News and events

The holy texts

When you see the Pope (or any world leader) speaking, at least you know the words are coming out of his own mouth, even if he may not have written it all himself.

I do wonder though how much of a role the Pope had in sending the papal SMSs last week.

  • Tue 15 July — Young friend, God & his people expect much from u, because u have within u the Father’s supreme gift: the Spirit of Jesus – BXVI
  • Wed 16 July –The Holy Spirit gave the Apostles & gives u the power boldly 2 proclaim that Christ is risen! – BXVI
  • Thu 17 July — The Holy Spirit is the principal agent of salvation history: let him write your life-history 2! – BXVI
  • Fri 18 July — The Spirit impels us 4ward 2wards others; the fire of his love makes us missionaries of God’s charity. C u tomorrow nite – BXVI
  • Sat 19 July — Dear friend, u must be holy & u must be missionary: never separate holiness from mission – BXVI
  • Sun 20 July — Young friend, the Spirit is calling u 2 be a bearer of the good news of Jesus 2 your generation – BXVI

Obviously they’re aimed at the young pilgrims who were here for World Youth Dayweek. And fair enough that any organisation wanting to reach its audience should use the latest technology.

But I have some trouble imagining his holiness whipping out the mobile from under his robes, thumbs ablur, furiously texting “C u tomorrow nite”, before comparing ring-tones with his bishops.

By Daniel Bowen

Transport blogger / campaigner and spokesperson for the Public Transport Users Association / professional geek.
Bunurong land, Melbourne, Australia.
Opinions on this blog are all mine.

15 replies on “The holy texts”

That’s your ageism talking though. Obviously he didn’t use a phone to send these because that’s not how mass-SMS is done. But I’m sure he came up with the exact statements, then someone else would have translated them into wanker-text and fed them to Telstra to be delivered to (some of) the people who subscribed to the service.

I still can’t fathom the Catholic Church. Here we have one of the “campest” organisations on the planet. Lots of times when I see a priest talking on TV or whatever my gaydar goes off (well, except Cardinal Pell). There was one in particular on the tarmac when the Pope first landed who I thougth he wouldn’t have been at all out of place in the Mardi Gras Parade.

Then you’ve got Numerous homo-erotic references at the Vatican itself (works from Michaelangelo etc etc), and yet the church is dead against it.

No wonder the Pope were’s red shoes. Of course he has his excuse that they “represent the blood of christ” or something, but I know better. It’s because he knows they look fabulous on him. And he’s right!

I am sick of world youth day publicity. You think those evangelicals or the Westboro Baptist Church in the US are crazy, think again. I am Christian Orthodox (Greek/Serbian orthodox), but I am hardly religious. You do not see this in other faiths.

They must pay out victims of sexual abuse. A lot of catholic priests are active homosexuals.

It’s good that they are active homosexuals – that way, religion has a chance of surviving the onslaught of secularism that has benefited humanity.

Moreover, I think no religion is particularly good – in the same way I think making a mistake on a maths exam is not good.

WYD cost $62million. It should never have occurred.

hay mr nick – i recon you might actually be thinking of the anglican preists being active homosexuals. the anglicans have made a decision to accept it.

they were a thing that you had a choice to subscribe to. most people who went chose to subscribe

so much for the pope being a “stalker” … or are we just looking for any reason we can get to mock the pope?

guess what – no matter what you think – even if god isnt real (which i beleive he is) you gotta agree that having kids run around screaming praise and going to world youth day and things like that is a whole lot better than sticking needles in their arms and sleeping with different people every night and getting in vrawls and stabbings.

would you rather your kids go get wasted/stoned/trashed/drugged up/raped or go to world youth day and follow a god of love and kindness and fellowship and have something to beleive in? (even if you dont think its true)

brainwashed by religeon or brainwashed by lack of faith and reason to exist? actually think about it before you jump down my throat in retaliation.

ive made my choice.

