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As Catholic influence in Ireland wanes, some hope abortion will be legalized

Demonstrators take part in a protest on Sept. 24, 2016, in Dublin to urge the Irish government to repeal the eighth amendment to the constitution, which enforces strict limitations to a woman's right to an abortion. Photo by Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters

DUBLIN (RNS) Bronagh Matthews, an office manager in her 30s, lives on the rural edge of North County Dublin. She attended an all-girls Catholic high school and a Catholic college and still identifies as Roman Catholic.

But Matthews fancies herself the “hatching, matching and dispatching” variety, offering a whimsical summary of her current Mass attendance, which primarily involves baptisms, marriages and funerals. She also favors abortion rights “not because I agree with it, but because I think it should come down to the individual choice of the woman,” and feels Ireland could do with less interference from the Roman Catholic Church.

She’s not alone.

Ireland metaphorically barred the door on the church’s influence on public policy when citizens voted overwhelmingly for the legalization of gay marriage in 2015, making it the first country in the world to do so by national referendum. Now  some devout Catholics fear that door may be locked after a Citizens’ Assembly — a deliberative body of people randomly selected from across the country — recently recommended liberal changes to Ireland’s abortion laws.

Currently, abortion in Ireland is only legal if the pregnant woman’s life is at risk, including risk of suicide. Each year, more than 3,000 women travel to the U.K. to terminate pregnancies.

Public opinion on abortion has long been evolving. A grass-roots movement (known as Repeal the 8th) to overturn an amendment to the Irish Constitution giving equal human rights to both a pregnant woman and her fetus gained enough momentum to call the Citizens’ Assembly to order.

A campaigner uses a suitcase to symbolize the women who have to travel outside of Ireland to have an abortion carried out, during a protest to demand more liberal abortion laws, in Dublin, Ireland, on March 8, 2017. Photo courtesy of Reuters/Clodagh Kilcoyne *Editors: This photo may only be republished with RNS-IRELAND-CATHOLIC, originally transmitted on May 16, 2017.

The Assembly’s recommendations, which are nonbinding: 87 percent of the 100 members voted that the eighth amendment “should not be retained in full,” and 64 percent voted that abortion without restriction should be lawful.

Some groups, including Evangelical Alliance Ireland — a nondenominational Christian organization — vocally oppose the legalization of abortion on demand and reject a common conception of the issue in civic discourse.

“We are concerned that the debate over the Eighth Amendment is being deliberately misrepresented as a false narrative of a battle between young liberal progressives and an older generation of backward conservative religionists,” the EAI wrote to the Citizens’ Assembly.

“This false narrative conveniently sweeps very real Human Rights concerns under the carpet.”

The recommendations of the Citizens’ Assembly are just one step toward potential abortion legislation. Debate among politicians may take months. The Assembly’s advice will go to a parliamentary committee made up of a handful of members from each party. If there is a referendum, it will likely take place in early 2018 — a referendum that could accelerate the evolution of Irish politics away from the church.

Throughout the relatively short history of the Irish Republic, church and state have governed private, public and spiritual spheres hand in hand. More than 90 percent of national schools are run by a local parish. A twice-daily call to prayer can still be heard on television and radio. And Good Friday remains the holiest of holy days, with a (much-disputed) nationwide ban on the purchase of alcohol.

But in recent years, chinks in the armor of Catholic Ireland have begun to appear.

Divorce was legalized in 1996. Nondenominational schools are gaining in popularity and have yearslong waiting lists. And several scandals involving the Catholic Church — widespread clerical abuse, the Magdalene laundries and most recently the mass grave of human infant remains uncovered on the grounds of a Catholic-run, state-sponsored home for mothers and babies — have increased wariness, if not outright rejection, of institutional religion.

Statistically, Ireland is becoming less Catholic. According to the 2016 census, those identifying as Roman Catholic fell to 78 percent, a decrease of 6 percentage points  since the 2011 census. Now 1 in 10 Irish people claim to “have no religion,” making the so-called nones the second-largest religious group in Ireland.

