Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Pope’s suffering equals that of the Jews during the Holocaust

If you did a spit take at that statement you are not alone. When I got the gist of this statement by the Rev. Rainero Cantalamesa to the faithful during the Good Friday homily I did a spit take too.

The "coincidence" that Passover falls in the same week as Easter celebrations, said Cantalamessa, a Franciscan who offers reflections at Vatican Easter and Advent services, prompted him to think about Jews.
"They know from experience what it means to be victims of collective violence and also because of this they are quick to recognize the recurring symptoms," the preacher said.

Quoting from the letter from the friend, who wasn't identified by Cantalamessa, the preacher said that he was following '`'with indignation the violent and concentric attacks against the church, the pope and all the faithful of the whole world.'"

"The use of stereotypes, the passing from personal responsibility and guilt to a collective guilt remind me of the more shameful aspects of anti-Semitism,'" Cantalamessa said his friend wrote him.
Huffpo link to the story

How in the name of all that is just and fair can a representative of the Catholic Church compare its leaders to the suffering of Jewish people in defense of its complicity in the abuse of children? Is it really the position of at least this representative of the Catholic Church that the calls for those responsible for this abuse meet some kind of justice outside of “therapy” and reassignment truly equals to the holocaust? Did this person just stand up and say that there is even one catholic priest that is suffering the indignity of Treblinka?

Benedict didn't speak after the homily, but, in a tired-sounding voice, chanted prayers. He leaned up to remove a red cloth covering a tall crucifix, which was passed to him by an aide. He took off his shoes, knelt and prayed before the cross
Huffpo link to the story

I’m not Jewish, and I’m not Catholic, but I write this diary in order to ask some real questions outside the rhetorical ones I posed above. When people use civil rights analogies in a way that I feel cheapens the struggle it makes me angry from a personal stand point, and I’m feeling that same burst of indignation from this person’s statement. Do you feel like I do?

UPDATE 11:26 from comments: Fandragon points out and the simplicity and accuracy of this point is still making me go doh!

What did he mean by "The "coincidence" that Passover falls in the same week as Easter celebrations..." The heck? I know that the dates fluctuate a bit, but calling it a coincidence is a little weird. Jesus and his followers were CELEBRATING Passover during the last supper, directly tying in the Passover celebration of the blood of the lamb protecting the people of Israel from the Angel of Death, with Jesus' sacrifice.

It seems like the bishop was trying to downplay the very direct link between Christianity and Judaism. Which is even stranger, seeing as how he followed that up by making the ridiculous claim that Catholics are now suffering the same way the Jews have under anti-semitism.
h/t Fandragon!

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