[PLUG-TALK] Diversity among Catholics

David Mandel dmandel at pdxlinux.org
Sun Jan 4 01:56:56 PST 2009

I wasn't going to write anymore postings on "the topics of the week", but ...

Recently we have had a number of postings using Catholic doctrine to
justify certain views and referring to the priest abuse scandals and
other events within the Church.  From this discussion non-Catholics
might get the impression that Catholics are much more homogeneous than
they actually are.   There are well over a billion Catholics in the
world.  With this many believers one would expect a wide variety of
views and beliefs; and I think anyone looking into matter will find
that to be the case.

I am Catholic and still, I don't understand a lot about Catholic
doctrine and Catholic practice; but I do understand that there are
many topics where Catholics have an official doctrine and an accepted
practice that seem to be in conflict with one another.  And of course,
while Catholics have some rituals and beliefs that are universal and
unite them around the world, they have others practices and beliefs
that are local to a country or region.

One area where there is often a conflict between official doctrine and
accepted practice is in certain topics relating to sex - and on many
of these topics I personally think the accepted practice is wiser than
the official doctrine and I think many clergy secretly (or more
accurately discretely) agree with me.

David Mandel

P.S.  I have known at least two priests who I suspected were gay.  To
the best of my knowledge neither of them ever abused anyone.   I knew
one of these priests quite well.  He was a family friend.  He was a
very good man who helped many down and out people.  He died many years
ago.  I guess he would be pretty old if he were still alive.

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