Tom Monaghan of Dominos Pizza fame said “Catholics just don’t understand their faith. They don’t understand why the church has the authority to tell them that they have to do this or they can’t do that…this should be a benevolent monarchy, not democracy. The Church in one sense is a military organization, just like the Marine Corps.”
And no, he wasn’t joking.
So to me that begs the question, why does the Catholic Church have the authority to tell you what you can do and what you can’t do?
I think that is a fair question.
Mr. Monaghan seems to think that it is a question that Catholics should know, so I was curious as to what exactly it is they should know.
You see, on one hand the Catholic Church, unlike every other religion that I can think of, has the ability to modernize itself and stay on top of the times. Why? Because they have a figure, the Pope, which they believe to be infallible and whose opinion instantly becomes the official creed of the entire Catholic Church the moment he is elected.
Well at least that's the way it has been since 1870 at the Vatican Council.
Infallible means that the Pope is incapable of erring. Incapable of error in expounding doctrine on faith or morals.
Said who? Well he did of course, in 1560 AD.
Pope Pius IV declared and then imposed that his personal opinions were the Church’s official creed in 1560 AD.
It's been the same ever since.
So since he can’t make a mistake, he can always correctly interpret the Bible into modern times and even change it if he feels he needs to.
So there is no reason why Catholics can’t believe in evolution.
Which they couldn’t by the way until Pope John Paul II said it was Ok in 1996.
Any "mistake" that the infallible Catholic papacy did in the past, although technically it wasn’t a mistake when it was happening because they are infallible, can be called a mistake after the fact but only be another infallible human being, who is completely fallible until he is elected Pope then instantly he becomes infallible.
While everyone else has to interpret and reinterpret ancient text to apply to modern day situations, which is more pain than it is worth, the Catholic Church which declared itself to be equal to the Bible by the Council of Trent in 1545 AD don’t have to do that dog and pony dance.
Whatever they say goes. The second they say it. It doesn’t matter how we did things yesterday, this is how we are going to do it from here on out and that is final. Remember, I am infallible.
Well why are you infallible? Oh yeah, because you declared yourself to be.
Just like this text that I am writing right here is actually the word of God.
Why is that?
Because it says so right here.
THIS TEXT IS TO BE CONSIDERED THE WORD OF GOD.
See. Is that all it takes?
Jesus didn’t even become God until 325 AD until by a vote of hands at the Council of Nicea in what is now Turkey, because how could he be God and also be praying to God at the same time? If they accepted that they had two Gods both Jesus and God then they would owe pagans a huge apology because they would essentially be no different than they were.
So the Bishops voted, men, mortal men voted, after long debates that Jesus would be "of one substance with the Father."
And so it was so. The Bishops looked at it and saw that it was good.
Well some of them anyway.
making Jesus into God was so controversial that many didn’t accept the council’s decision for decades.
We don't even think of this as being controversial today because most people don't even know how this happened. They just think it was always this way.
In 1215 Pope Innocent III said that priests suddenly have the power to turn saltine crackers into Jesus’ body and red wine into his blood by a process he called Transubstantiation, essentially turning Christians that participated in the ritual each Sunday into cannibals and the priests that performed the spell into wizards.
To this day no scientific experiment has ever proven that a priest saying a few words over a box of saltine crackers turns it into the flesh of a 2,000 year old Jewish carpenter.
How do we forget that these are men, human beings, nothing more, nothing less?
How do we lose sight that it was a man, not a God that said that his opinion on matters such as morality and the faith itself is as binding as the Bible itself?
Men have given themselves this authority, but the people who follow these men have given themselves the power that comes with it.
So to answer Tom Monaghan, who said that Catholics don’t understand why the Church has the authority to tell them what to do and what not to do, isn’t the reason just because they gave themselves the authority to?
There isn't anything holy or metaphysical about that?
Nothing that I mentioned in this article is backed up by a single word in the Bible.
Not turning saltines into the flesh of a dead corpse, Jesus being God, the Pope being infallible, none of it.
Jehovah’s witnesses to this day hand out those crackers and wine every Sunday. Do they even know why they do it or is that just a hold over from when Pope Innocent III declared that priest could perform Transubstantiation spells?
Have they even heard of the word Transubstantiation?
Why do they think that Jesus is God? Are they aware that decision was made by a vote at the Council of Nicea in 325 AD?
These are things that people are dying for, chastising people for, proclaiming are truths self-evident and just assuming that they are rooted in a lot more fact than 30 men sitting in a room in 325 AD and making it up.
Which brings us full circle.
Those who are in the know, understand that the average Joe walking the streets doesn’t want to do the leg work. He wants you to think for him and tell him what to think. He would rather trust that you know what you are talking about than have to recreate the wheel every single time he wants to believe in something.
Well I understand that. We are all like that. So I say we need to make sure that this kind of information becomes common knowledge so he doesn’t have to work so hard.
The tradition has been that since those who are in the know, are aware that you aren’t going to find out the truth for yourself they don’t have to worry about anyone coming up and exposing them.
The future’s so bright I’ve got to wear shades.