Southern Religion

Mismarketing via the Sunday sermon?

For tickets to the movie “The Road,” which has no real bearing on Christian faith, would you?

[Christian p.r. company A. Larry Ross Communications chief Larry] Ross, who will hold advance screenings for Christian leaders, told Entertainment Weekly that he hopes pastors will refer to the film in their sermons.

Steve Rabey recommends that any who comply add, “This seemingly gratuitous reference was made in exchange for free tickets and other promotional considerations provided by the makers of ‘The Road?’”

November 18, 2009 Posted by | Cultural, Movies | , | Comments Off on Mismarketing via the Sunday sermon?

Southern Baptist Cult (SBC)?

Southern Baptist Convention disdain for women and lack of concern for children thundered through Georgia this week. Outspoken Oklahoma pastor Wade Burleson wrote:

During the November 11, 2009 business session of the Georgia Baptist Convention, messengers to the Southern Baptist state convention dismissed FBC Decatur, Georgia from fellowship for the church’s calling of Julie Russell-Pennington as Senior Pastor in 2007. The SBC will not establish a data base to track ministerial child abusers out of fear of “violating local church autonomy,” but when it comes to a church calling a woman to preach the gospel, church autonomy is slain at the feet of conventional conformity.

Read Burleson’s entire piece here, and read Christa Brown’s reaction at Stop Baptist Predators.

November 18, 2009 Posted by | Religion, SBC | , , | Comments Off on Southern Baptist Cult (SBC)?

Vatican may have first Legionaries/Regnum visitation report in hand

Legionaries of Christ

Investigators of the Legion of Christ (LC) and their lay organization, Regnum Christi (RC), were summoned to Rome in late October to give Benedict XVI a report on their investigation, according to the Spanish news agency eFe.

The investigation, called an “apostolic visitation,” is being conducted by Basque Bishop Ricardo Blazquez in Spain and by Archbishop of Denver Charles Chaput in the United States. It was provoked by the sexual and financial wrongdoings of RC founder Marcial Maciel and related events.

Translated, the eFe report says:

According to information provided to Efe by Legionary priests who are still within the religious congregation, but who disagree with the attitude of “secrecy” of their superiors, the apostolic visit is almost complete.

However, the visitors continue to work as some schools are lacking a visit, as in the case of Spain, and because there are still many people, especially the RC laity and consecrated persons, who have requested to be received by the visitors and give their testimony.

Apparently the Vatican was very interested in issues associated with taking control of the order’s assets, and with the willingness of LC members to obey Rome’s orders when action is taken:

[In addition to Maciel’s wrondoings] being investigated with emphasis are: “if the Legion’s constitutions correspond to those adopted at the time by the Holy See, on the financial issue and ownership of properties and facilities and, by express mandate of the Pope, in possible ‘coercion and control’ you bring back to consciousness of them in the consecrated members of the Legión,” sources told EFE.

Regnum Christi

The story portrays an organization whipsawed by distrust and dismay, awaiting action:

A Legionary priest, who occupies an important position in the LC and is still inside pending the decision of the Holy See at the end apostolic visit, summarized the situation to Efe:

“In the LC and RC at the moment there are three types of attitudes: those who still think that everything is false and that this is further proof that Christ calls us; those who have left and have gone out; and us who live with a tremendous frustration because of the secrecy of our superiors and are waiting on what the Pope decides and whether we convene a General Chapter.

“Everything that has been said is true,” says this priest, “and has been known to some LC superiors and to the Holy See for at least twenty years as acknowledged by the Vicar General, Luis Garza,pronounced at internal conferences this summer. ”

Apparently, eFe sources cast no light on exactly how the question of whether to dissolve, or refound LC/RC will be answered.

[H/T: How to get a loved one out of the Legion of Christ & Regnum Christi]

November 18, 2009 Posted by | Catholic, Pope Benedict XVI, Religion | , , , , | Comments Off on Vatican may have first Legionaries/Regnum visitation report in hand

Sarah Palin, the smeared Dominionist feminist

Sarah Palin the Christian Right Dominionist is rarely directly acknowledged as a feminist who asserts her right to power. Even feminist Echidne of the Snakes comes at that issue obliquely when defending Palin against the misogynist smears (like the current cover of Newsweek). The Goddess writes:

The list of explosive topics for feminist bloggers is slightly different than for, say, progressive bloggers in general. And no, I’m not going to give you the list because that would get the yelling started. But one of those topics certainly is the way Sarah Palin is treated in the political media and on various political blogs. The debate on her is predictable: Some (poor dear) feminist blogger points out that her treatment contains large chunks of sexist smearing. Then others note that Sarah is trading on her sexuality so she deserves the sexualized responses. Or that she’s too stoopid for words and has such horrible politics that we really should dump everything possible on her head. Including misogyny, whenever appropriate.

November 18, 2009 Posted by | Politics, Publications | , , , | Comments Off on Sarah Palin, the smeared Dominionist feminist

USCCB Study: Homosexuality play no role in priestly sexual predation

John Jay College of Criminal Justice researchers told the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops they found “no evidence that gay priests are more likely than heterosexual clergy to molest children.”

USA Today reported:

“What we are suggesting is that the idea of sexual identity be separated from the problem of sexual abuse,” said Margaret Smith of John Jay College, in a speech to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. “At this point, we do not find a connection between homosexual identity and the increased likelihood of subsequent abuse from the data that we have right now.”

[And] many experts on sex offenders reject any link between sexual orientation and committing abuse. Karen Terry, a John Jay researcher, said it was important to distinguish between sexual identity and behavior, and to look at who the offender had access to when seeking victims.

According to Tuesday’s interim report on the $2 million study, Catholic clerical sexual abuse peaked in the late 1960s and 1970s before declining in the 1980s, and researchers believe there has been no resurgence. That pattern, they argued, parallels to some degree changes in the society at large during those periods.

Dubbed The Causes and Context Study, it was funded by the USCCB, the National Institute of Justice and several foundations. A complete reported is scheduled for December of 2010.

November 18, 2009 Posted by | Catholic, Crime, Health | , , , | Comments Off on USCCB Study: Homosexuality play no role in priestly sexual predation