Hate first, then help if you've got spare time.

DrB-

I found this a few days ago, but forgot to ever do something with it. To start, the bible does have an overwhelming amount of sexism, war, violence, genocide, rape, and general things decent humans recognize as “bad.”

However, there’s a few notes in there about helping the poor, loving your neighbor, social justice, and that sort of thing. It has a few bright points in it. And to the credit of some of the convents that I’ve seen, the nuns there take that social justice stuff seriously. They do put significant effort into feeding the hungry and clothing those in need.

Random side note: Growing up, my mom loved to garden, and one year we planted cantaloupes. Just about when they would be getting ripe, we took a family vacation, and we asked that my grandparents look after our garden, and pick anything that became ripe. When we got back from vacation, it turns out cantaloupes grow LIKE CRAZY. My grandparents had harvested over a hundred of the things, and were able to donate them to a local Kansas city charity, “Little Sisters of the Poor.” The nuns were happy to have them, and fed lots of hungry people fresh fruit.

So, there are nuns in the world who took that “love they neighbor” to heart, and are doing a solid job of improving the welfare of those around them.  Atheists wouldn’t really agree with all the tenets of their theology, but the love for fellow humans is a trait we can all respect.

The Catholic church & bishops has taken note of this, and were obviously ecstatic over the great PR that these nuns could provide. With their recent child abuse scandals, they could use the good image. The pope & council of bishops reached out to US nuns in support of their mission, to say “Great work! Keep up making the world a better place!”

Well, I mean….that’s what the pope and ruling council of bishops COULD have done.

A US Catholic nuns’ group said it is “stunned” that the Vatican reprimanded it for spending too much time on poverty and social justice concerns and not enough on abortion and gay marriage.

……….said the group had failed to make the “Biblical view of family life and human sexuality” a central plank in its agenda.

It further reprimanded US nuns for expressing positions on political issues that differed, at times, from views held by US bishops.

http://www.rte.ie/news/2012/0420/us-catholic-nuns-reprimanded-by-the-vatican.html

 

This is what the religion virus does to people. US nuns read the same bible their bishops & pope do, but they chose to emphasize poverty and social justice. The Catholic church leadership decided it didn’t want resources allocated on that, instead it was imperative that their “traditional values” and anti-gay party line be enforced.


 

You can find me on twitter, @DrDavidBurger

I recruit in Kansas City, http://www.kcatheists.org/
& https://www.facebook.com/KCAtheists

About doctorburger
  • Nick

    They do put significant effort into feeling the hungry

    Oh my.

    • Rory

      I enjoy your comment more when I imagine it in George Takei’s voice. Try it!

      • http://considertheteacosy.wordpress.com Aoife

        Everything sounds better in George Takei’s voice!

  • ‘Tis Himself

    The Catholic bishops and his popeness have made it obvious that feeding the poor, clothing the naked, caring for the sick, etc., are minor compared to “Baby Jesus cries whenever someone uses a condom” and “same-sex marriage shouldn’t be allowed because gawd thinks what gays do in bed is icky.” It’s interesting what the priorities of a bunch of old, male, professional virgins are. Whining about insurance companies paying for contraception is much more important than “whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.” (Mat 25:40 NIV).

  • Roving Rockhound, collector of dirt

    “It further reprimanded US nuns for expressing positions on political issues that differed, at times, from views held by US bishops.”

    So they are admitting to expressing positions on political issues? Tax ‘em, then.

    • fastlane

      In the US, non-profits are explicitly allowed to express opinions on issues. The law is written such that they are not allowed to endorse politicians, but can do so on issues.

      So, of course, they all say they should vote based on a single issue (gay marriage, anti-abortion, etc.) with a nod and a wink so the sheeple know who to vote for. But it is technically legal.

      • Roving Rockhound, collector of dirt

        Even churches, though? I thought they were considered a different category.

  • rapiddominance

    This is what the religion virus does to people. US nuns read the same bible their bishops & pope do, but they chose to emphasize poverty and social justice. The Catholic church leadership decided it didn’t want resources allocated on that, instead it was imperative that their “traditional values” and anti-gay party line be enforced.

    In the end, one comes to realize that the atheist’s revulsion of the christian population doesn’t come from some enhanced intellectual ability that allows him/her to see what the rest of the world cannot.

    Instead, it appears to have arisen from a lifetime of social experiences that inform us as to the true intent and motives of those we interact with on a daily basis.

    As humans, we often try to explain our revulsions with words and structured dialogue; but the disgust itself just kind of comes natural and we can often recognize the fact that we detest a thing long before we know WHY we detest it.

  • unbound

    Although I don’t agree with the Catholic church on this issue (or many issues really), the linked article is painting a bit of a different story than the report actually states (http://www.usccb.org/loader.cfm?csModule=security/getfile&pageid=55544).

    The report is damning the lack of adherence of the nuns to church doctrine, and, despite what the rte.ie site claims, I don’t see in the actual document anything that even hints at claiming the nuns focused too much on social support and not enough on doctrine. It simply says that they are expected to tow the party line.

    How is that any different than any other large corporation? You can darn well bet that upper management is going to come down like a hammer if some mid-level management starts talking publicly about how wrong upper management is on various subjects. Perfectly fine within the organization, but it isn’t tolerated well when spoken publicly by secular corporations either.

    We (atheists) should always be careful about accepting articles at face value just because they say the types of things we think are true. We end up looking foolish when we support these types of things. There are plenty of things that the church is bad about, but this isn’t one of the key things we should be pushing.


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