Pope uses Christmas message to hate on gays

What is wrong with the Catholic church in general, and this Pope in particular?

I know some will say all religion is this hateful. But I don’t buy it.  My religion, Greek Orthodox, isn’t exactly good on gay issues, or many progressive issues.  Hell, we broke from the Catholics, or they broke from us, 1,000 year ago, and sadly, we still hold many of the same out-dated, sexist views that the Catholics hold.  Yet we’re not nearly as publicly hateful as the Catholic church.

And the Jews are decent, policy-wise – at least Reform Judaism – among others faiths.

Yet there’s an aggressive meanness to the Catholic church, and to this Pope, that you also see in evangelicals, Baptists, and Mormons.  Who uses their Christmas message to to talk about people they hate?  It reminds me of people who, in their online dating profiles, put a long description of what they’re “not” looking for, and what you’d better “not” be like.  The anger is palpable, and distasteful.  It’s a window into a troubled soul.

Christmas gift dead witch

Christmas hate from the Pope, via Shutterstock

I’d always felt that some gay people, when Catholic-bashing, went too far.  Now I get it.  I also get the Inquisition.  Imprisoning Galileo.  The stories about Catholic indifference (at best) with the Nazi threat during World War II.  And while people can say that it’s irrelevant that the current Pope was a Nazi as a youth, you have to wonder about a religion that isn’t concerned about the fact that it’s picking a former Nazi as its leader.  The Vatican could have skipped a round and picked a German next time – a German who wasn’t a Nazi – but they didn’t.  It speaks to the arrogance and the moral indifference.

And then there’s the serial rape of children.  The lack of any desire to put a stop to it.  And the active effort to cover it up, even to this day.  Who would side with pedophiles over the children they rape?  The same kind of person who would make Christmas about hate.

From Reuters:

Pope Benedict on Friday signaled the Vatican was ready to forge alliances with other religions against gay marriage, saying the family was threatened “to its foundations” by attempts to change its “true structure”.

The pope’s latest denunciation of gay marriage came in a Christmas address to Vatican officials in which he blended religion, philosophy, anthropology and sociology to illustrate the position of the Roman Catholic Church.

CyberDisobedience on Substack | @aravosis | Facebook | Instagram | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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95 Responses to “Pope uses Christmas message to hate on gays”

  1. Peter says:

    Many Catholics would agree that a whole new approach to sexual diversity is required in contemporary society, including opening the bonds of marriage to homosexuals. But this cause is not well served by the kind of emotive invective peddle by John Aravosis. The Pope’s official Christmas message to the
    world is available in many places, including here:

    The reader will note that there isn’t a single reference to homosexuals or gay marriage. It is certainly true that in a Christmas speech to Vatican insiders he denied that gay marriage was a legitimate institution. I don’t agree with him, but where was the ‘hate’ towards gays? No examples are offered in the post above, and not a single argument of the Pope’s is engaged. This is, alas,
    typical of a knee jerk liberal conformism and groupthink which is so in vogue in the US and
    UK right now.

    Finally, the ‘former Nazi’ slur is beneath contempt. By law, 14 year old boys were drafted into the Hitler Youth, and he was later drafted into the armed forces, from which he deserted. This is well established in the biographical literature. By the reasoning of Aravosis in this and his other sensationalist posts, every German boy (possibly girl, too?) of that generation was a Nazi and should have been
    excluded from public life thereafter. Perhaps the same stance should have been adopted towards US
    citizens who happened to be alive before African Americans were given full civil rights. After all, they all must have been racists who thought black people should be systematically oppressed, right? Such small minded prejudice (at best), outright defamatory lies (at worst), detracts from an otherwise perfectly reasonable stance in favour of gay marriage.

  2. Man for a woman, woman for a man,

    don’t go against nature, it’s not
    part of the plan.

    You say you’re hurting no one with
    eye’s so full of pain,

    you have everything to lose and
    nothing to gain.

    Gaypride i hear you cry, i say you
    live a lie,

    while your mind’s at odd’s with your

    You’ll never attain your Heavenly

    Your pride has overcome your shame

    but you’re not really the one to
    blame, there’s a darker force at work today,

    he’s the one that said that you were

    If your ma and pa thought

    they were gay

    you simply would not exist today

    then how could you be so proud

    to waste a life that was never


  3. rustyoldcar says:

    Not bitter. Just rusty.

    The only icon I have in this particular debate is reason. I support traditional one-man, one-woman marriage because that is want reason leads to, for me.

    I would be happy to debate this sometime, even here on Alternet. But, honestly, most folks here, who one would assume are pretty liberal, and therefore would subscribe to the importance of Reason (you know, the Enlightenment and all of that), really just want to get in the ring and bash those of us who are liberal and happen to disagree with them on this issue.

    Call me more names if you like. It advances nothing.

    And, by redefining marriage…and I am happily married thank you….you are NOT minding your own business, at all. By promoting same-sex marriage you ARE, by definition, redefining an institution that was my business when I entered into it and why you are wanting to change by mental fiat. So, don’t pretend you are “minding your own business” by a entire redefinition of marriage.

