Saturday, November 15, 2008

No Communion For Obama Supporters, Says South Carolina Priest

From the AP via the Huffington Post news wire:

A South Carolina Roman Catholic priest has told his parishioners that they should refrain from receiving Holy Communion if they voted for Barack Obama because the Democratic president-elect supports abortion, and supporting him "constitutes material cooperation with intrinsic evil."

The Rev. Jay Scott Newman said in a letter distributed Sunday to parishioners at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Greenville that they are putting their souls at risk if they take Holy Communion before doing penance for their vote.

"Our nation has chosen for its chief executive the most radical pro-abortion politician ever to serve in the United States Senate or to run for president," Newman wrote, referring to Obama by his full name, including his middle name of Hussein.

Click here for the rest.

...but it's okay, apparently, to vote for McCain, who supports aggressive preemptive war, and the death penalty, both of which are opposed by the Catholic Church. I feel reasonably certain that this priest issued no such edict against supporters of President Bush, either, who actually has the blood of hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions on his hands.

Clearly, this makes no fucking sense. I mean, even if this priest was consistent with his condemnation, it still wouldn't make any sense because he would essentially be telling his parishioners to refrain from the political process altogether, which is just a really bad idea in a democracy; citizens need to participate or it isn't really democracy--on the other hand, first century Christianity was able to thrive in the Roman world only because the new religion was apolitical, but then Rome was no democracy.

But I digress.

This "can't take communion" thing is the necessary result of mixing politics and religion, which happens all the time in the United States, but is more often than not something that fucks up both country and religion alike. Whatever. The cultural, political, and economic institutions of power known as churches are what they are, and will do what they will. They are, after all, private organizations, funded by private donations, and like other private organizations such as the John Birch Society or the Ku Klux Klan, can say whatever crazy kind of shit they want, whenever they want.

So here's a little unsolicited advice for any of my fellow countrymen of the Catholic persuasion who are feeling politically repressed by their Church: quit. You don't have to take this shit. You don't have to divide your political self from your spiritual self. Indeed, I'm not telling you to be an atheist or agnostic or anything like that; quite the reverse, I'm telling you to keep your relationship with God while abandoning your relationship with an institution of power that insists on pitting loyalty to country against loyalty to the Almighty. Fuck 'em. They can't tell you what to do. You don't need any fucking priests dangling wine and wafer over your mouth only to yank it away if you don't beg correctly. Just quit. Millions of American Catholics have already done it. It's cool. It's very American.

Quit the Catholic Church!

Of course, that's easy for me to say with my Protestant background. The entire Reformation was about quitting the Catholic Church. Protestants love to quit. Fuck man, I quit being a Southern Baptist long ago, myself, which is just soooo Protestant. You can take the boy out of the church, but you can't take the church out of the boy.

Actually, we'd all be much better off if
everybody quit their churches. As if that's going to happen. But it's still a good idea.

UPDATE: You know, I'm really only telling people to quit their churches half-heartedly, with tongue in cheek, but check this shit out. That's what I'm talking about. Good stuff.