Monday, September 3, 2012

Pope: If You Hate the Church, the Honest Move is to Leave

Aren't holidays awesome?  I've been catching up on some blog reading today and I came across this story on several different sites.  The Holy Father, during a recent Angelus address, said that if a Catholic doesn't have the Faith anymore, it would be more honest to leave.  Click here for the full story.

This confirms for me something I taught my students the past few years at Ritter - the idea that I have more respect for people who have thought through the issues and leave the Church than I do for the people who disagree with the Church on every conceivable issue of importance, but don't do the intellectually honest thing and leave.

I've said many times I'd much rather talk to an atheist than a cafeteria Catholic because while an atheist has taken false premises to their true conclusion, a cafeteria Catholic has taken true premises through to false conclusions while also lacking the courage to ACT on those false conclusions.  Is there anything more illogical than "catholics" who hate the Church?  There is no such thing as Twinkie fans who hate Twinkies, no such thing as Buddhists who hate Buddhism, and no such thing as football fans who hate football.

I'm glad to see the Pope confirm something I've felt for a long time - if people don't like the Church, they should do the intellectually honest thing and leave. 


  1. Exactly what I did.

    1. Well, I respect that more than if you believed what you believe but had stayed

    2. Might want to tell him the consequences for doing that. Should he die without returning to the church, the Catholic Church says that he will go to hell and suffer agonizing torture there forever. That's Catholic teaching, plain and simple. Pope Benedict should have said that in his speech or whatever.

    3. Alas Father,
      I was once a cafeteria Catholic. Pro-choice, pro-same-sex marriage. Everything that would probably tick you off. There is hope for them yet. It took a young Catholic couple with a baby on the way who gradutated from Fransician to show me that some people actually uphold the Magesterium of the Catholic Church. Their witness set me on a path to conversion. Perhaps some of these frustrating folks could one day embrace the Church they grew up in. You are not alone in your evangilization. Your Church is working with you. I hate to sound obnoxiously optimistic, but God proved it possible through this poor sinner :)

    4. Simon,
      It isn't Church teaching at all that he will go to hell and suffer agonizing torture there forever. To the extent that other people share in elements of salvation in the Church (to the extent that they Baptize, pray on the Scriptures, etc.) people can be considered somehow in the Church even though they don't think or even want to be in the Church. The Church doesn't say who goes to Heaven or Hell - we say you need to somehow be in the Church but the Church acknowledges that there are other ways to potentially be "in the Church"

  2. Fr. You are the reason why I am on my computer so much....I love your posts...and oh darn, it started to rain again. I guess I can not cut the grass afterall....Oh Well....NEXT POST, please!!!

  3. I'm glad I read the linked article, as it mentions the Pope discussing Judas, which always interests me, as Judas is an important example in scripture.. I assume when Judas was outed in the last verses of John chapter 6, that this was two years before the crucifixion, and that probably Jesus continued to pray that Judas would exercise his free will and convert or repent. (Jn 17 contains his prayer about keeping the souls entrusted to him by the Father) I've also read Bishops blogs that seem to oppose one another, One claims Judas received communion at the last supper, the other says he didn't. (i assume this isn't defined teaching? I lean that Judas did receive, years later Paul tells us receiving unworthily can lead to death, which has no bearing whether Judas did other than it could be an example Paul was aware of.)
    its off the subject but Father what is your understanding on whether Judas received?

  4. I am glad to be away from the catholic and its chaotic hypocrisy !
    Their leader cant forgive his butler
    Where is the mercy ?
    Where is the Love ?

  5. I left the church, not because I hated it, but because theologically I found myself "outside the circle" of theological beliefs that are required to receive communion. It wasn't an easy decision. Much prayer and anguish actually. But in the end, I felt much like the phrase attributed to Luther (though commonly rejected as a real quote), "Here I stand, I can do no other." Being honest before myself and God, I bailed. I can't for the life of me understand those who stay and are at odds with every teaching. What a horrendous spiritual life that must be.