Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Test of Faith

The Pope has demanded a priest quit his job as an MP. It's not much of a loss, since the MP in question, Raymon Gravel, is one of the more tedious members of the Bloc Quebecois. Still, I'm impressed that he complied. Obviously, he is someone who actually lives his faith, whether you agree with it or not.
Yes, it's a bit hypocritical that the Church, which has known its share of political acts and actors, including the present Pope, to demand its lower clergy stay out of politics. And I'm very troubled by the fact the Vatican made the ruling because of complaints by people in Quebec who did not like Gravel's positions on issues. Still, it might be a step forward in ridding the world of priest politicians like Aristide of Haiti and some of the liberation theology advocates who helped fill the ranks of the Sandinista cabinet. I'm not sure how to read this, thought. If the Pope really plans to pull the clergy out of active politics, he's going to have some real fights with Jesuits, especially in the Third World. And he's going to have to be consistent, not acting just when people complain.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

If someone, especially the media, would read the Code of Canon Law of the Catholic church, one wouldl know that its nothing new about prohibitng Catholic clergy from "having an active role in politcal parties".

§3 Clerics are forbidden to assume public office whenever it means sharing in the exercise of civil power.

§2 They are not to play an active role in political parties or in directing trade unions unless, in the judgement of the competent ecclesiastical authority, this is required for the defence of the rights of the Church or to promote the common good.

John Paul II forcefully enforced this. Does nobody remember why Fr. Bob Ogle didn't run for re-election for the NDP in 1984.

I wish someone would give Warren Kinsella a lesson on the history of Canadian church/state relations Where is this "separation of church and state" in Canadian law that he's alwyas going on about.