Before he wore The Best Frock, Joseph Ratzinger’s job was to investigate the child abuse scandal that has plagued the Catholic church for decades. In May 2001 he wrote a confidential letter to Catholic bishops, ordering them not to notify the police, or anyone else about the allegations, on pain of excommunication (which for Catholics, involves eternal hellfire and damnation). He wanted any investigations handled in secret.
Ratzinger has spoken (or released statements) stating that he believes the Catholic church has been the victim of a ‘planned’ media campaign. He instructed that prayers be said in perpetuity for the victims along with an insistence that men ‘with deep-seated homosexual tendencies’ do not enter the priesthood, thereby turning all responsibility for the scandal onto the (presumably evil) gays.
Ratzinger presides over a church that calls homosexuality ‘a deviation, an irregularity, a wound’. In 1986 letter, he complained that, ‘even within the Church, [people] are bringing enormous pressure to bear . . . to accept the homosexual condition as though it were not disordered’. He added that homosexuality is ‘an intrinsic moral evil’.
Ratzinger opposes women priests, and demands the criminilisation of abortion even for women who have been raped. His friend, the theologian Wolfhart Pannenberg, has said that Ratzinger sees the push for female priests as driven by ‘spokeswomen for radical feminists, especially lesbians’.
Aids, Ratzinger says, ‘cannot be overcome through the distribution of condoms, which even aggravates the problems’. There are more than 12 million Aids orphans in Africa. Twenty-two million Africans have Aids and the UN fears that eventually 90 million could die.
This is the chap who is coming to England to lecture us about morality.
Please make him feel welcome.
‘Religion is the opiate of the masses’ ~ Karl Marx