These recent figures, together with the Citizens’ Assembly recommendations, the legalization of gay marriage and the rise of nondenominational schools, have stirred debate among religious leaders. Some decry the growing secularization of Ireland, while others see the country coming to honest terms with its beliefs.

“Things have taken a bit of a turn,” said Scott Evans, an author and chaplain at University College Dublin. “Obviously, these aren’t necessarily new things, it just so happens that they’re kind of coming together. But you do notice a bit of a backlash on social media, people kind of sensing this fear that Christianity is on the wane. There’s a loss of power, there’s a loss of influence.”

The Iona Institute, a Catholic advocacy and research group that campaigned heavily against the marriage referendum and repeal of the eighth amendment, believes Ireland remains more Catholic than it lets on, despite the Citizens’ Assembly results.

“A lot of them fall into the spiritual (but) not religious camp,” David Quinn, head of the institute, told state-owned RTÉ Radio One. “The vast majority of people in Ireland still believe in God, even if they don’t go to church.”

Michael Nugent of Atheist Ireland argues that the Irish people have moved away from the Catholic Church, but “the institutions and the laws haven’t moved on.”

But the more secular Irish stand to make unprecedented gains in future months and years. If they do, a Catholic Ireland may still exist, but those who no longer toe the party line on religious dogma may be the ones to define the nation’s future.

As Donal O’Keeffe, columnist for Irish paper The Avondhu, writes, “For the rest of us, the a la carte, Bouncy Castle Catholics,” — referring to the ubiquitous main attraction at Communion and confirmation parties across the country — “we need to think about what sort of a country we have and what sort of a country we want.”

(Karen Huber is a freelance writer living in Dublin)

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  • Long past time that the emerald isle ceases to be a subsidiary of the backward priests and vicars of the RCC. My grandmother had to flee Ireland to avoid being forced into a convent that priests and unthinking family decided should be her “calling”.

    These people want to still run the country…tell the RCC to get lost.

  • “Currently, abortion in Ireland is only legal if the pregnant woman’s life is at risk, including risk of suicide.” Murdering a baby (aborting) is suicide if you don’t seek forgiveness.

    exodus 23:7 – Stay far away from a false charge, and do n’t kill the innocent or the righteous, because I won’t acquit the guilty

  • Proverbs 14:34

    ESV

    Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.

  • Psalm 139:13ff You brought my inner parts into being;
    You wove me in my mother’s womb.
    14 I will praise you, for You made me with fear and wonder;
    marvelous are Your works,
    and You know me completely.
    15 My frame was not hidden from You
    when I was made in secret,
    and intricately put together in the lowest parts of the earth.
    16 Your eyes saw me unformed,
    yet in Your book
    all my days were written,
    before any of them came into being.
    17 How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God!
    How great is the sum of them!
    18 If I should count them,
    they are more in number than the sand;
    when I awake,
    I am still with You.

    What a cold heartless culture we’ve become to take our anxiety, fears, and hatred out on poor helpless babies. God have mercy on us.

  • You’d rather take your anxiety, fears and hatred out on women and young children rather than a non-viable collection of cells so that the women and the babies those cells may become are forced to live unnecessarily damaged lives?

    If there was a God and he were genuinely merciful he couldn’t be agreeing with you.

  • I hope, I sincerely hope Ireland will be a point of deep reflection and honesty with those in the RCC. Everything happening in Ireland is a DIRECT result of what the RCC has done to the Irish. The lack of vocations, the lack of church attendance, the increase support of such issues as abortion, EVERYTHING, is now or will be anti-catholic, anti-christian. The RCC has committed, inflicted so much evil, violence, abuse in all its forms, considered itself above reproach, the law that it will be generations before these wounds begin to heal. While I do not support abortion, I hope the RCC in Ireland realizes that it has already committed similar atrocities with all those babies they themselves did not care about. Ireland is the product of the sins of the RCC. Will the Church have the courage to accept their culpability, own their sins?

  • Isaiah 60:12

    English Standard Version

    For the nation and kingdom that will not serve you shall perish; those nations shall be utterly laid waste.

