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Thursday, June 18, 2015

The Pope and global warming

The Pope has pronounced global warming to be man-made and a bad thing.

The reaction is interesting.

Whose mind, exactly, is the Pope going to convince?

The people who are most vociferously cheering the Pope are non-religious humanists who have no use for religion except as a political weapon.

In place of an omnipotent God they worship themselves. Many have a childlike faith in “science.”

Will he convince academics for whom religious people are a distant tribe suitable for anthropological study?  Most are already true believers. 

Will Catholics who use birth control - against church teaching - be convinced that the gasoline that gets them from place to place is evil?

Will the Pope persuade Protestants who make up half of America’s Christians and who broke from Rome about 500 years ago?

At one time the Pope had political powers because the Christian world was Catholic and the Church could keep consign your immortal soul to Hell. Today the concept of Hell is so passé that it’s rarely even brought up in church. For many church-goers God is not a just God.  Instead He is "Love" - the Almighty Patsy.

The Catholic Church has temporal power when it speaks to spiritual matters. It speaks to a widespread universal yearning when it addresses issues like freedom.  That’s what gave John Paul II the moral authority to help bring down Communism in Easter Europe.

But when it enters into secular territory, even as it tries to couch its views in moral terms, the disguise is flimsy.  The Catholic church has no particular expertise in the realm of science and endangers it's claims to a higher morality when it enters disputes about the morass of competing facts regarding global warming.

The Pope calls for charity and the impulse to help the poor are universally admired.  The public, especially the American public remains incredibly charitable. Truly religious people have always railed against the rampant consumerism that is so much a part of modern, and need we say, Liberal culture. You will not hear a sermon in church at Christmas time to go out and spend money to buy stuff.  That's for popular - secular - culture.  That's a culture where money, goods, envy and the desire to divide the spoils is the real – but unadmitted - core of the issue of income disparity.

Liberals are happy to have found a Pope who agrees with them that fossil fuel is evil. They have also found themselves championing men who claim to be women and Caucasians who claim to be Black. They are also the champions of women of easy virtue who change their minds about sexual encounters and claim to have been raped. I’m really rather glad they are not on my side.

As for me, a Protestant Christian, I hope this Pope does not do too much damage to his brand of Christianity.  

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