    If you have it in a library near to you, I would recommend a book by Harvard Professor Carle Zimmerman called Family and Civilization. A complete and lucid review of the historical record about what happens to civilizations that destroy the natural family of man, wife, and children.

    And, another recent book “What is Marriage?” would be a good read and something for you to comment about and offer sound arguments in the opposite direction.

    But, again, not likely. What I do expect is simply more name-calling (at best) if not downright meanness.

    The fact is that lots of us liberals do not agree that marriage should be wholesale redefined. Lots of us understand that it is incorrect to link “marriage equality” to “racial equality” in the same thought; and, in fact, that “marriage equality” as an argument to support same-sex marriage undercuts racial equality and poses many other harms to society.

    Anyway, I do wish you a happy new year. Maybe there can be a reasoned debate about this issue in America in 2013. I hope so.

    Best to you.

  4. rustyoldcar says:

    Typical dissing, bashing, name-calling by someone who wants to re-define marriage and just can’t stand that some other thoughtful people would disagree with them. It’s called ad hominem. Instead of attacking my argument, you attach the person. “Rusty Old Brain,” “Dumb Nuts,” “Get the Hell Out of the way…”

    In a way, “same-sex” marriage is getting to be, uh, so passe. It is boring, frankly. Some of my gay friends tell me they are sick and tired of the screeching gays who want to box them into “marriage” when that is not really who they are. Can two men love each other? Yes. Can Three women love each other? Yes. Can two women and two men love each other? Yes.

    Should they all be able to enter into mulitple-partners “marriages” because it is love that makes them happy? No. Well, at least I don’t think so. And, if you do, then explain it please.

    If you would like to use REASON instead of simply attacking folks who believe and support traditional marriage, then you might get somewhere. But honestly, you and folks like who who just bash away and then feel good about your verbal bashings, are, well, just getting tiresome to people who really want to think and talk this through.

    I did sort of like the Rusty Old Brain, though. Feels like that some days.

    Merry Day now, and Happy New Year!

  5. Butch1 says:

    Isn’t that the truth!

  6. Butch1 says:

    The only word I can use with GOOD when thinking of him is “grief”

  7. Butch1 says:

    Nice of the Leader of the Roman Catholic Church to stray from the message of “Christ is Born in a lowly manger of a Virgin,” whether it’s true or not and rather preach hate to his flock. What kind of leader is this? It’s the old Cardinal Ratzinger who ran the Inquisition. Even though they changed their name to protect themselves so people wouldn’t recognize them, they were the same diseased bunch of sick little men looking for people to terrorize. He became Pope John-Paul’s right-hand man when it came to flushing out the homosexuals and writing all the church laws against them. This former Nazi has had his hand in most of the dealings with the former Pope on these matters well before he himself became Pope. It was obvious that he worked his way politically into a position where it was obvious he was next in line to be chosen. He became John-Paul’s right-hand man and his favorite for going after what the Pope considered “intrinsic” illness. He never liked us either but with mounting pressure became one of those who could “love the homosexual but, not the sin.” Ratzinger is another thing. I think he would like to get rid of us. This old Nazi hasn’t forgotten his past and he is obsessed with homosexuality and our marriages. To ruin a Christmas message about the Birth of Jesus with his hateful bonding with other churches that want to hate us as well, go to show one that he is no spiritual leader at all. He needs to step aside or be forced out of his position. He is the worst Pope I have ever seen. His face reveals his many sins.

  8. Stev84 says:

    Common law marriage isn’t that widespread anymore. It’s only legally recognized in 9 US states. Most states stopped recognizing it a long time ago.

    Australia, btw, has de facto relationship recognition for gay couples even without official marriage. So Australian same-sex couples can get most benefits just by living together.

  9. Sweetie says:

    The number of justices is anachronistically tiny in the first place.

  10. Papa Bear says:

    Give ’em time…

  11. Papa Bear says:

    Re: non-binding religious theater — in most (if not all) states, pretending to be married (holding out to the public at large as a married couple) is the basis for “common law marriage”, which IS a legal civil contract. And that SHOULD mean that any gay couple that tells everyone they’re married SHOULD be legally bound. It’s a pity that no one’s worked that particular legal angle yet, but give them time…of course, my information could be out of date. A simple DOMA-like state law could over-rule such an effort, but then, that would make for more grounds for a sound constitutional challenge, I’d think.

  12. Grant says:

    So now you’re defining for other people whether they are Christian or not. Great.
    Do you have any idea how many times I’ve heard people smugly say that somebody else is not a real Christian? That somebody is going to hell? That Jesus is the only way?
    Too many.
    I have had multiple “Christians” say to me that all gays deserve to go to hell, that Obama isn’t a real Christian (yeah, yeah, I brought politics into it. Sorry), and that all people who are another religion are damned regardless of how good a person they are. Very loving religion you’ve got yourself there.

    If your God isn’t willing to allow good people into heaven unless they have enough faith to believe in a man who died 2000 years ago, then he isn’t deserving of my time or worship. Mother Teresa said to one of her confessors “Jesus has a very special love for you. [But] as for me, the silence and
    the emptiness is so great, that I look and do not see,—Listen and do
    not hear—the tongue moves [in prayer] but does not speak … I want you
    to pray for me—that I let Him have [a] free hand.”