  • The absence of evidence and/or need for a soul enables me to ignore that thoroughly unlikely superstitious belief; leaving me free to concern myself with that which clearly exists rather than that which is imaginary.

    If your primary concern is (the selfish one of) securing the unevidenced eternal future for your imaginary soul you can’t but see the world differently to those of us who don’t suffer from that limitation.

  • Much, but not everything, I suspect there are other factors at work including the availability of alternate data via the internet. And your apparent assumption that anti-catholic equals anti-christian may raise a few dissenting voices.

    It may be that the RCC’s abuse in Ireland has caused many to question the basics that they had previously accepted without query. Those who questioned may have, as I did in protestant England, come to the rational conclusion that the underlying beliefs that they had been sold are not supported by either evidence or logical reasoning and are therefore best discarded.

  • I was making the point that anti-catholic views will eventually turn into anti-christian/secular views as we can see here with the abortion issue. In time, if the RCC cannot do something to reinvigorate its members/ former members, they will become a catalyst of forming a society who chooses against the Church. Their faith has been rocked to the core, by the people who were suppose to be that faith. It will take quite some time before trust can or will be reclaimed. The RCC has done grave damage, let’s hope they do not turn into another false society built on humanism.

  • How merciful of you to murder lives you, in your wisdom, deem unworthy of living. Life unworthy of life is a phrase I heard somewhere or another. Lebensunwertes Leben. Rings a bell.

    Non-viable? Do you mean a human being that can’t sustain himself without the assistance of his mother? I’ve seen the afflicted who can’t exist without a machine, or someone to care for them. For you that eliminates their humanity and their worth. Collection of cells? Without the soul you foolishly deny, what more are you than just a worthless, albeit “viable” for the time being, collection of cells?

    Crawl back under your rock and pray for a sliver of humanity before it’s too late.

  • What could you possibly know about concern for souls? What does exist for you? Do you love anyone? Your mother? Your wife? Can you provide evidence? Something scientific please because, after all, nothing else will do.

  • Somebody already beat you to it: “non serviam” is his battle cry.

    You are a sad cliche’.

  • How hypocritical you are to talk about lives of others yet be completely indifferent and/or hostile to those already born. Care for life begins and ends with pregnancy with your crowd.

    Btw Nazis banned abortion and enjoyed the support of various Christian churches.

  • Evidently the souls of a fetus are of greater concern than those of the born. How wonderful. /sarcasm

  • Well when you mix church and state, you ruin the integrity of both. Roger Williams was telling people that 400 years ago. People still don’t get the hint.

  • Too late. By establishing themselves as the state church, they ruined any credibility they have. Faith was replaced by coercion. Now they see the results of such actions. The lesson here is that a free secular society can easily become anti-theist when religious institutions are heavy handed and entangle themselves with the state.

    Btw religious freedom only exists in a secular society.

  • If there are no objective moral values and duties there is no God.
    There are objective moral values and duties.
    Therefore there is a God.

    We all have limitations: when I see a sonogram of a baby I see – a beautiful baby; you only see potential medical waste.
    I am fortunate I do not suffer from your limitations.

  • Hey, did anyone think to tell the Irish? Hey Irish people, did you know the RCC destroyed your culture?
    (crickets)

  • People around the world desire freedom, and that includes freedom from religious oppression. As President Bush once said, you can’t stop the desire for freedom. So, go Ireland!

  • Whew! There for a moment I thought something had happened I hadn’t heard about. (So why do you think he quoted Roger Williams as if they were bff’s?)

  • LOL! Yeah, as did Diocletian, as did Voltaire, as did Lenin, Stalin, Mao…they are all dead and in the ground (except for Lenin-but he is dead) but Jesus rose again from the dead and His church is still going strong because as He said “The gates of hell will not prevail against it.” Matt. 16:18

  • The church has made a mess of Ireland, with its Magdalen Laundries, clerical sexual abuse, and harsh opposition to women;s rights of conscience and religious liberty on abortion.

