Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition

It seems there is a new Pope. Benedict XVI, he'll be called.

"Presumably it's not going to be Cardinal Ratzinger," I said at the start of the process.
"The head of the Inquisition!"
I got that one wrong. Just as well I'm not a pundit ;-)

He seems a bit of a hardliner who, as head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (the new name for the Inquisition), silenced dissenting theologians. It will be interesting to see how he deals with challenges from those who question traditional (if peripheral) dogmas like priestly celibacy, the ban on birth control, the exclusively male priesthood, or papal infallibility, as well as more clearly moral issues like abortion.

I wonder if he'll want to comment on issues like the "christianisation" of Europe and the proposed constitution, or on the admission to the EU of its first moslem country, Turkey, or on globalisation, or the War On Terror.

Finally, I'm wondering how Northern Ireland's political and religious figures (Ian Paisley, for instance) will react to the head of the Inquisition running the Catholic church. It has become fashionable to apologise for the past - will there be calls for apologies for the crimes of the Inquisition?

1 comment:

Flaming Firegeni said...

Well it's just as well you are *not* a pundit indeed.

'nyways the general opinion was that the Pope had accumulated sufficiently like minded people into the inner circle to ensure a perpetuation of his principles and thinking for decades to come. How farsighted is that!

You want apologies for the crimes of the Inquisition now?!!! I mean haven't you heard of "selective memory"? It's the church's memory typology ;)