    Your God does not love. He does not care. And he surely doesn’t deserve my time.

  13. karmanot says:

    My dear Rusty Old Brain: “which is that their relationships are the same as one-man, one-woman married relationships.” Duh, no they are not the same as one man-one woman married relationships—-that’s the whole point dumb nuts. ‘Marriages’ are civil legal contracts in our democracy and should be uniformly held in all states and at the federal level. ‘Marriage’ is also religious theater and non binding if there is no civil contract. If you want some pretend magical sky god drama—-go for it. But, get the hell out of the way of others who want full civil rights.

  14. Ninong says:

    If Ratzinger and JPII were unwilling to allow even a simple priest to be defrocked for criminal sexual molestation of young boys because of the detriment that would cause the Church, then you know they weren’t about to allow the founder and long-time director general of a religious order to be publicly shamed. Ratzinger’s policy from 1981, the first year he was Prefect of the CDF, was to slow walk all investigations, taking years to even formulate an initial response.

    Bishop John Cummins of Oakland wrote to the Vatican requesting permission to defrock a priest guilty of criminal molestation of young boys, something the priest himself was requesting, but Cardinal Ratzinger denied the request for the good of the Church. The initial letter was written in 1981. Ratzinger’s first reply didn’t come until 1985. He turned down the petition but he did it for the good of the Church. He said that granting the petition would be detrimental to the community of Christ’s faithful. In other words, the reputation of the Church is more important that the children of the Church!

    After three requests to the Vatican, the “priestly burdens” were finally lifted from Fr. Stephen Miller Kiesle in 1987. That wasn’t the only instance but it’s one for which Ratzinger’s letter to the bishop was leaked to the press in recent years — not a copy of the letter, the actual letter, in Latin, on the stationery of Sacra Congregatio pro Doctrina Fidei, die 6 novembria 1985.
    Most of those documents were destroyed following what happened with Bernard Cardinal Law in Boston. The Vatican can only harbor a limited number of fugitive prelates fleeing prosecution.

  15. dcinsider says:

    Relax every one. There is no god. Thus this idiot is going to be worm food in the not so distant future. Let’s stop noticing that this ridiculous buffoon exists.

  16. Mike_in_Houston says:

    One of your best-ever posts, John.
    As for Ratzi the Nazi, he is one of the most evil-looking men I have ever seen. I have yet to see a photo of him where he doesn’t look evil and depraved. Makes sense…

  17. FLL says:

    From your comment: “thereby destroying an institution.”

    Assuming you’ve been married, have those same-sex couples destroyed your marriage by getting married themselves? Doesn’t sound like you have much of a marriage if it’s so easily destroyed by people creating personal bonds that are really none of your business anyway. How about we make an amendment to the Constitution that everybody minds their own business… especially losers with nothing better to do than whine about how other people’s happiness somehow harms them. After all, you never hear happy, successful people complaining about marriage equality, do you? Look at the personal history and pathetic public face of your icon, Maggie Gallagher. I doubt if any children out there either admire her or aspire to be like her—any more than they admire or aspire to be like a “rusty old car”—and who can blame them.

  18. garthastro says:

    Don’t forget that he also raped his own children; products of many of the women he got pregnant! What a guy!

  19. rustyoldcar says:

    Good for the Pope. To speak the truth in this day and age of derision for anyone who would stand up for traditional, honest, conjugal marriage takes courage.

    The issue of genderless-marriage is simply that it does not and cannot exist. Marriage is between a man and a woman, that’s it. The selfish revisionists would have you believe that “marriage equality” demands that some things that are not the same, should be called the same thing, thereby destroying an institution, one-man, one-woman marriage that has existed through the eons of time, and for very good reasons.

    Now, one does not even need to get to religious views on marriage to hold that gay-marriage is wrong for several reasons.

    I would challenge anyone to actually read the pope’s message and this book – What is Marriage? http://www.encounterbooks.com/books/what-is-marriage/

    There have been so many lies about homosexuals over the years. Why would they want to promote another one, which is that their relationships are the same as one-man, one-woman married relationships.

  20. Kenneth C. Fingeret says:

    Hello nicho,

    I call him Benny the Rat. I like your description and will try to use them both.

  21. Ninong says:

    Michael, are you familiar with the life of Fr. Marcial Maciel, the founder of the Legion of Christ? Just enter his name in Wikipedia if you don’t know who I’m talking about. Do you know how many seminarians and priests he raped? Do you know how many women he got pregnant? How much money he gave to mistresses? Do you know that JPII and Ratzi, as Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, knew all about his “problems” for decades before he died? Do you know that JPII told Ratzi to shut down the investigation? Then, shortly have JPII’s death, Papa Ratzi ordered Maciel to retire to a life of penance and contemplation. Ha!

    Fr. Marcial Maciel was a close friend of John Paul II. The Vatican had credible evidence against him for decades. They did nothing! Absolutely nothing. Unless you call ordering him to give up his position as General Director of the Legion of Christ and retire to a life of penance and contemplation when he was already in his 80’s doing something.

