VATICAN CITY: Pope Benedict XVI warned against the grave dangers that "radical secularism" posed to the Catholic Church and society in general during a meeting Thursday with US bishops.
The United States was founded "on certain ethical principles" that have "eroded significantly in the face of powerful new cultural currents...," he said.
These trends, the pontiff continued, "are not only directly opposed to core moral teachings of the Judeo-Christian tradition, but increasingly hostile to Christianity as such."
While acknowledging the legitimacy of the separation of church and state, that did not mean the Roman Catholic Church should remain silent on certain questions, he added.
"The Church has a critical role to play in countering cultural currents which, on the basis of an extreme individualism, seek to promote notions of freedom detached from moral truth," the pope said.
He noted US bishops' efforts "to maintain contacts with Catholics involved in political life and to help them understand their personal responsibility to offer public witness to their faith...".
That was especially important with regard to "the great moral issues of our time: respect for God?s gift of life, the protection of human dignity and the promotion of authentic human rights," he said.
The bishops had to ensure that American Catholics had the courage "to counter a reductive secularism which would delegitimize the Church's participation in public debate about the issues which are determining the future of American society."
The pope's comments were posted in English on the
The Irish Catholic online today reported the contentious Labour position which may endanger all religious, denominational schools in the Republic. Click on the link. Why do the Irish insist on voting Labour, when this type of position, a hardening of anti-Catholic, anti-Christian sentiment is so obvious? I can ask the same question of the Catholics who voted for Obama, the man with the worst pro-life record in the history of the State of Illinois, a follower of Chomsky and other Marxists, and a narcissist. Oo, fighting words, but if you read the post below this one, you will see where POTUS and, indeed, some politicians here in Ireland stand on Christianity and the traditional Western Civ view on individual rights.
The Irish are in a fog about their own government and the country at large. While continuing to give out millions for social programs, the country is sliding into depression, financial and psychological. Many people here, especially the youth, are unhappy. The best leave and get jobs in Canada and Australia, like millions of our ancestors from Europe did in hard times. Those who get jobs where the jobs are need to be encouraged, but they are not. One dad here told me that his wife did not want the boys to emigrate, as she would never see the grandchildren again. That is just plain selfishness, as these young men have a first duty to their wives and children.
The country of Ireland needs more than selfishness, it needs leaders and people with vision. Obviously, attacking religious schools is not vision but oppression. I wish the old Republican spirit would awaken in the people of Ireland, but it is merely part of the stories said around the pubs and homes, stories from the past and not of the future. Here are a few quotations from the Irish Catholic article this morning.
Aodhán Ó Ríordáin TD, vice-chair of the Oireachtas education committee, told The Irish Catholic ''that religious ethos has no place in the educational system of a modern republic''.
His comments come as senior Church sources have accused the Labour Party of ''bullying'' Catholic schools by falsely accusing them of breaking the law over enrolment policies that admit Catholic children ahead of other children if the school is over-subscribed.
Dr John Murray of Mater Dei Institute of Education said the Labour move amounted to an attempt to ''intimidate'' the schools.
He said: ''I hope this isn't indicative of the attitude of the wider Labour Party to denominational schools because if it is, it is deeply worrying and needs to be strongly resisted. ''It is nothing less than an attack on the religious freedom of denominational schools,'' he said.
From where I am standing, Catholicism is becoming the minority way of life here.