Last week, the Vatican declared seven new ways for Catholics to win a one-way ticket to hell in addition to the traditional seven deadly sins and mortal sins and breaking one or more of the 10 Commandments. Someone has too much time on his hands over there.
The traditional seven deadly sins, or the seven deadlies as I call them, are gluttony, greed, pride, lust, wrath, envy and sloth, and they are considered the root of all sin. That is, they are the things that cause people to commit sinful acts. To that list, we can now add these new venial sins, which include genetic engineering, drug use, pollution and abortion. (I thought the Vatican always considered abortion a sin, but apparently not.) The final two sins — now keep in mind these came from the Catholic church and try reading these two without laughing — are tremendous wealth and pedophilia.
The Catholic church is the wealthiest church in the world and requires its followers to tithe 10 percent of their income to the church or face eternal damnation. It also requires that you marry another Catholic and that your children be Catholic, which ensures that you will keep giving them your money, as will your good little Catholic children.
Many priests no longer live in church rectories. No, they don’t want to be bothered with people’s problems 24x7 — which, by the way, is their job — so they live in lavish houses away from the church and paid for by the church. So much for that vow of poverty. And how did the church pay for it? With the money you give them every Sunday.
Furthermore, the church makes a tidy sum from annulments. A friend who is very Catholic wants her (first and only) wedding to be in the Catholic church. Her fiancé, however, must annul his first marriage, which took place when he was 19 and ended after six months, when he found out his wife was cheating on him. (His second wife of 20-some years died, so he’s off the hook there.) The archdiocese said that for $400, he could get an annulment in about a year, implying that if he paid more, he get it faster. It is the Catholic church, so that’s certainly how it works. Show them the money and you can get married in their church. What a crock.
So as the wealthiest church in the world with billions of dollars in assets, isn’t the Catholic church itself guilty of the sin of tremendous wealth?
And the Catholic church calling pedophilia a sin made me explode with laughter. The church’s priests are some of the worst offenders of this particular sin, and they are rarely punished for it. Rather than send a disgusting baby-raper to prison, the church transfers him so he can molest more kids somewhere else. Part of the reason the Catholic church needs its tremendous wealth is to pay off its priests’ victims who come forward. Pay them off, transfer the priest and pretend everything is fine.
I keep wondering if Catholics really take this shit seriously. How do you fear damnation because you had an abortion 15 years ago when the Catholic church itself is sponsoring pedophiles? Excuse me, but pedophilia is a much worse offense than abortion could ever hope to be. Those priests have wrecked the lives of countless children while breaking the vow of celibacy. If I were Catholic, I would laugh in the Vatican’s face with its new sins. I’ll follow them when you do, I’d say.
Here’s another thought. If these sins get you banned from heaven, then aren’t the Catholic church and its representatives banned from heaven? Where does that leave you as a follower of a hell-bound church? Other churches ought to be cashing in on this, inviting Catholics to join their churches and gain the opportunity to go to heaven. They could have catchy slogans like, “What is your fate if your church is hell-bound?” or “Stop supporting priestly pedophiles. The Church of Whatever is here for you.”
Regarding the five other new sins, how will the church determine how much pollution is sinful? Moreover, large corporations are most guilty of pollution, so now what? Is someone guilty of the sin of pollution if they work in a factory or are the top execs the guilty ones? We all know the abortion debate: Whether the procedure is murder depends on when you believe life begins. And is the Vatican using the term “drugs” as a general collective to included street drugs, prescription drug addiction, alcohol and even tobacco? Calling drug use a sin is stupid. I call it thinning the herd.
And finally, genetic engineering. I know that Christians believe that man was created in God’s perfect image (women were either made from the leftover sludge or Adam’s rib, though), and thus humans shouldn’t fuck with God’s design. I agree that Nature (not necessarily God) is not to be fucked with. I don’t like the idea of cloning or designing your kid to look how you want him or her to look. That’s when we start getting into spooky Brave New World kinds of things.
However, genetic engineering most certainly has benefits, such as exposing the inner workings of diseases, viruses, genomes, DNA and more, all of which can save lives. Genetic engineering is what will find the key to cancer, cure HIV and reveal more information about the human body. That can’t really be a sin, can it?
By age 13 I recognized how hypocritical, controlling, corrupt and greedy the Catholic church is. I refused to be confirmed (much to my parents' chagrin) and I left the church entirely. I have never regretted it, and if I were to suddenly become Christian tomorrow, I would not return to Catholicism. Every time the Vatican comes up with something ridiculous, it reaffirms my decision to leave. I just can’t figure out why so many people continue devotion to such a corrupt church.