  22. Ninong says:

    “Throughout all of history marriage has been between a man and a woman.” Really, Michael? Is that what you read in the Bible? On the contrary, marriage was usually between a man and several women if he was in a position to provide for them. How many wives did David have? How many did his son, Solomon, have? You remember Solomon, don’t you? Jesus compared himself favorably to Solomon, saying that he was “greater than Solomon.” He didn’t mention anything about Solomon’s 1,000 wives (counting concubines). I doubt he would have bragged about being “greater than Solomon” if he found Solomon unworthy in any respect.

    Homosexuality is a natural variation of human sexuality. It is 100% genetic!!! That will be proven very, very soon — like before the end of next year! In fact, it’s a natural variation in the sexuality of many animals, not just hominids. Sometimes epigenitic markers that are usually erased during embryonic development are not erased, this leads to a variety of traits that can make identical twins not quite identical. One of the epigenitic markers that is usually erased has to do with sexual orientation. If it is not erased at the proper moment in the early stages of embryonic development the embryo will result in a fetus with same-sex orientation.

    Any psychiatrist or psychologist who advocated your ignorant viewpoint would be a laughing stock and unfit to practice. There is nothing wrong with homosexuality and there is nothing wrong or immoral about homosexual acts. Grow up!

  23. Kenneth C. Fingeret says:

    Hello John Aravosis,

    This pope has a message of love. The love of hate for children, women and gays. With a leader of that caliber who should follow him? It is way past time for all good Catholic followers to leave the Church. Lead by example by saying adios, arriverderci or even auf wiedersehen to a “big” daddy with issues..

  24. BeccaM says:

    And happy Yule to you, too, Salamander.

  25. My personal beliefs are ALL churches or religious institutions should not be tax exempt

  26. karmanot says:

    BRAVO! Well done

  27. Bravo! Thank you for putting into words what I truly feel and believe. Merry Christmas my friend.

  28. man for the most part has corrupted religious faith. What began as love for God as morphed into I love and care for you as long as you believe the way I do. Hardliners, fundamentalist, the religious right, whatever they call themselves know nothing about true love. Love of God and love of man. Their actions and words condemn them. How can you profess to love God and hate a part of His creation? You can’t.
    They hide behind the Christian title. But they don’t know the first thing that Jesus came to share. They have condemned themselves in this life. God will condemn them and exact punishment for their sins in the next life. May God have mercy on their souls

  29. FunMe says:

    “Hate the sin, love the sinner”
    Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaawn (with eyes rolled).

  30. FunMe says:

    “How intolerant you are to the church’s intolerance.” Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaawn (with eyes rolled)

  31. cole3244 says:

    to the vatican consenting adults can’t live a gay lifestyle but priests can molest young boys, thats all you need to know about the nonsense coming out of rome, the pope is not to be taken seriously

  32. karmanot says:

    Ah Mr. Dignity, it is an uphill battle for gay faithful to live in the Church. The Church is not the Vatican and within that is some hope.

  33. dula says:

    Until you start advocating for the execution of those who work on the Sabbath and/or eat shellfish, I can’t take you seriously as a devoted Christian who takes the Bible literally.

  34. BeccaM says:

    I’ve wondered sometimes how many realize the implications behind a religion called the Holy Roman Catholic Church.

    A faith built on the decaying bones of a corrupt and long-fallen empire known for its cruelty, arrogance, and imperialism.

  35. BeccaM says:

    May the Flying Spaghetti Monster bless your shriveled, black little heart.

    p.s. Not all cultures or religions are as bigoted and intolerant as fundamentalist Christianity.

  36. DrDignity says:

    Dear Mr. Not, The pope is off Jesus’ message of loving oneself as one’s neighbor. He may love god in his own way, yet lies to himself concerning human sexuality. Apparently, you did not read this article as your comment is off track of its message. When you seek honesty, you must first tell yourself the truth, also regarding your own sexual orientation. With that, be yourself. This pope is not authentic, in my opinion, as he is not telling his truth & with his self-loathing creates more suffering for those Catholics who are devout & gay. In my experience, the Church is homophobic & homosexual, a lethal combination. That is my truth.

  37. BeccaM says:

    …unless I’m in a bad mood. ;-)

  38. FLL says:

    Ratzinger, the pope of your religion, has not just crossed a moral line by encouraging the faithful to hate people based on their sexuality; he has also crossed a line of good manners and decorum for a public figure, which is never a good strategy for someone representing an institution. Surely you must notice that you and like-minded people are becoming increasing unpopular with your fellow Americans. I’m quite sure that the “unchurched” constitute more than half the population of our country, at this point. You can spout your venom about “sin” on the Internet, but I don’t think it would fly in the workplace or in schools or in the armed forces. So who’s really in the closet? At first, I considered asking you to keep your hostility to yourself, but then I realized that in the workplace, schools and the armed forces… you already do keep your hostility to yourself. Fine with me.

  39. karmanot says:

    I join with Alice Roosevelt in the belief that one should talk smack about the evil dead, after all if Dante can assign Popes to Hell, why not?

