Catholicism

Turmoil in the Catholic church

Issue section: 
Issue: 
Author: 

Recent months have seen the row over the abuse of children by Catholic priests intensify, with the pope himself directly implicated in the cover-up. Kevin Devine analyses the social role of the Catholic church, and the circumstances which enabled these crimes to continue for so many years

"A scandal crying out to heaven." This is how dissident theologian Hans K√ľng described the widespread revelations of the physical and sexual abuse of children and adolescents by Catholic priests, nuns and brothers in the US, Germany, Ireland and other countries. That someone who remains a Catholic, despite repeated clashes with the authorities, can portray the situation facing the church like this gives an idea of the scale of the issue.

Pope Idol

Issue section: 
Issue: 
Author: 

John Paul II's social conservatism should not be taken as gospel.

John Paul II was, according to that impeccable news source Yahoo!, 'the people's pope'. Other than a huge ego, it's hard to say what he had in common with 'the people's princess' Diana, and the headline probably had more to do with the ease of alliterating the 'p' than anything else. If there is an afterlife, Pontius Pilate must be kicking himself that he wasn't born 20 centuries later.

We've also heard endlessly about 'spontaneous outpourings of emotion', the way he 'touched people's lives' and all the other mawkish sentiments rolled out whenever someone famous cops it.

Subscribe to RSS - Catholicism