Richard Dawkins: ‘Being Raised Catholic is Worse than Child Abuse’

Godlessness personified.

Raising your children as Roman Catholics is  worse than child abuse, according to militant atheist Richard  Dawkins.

In typically incendiary style, Professor  Dawkins said the mental torment inflicted by the religion’s teachings is worse  in the long-term than any sexual abuse carried out by priests.

He said he had been told by a woman that  while being abused by a priest was a ‘yucky’ experience, being told as a child  that a Protestant friend who died would ‘roast in Hell’ was more  distressing.

Last night politicians and charities  condemned the former Oxford professor’s views as attention-seeking and  unhelpful.

The remarks are due to be broadcast tonight  by Qatar-based TV network Al Jazeera.

Interviewer Mehdi Hasan asked Professor  Dawkins about previous comments he made, when he said: ‘Horrible as sexual abuse  no doubt was, the damage was arguably less than the long-term psychological  damage inflicted by bringing the child up Catholic in the first place.’

Mr Hasan asked: ‘You believe that being  bought up as a Catholic is worse than being abused by a priest?’. Professor  Dawkins replied: ‘There are shades of being abused by a priest, and I quoted an  example of a woman in America who wrote to me saying that when she was seven  years old she was sexually abused by a priest in his car.

‘At the same time a friend of hers, also  seven, who was of a Protestant family, died, and she was told that because her  friend was Protestant she had gone to Hell and will be roasting in Hell  forever.

‘She told me of those two abuses,  she got over the physical abuse; it was yucky but she got over it.

‘But the mental abuse of being told about Hell, she took years to get over.’

Read more here.

The atheist Dawkins should stick with what he knows: biology. Clearly, he has no idea what the Church teaches and is a theological dilettante of note!



What Can We Learn?

Asks Fr Anthony Chadwick:

… If we want things better for ourselves and our posterity, it is up to each of us not only to rebuff the cynicism, scoffing and naysaying of others, but also to be committed to a positive course of action to offer the world what we consider as sacred and precious. I believe it is possible with this renewal of good will between our bishops…

Read it all here.



Former TAC Bishop Carl Reid to be Ordained

Priest for the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St Peter on 26 January 2012.

It’s on Archbishop Prendergast’s schedule and now the official news release is out from the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter.

Month of January 2013 from the Arcbishop’s schedule.  I hear Fr. Peter Wilkinson is coming, so is our Dean, Fr. Lee Kenyon. 

Day & Time Activity & Location
Jan. 12, 10 a.m. Ordination to the diaconate of Carl Reid, St. Patrick’s Basilica, Ottawa
Jan. 26, 10 a.m. Ordination to the priesthood of Carl Reid, Notre Dame Cathedral, Ottawa

Here’s the news release. My bolds.

Three ordinations scheduled for early 2013 include former Anglican bishop Carl Reid of Ottawa, Canada, a former bishop with the Anglican Catholic Church of Canada and current administrator of the Sodality of the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and former Anglican priest John Cornelius, of the Society of St. Alban in Rochester, New York, on January 26. Ken Bolin, Airborne Brigade Combat Team Chaplain with the U.S. Army, currently stationed in Fort Richardson, Alaska, recently was ordained a Catholic deacon. He is expected to be ordained a priest in March 2013. The Ordinariate, which is equivalent to a diocese, but national in scope, has 27 priests (including Ray), more than 1,600 people and 36 communities across the United States and Canada. Its Ordinary, Monsignor Jeffrey Steenson, is a former Episcopal bishop who is based in Houston, TX. Two additional ordinariates are located in the United Kingdom (Our Lady of Walsingham) and Australia (Our Lady of the Southern Cross).



Sistine Chapel Visitors to Pass Through Vacuum System

Still with the Vatican, I see that Sistine Chapel visitors are going to have to pass through a vacuum system.

Millions of tourists flocking to the Sistine Chapel each year will be required to pass through a vacuum system to remove dust, fibres, skin flakes, hair and other tiny particles before viewing the renowned frescoes.


Vatican Museum Director Antonio Paolucci said the new hi-tech vacuum system is designed to ensure that visitors are free of environmental pollutants that might damage the 500-year old artwork that adorns the world’s most famous chapel.