  40. karmanot says:

    Particularly on the feast day of St. Dymphna——she who protects clergy who are mentally ill, weak willed and deluded, lest they be mary and gay.

  41. karmanot says:

    WTF are you ta-liking about?

  42. karmanot says:

    We can rely on you Becca to always put our preferred uncivil, theological knuckle sandwich in an eloquent and compassionate form! :)

  43. karmanot says:

    Or real family, for that matter.

  44. karmanot says:

    “What many like you do not understand is that there is a Holy God who created us.” ROTFL—Strike one! And you don’t get credit for sincerity as you throw fire on the faggots.

  45. karmanot says:

    We are not feeling sorry at you holy Troll, we are feeling sorry for you.

  46. karmanot says:

    You go bigotella!

  47. karmanot says:

    Augustine was an SOB. He abandoned his wife and child in the streets of Alexandria, to pursue his perverted views on women, sex and god-forbid—God. What a sweetheart.

  48. Asterix says:

    What do you suppose would transpire were the Pope to directly threaten SCOTUS faithful with excommunication if they failed to hold up DOMA? Would SCOTUS show some backbone?

    Recall that Pius IX excommunicated supporters of Italian Democracy in the 19th century and numerous groups and individuals have been excommunicated (although not necessarily by Mr. Ratzinger personally) for taking a position supporting pro-choice.

  49. DrDignity says:

    Nicho, the closet is a terrible place. To conceal from the world who you really are, deforms everything, including your credibility and your integrity. The self-loathers can be the worst offenders, even worse when they get power. Dom

  50. karmanot says:

    Back to about the 4th Century I’d say.

  51. nicho says:

    Tell that to Ratzi the Nazi.

  52. nicho says:

    Bingo. The King James Version alone contains 30,000 known mistranslations. Also, there is no complete original texts. There are collections of ancient versions of the individual books of what is called the bible and they vary quite a bit, closing in on 100,000 discrepancies among versions. There isn’t one English translation of the bible that can be used to make any kind of a moral argument. They are all seriously faulty and often politically tinged. In fact the word “homosexual” doesn’t appear in the NT until the 1920s when gay began to be seen as a discrete sexual orientation. There is no word for it in Koine Greek, simply because they had no concept of it, so “the bible” really couldn’t have said anything about it.

  53. nicho says:

    Did you have to go to asshole bigot school or does it run in the family?

  54. Once again, the Catholic hierarchy will become surprised that what John F Kennedy said over a helf century ago is true: not all Catholics follow the dictates of the Vatican. The real joke here is Uncle Clarence Thomas, who clearly divorced and remarried, yet the hierarchy is willing to overlook it, as long as he votes the way it dictates!

  55. Precisely my point, in other words! Augustine equated sexuality with the paganism of his previous life. In that life, Augustine practiced neo-Platonism, which was ultimately linked to Zoroastrianism with the forces of good and evil being dominate in the spiritual and material life, respectively. In fact, there was a time when the Christian Fathers considered all sex to be evil, until they confronted the fact that the human race would then die out!

  56. dula says:

    It’s like pullin’ teeth to get a little compliment outta you ;-)

  57. Michael, if you don’t read ancient Greek, Hebrew or Aramaic, then no, the Bible really isn’t “clear” on its face. Second, which Bible are you talking about? You do know that there are at least 15 different versions in English alone, and all have different words, right? Then there’s the translation in probably every language. So which one are you talking about being “clear”? You do know that some English versions mention gays or homosexuality in some passages but other English versions don’t – so which one exactly is “clear” on its face?

    As for history, you seem to have gotten that confused as well. Mormon marriage is based on one man and lots of women. In ancient history marriage is based on one man, his wife, his mistress, his slave, and sometimes his brother’s wife if his brother dies. Oh yes, and ancient history – well, history from ancient times up until only 4 decades ago, marriage was based on one white man marrying one white woman, and one black man marrying one black woman. Why did we change that?

    As for your not allowing your gay family members to call themselves Christian, don’t worry, I don’t consider people like you real Christians either.

  58. citizen_spot says:

    This might help to educate you Michael. The video regarding traditional biblical marriage is especially enlightening.


  59. Stev84 says:

    Go peddle your BS elsewhere

  60. citizen_spot says:


  61. citizen_spot says:

    You seem to be quite intolerant of other “religions”. If you are bothered by what someone else believes, then maybe what’s really bothering you is YOUR own conscience.

  62. BeccaM says:

    Not all share your beliefs or your certainty as to the nature of the universe. I have myself read the Bible many times over the last half century of my life, and in it I find deity-sanctioned genocide, rape, slavery, relegating women to chattel status, the murder of innocents, and a whole list of cultural rules that sincere believers like yourself pick and choose from for a culture two millennia separated from the bronze age culture that originally came up with those rules. You also seem awfully certain what it is your unprovable deity says is and isn’t morally wrong, which strikes me as hubris and prideful.

    Your god also says that eating shellfish is an abomination, as is pork. He also clearly says that men like yourself should not shave your faces or cut your hair. According to your Bible, he clearly ordered that those who violate the Sabbath should be killed.