I’ll try to keep it respectful. But Shaz – I’ve never heard a more emotive diatribe.
I won’t launch into a full argumentative assault – but can I ask you: Is it a sin to be gay? Can you prove there is a god? Is atheism the cause of contemporary wars?

Besides Shaz, is it an either/or question? ie., do kids have to be either going to Youth day or out raping and pillaging? I’m a died in the wool, born-again, I’ve seen the light, agnostic – yet I’ve never shoved a needle in my arm, or stabbed anyone who didn’t deserve it :-)

To those of you who have used the recent World Youth Day in Sydney to launch a vicious attack on religion, Christianity in general, and Roman Catholicism in particular, you are a group of sad, angry, bitter people! Have you nothing better to do than attack the beliefs and way of life of one sixth of the world’s population? As a proud and devout Catholic, I find it particularly offensive and upsetting that my beliefs are ridiculed and insulted by people who do not share the same beliefs. I respect peoples’ right to believe in whatever they wish- Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, or even atheism. But I do not appreciate being told what to believe by somebody else! Militant atheists like to spout off that we Catholics are intolerant to other beliefs, but we could accuse them of being the same. To me, it seems as if many atheists are not simply content with not believing in God themselves, that everyone else must share the same view as them. Some might consider that indoctrination, as Mr Van Bemmel has so noted on his blog:
‘Religion involves indoctrination. Basically, this refers to the process of teaching repetitiously or inculcating a belief that is unsubstantiated. Teaching that only that belief is right and that all other beliefs are wrong etc etc. This means that people remain close-minded. It could also be viewed as a form of brainwashing.’
Simply put, atheists have about as much luck as trying to disprove God to me, as I have of proving God to them! So to attack an event that generated nothing but goodwill in Sydney is pretty bitter and narrow minded! Also, to attack an organization that has helped millions of people around the world, through its charitable programs, such as St Vincent de Paul, and through its missionary work in third world countries, is downright despicable! Let me know of any atheist organizations which have helped in the same way! Religion and faith can be a great source of comfort for people who have gone through difficult periods in their life- having been orphaned at the age of 6, it is my Catholic faith that has provided me with the strength and love to make a better life for myself and everyone around me! Churches are also communities- people of similar beliefs who congregate every weekend to listen to, talk to, and help one another. And yes, I am a proud conservative, who likes to hold onto traditional values, as I feel they are the bedrock of a stable society. Mr Van Bemmel asks if atheism is the cause of contemporary wars- maybe not, but in my opinion, it is in part responsible for the breakdown of morals and ethics in society- the lack of respect towards others, the selfishness of modern day thinking, the breakdown of the traditional family unit, among others! Mr Van Bemmel also points out on his blog:
‘Religion promotes more children. Religious families across the world have more kids. This is an environmental disaster since we can’t afford to have more people on the planet (as I shall outline later). Maybe this is because they refuse condoms on a “moral” ground.’
So having children is evil, apparently!? One might like to ask Mr Van Bemmel exactly what he is? To sum it up, I am proud of Pope Benedict XVI, as he is an example of a great, loving, caring leader, who has reached out to all people of all faiths. And of all the cardinals, bishops and priests, whose names have been vilified because of a few bad seeds, they are great leaders within their own communities, who give so much to so many in their hour of need! I pray for men such as my confirming bishop, Cardinal George Pell, and Melbourne Archbishop Denis Hart, that they have the strength to endure such vitriol, and to continue the great work they do for their communities! If atheists are sincere in their talk on tolerance, they might like to start by extending it to the people who believe contrary to them! Thankyou!

Oh, dear. That seemed to have brought up a whole lot of barely repressed vitriol.

The whole thing reminds me of a story a person who went to one of these a number of years ago told me about the masses of used condoms she saw in the camp grounds the pilgrims were staying in. But, then, of course, religious pilgrims (such as those going to Santiago de Compostella) were already considered in the Middle Ages to be a source of trouble.

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