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Sun May 26, 2013, 06:49 PM

 

Dear Pope, Atheists Don't Need Redemption

Atheists like me are used to religious leaders like the last pope telling us that we are going to Hell to be tortured for all eternity because we are skeptical of their pretty hard to believe claims. This new pope surprised everyone the other day by proclaiming that atheists are not condemned to eternal torture if we live a virtuous life. Thanks for that, Pope Francis, but I wasn't worried. I'm reasonably sure that Hell is imaginary.

The thing is that Pope Francis went farther than just acknowledging that atheists aren't going to be tortured for all eternity. He also said that if we live virtuous lives, we will be "redeemed" by Jesus just like Christians. I think that last part goes a little too far for me. I know the pope meant well and probably didn't realize just how condescending that actually sounds to many atheists. In an effort to help the pope better communicate with the growing atheist community and in the spirit of furthering dialog, I'm going to explain why I take issue with his statement.

I'm not interested in being "redeemed" by Jesus. Contrary to the Catholic and even the broader Christian belief, I don't believe humans are evil sinners in need of redemption. I don't see the glass as half empty. The way I see it, the glass is full. Half the glass is filled with water and the other half filled with air. In other words, I don't think people are inherently evil; I think people are more nuanced than that. We do good things and we do bad things.

As a humanist, I have come to understand that people generally try to be the best they can. We are all trying to be the heroes in our own story, sometimes getting sidetracked along the way.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/staks-rosch/dear-pope-atheists-dont-need-redemption_b_3332013.html?utm_hp_ref=religion

64 replies, 7103 views

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Arrow 64 replies Author Time Post
Reply Dear Pope, Atheists Don't Need Redemption (Original post)
SecularMotion May 2013 OP
MADem May 2013 #1
hrmjustin May 2013 #2
MADem May 2013 #4
hrmjustin May 2013 #5
MADem May 2013 #6
hrmjustin May 2013 #7
DesertFlower May 2013 #8
hrmjustin May 2013 #9
Spitfire of ATJ May 2013 #11
hrmjustin May 2013 #12
SCVDem May 2013 #19
DesertFlower May 2013 #24
hrmjustin May 2013 #25
DesertFlower May 2013 #26
hrmjustin May 2013 #27
DesertFlower May 2013 #28
hrmjustin May 2013 #29
DesertFlower May 2013 #36
hrmjustin May 2013 #45
No Vested Interest May 2013 #61
DesertFlower May 2013 #64
BlueStreak May 2013 #30
hrmjustin May 2013 #31
BlueStreak May 2013 #33
hrmjustin May 2013 #34
BlueStreak May 2013 #35
Phillip McCleod May 2013 #50
hrmjustin May 2013 #51
Phillip McCleod May 2013 #53
hrmjustin May 2013 #54
Phillip McCleod May 2013 #56
hrmjustin May 2013 #57
Phillip McCleod May 2013 #58
hrmjustin May 2013 #59
Phillip McCleod May 2013 #63
rug May 2013 #3
gcomeau May 2013 #38
rug May 2013 #41
gcomeau May 2013 #42
rug May 2013 #43
gcomeau May 2013 #46
Phillip McCleod May 2013 #55
Tien1985 May 2013 #10
coldbeer May 2013 #13
Spitfire of ATJ May 2013 #14
coldbeer May 2013 #40
Spitfire of ATJ May 2013 #44
Billsmile May 2013 #15
skepticscott May 2013 #20
gcomeau May 2013 #39
TekGryphon May 2013 #16
alfredo May 2013 #17
RVN VET May 2013 #18
Lobo27 May 2013 #21
stopbush May 2013 #22
BillyRibs May 2013 #23
Purplehazed May 2013 #32
struggle4progress May 2013 #37
Act_of_Reparation May 2013 #47
struggle4progress May 2013 #48
Act_of_Reparation May 2013 #60
struggle4progress May 2013 #62
uriel1972 May 2013 #49
Walk away May 2013 #52

Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Sun May 26, 2013, 06:56 PM

1. I don't think he was lecturing the atheists when he said that ....

I suspect he doesn't need any "Thanks, but..." from the atheists in any event.