    A Pope who says that gay people getting married threatens the very fabric of civilization itself is expressing a hate-based religious philosophy. His deity also apparently does not call the Catholic clergy for its sins of child rape, and there are lots of gay people who aren’t suffering for being gay, so I have to wonder if you folks got it all wrong with respect to homosexuality being an inherently sinful state.

    You say you do not hate your gay and/or lesbian family members. If in fact you believe they will suffer eternal damnation for being with someone they love and wanting to have a family of their own, you actually do hate them. It’s for darned sure you don’t really love them.

  63. Michael Near says:

    Mr. Aravosis, I read your blog regarding the Pope’s Christmas Message. I wonder if you actually read the text? It seems as if you did not because the first reaction you have is regarding HATE. That is a word that YOU inserted into the conversation, not the Pope. I suggest that you are allowing your confused understanding of scripture to drive your conclusions. What many like you do not understand is that there is a Holy God who created us. His prescription for life is indicated clearly in the Bible. Throughout all of history marriage has been between a man and a woman. No amount of twisting and re-defining can change that. Simply because you choose not to believe the Bible and God’s word does not negate its authenticity and power.
    If you are, as you claim to be, a person with Christian background, I suggest you read the entire Bible prayerfully and discover for yourself that God,(and the Pope) does not HATE anyone. God simply calls men from their sin and provided the ONLY remedy by sending His Son Jesus Christ to die in our sinful places. We obtain salvation through faith in His resurrection and that only by the gift of Grace.

    This message is a message of LOVE (not hate). It is loving to call a person from a pathway of destruction and offer them communion with God. Do you not see that?

    I have family members that are homosexual, I do not hate them, but I also do not condone their actions. I also certainly would not allow them to call themselves Christian if they continue in open sinful action, which homosexuality was, is and will always be.

    Michael Near

  64. BeccaM says:

    I suppose it depends on how one feels about kittens… ;-)

  65. UncleBucky says:

    Best comment, even though others here comment well on this problem with religion.

    Merry Happy Stuff. ;O)

  66. First tell the truth to yourself & to everyone else. To lie to yourself & to lie to everyone else is disordered. Honesty is the essence of integrity.

  67. Blogvader says:

    You nailed it. I see two major problems with the modern Catholic Church: (a) They still think that their views should be reflected in secular policies that apply to everyone, even Non-Catholics and (b) they’ve institutionalized the protection of sexual predators. It’s easy to do when you have tens of trillions and there are billions of people stupid enough to pay your voluntary religion tax.

    I find it especially distasteful that people think the charity of the Catholic Church gives them a pass on protecting rapists. I mean, if volunteer at a soup kitchen six days a week, yet spend my Saturdays barbecuing live kittens, am I really still a good person?

  68. dula says:

    I distrust those people who know so well what God wants them to do, because I notice it always coincides with their own desires.
    -Susan B Anthony

  69. Stev84 says:

    The problem with Augustine was that he hated his own sexuality and lust. He “struggled” his whole life with “lust” and hated himself for that deeply. And of course he blamed women for tempting him. But instead of keeping that in his private life, he projected his own fucked up sexuality and opinions on everyone else. Paul did pretty much the same, but with Augustine it is very well documented in his writings.

  70. John, I’ve been reading through a book on the early Christian church, and I’ve found it more fascinating than the Reformation. It goes to the roots of Christianity, and Augustine’s erroneous application of neo-Platonic philosophy of Manichian dualism. This was the time when the two halves of the Roman Empire began to drift apart, leading to separation in 1054 of the Catholic and the Orthodox.
    This philosophy thought that the spiritual world was devine and the material world was evil. Thus, sex, which can lead to more souls trapped in this evil world, was also evil. So, the concept of original sin popped up into acceptance. Every one here is a product of that evil! Furthermore, any pleasure from sex is evil.
    So, John, there we have it — something to reject, along with a hierarchy that still longs for a dominance it had in the Middle Ages. Your church depended upon the Byzantine government during that time and did not have such dominance, even after the fall of Constantinople in 1453.

  71. HeartlandLiberal says:

    There you go again, getting all fact based. Don’t you understand you are supposed to build your own reality, then stick to it regardless of facts? That is what these people have built their entire religious systems around. Now they have extended that way of ‘thinking’ into their secular life. After all, everyone knows that Obama is a foreign born Kenyan Communist Socialist who has been planning all along to take away our guns, he was just waiting for a massacre of children to happen to do it. Seriously, I am surprised I have to explain this to you at this point.

  72. HeartlandLiberal says:

    If you want to see what web sites looked like nearly 15 years ago in the earliest days of the web, check out the Vatican web site: http://www.vatican.va/phome_en.htm. Seriously, except for the fact the background is orange, it reminds me of the very first, even the zero generation of web design.

    What I could not find on the site was a single link or page that would let me contact the Vatican. Not even on the press page. No contact information. Pity. I was going to post John’s missive above with a merry wish that the Church crumble into dust, sooner rather than later.

