Thursday, October 7, 2010

Notes: Thursday, October 7, 2010

A good question in a letter in today's Australian

The last sentence of this letter in the "Last Post" section of the letters section:

Why does marriage need to be between one man and one woman? The arguments for same-sex marriage equally apply to polygamy and polyandry. If people want to fundamentally transform Australia's culture, why stop at half measures?

D. Straface, Perth, WA


Mr. Magister on the September 20 to 27 meeting of the joint international commission for theological dialogue between the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church ("Papal Primacy. Russia Heads the Resistance Against Rome")

I was interested to read in that article that

the Eastern Churches are slowly approaching the convocation of the pan-Orthodox "Great and Holy Council" that should finally unite them in a single assembly after centuries of incomplete "synodality," [...]

Material preparation for the end of the Eastern Schism after the Consecration of Russia, perhaps.

Mr. Schütz contra Dr. Gray on euthanasia

Mr. Schütz uses a very good piece of rhetoric in that rejoinder to Dr. Gray's opinion piece, which (opinion piece) I covered in yesterday's edition of Notes:

To die with dignity is, I would agree, a “human right” – but in a secondary sense: ie. everyone is entitled to that “dignity” which is due to them because they are a human being in BOTH life and death. The question is: what do you mean by “dignity” in this context? Japanese warriors and Jihadist Terrorists both had/have ideas about what a “dignified” death is. We disagree with both their accounts. We disagree with Nigel Gray’s too.
[my emphasis]

Pro-Confessional-State pronouncement from the Vatican?

I was interested to read the following from the text of the conclusions from the meeting of March 11-13, 2007 of the Bilateral Commission of the Delegation of the Holy See's Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews and the Chief Rabbinate of Israel's Delegation for Relations with the Catholic Church in an old post at the Maurice Pinay blog:

6. In addition to respecting the freedom of religious choices, the integrity of faith communities should also be guaranteed. Accordingly it is legitimate for a society with a predominant religious identity to preserve its character, as long as this does not limit the freedom of minority communities and individuals to profess their alternative religious commitments, nor to limit their full civil rights and status as citizens, individuals and communities. This obliges us all to safeguard the integrity and dignity of holy sites, places of worship and cemeteries of all religious communities.

A few thoughts:
  • To say that "it is legitimate for a society with a predominant religious identity to preserve its character" is encouraging insofar as that it is saying that it is legitimate for a Catholic Confessional State to have Catholicism as the State religion and the Catholic Church as the established Church. (Unfortunately that does not seem to have been Vatican policy in the aftermath of Vatican II.)
  • But of course, it is discouraging insofar as it is saying, by the same token, that an Anglican Confessional State, or Lutheran Confessional State, or Muslim Confessional State, or Atheist Confessional State, or, given the context, Jewish Confessional State, is also legitimate, which is false.
  • It is also discouraging insofar as it does not affirm, or does not affirm adequately, the right (and duty) of a Catholic Confessional State to repress, where prudent, offenders of the Catholic religion.
Reginaldvs Cantvar
Feast of The Most Holy Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and of St. Mark I., Pope, Confessor, and of St. Sergius and Companions, A.D. 2010


Cardinal Pole said...

Another good point (in bold) by Mr. Schütz:

"Yes, the connection between “rights” and “responsibilities” has often been discussed. However, one thing that is not often noticed is that it is this very connection between “my rights” and “your responsibilities” (or vice versa) that demonstrates the communitarian or social nature of the language of “rights”. Without a social context, a context where I am in some relationship with someone else, the language of rights has no meaning. Therefore, to posit an extreme individualism as the basis of “human rights” is ultimately self defeating."
[my emphasis,]

Cardinal Pole said...

More on the State of Israel as a Jewish Confessional State:

Cardinal Pole said...

Correction: Delete "(in bold)" and "my emphasis," from that first comment.