I think his purpose was to tell the members of HIS flock to cut the shit, get off other people's backs, and stick to their own knitting, doing the "good works" and "charity" that his church used to do to great effect.

In sum, he wasn't telling ATHEISTS to not worry, he was telling CATHOLICS to butt out of atheists' business -- that they'll get there their own way (or not, but t'aint nobody's biz-niz...).

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Response to MADem (Reply #1)

Sun May 26, 2013, 06:57 PM

2. I agree but I don't think others in the Vatican liked it.

 

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #2)

Sun May 26, 2013, 07:33 PM

4. Well he's the head Mitre-chapeau in charge, so they're just gonna have to dig on it!

It's probably smart that he does a lot of his own cooking....

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Response to MADem (Reply #4)

Sun May 26, 2013, 07:35 PM

5. JP the first dies the day I was born. He died about the time I was born.

 

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #5)

Sun May 26, 2013, 07:36 PM

6. Time for a bit of reincarnation woo, if you believe that sort of thing! nt

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Response to MADem (Reply #6)

Sun May 26, 2013, 07:36 PM

7. That is what my friends at church say.

 

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #7)

Sun May 26, 2013, 07:44 PM

8. what do they say?

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Response to DesertFlower (Reply #8)

Sun May 26, 2013, 07:46 PM

9. That I am John Paul the first reincarnated.

 

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #9)

Sun May 26, 2013, 07:52 PM

11. Damn shame George and Ringo isn't in there with ya.

 

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Response to Spitfire of ATJ (Reply #11)

Sun May 26, 2013, 07:53 PM

12. Now that would be a great personality!

 

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #12)

Sun May 26, 2013, 08:49 PM

19. I share a birthday with Adolphs death day.

 

I'm not even going along with reincarnation.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #9)

Sun May 26, 2013, 10:27 PM

24. do you think you are?

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Response to DesertFlower (Reply #24)

Sun May 26, 2013, 10:35 PM

25. No I don't, but it is interesting that I was born almost at the moment he died.

 

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #25)

Sun May 26, 2013, 10:54 PM

26. i believe in reincarnation. i didn't think

the people in your church did. it's my understanding that catholics taught it at one time, but then decided that if people thought they had another chance they might not be good. i, on the other hand want to make sure i do the right thing this time around. coming back scares the hell out of me.

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Response to DesertFlower (Reply #26)

Sun May 26, 2013, 10:58 PM

27. They said it in jest and I am Episcopalian.

 

I have never heard of reincarnation being taught by the Catholic church but it may have something to do with purgatory.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #27)

Sun May 26, 2013, 11:31 PM

28. i think it was in the 1400s. i'm a former

catholic and i remember purgatory very well. we used to have to pray for the poor souls in purgatory. they also had a place called "limbo" where unbaptized babies went. i think they might have changed all that.

i know you're episcopalian. that's why i said i didn't think they believed in reincarnation.

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Response to DesertFlower (Reply #28)

Sun May 26, 2013, 11:37 PM

29. I think they got rid of limbo! As to reincarnation it could have been the cathars!

 

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #29)

Mon May 27, 2013, 12:24 AM

36. they changed so many rules. i remember it was a mortal sin

to eat meat on friday or to miss mass on sunday, but they won't give in on birth control. i remember my mom and my aunts never received communion because they would not be given absolution in confession unless they promised to never use it again. then as they reached menopause or had a hysterectomy, they started receiving communion again. no one in my family had more than 3 children.

i think most catholics ignore this rule now. chris matthews (MSNBC) a practicing catholic didn't come right out and say it but he did say "i come from a family of 5 -- we had 3 children".

one of the pope's called them "cafeteria style catholics". he said "they pick and choose the rules they want to follow".