  • Yes, Lucifer’s cry, I believe…Damien will follow in “non serviam”…and hopefully all of Ireland too.

  • Don’t leave out their campaign to against gay marriage, which blew up in their faces big time. The whining from the religious Reich about unfair it all was when they put peoples rights to a vote, and then lost it, was truly delicious.

  • My RCC ancestors left Ireland and within a generation or two joined various other churches or none at all. Monopolies are bad for religion just as for commerce. Top down management for religion with little outside accountability is also bad and leads to excessive corruption.. Therefore the RCC in Ireland is now in the condition it finds itself. The Reformation is coming to Ireland just rather late and not forced on the Irish as the English tried long ago.

  • Catholics in Ireland, as elsewhere in the world, are evolving. They are seeing the hypocrisy of the ‘Church’ and the sins she hides under her garment of religion and salvation. People are becoming more progressive and independent. Why should the Catholic church, or for that matter the Evangelical church or any right-wing church, dominate the lives of people? Clerics of the church are behaving in a presumptuous manner thinking it is their bounden duty to do the will of God. I wonder if God has really spoken to these people or are they just imagining?

  • The fact is there are never many biblical Christians in the world at any given time but there are many that claim to be Christians and those are the ones you speak of…..

    Matthew 7:13-14

    ¶ Enter in at the strait gate: for it is the wide gate, and broad way that
    leadeth to destruction: and many there be which go in thereat. Because the gate
    is strait, and the way narrow that leadeth unto life, and few there be that
    find it.

    Matthew 20:16

    So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many are called, but
    few chosen

    Matthew 7:13-14

    ¶ Enter in at the strait gate: for it is the wide gate, and broad way that
    leadeth to destruction: and many there be which go in thereat. Because the gate
    is strait, and the way narrow that leadeth unto life, and few there be that
    find it.

    Matthew 22:14

    For many are called, but few chosen.

    Luke 13: 23-28

    23 Then said one unto him, Lord, are there few that shall be saved? And he
    said unto them,

    24 Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will
    seek to enter in, and shall not be able.

    25 When the good man of the house is risen up, and hath shut to the door,
    and ye began to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord,
    open to us, and he shall answer and say unto you, I know you not whence ye are,

    26 Then shall ye begin to say, We have eaten and drunk in thy presence, and
    thou hast taught in our streets.

    27 But he shall say, I tell you, I know you not whence ye are: depart from
    me, all ye workers of iniquity.

    28 There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when ye shall see Abraham,
    and Isaac, and Jacob, and all the Prophets in the kingdom of God, and
    yourselves thrust out at doors.

  • The fact is YOU were once a non-viable collection of cells so that the women and the babies those cells may become are forced to live unnecessarily damaged lives? Aren’t you glad your parents didn’t believe the foolishness you believe?

  • Well the unbelievers and atheists have murdered far more people in the last century or so than any “religion” ever did.

    First lets quote some numbers from Atheists genocides just in the 20th century alone. Over 180 million deaths/murders has occurred from Atheist Dictatorships/Rulers/Regimes, etc. From Stalin, Mau Tse Tung, Hilter, Pol Pot, Hideki Toji, Leopold II of Belgium, Kim IlSung, Meghistu and the list goes on and on. And please, before you give me the “Hilter claimed he was a Christian” garbage you atheists like to quote so often, even secular Historians agree on the main points concerning that Hitler’s religious views were nothing more than a political move to advance his way into power in a country where the dominant religion was Lutheran. Once in power, he burned the Bibles in the Churches along with the schools and replaced them with Mein Kampf, along with sending the churches leaders into death camps along with the Jews. Christians today would call him a Anti-Christ (lead by Satan) as his actions were not Biblically based in any sense of scripture. Unfortunately Christians are not marked by God when we are born again other than what fruits we bear once transformed and continued during the sanctification process. However, the Bible is full of advice on discernment of showing how to distinguish False Prophets, False Leaders, False Teachers and those of the Anti Christ i.e. False Christians such as Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama or any other so called professing Christian whose lifestyle and actions are contrary to God’s Word and teachings. I have no problem whatsoever calling someone a Non-Christian, no matter what political party, church they attend, etc. if I hold them up to Gods word.