    I am reminded of what the Romans did to Carthage. Salted the fields so that for a generation no crops would grow, this after destroying the city and its populace. Carthago deledum est. This is the fate that the Catholic Church deserves. When you count in the Crusades, the Inquisition, and the Jesuits destruction of the cultures of central and south America, I mean really, is there a Church with more evil and blood on its hands?

  73. samiinh says:

    As we’ve said before, one should only say good things when someone else passes and when this Pope passes, we can all say GOOD.

  74. samiinh says:

    We have been watching the Show Time series “The Tudors” about the life and times of King Henry VIII. In this series one will witness the execution of those who profess a different view than that of first The Church and then The King as Head of the Church. Thomas More executes heretics by burning then at the stake, and latter gets executed himself by being beheaded for refusing to accept the King as the Head of the Church. Religion is an evil institution invented by men to control other men. Christianity has a long, long history of this evil and yet the power of delusion still controls millions of lives even today. I am so glad I’m not one of them.

  75. civil says:

    I said it earlier today, and it appears to be proven yet again. The most hateful group of people I’ve ever seen in my life, and I’ve seen a lot in my life. No I’m not talking about the church. I’m talking about those poor people who feel that everybody is watching them and then they are feeling sorry for themselves for being so misunderstood. If just once they’d be a tenth as tolerant of others as they demand from others, then maybe that hatred would die away a little bit.

  76. Ninong says:

    I don’t know about that but I do know that last year for the very first time Amnesty International listed the Holy See in its State of the World’s Human Rights report for decades of child abuse and coverup in Ireland. That was after the Vatican was publicly blasted by the Irish Prime Minister.

    More than two decades ago the Holy See signed the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child but so far they have ignored it’s requirements completely, refusing to file the required reports.

    You know you’re having a bad year when your personal butler/valet steals thousands of pages of your most confidential documents and turns them over to a newspaper reporter, who then publishes a best-selling tell-all book on financial corruption and back-stabbing inside the Vatican. And that was after the Vatican reluctantly agreed to allow the exumation of the remains of an Italian Mafia don who was buried in a high-profile Vatican-owned vault to determine whether his coffin also contained the remains of a 15-yr-old teenage girl who disappeared around the same time.

    Look for another book before long authored by the latest head of the Vatican Bank who was kicked out quite suddenly at the same time the Pope’s confidential papers were published. The Vatican Bank just seems to be in the thick of things every time there is a new scandal.

  77. civil says:

    I failed to see where the Pope or any other “religion” besides one insane family who calls themselves a church, said they hated gays, or hated anyone.I tend to believe it’s your own intolerance and hatred that brought you to even write your article. Someone having an opinion other than the opinion you have is not hating you, they are simply of a different opinion. Are you truly unable to see that? Do you really carry so much hatred of your own, (probably stemming from your own parents telling you that their “religion” does not support homosexuality), that you hate anyone who doesn’t embrace homosexuality, particularly churches or “religions”? Simply because there were a lot of people who decided to “tolerate” homosexuality, does not mean that homosexuality is tolerated by all. Sure, there are many who said they’d go ahead and tolerate, but that does not make homosexuality “mainstream” by any stretch. Any churches that said, “Sure. Go ahead and be gay, it’s alright with us.” were not likely churches with people in them that are going to go to heaven or anything else traditional church goers might expect to do. You just can’t come along and expect a genuine house of God to turn away from everything they believe in just so they won’t hurt your feelings can you? “Progressive churches” are simply leading their flocks straight to hell in favor of allowing a little sin. After all, times are changing. Shouldn’t we expect God to change too? I don’t think so. None of us will really know though until the day we die. If those intolerant bastard Christians were right, then it won’t matter what you like or believe will it? On the other hand, if they were wrong, then who cares? In the meantime, if you are bothered by what someone else believes, then maybe what’s really bothering you is your own conscience.

  78. jasonut29 says:

    And the nazi speaks again….hate, lies and bigotry…..the way of this Pope!!

  79. BeccaM says:

    Just as a thought experiment, I thought I’d check the religious demographics, if the SCOTUS justice membership represented actual U.S. demo numbers. If it did, we’d have 4 or 5 Protestant (or Protestant variant) Justices, 2 or maybe 3 Catholics, 1 or 2 atheists or agnostics, and either 1 or none from all other faiths, including other Christian sects, Judaism, Buddhism, Islam, Hinduism, or other.

    With its current roster of six Catholics and three Jewish Justices, the Supreme Court isn’t even close to the U.S. demographic numbers.

    In terms of gender, there should be five female justices and four male, while at present there are only three women. The racial balance with one African American and one Latina justice is actually pretty close, although by now we should have had at least one or two justices who were Asian or Asian-Indian, and we’ve had none.


  80. Mighty says:

    This is nothing special really. I mean the Popeinator takes every chance he can to hate on us gays. Probably does it on Arbor day, groundhog day, international fig tree day.

  81. Asterix says:

    From WikiP:

    “In May 2009, President Barack Obama nominated a Catholic woman, Sonia Sotomayor, to replace retiring Justice David Souter.[77] Her confirmation raised the number of Catholics on the Court to six, compared to three non-Catholics.”