BTW. my grandmother had 8 children, but her sisters and brothers only had 1 or 2. grandma was a really good catholic and a good person. when she died my mom said "i hope for grandma's sake there is a heaven because she tried so hard".

one time i was in the elevator at work and i said "i wonder what happened to the catholics who ate meat on friday after they changed the rules." someone said "they were relocated".

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Response to DesertFlower (Reply #36)

Mon May 27, 2013, 02:51 PM

45. The Church must speak to every generation. Unfortunately many churvhes have issues doing

 

this.

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Response to DesertFlower (Reply #36)

Wed May 29, 2013, 01:46 AM

61. In my mind there's a big difference between Laws of the church and God's laws

Laws of the church are man-made, such as attending Mass every Sunday and on Holydays, or abstaining from meat on Fridays in Lent.
God's laws spring from the Ten Commandments, the commands of Jesus, and from natural law.

Laws of the Church vary during different eras, places, and cultures. Ex. -Holydays are not uniform throughout the world, and their observation may be changed by local hierarchy.

Although I have a general intention of observing the laws of the church, I do not beat myself up if I can not or do not keep every one all the time, and, I believe, they are not seriously sinful (mortal) in the way a grievous act contrary to God's law or natural law would be.

I would find it interesting to hear the conversations in your elevator at work. (LOL)

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Response to No Vested Interest (Reply #61)

Wed May 29, 2013, 07:02 PM

64. lol. a little off the subject but another

elevator story (same company) it was '79 -- smoking in elevators was permitted. i was leaving work one night and a man was smoking a cigar. i commented that "it was disgusting and i felt sorry for his wife". a few weeks later i was assigned to do some work for one of the top lawyers at new york telephone company. guess who it was? we had a good laugh and worked well together.

as far as religion i don't practice any. i think the important thing is to be a decent, charitable person.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #2)

Sun May 26, 2013, 11:41 PM

30. I see a strong parallel between Pope Francis and President Obama

 

I believe both are fundamentally decent people. And both find themselves "in charge of" bureaucracies full of evil, loathsome people who have interests fundamentally opposed to the stated missions of said bureaucracies.

The advantage Pops Francis has is that he can carry on pushing the rest of his life if he wants to. And the Pope actually does have some real power over his bureaucracy (unlike the President).

As an atheist, I was not offended by his statement. I think it was his way of trying to say (basically), "We are on this planet together. Let's help each other. There is no need to be enemies." And if that was his meaning, I believe he is right.

I hate what has become of the Catholic Church -- and I'm sure quite a few of the parishioners do as well. And I admire many of the things the Catholic Church has tried to do in the past. There is no point in arguing about the hereafter. And where there are opportunities for us to work together for social justice and advancement of the least among us, we should be allies.

In recent years, the only thing good about the Catholic Church was the nuns, IMHO. Now it it the Nuns and the Pope. I hope together they can clean up some of their mess.

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Response to BlueStreak (Reply #30)

Sun May 26, 2013, 11:45 PM

31. In my opinion believers and non-believers go to the same place when we die.

 

It is either heaven or there is nothing. In the meanwhile we should do our best to work together to make this a better world.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #31)

Sun May 26, 2013, 11:59 PM

33. Therein lies the problem when we create gods in our own image

 

It makes no sense that a god would create a heaven, go to the trouble to have this Jesus character be so clear about what you have to get in, then turn around and let anybody into the club after all.

But that is because I process this proposition based on how our transactions work here on earth. It would be foolish to allow free admission to the club when the churches really want everybody to pay 10% of their income to get in.

But see, a god probably wouldn't have any such value system. For one thing, a god wouldn't have any need for money and therefore would have no reason to try to think of the concept of dues. For all we know, this god might turn all humans into mosquitoes in heaven and the creatures that really rule the place may be the goldfish, which enjoy a tasty diet of mosquitoes.