  • Are you angry because you lost two major battles in Kentucky and yes they have set a new anti-homosexual bullying precedence that will spread like wild fire throughout the USA. That kind of delicious?

  • Obama and Hillary are far better Christians than Bush II or the childish buffoon currently occupying the Offal Office.

  • “Let’s ask the in utero babies if they want to be aborted.”

    “Hi, babies.”
    “Hi. Hello. Yo. Sup. Nice to meet you.”
    “I’m taking a little survey. Can you help me?”
    “Sure. Yes. Okay. Uh huh. Why not? Let me check my social calendar…yep, I’m free. What’s it about?”
    “Abortion. Would any of you like to be aborted?”
    “‘What the…’ ‘Say what?’ ‘Aborted!’ ‘As in torn apart and sucked out with by vacuum aspiration…’ ‘as in Dilation and Evacuation…’ ‘as in Labor Induction followed by suction curettage…’ ‘as in as a partial birth abortion?'”
    “Yeah, that pretty much covers it.”
    “Don’t think so. Nope, I’ll pass. Man, that’s cold. Get away from me, dude or I’ll call my dad. I want my mama.”

    “Survey says: NO! Babies don’t want to be aborted.”

  • Nope. America is doing great without the religious fanatics in charge. Of course, the current constitutional crisis in America is due to the holy hypocrites voting in mass for a serial adulterer and womanizer who simply faked “Christianity” long enough to fool the redneck rubes. Bigotry is neither Christian nor patriotic.

  • Someday you will read a history book, and remember things. But not today.

    Leopold of Belgium, his Most Catholic Majesty, was an atheist? It would have been such a surprise to him.

    Germany was christian, before during, and after the war. that Hitler “may” have been using religion is a cover in no way disguises the fact that IT WORKED! And the Lutheran church and the Catholic Church were behind him.

    and how many people have non atheist Muslims murdered? And how many people did good Christians murder for being the wrong kind of Christian, the wrong kind of Jews, the wrong kind of Muslim? Secular society finally put an end to that. For the most part, though I understand Catholics and Protestants in Ireland may fire up the furnaces again.

    You people have some weird ideas about history,

  • Enjoy that brief victory, while we finally start doing what we should have been doing decades ago– go after the REAL villain, discrimination on the basis of religious belief.

    I have a feeling you are not going to like the result.

  • And True Christians (Tm) like you are so much of the reason people are leaving this stuff behind. Enjoy yourself as an ever dwindling minority.

  • Even having illicit sex in the Oval Office, and lying about it under oath, did not shame America as bad as the Tangerine President has, and that is saying a lot, sadly.

  • First you need to know true history because what the catholic church did committing several atrocities is neither supported or condoned by the bible. Second I am not responsible nor condone any of the atrocities the catholic church committed. So when foolish people like you can show Christians where anything the catholic church did you may have something but until then you point is moot.

    More history that you obviously ignored…….

    Hitler murdered Christians
    On Apirl 7, 1933 Hitler make it absolutely clear that there would be “no place in the German utopia for the Christian Church”. He said, “nothing will prevent me from eradicating totally, root and branch, all Christianity in Germany…A German Church, a German Christianity is all rubbish….one is either Christian or German.

    Further, Hitler was a staunch Darwinist. Oxford University historian Alan Bullock wrote that Hitler “showed the sharpest of hostility toward Christianity because in Hitler’s eyes, Christianity was a religion fit only for slaves, he detested its ethics in particular. Its teachings, Hitler declared was a rebellion against the natural law of selection by struggle and the survival of the fittest.”

    You might be interested to know that the Nazi’s exterminated over 700,000 handicapped people using arguments from the California State legislature recorded in the 1920’s surrounding the eugenics debate which was thankfully defeated in the US. Many in CA tried to argue for it but failed. Hitler did not. Hitler corrupted the church.

