THEIST_WATCH Msg : 10 Written : 06/15/94 06:48pm From : ROBIN MURRAY-O'HAIR Status : To :

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THEIST_WATCH Msg : 10 Written : 06/15/94 06:48pm From : ROBIN MURRAY-O'HAIR Status : To : ALL Subj : RCC Admit Errors? Could the Roman Catholic church really be ready to apologize to the world? To make amends for all the murders, rapes, thefts, and crimes it has committed? Well, don't hold your breathe. It seems that during a two-day meeting between the cardinals of the Roman Catholic church and the pope to discuss church celebrations for the year 2000, the pope almost said that. Apparently, on Monday, June 13, he commented that "only the courageous recognition of the faults and omissions of which Christians have in some way been responsible" could help lead the church into the 21st century. Saying that the church's historical methods of coercion were similar to the regimes of Hitler and Stalin, the pope seemed to want to apologize at last for the Inquisition. In addition, in a 25-page memo sent to the cardinals before the meeting, the pope commented "How can one remain silent about the many forms of violence perpetrated in the name of the faith? -- wars of religion, tribunals of the Inquisition and other forms of violations of the rights of persons?" But the cardinals would have none of that. They replied that "A great effort should be concentrated on studying our present situation, as it is easier to deplore the mistakes of the Church in earlier centuries than it is to face present mistakes." And then they started attacking the United Nations Conference on World Population, scheduled for September because they fear that the conference might endorse birth control and abortion. Don't think the pope was entirely reasonable. He asked Muslim countries to give Christians the same freedoms Muslims enjoy in Christian countries (like the freedom given them to die in the Inquisition in Spain? In the crusades?). The pope also that "the time has arrive to debunk legends that have sometimes circulated on the subject of fabulous wealth hidden in the Vatican. The truth is very different." Then how can he afford all that fancy clothing, gold shoelaces, and globe-trotting? THEIST_WATCH Msg : 22 Written : 07/01/94 03:35pm From : ROBIN MURRAY-O'HAIR Status : To : ALL Subj : Say That Again Say That Again As American Atheists review the religious news, we run into items which boggle the mind. We intend from time to time to give you "For Examples." In reviewing the new Catechism put out by the Roman Catholic Church, we found this little gem in an Associated Press wire service dated 27 May 1994 and titled "Purgatory." In special sections on purgatory, the communion of the church on heaven and Earth and the communion of saints, the catechism makes clear that: . . . a perennial link of charity exists between the faithful who have already reached their heavenly home, those who are expiating their sins in purgatory, and those who are still pilgrims on Earth. Between them there is, too, an abundant exchange of all good things. THEIST_WATCH Msg : 35 Written : 07/11/94 06:39pm From : ROBIN MURRAY-O'HAIR Status : To : ALL Subj : Insurance and the Church Nothing needs to be added to this direct quote from _Catholic Trends_, vol. 24, no. 25 (July 2, 1994), a church publication: "Aetna Casuality and Security Co. has filed a lawsuit offering sixteen reaons why the company 'has no duty to defend or indemnify' the Diocese of Providence, R.I., or diocesan priests on charges involving the alleged clergy sexual abuse of minors. Diocesan attorney William Murphy said he has sixty days from June 15, the date the papers were received by the diocese, to respond to the lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court in Providence. Among the reasons for its lawsuit, Aetna held that insurance law prohibits insurance coverage of actions 'so egregious and improper' as child molestation; the alleged misconduct did not happen just once or by mere accident, and therefore is not subject to coverage; the alleged miscondust did not happen 'on behalf of' the diocese; and the diocese knew about the alleged miscondust as it was going on, but did not disclose the knowledge of potential losses to the insurance company." THEIST_WATCH Msg : 36 Written : 07/11/94 06:45pm From : ROBIN MURRAY-O'HAIR Status : To : ALL Subj : Yes, this is real news We know readers will accuse us of making this up, but the following information was snatched from the pages of _In These Times_ (3/1/94), a national news commentary magazine. It seems that the ordinary way to gather male sperm for medical use is to have men masturbate. And, according to the Vatican, masturbation is a sin, even if it's done for science. But help is at hand for scientifically-minded Roman Catholics! The Vatican has approved a vibrating machine that attaches to the testicals in order to obtain the release of sperm which can then be caught in a receptable. The _National Catholic Reporter_ terms this a major medical breakthrough since it is a "moral alternative to masturbation." The University of the Sacred Heart in Rome survey seventeen men on whome the machine had been used and concluded that: "components that constitute the masturbation act would seem to be absent (such as) direct stimulation of the genital organ (and any) erotic feelings." _In These Times_ comment that work is still being done on the device to make it painful. THEIST_WATCH Msg : 38 Written : 07/12/94 05:08pm From : ROBIN MURRAY-O'HAIR Status : To : ALL Subj : Catholics vs. the Pope Gather Statistics While Ye May Catholics for a Free Choice (founded in 1973) are hardly in a position to fight the Vatican, but they do the best they can with a barrage of press releases. Now they are now relying on statistics. The latest were issued on July 7, but little is said of how they were obtained. They all have to do with some or other manifestation of sex. It seems that: ** 61 percent of Polish voters favor legal abortion; ** 52 percent of the Irish are opposed to the Vatican's views of contraceptives; ** 72 percent of Brazilians see no harm in using birth control. ** 88 percent of Mexicans think that either the mother or the couple involved have the decision for abortion. ** 73 percent of Chileans are for legalized divorce. ** 83 percent of respondents in the Philippines agree to use condoms to prevent the spread of AIDS. The group wound up its presentation with the main statistic - that there are almost six billion people in the world and, after all, the pope claims only to represent one billion. THEIST_WATCH Msg : 43 Written : 07/21/94 05:42pm From : ROBIN MURRAY-O'HAIR Status : To : ALL Subj : Catholics Don't Agree No wonder the pope wants governments and the U.N. to oppose articifical birth control -- he can't get his parishioners to listen to him any other way. Catholics for Free Choice has released new statistics that show that even in the most Catholic of countries, members of the church are in disagreement with church rules on issues related to sexuality: ++ 61 percent of Polish voters favor a legal right to abortion. Only 10 percent favor a complete ban on abortion. However, 95 percent of Poles are Roman Catholics. ++ Mexico is 93 percent Catholic, but 88 percent of the folks there think that abortion should be the decision of a couple or a woman. ++ 72 percent of Brazilians say that all forms of contraception are morally acceptable. Couples should be free to choose abortion as an option, according to 40 percent of the country. ++Abortion is illegal in Ireland, which is 94 percent Catholic. But 71 percent of the Irish favor allowing the procedure in some circumstances. The church's position on contraception is oppsed by 52 percent. The Vatican claims to represent the voice of 944 million Catholics. *********************************************************************** * * * American Atheists website: http://www.atheists.org * * PO Box 140195 FTP: ftp://ftp.atheists.org * * Austin, TX 78714-0195 * * Voice: (512) 458-1244 Dial-THE-ATHEIST: * * FAX: (512) 467-9525 (512) 458-5731 * * * * Atheist Viewpoint TV: avtv@atheists.org * * Info on American Atheists: info@atheists.org, * * & American Atheist Press include your name and mailing address * * AANEWS -Free subscription: aanews-request@listserv.atheists.org * * and put "info aanews" in message body * * * * This text may be freely downloaded, reprinted, and/other * * otherwise redistributed, provided appropriate point of * * origin credit is given to American Atheists. * * * ***********************************************************************

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