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Response to BlueStreak (Reply #33)

Mon May 27, 2013, 12:01 AM

34. Well we will find out sooner or later.

 

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #34)

Mon May 27, 2013, 12:18 AM

35. Well actually, we won't. And that's how religions are able to keep their con going.

 

Nobody ever dies and then comes back to say "Hey people -- wait. It is all a lie. There was no heaven. There wasn't even any hell. You just die and that's the end of it."

You will not perceive a lack of heaven when you die. You won't perceive anything. It is your brain, not your "soul", that makes all perceptions and the brain does nothing when you are dead.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #31)

Tue May 28, 2013, 09:24 PM

50. if that is true then undoubtedly we northern europeans still go to ragnarok or the like.

 

if what you way is true, then there can be no change from one age to the next about the 'heaven' or 'sheol' or 'hades' what-have-you. the heaven/hell dualism is particularly gnostic in the sort of big-G Gnostic sense of the word, and is what has led scholars of early christian history to conclude that there was a great deal of syncretism before the nicean councils. certainly that type of dualism is entirely absent in the torah's concept of the 'afterlife'.. if indeed it can be called that.

in short, either there is a heaven, or just hades, or just sheol, or just the ancient egyptian afterlife, etc.. there are beliefs far and away more ancient and compelling than 'heaven'.

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Response to Phillip McCleod (Reply #50)

Tue May 28, 2013, 09:26 PM

51. Yeah but I like a heaven with an open bar better.

 

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #51)

Tue May 28, 2013, 10:01 PM

53. that'd be valhalla, then.

 

so far i'm 1 of 1.

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Response to Phillip McCleod (Reply #53)

Tue May 28, 2013, 10:02 PM

54. My idea of heaven is a big bruch with neverending booze and food.

 

Hey we can dream right!

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #54)

Tue May 28, 2013, 10:11 PM

56. that's valhalla. it just is.

 

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Response to Phillip McCleod (Reply #56)

Tue May 28, 2013, 10:16 PM

57. Looks fun. Ok valhala it is!

 

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #57)

Tue May 28, 2013, 10:21 PM

58. the norse religion's idea of the 'end of the world' was better too..

 

'ragnarok' is the 'end of the gods' not the end of the world. life goes on without the old gods.

food for thought.

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Response to Phillip McCleod (Reply #58)

Tue May 28, 2013, 10:24 PM

59. So you can live as you want without having to worry about the rules.

 

Interesting religion.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #59)

Wed May 29, 2013, 10:14 AM

63. i dont know about *that*..

 

..but entrance to heaven has nothing to do with being good by any standard so we could say that about the xtian afterlife.

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Sun May 26, 2013, 07:07 PM

3. Whether Rosch does or does not is immaterial, as long as he understands what the Pope is saying.

 

That may help him avoid making further uninformed statements like this:

Everything Christianity is about hinges on the belief that we are all wretched human beings and that no one is righteous, not one.

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Response to rug (Reply #3)

Mon May 27, 2013, 02:03 AM

38. Ummm, that "uninformed statement"...

 

...is direct from the bible.And yes, it is one of the fundamental bedrock principles upon which Christianity is based. You need to sell people the idea they have something they need to be saved from in order to justify the need for a savior... and that's it.

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Response to gcomeau (Reply #38)

Mon May 27, 2013, 09:00 AM

41. Then it should be a small matter to cite the chapter and verse.

 

Calvin doesn't count.

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Response to rug (Reply #41)

Mon May 27, 2013, 12:16 PM

42. Romans 3: 9-20

 

Have you even ever read the book? The fall of man is kind of a major theme.

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Response to gcomeau (Reply #42)

Mon May 27, 2013, 12:41 PM

43. I did. Here's your opportunity to read the whole thing.

 

Romans 3

1 What advantage, then, is there in being a Jew, or what value is there in circumcision? 2 Much in every way! First of all, the Jews have been entrusted with the very words of God.