    So again what the protestant and catholics did are not and never were condoned by God or the New Covenant. Please get you history facts in order before you make yourself look foolish again.

    If you need more actual historical facts I’ll be more than happy to help you out.

  • You clearly have your own versions of history. You are absolutely entitled to them.

  • It is best to think of the Church of England – and increasingly the Catholic Church in Ireland – as Shintu institutions. That is, as with Shintu in Japan, the churches are valued and retained for their ceremonial uses, not for their peculiar dogmas or discriminatory moral stances.

  • My Irish immigrant parents always held that the cozy union of the CAtholic Church and the Irish state would corrupt both institutions.

  • It is not a cliche to ressist coercion in religion and the use of the state to enforce religious prejudices.

  • LOl, so Ireland’s holding on to the RCC for centuries, its utter oppression resulting, is proff that the RCC is not the waty to serve your god.

  • The Bible says that all adulterers must be put to death. When you practice that literally come back and comment.

  • And don’t rule the ultra right wing archbishop of Dublin who railed against homosexuality while sleeping with his male housekeeper.

  • So what. What has that got to do with IReland. In the nOrth it was religious fanatics that murcdered and brutalized people.

  • Nobody on the proabort side ever asks what the babies want, kind of like nobody on the proslavery side ever asked what their human chattel wanted. The similarities between slavery and abortion are astounding!

  • Neuroscience – look it up.

    Love is visible as changes in the use of oxygen, varying levels of dopamine etc.. resulting from controlled stimuli.

  • Calling me a murderer is childish, ignorant and pathetic and claiming I hold positions I do not hold is bearing false witness – something real Christians (those imbued with the Holly Spirit) would not do. Your comments betray your inability to provide rational justification for your superstition based opinion.

    If you are a Christian in good standing with God the Christ of the Bible cannot so be.

    You asked, above, for evidence of love and I’ve pointed you to it.

    Now it’s your turn to provide evidence of the existence of a “soul”.

    Without the pretence of a soul I am what I am, imperfect, temporary and intentionally moral. I am not an imaginary nonsense making up lies about others and calling people childish names because of mental venom that needs release. I am not someone who claims morality but acts out of fear of threats that should have been disregarded in childhood, nor do I lack self-esteem to the extent that I’ll suspend humanity in the hope of attaining a promise that rational thought dispels. I value people who have life over proto-humans, I value those that feel physical and emotional pain over those that don’t and I value those that have input to the quality of life for others over those that don’t.

    I value steak over burgers – I eat burgers (occasionally) but when the choice is either or I choose steak; now tell me I hate burgers, that I am evil because I don’t eat a burger every day, that I should to crawl back under my rock because not preferring burgers to steak is a rational disagreement with your need for additives – that’s the level of your “argument” isn’t it!

  • It’s good to see it really does bother you because the government upheld your precious “equality” mantra no matter how many people it hurts eh?

  • Obviously you know little about the bible and that adulterers are to be brought before the Judges and have 2 or three witnesses against them and then the Judges deal out God’s justice. So your argument is moot. You can start looking in Deuteronomy. I think it’s funny how those like you attempt to use the bible against Christian by repeating fallacy’s they heard from others that know little to nothing about the bible than the propaganda repeated to them.

  • Like many I once believed I did. Then I went to big school and started meeting people and ideas that had been hidden from me as a pre-teen.

    Jesus, assuming he existed, was probably the sort of person an idealistic 12 year old would have revered. Edgy, risking everything for an idea of a better world, albeit pretty rough by modern standards. Rather like, and probably as like the stories told about him as, Robin Hood. Sermon on the Mount guy – courageous, rebellious and trying to make the world a better place for humanity.

    Problem was – very, very few of those who claim to be Christians are like that. In the main they prefer to follow the teachings of mythical prophets and those who perverted the gospel teachings (if they even knew them). Their failing vision of Christianity excuses their fears and the resultant hatred of all that threatens their irrational beliefs, it provides absolution for their anger and petty jealousy – and it teaches them that they are ultimately better/worth more than those who lead decent, moral caring lives.