Each visitor will be “dusted, cleaned and chilled,” Mr Paolucci said, adding that there will be a carpet that cleans visitors’ shoes, while side vacuums will suck dust from clothes and cool temperatures to reduce heat and humidity that emanate from their bodies in the hot Rome weather.

The new system is expected to be ready sometime in mid 2013. Vatican officials said they are also working on a “virtual tour” that will allow a close-up view of the Sistine Chapel’s most famous works, which attract 20,000 tourists a day.

“It was something sooner or later we were going to have to address,” Mr Paolucci told the Corriere della Sera. “Dust, temperature, humidity and carbon dioxide are the biggest enemies of paintings.”



Push to Stop Sunday Shopping

I can remember the days when it was only the Muslim owned cafe on the corner that was open for ‘emergencies’ on Sundays. The rest of the shops were closed. Today, it however seems as if the busiest shopping time of the week is actually after Church on Sundays. Well, the Vatican is working to stop that in Italy:

The Roman Catholic Church, trade unions and small business associations have joined forces in a bid to save Sundays.

In a bid to spur economic growth, outgoing Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti backed a new law that allows shops to stay open on the Sabbath.

But Sunday traditions are strong in the European nation, and the change provoked strong resistance from religious and secular groups.

Last month, an Italian shop owners association and the country’s Catholic bishops’ conference launched a campaign to “free up Sundays.” They aim to gather the 50,000 signatures needed to try to repeal the liberalizing shop law.

Confesercenti, the shop owners association, fears that mom-and-pop stores — the backbone of the Italian retail sector — will be squeezed by large retailers and American-style malls.

The issue extends beyond Italy. In Brussels, dozens of religious groups — including the Catholic church — unions and business associations from 27 countries have formed the “European Sunday Alliance” to lobby the European Union to keep Sunday as a continentwide day of rest, at least in principle.

Johanna Touzel, the alliance’s spokeswoman, said setting Sunday aside is not necessarily a religious issue and not discriminatory toward Jews and Muslims. “We need one day when everyone can rest — this is the origin of Shabbat. And in fact, even Muslim organizations support us.”

For the Catholic church, keeping Sundays free from shopping and work concerns is of larger consequence than the economy.

Fr. Marco Scattolon of Camposampiero, Italy, became an instant celebrity when he labeled Sunday shopping a sin and called on his parishioners to do penance for it. Sundays, he told the Corriere del Veneto newspaper, are important “not just in the religious sense.” “They are one of the few occasions left for families to be together.”

Bishop Antonio Mattiazzo of Padua sided with Scattolon while other bishops publicly signed the Confesercenti campaign.

“The broad consensus in opposing Sunday openings shows that having a common weekly day for rest is something that benefits everyone, not just believers,” says Luca Diotallevi, a Catholic sociologist who advises Italy’s bishops on social issues. “Sunday has not just a social value but a theological one too: Man needs to have a holy day.”

Others go even further in arguing for work-free Sundays.

Mimmo Muolo, a journalist for Italy’s official Catholic newspaper Avvenire, in his recent book, Le feste scippate (“The Stolen Holidays”), argues that “the 24/7 retail cycle has reintroduced a system of slaves and masters.” He said employees who have no choice but to work on Sundays — and thus have no time for family and other social activities — are “Sunday slaves.”

At least in Italy, there are signs that few businesses have taken advantage of the reform.

Before the usual Christmas shopping rush kicked in, it was difficult to find many open shops on Sundays outside the tourist areas of the city centers.

“It is pointless because people don’t have enough money to spend,” says Anna Lucentini, 35, a saleswoman on one of Rome’s busiest commercial streets.

She says the only result of the Sunday-opening reform is that employees will have to work more at their bosses’ request. “In Italy, those who still have a job are afraid to lose it and so let themselves be exploited without complaining.”

Still, opposing the liberalization of store opening schedules is winning the church some unexpected sympathy. Lorena Vargas, 21, just learned about the bishops-backed campaign. “For once, the church is doing a good thing,” she says. “I could even start going to Mass.”