3 What if some were unfaithful? Will their unfaithfulness nullify God’s faithfulness? 4 Not at all! Let God be true, and every human being a liar. As it is written:


“So that you may be proved right when you speak
and prevail when you judge.”[a]

5 But if our unrighteousness brings out God’s righteousness more clearly, what shall we say? That God is unjust in bringing his wrath on us? (I am using a human argument.) 6 Certainly not! If that were so, how could God judge the world? 7 Someone might argue, “If my falsehood enhances God’s truthfulness and so increases his glory, why am I still condemned as a sinner?” 8 Why not say—as some slanderously claim that we say—“Let us do evil that good may result”? Their condemnation is just!

No One Is Righteous

9 What shall we conclude then? Do we have any advantage? Not at all! For we have already made the charge that Jews and Gentiles alike are all under the power of sin. 10 As it is written:


“There is no one righteous, not even one;
11 there is no one who understands;
there is no one who seeks God.
12 All have turned away,
they have together become worthless;
there is no one who does good,
not even one.”
13 “Their throats are open graves;
their tongues practice deceit.”[c]
“The poison of vipers is on their lips.”[d]
14 “Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness.”[e]
15 “Their feet are swift to shed blood;
16 ruin and misery mark their ways,
17 and the way of peace they do not know.”[f]
18 “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”[g]

19 Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God. 20 Therefore no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of our sin.

Righteousness Through Faith

21 But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22 This righteousness is given through faith in[h] Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. 25 God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith. He did this to demonstrate his righteousness, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished— 26 he did it to demonstrate his righteousness at the present time, so as to be just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus.

27 Where, then, is boasting? It is excluded. Because of what law? The law that requires works? No, because of the law that requires faith. 28 For we maintain that a person is justified by faith apart from the works of the law. 29 Or is God the God of Jews only? Is he not the God of Gentiles too? Yes, of Gentiles too, 30 since there is only one God, who will justify the circumcised by faith and the uncircumcised through that same faith. 31 Do we, then, nullify the law by this faith? Not at all! Rather, we uphold the law.


Nothing in there supports the OP statement regarding "the belief that we are all wretched human beings". The passage is about the faithfulness of God, humanity's constant rejection of it, and the need for faith. Different things entirely.

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Response to rug (Reply #43)

Mon May 27, 2013, 06:43 PM

46. Read it. Many times.

 

The ENTIRE THING supports the OPs statement. That's the primary point of the entire chapter! Man needs faith in the redemptive power of Christ BECAUSE not a single damn human being on earth is righteous... no not one... they're all worthless. Says so flat out right up there. Uses the actual term worthless.

And therefore the only chance that worthless unrighteous fallen mass of humanity has at saving themselves is... guess what?

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Response to gcomeau (Reply #46)

Tue May 28, 2013, 10:07 PM

55. yeh but it's all how you *interpret* ..

 

.. the word 'worthless'.


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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Sun May 26, 2013, 07:50 PM

10. Meh

The pope isn't a great influence in my life. I see his statement as a way to help his sheep navigate in an increasingly secular (or at least, more openly secular) world.

I can only imagine that if you do believe in hell, the thought that your friends and loved ones are going there because they aren't the same kind of believer as you must be truly upsetting and frightening. With what the pope said, it might make people feel less stressed out about everyone they know suffering for eternity.

It does sound pretty condescending, but I just keep remembering the message wasn't really for me.

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Sun May 26, 2013, 07:55 PM

13. Something too obviuos

Women were only partners for procreation. These saint hermits
that lived in caves were homo sexuals. They had to leave the cave
to procreate. Atheists lived with and loved women!

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Response to coldbeer (Reply #13)

Sun May 26, 2013, 07:59 PM

14. Are you saying the classic monks bent over scribing away were the first nerds?

 

If so, did they have pocket protectors for their quills?