    Do I know Jesus – of course not, he’s been dead a very long time. But some of the ideas associated with him are beautiful, so beautiful that those who corrupt them, and seek to corrupt others through them, need constant, unyielding opposition.

  • This is not a rational response.
    Your first sentence is such poor English that it is unintelligible.

    As to your second sentence. No – I’m not. Had they decided to abort the foetus that became me I shouldn’t be here to be glad or not glad would I? – Try thinking?

  • Are you, by any chance, living somewhere where you are surrounded by men in white coats?

  • “…provide evidence of the existence of a “soul”.

    Sam and Dave “I’m a Soul Man”

  • Being butt hurt that you can no longer harm other people and have dominion over their lives is not the same thing as people being hurt. No one is hurt by my equality. That you need to put it into quotes says so much about you.

    If I have time later, I will write about bigotry. Maybe you will be butt hurt some more.

    But in the meantime, as you contemplate that you are losing even more ground in harming our lives, I will rejoice in your weeping, your wailing, and your gnashing of teeth.

  • Obviously you use gobbledegook talk to get around the issue that all adulterers are to be put death, as stated in the Bible. You carefully misdirect the issue. So what happens after the judges look into the matter of adultery? And why do Evangelicals use the Bible to condemn homosexuality and then ignore the command about adulterers?

  • “Let’s ask the in utero babies if they want to be aborted.”

    Ever tried asking them if they want to be born?

  • The problem here is you can’t tell the difference between evil and good. But then again the bible predicts those like you.

    Isaiah 5:20

    20 Woe unto them that speak good of evil, and evil of good, which put darkness for light, and light for darkness, that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for sour.

  • So you think you know what a Christian is do ya? So I’ll call you out on a answer you’re going to give or be honest about.

    So here we go. Please define a Christian and how one becomes a Christian using the bible of your choice. John 3:3, 5, 7.

  • I just pointed out you unfounded opinion that has absolutely nothing in common with facts of the bible. Get used to being embarrassed on these things you know nothing about. So tell us when was the last time a judge found a person guilty of adultery and sentenced them to stoning because that is in fact the law in the OLD COVENANT. So be honest are you under the law or do you think you’re a Christian? BTW in a biblical church all adulterers and homosexuals are removed from the church see 1 Corinthians and 2 Corinthians on how adulterers are disciplined in the NEW COVENANT. And where Jesus spoke to the adulteress in John 8. That way you’ll know just how clueless about the bible you truly are.

  • Shep is a dog.
    Shep is a German Shepherd.
    Therefore all dogs are German Shepherds.

  • ” Secular society finally put an end to that. ”

    Secular society is important, now more than ever. It’s a great rescuer from all kinds of bad religious attitudes.

  • Absolutely. Secular society not only protects the the non religious from the religious, but also protects the religious from each other…

    Where there is a far greater need.

  • Sure I can. It was a logical error of the ‘post hoc ergo propter hoc’ variety: it does not follow. The first sentence is an assertion for which evidence is nonexistent. There is considerable literature on the nonetheistic ethical systems. “the Philosophy of Humanism” by Corliss Lamont is one such. these ethics are considerably superior to yours, and those of the fictional character whose nickname you appropriated as a nom de guerre.

  • I didn’t think you could back your foolish accusations up and thank you for proving that fact. So another fact is you don’t know if I’m a dwindling minority because you just admitted you don’t know what a Christian is.

  • No, honey, YOU don’t know what a Christian is. nor does any other Christian who insists there are true Christians and then there is everyone else. As far as I am concerned, if you say you’re a Christian, then you are. As I said, if you don’t think so, take it up with your fellow travelers.

    And in your case, when you act like your sort of Christian, I have no doubt that you are a Christian. But it isn’t by your “love.”

    Have a nice day.

  • I’ve read the bible more the 20 times and as far as it tells Christians that actually believe the bible we’re promised heaven. John 3:3 so where does that leave you? 1 Cor 6:9-11 9

  • A man that calls another man honey is not a Christian according to God’s word.

