hold in esteem. But the Church is the Rock of our faith, the Truth of Jesus Christ. Men will always let us down, but Christ will not. It is important to distinguish between the two and not muddle the issue.