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Response to Spitfire of ATJ (Reply #14)

Mon May 27, 2013, 07:30 AM

40. Why do people think that male nerds and geeks are gay?

Why do people think that male nerds and geeks are gay?

below is a google result


Is it because they suck at sports, or because they're soft spoken, or because they don't scratch themselves, burp the alphabet, drink until they pass out and work construction? Is it because they chose to work SMART and not HARD (I've never been into working physical labor for less than I could be working in a nice air conditioned laboratory making MORE money)
So...what's with this stereotype?
Is it because they suck at sports, or because they're soft spoken, or because they don't scratch themselves, burp the alphabet, drink until they pass out and work construction? Is it because they chose to work SMART and not HARD (I've never been into working physical labor for less than I could be working in a nice air conditioned laboratory making MORE money)
So...what's with this stereotype?


my question is,

The authors of the New Testament were Essenes? Pharises, Sadducees are mentioned but not Essenes because they were the
writers. Were Essennes also homosexual? The males liked to kiss each other on the lips.

It's kind of like the GOP accusing the Democrats of doing what the GOP does.

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Response to coldbeer (Reply #40)

Mon May 27, 2013, 01:45 PM

44. "So...what's with this stereotype?"

 

You're right, here's their ultimate fantasy....

http://imgur.com/gallery/i6RzWuz

(The comments are a hoot.)

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Sun May 26, 2013, 08:09 PM

15. Religion and Science are Both Ways....

To attempt to understand the world & universe. Religion is by & large pre-science in its viewpoint while science obviously isn't. Science, to a large part, is constantly under revision & often gets refined and more accurate as time goes by.

Just trying to show how they both are aspects of the same quest for truth and answers to universal questions.

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Response to Billsmile (Reply #15)

Sun May 26, 2013, 09:11 PM

20. No, sorry...they are not

 

Religions do not "discover" truth or answers to your so-called "universal questions", or even gradually get closer to them. They declare the answers that they have decided by fiat and do everything they can to gain hegemony for their version of things, in as large an arena as possible. Once they have, facts, evidence and reason no longer matter, only clinging to dogma and defending it at all costs. Religion and science are most definitely not part of the "same quest" for anything.

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Response to Billsmile (Reply #15)

Mon May 27, 2013, 02:05 AM

39. Not even close.

 

Religion has nothing to do with any quest for truth. It simply decides what it prefers the truth to be then declares it to be so and stops there. That's not truth seeking that's denial.

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Sun May 26, 2013, 08:18 PM

16. Click-bait fake controvery. Author deliberately took the Pope out of context to draw views.

"We must meet one another doing good. ‘But I don’t believe, Father, I am an atheist!’ But do good: we will meet one another there."

Beautiful sentiment. If we all do good we will all meet at our ideal destination.

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Sun May 26, 2013, 08:18 PM

17. I don't want to go to heaven, even if it existed. I didn't hang with the "saints" in life, I'll

be damned if I want to spend eternity with them.

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Sun May 26, 2013, 08:31 PM

18. Pope Frankie is not shaking up the RC world

but he IS ticking off a lot of its more narrow and smarmy minded members, including clergy and laity. And that is, I think, what he intended. No condescension to atheists intended. Quite the contrary.

But he's not a new Pope or a revolutionary Pope. He's maintaining a severe stance vis a vis homosexuality. Ditto, females as priests. And he is not about to change his or the Church's feelings about either issue.

So the RC Church is still anathema (to use one of its favorite words) to me.

But if he dies suddenly, from some ill-defined cause, it will be a fair guess that he pissed off the wrong members of the Curia -- just like JPI.

As for humanity: I don't think homo sapiens is evil or good. Just horribly incompetent. The proper study of man reveals millenia of warfare, distrust, slaughter, mayhem, horror -- offset by millions of unacknowledged and unheralded acts of love end kindness. We're not bad enough to be Klingons, and not good enough to be angels. Another Pope (a Catholic, BTW) said it very eloquently. Man is:

Placed on this isthmus of a middle state,
A Being darkly wise, and rudely great:
With too much knowledge for the Sceptic side,
With too much weakness for the Stoic's pride,
He hangs between; in doubt to act, or rest;
In doubt to deem himself a God, or Beast . . .