    1 Cor 6:9-11 9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor wantons, nor buggerers,
    10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor railers, nor extortioners shall inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified, in the Name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

    Gal 5:16 So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
    19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.

    1 Timothy 1:8-11
    8 And we know, that the Law is good, if a man use it lawfully.
    9 Knowing this, that the Law is not given unto a righteous man, but unto the lawless and disobedient, to the ungodly, and to sinners, to the unholy, and to the profane, to murderers of fathers and mothers, to manslayers,
    10 To buggerers to menstealers, to liars, to the perjured, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to wholesome doctrine,
    11 Which is according to the glorious Gospel of the blessed God, which is committed unto me.

    2 Thessalonians 2:10-12
    10 And in all deceivableness of unrighteousness, among them that perish, because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
    11 And therefore God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe lies,
    12 That all they might be damned which believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

    Just saying you don’t know the bible.

  • A man who calls another man honey is not a Christian according to god’s word.

    Funny how you just made that up. I searched by concordance, and couldn’t find a single mention of a man calling a man honey.

    Honey.

  • Where does it leave me?

    Not spending the next 2 million years hanging out with a bunch of rigid, judgmental, uncompassionate, self righteous a-holes, convinced of their wholly imaginary superiority as human beings because they think the understand something they read in a book written 1900 years ago.

    And thank the god I don’t believe in for that, because if that isn’t hell, I can’t imagine what is.

  • I gave you scripture that you choose to ignore another proof you’re not who you say you are but in fact a deceiver. Only homosexuals call other men honey and can’t admit that fact.

  • Well Ben the bully you just got yourself blocked because of your bulling tactics.

  • Awwwww. Pooooorrrr widddle snowflake can say all kinds of nasty things to people, and has done so many, many times. But the PWS cannot take it if someone just stands up to it, because the PWS so likes to project his stuff on to other people.

    I’ll try to recover my equanimity.

    Well, there it is! Equanimity!

  • Well, if you gave me Scripture that says nothing about the word honey, I guess that proves it.

    As for admitting it, I guess reading comprehension is not your strong point. Because, honey…

    I AM THE BIGGEST, OUTEST, FLAMINGEST, IN-YOUR-FACIEST HOMOSEXUAL YOU ARE EVER GOING TO MEET.

    Deal with it.

    Or not. I couldn’t possibly not care any less than I already don’t. I’ve been dealing with people who hide behind their religious beliefs, or who can’t even manage the decent hypocrisy to do that– for my entire life: your hubris, your arrogance, your imaginary superiority, your despite, your condemnations, your ignorance, your lies, and your fears. I can’t begin to count the number of times I was called a dirty jew as a child by the church-goin’ white boys. Exceeded only by the number of times I’ve been called a dirty f*g as a child and as an adult by the so called Christians of your sort.

    You throw around your bible verses and your fake facts at everyone you don’t like– gay people, uppity women, liberals, Muslims, atheists, brown people, black people, and my very favorite– other Christians who aren’t your sort of Christian.

    You throw them around like they actually matter, like you are imparting some Wonderful and Great Truth that all of the objects of your despite will certainly hear. But more importantly, FEAR.

    It’s old, it’s tired, and frankly, all it does is accelerate the departure of people from your kind of faith. So perhaps you are actually accomplishing some good in the world after all.

    So block me, or don’t block me. Cowardice, or unpleasantness in hearing what you don’t want to hear.

    Your choice.

  • But you blocked me, didn’t you? so I think you really are afraid of me.

    TEe-hee. a big ol’ butch heterosexual Christian afraid of the flaming gay boy.

  • Only if you reduce Christianity to taxpayer-funded government programs (and/or socialism) and shilling for the latest progressive demands.

  • Sorry for the delay in replying, Spuddie was merely reiterating Williams’ caution regarding the potential entanglement and corruption that can occur when church and state begin to closely align; a not unreasonable concern. However, the separation of Church and State does not in my mind equate to the absence of godliness in government. Which, of course, is another argument that Spuddie would disdain.

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