  82. Kevin Joseph says:

    really? last i checked the SCOTUS was over represented by jews 30x over.

  83. Asterix says:

    One can only speculate on what position the Supreme Court, which is overwhelmingly Roman Catholic, will take on its deliberations regarding DOMA, given that Mr. Ratzinger has delivered his instructions to the faithful.

  84. karmanot says:

    Not likely. His evilness takes inspiration from his own black heart and his close friend, the former Arch Bishop of San Francisco, who now heads Ratzo’s old seat as the Grand Inquisitor.

  85. FunMe says:

    Walks like a … talks like a … Yup, he’s a NAZI.

  86. FunMe says:

    The pope is EVIL and still has his Nazi heart pumping loud and clear. How anyone can even listen to a representative of a “church” which shows NO love to others the way Jesus taught, is beyond me. Plus they are a church that ABUSES CHILDREN. Sometimes I think hell exist now and the devils are “people” like the pope. The devil wears Prada!

  87. BeccaM says:

    Thank you, Bose. You’re most kind.

  88. BeccaM says:

    Just my opinion, but I feel the rot in the Catholic Church goes way deeper and much further back than just one corrupt old Pope who lacks any sense of human decency or compassion.

  89. Bose says:

    Thanks, Becca… your closing graf is perfect.

  90. Jim Olson says:

    Can we get the SPLC to name the Catholic Church as a hate organization yet?

  91. amynator says:

    I realize that Christmas is a religious holiday, but I really think (regardless of ones religious beliefs) that it’s the best time of the year. It’s the only day when I get to see all my sisters/brother/nieces and nephews all in the same place and I look forward to it every year. I hate that people use a wonderful holiday like this to divide us, it’s purely selfishness and self-serving in my opinion. http://www.ficksitall.blogspot.com

  92. bkmn says:

    I welcome the Catholic church into the political masses, as long as they start paying the amount of tax that they aren’t paying because they are a tax exempt entity.

    Freedom of religion does not mean you get to fire up your church to be politically active, unless you forego the tax free status of being a charity.

  93. karmanot says:

    Once a Nazi—always………

  94. BeccaM says:

    It’s not religion, per se, but how it is practiced.

    There are many which are essentially “Live and let live” — such as the Quakers, the Unitarians, the Episcopals, and so on. Look at religions that feel it is their place not merely to provide a framework for spiritual beliefs, but also to make non-adherents follow their precepts and moral judgments, and this is what we have with the Catholics, the Southern Baptists, the Evangelicals… and yes, conservative Judaism, Islam, and Hinduism (although in America, it’s only the Christians who have their say and their way).

    Christianity when it was first started really wasn’t much more than a reformed brand of Judaism, albeit with a martyred personality cult figure. It was when the rotten, decaying and corrupt remnants of the fading Roman Empire attempted to reassert dominance through the imposition of the state religion of Christianity that the religion itself began to go bad. Suddenly there was a hierarchy, and the creation of dogma and the concept of heresy and, over the centuries that followed, a crusading and inquisitorial core. Convert to this extremely conservative religion or die (sometimes it was “convert, then die so you have no chance to backslide”).

    In each case, the hate seems (to me anyway) to come from this presumed position of moral judgment over others — even when it is clear to casual observers that the religion itself, as practiced (or not) by its followers, is morally flawed and inconsistent. Thus, for example, it’s not enough for the Catholic Church simply to say they choose not to perform religious solemnization ceremonies for same-sex couples — they feel they have to ensure that gay and lesbian non-Catholics cannot marry anywhere else either, especially not through what is supposed to be a purely secular marriage licensing system through the civic government.

    Gay people are not going to straight-marry just so they can have families and kids. What I find fascinating is how the Catholic Church (and all the other hyper-conservative religions) keep trying to deny the existence of family units that have been around for decades, if not centuries. The families exist, as do their children — and yet the Catholic hierarchy, and this hateful Pope in particular, would rather insist that these existing families and their children have no legal rights or protections. Worse, this Pope labels these real families, these people, a moral danger to the very fabric of civilization itself, with no evidence other than the black bile inside his own heart.

    And yes, it is also ironic that the church that spent decades and longer protecting and abetting the pedophile predators in its midst has the gall to assert that gays and lesbians are a danger to children, to the entire notion of ‘family’, and civilization. I think the correct term is ‘Blood Libel.’

    At the risk of going all Overton, there was a national culture that not very long ago labeled an entire arbitrary category of people to be a danger to society and country. And they labeled a few other groups the same way. Then did what comes naturally and sent them off in trains to be exterminated.

    So what’s it to be Pope Ratzinger? This is what you do to a people who have no redeeming value to society, who are, by their mere existence, a danger to everything you hold dear. Is it to be prisons or concentration camps for us? And when can we expect mere imprisonment to be judged not harsh enough because for some weird reason all these gays and lesbians won’t stop being who we are?

  95. Webster says:

    The Vatican’s newly-hired spokesman–from FOX news, who is also an Opus Dei cultist–probably urged Ratzinger to do this. FOX and a former Hitler youth–sounds like a good fit.


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