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Sun May 26, 2013, 09:29 PM

21. I donno why people always try to make it more then what it is.

What I get from this is that he is telling his flock to be inclusive. Who cares if people are atheists, if they are good people they are ok. I think that is all he was saying.

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Sun May 26, 2013, 09:42 PM

22. We know what he thinks of atheists. What does he think of the child rapists and their enablers

who he is still protecting behind the walls of the Vatican?

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Sun May 26, 2013, 09:49 PM

23. Dear Pope, Atheists Don't Need Redemption...

 

But hey, Thanks for thinking about us.

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Response to BillyRibs (Reply #23)

Sun May 26, 2013, 11:54 PM

32. Amen....;) nt

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Mon May 27, 2013, 12:24 AM

37. I doubt Pope Francis spends much time reading HuffPo, so if Rosch wants to tell him something

he probably ought to put a stamp on it and drop it in the mail

But since Rosch presumably knows that already, his target audience isn't really the Pope

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Response to struggle4progress (Reply #37)

Mon May 27, 2013, 08:09 PM

47. I doubt atheists spend much time listening to the Pope's sermons, so...

...if the Pope wants to tell us something, he probably ought to get himself an account on Freethoughtblogs.

But since the Pope presumably knows that already, his target audience isn't really atheists.



See what I did there? Maybe next we can discuss the substantive points of a posted article instead of childishly fixating on rhetorical flourish.

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Response to Act_of_Reparation (Reply #47)

Mon May 27, 2013, 08:36 PM

48. I doubt the Pope was expecting atheists to listen to his talk: he seems to have addressed

various Catholics, with the intent of encouraging them not to condemn atheists uniformly but rather to welcome them wherever they find common ground in common work

So I agree with you: the Pope's target audience there really wasn't atheists

Such details, of course, never prevent folk like Rosch from taking offense

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Response to struggle4progress (Reply #48)

Wed May 29, 2013, 01:21 AM

60. Nonsense

He wasn't encouraging Catholics to accept atheists, he was speaking of the redemptive power of good works, using atheists as prototypical examples of people in need of redemption. If he wanted to tell his flock to be nice to atheists, he would have said, "Guys, be nice to atheists".

Atheists are justifiably offended by this, as news agencies--and a number of posters on this forum--presented the sermon as something it wasn't: an act of reconciliation. This Pope was not reaching out to atheists, and even if he were, saying "You're going to hell after all", while a positive change in tone, is nonetheless a decidedly ineffective means of bridging the gap between our communities.

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Response to Act_of_Reparation (Reply #60)

Wed May 29, 2013, 02:28 AM

62. ... The leader of the world's 1.2 billion Roman Catholics made his comments in the homily

of his morning Mass in his residence ...
Pope defends atheists: Atheists who do good are good, says Pope Francis
Pope Francis said yesterday that atheists (like everyone) have been redeemed by Christ Jesus, and that their goodness is determined by their acts, not their faith (or atheistic lack thereof).
By Philip Pullella, Reuters / May 23, 2013

Imma go out onna limb here and suggest non-Catholics non-flocking to hear the homily at the morning mass at the Pope's residence. And mebbe, y'know, you donna wanna know what the Pope says then you donna listen Vatican Radio

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Tue May 28, 2013, 09:55 AM

49. I don't need to be redeemed...

I wasn't born with 'Original Sin' and I haven't done anything particularly bad that I need redemption.
The whole concept of 'Original Sin' is vile and unjust. We are to be punished for another's crime. That is a grave injustice as far as I am concerned.

But the Pope aint listening to me anyhoo, so... whatever.

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Tue May 28, 2013, 09:47 PM

52. This must be part of being a good beard for the Ratz.

I wonder what the real Pope is up to these days.

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