What nerve~!  After having last year compared gay people to the ku klux klan,

this year he does it again!  now that gay marriage is likely to be approved in Illinois, he wants to play politics even as he dodges his taxes by writing a lil letter calling gay marriage unnatural.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/geoffrey-r-stone/cardinal-george-same...

let's put aside the fact that his church has spent 2 billion dollars covering up the crimes of his predator priests and these people have headed an international criminal conspiracy to cover up child molestation over generations ...

isn't morality itself unnatural?  it's meant to tame our natural aggression.  Nature is completely amoral: there's cannibalism in nature, some species of birds sacrifice one chick if that increases the chances of survival of the stronger chick.  And dogs, dolphins, octopi, apes, almost all mammals engage in homosexuality.  what does he mean by unnatural, and in what way would that be relevant to ethical questions?  his doctrine is so unsophisticated, feudal, archaic, bigoted and stupid, and his church so lacking in credibility that it's embarrassing that this type of nonsense is still coming out of his mouth and that he even thinks he has the moral authority to utter this.

sorry for ranting ... phew! i wonder if there's a way to effectively boycott the catholic church?

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Morality is not unnatural. Morality is independent of religious belief; indeed, morality is required to choose a particular religious path is "moral."

Religious morality, however, is used to justify things that would be clearly viewed as evil by a person not indoctrinated in, or who slipped the shackles of, superstitious belief. Genocide, infanticide, regicide, patricide, matricide, rape, conquest, plunder, all are justified by superstitious holy books.

On the other hand, it is a clear mandate of evolutionary theory that a species survives by promoting its fellows. Indeed there are many examples of such altruism in nature. There are some of species even supporting others, such as dolphins saving humans (though humans have been incredibly destructive of the dolphin race).

In the absence of evidence for a dolphin religion, agnosticism toward dolphin religion seems to be the rule, and atheism toward any putative dolphin god(s) also the rule(s).

"Civil laws that establish 'same-sex marriage' create a legal fiction," [Cardinal George] wrote, because the "State has no power to create something that nature tells us is impossible."

Oh ... is THAT why we see homosexual behavior in hundreds of species other than Homo sapiens?  Is that why attempts to cull or train or use aversion therapy to remove homosexual behavior from human beings has been an unmitigated failure?  Nature seems to think pretty contrary to Cardinal George's thinking, but of course, he will ignore that because man is a separate and special creation, isn't he?  That matter of those two chromosomes of ours having originated in apes and fused as a part of the creation of our species is not something he's willing to consider.

Once again, church doctrine is supposed to rule über alles, and if there is some fact of nature which contradicts the church, it's just conveniently ignored.

Hiram, you ask an interesting question. i wonder if there's a way to effectively boycott the catholic church? Actually, there is - if you were baptized a catholic. You can formally excommunicate the church from your life. I know. I did it. There is a form that basically says you demand to be removed from the rolls of the church which, along with a letter of explanation, you send to the bishop of the diocese where you were baptized. This may sound trivial on its face, since you no longer participate in or give money to them (assuming, once again, you were baptized into that cult). The reason people should do this is that whenever the church decides to flex its political muscle, the membership numbers they use to cower politicians are the baptismal records. Is that a phony statistic? Absolutely. But then again, you really didn't think the church was going to engage in honesty, did you? If you were a member, and want your named purged from the "party" rolls, email me. I'll be glad to forward it to you.

I was baptised there and tried, actually for years.  The Catholic Church has such a heinous bureaucracy that it was almost impossible to get a certificate of apostasy from them.  I contacted the church of my baptism, they told me to contact someone locally, I contacted someone locally and they told me to contact the church where I was baptised, I contacted someone where I grew up and they said I should contact  someone else.  There's no streamlined way of doing it, they try to hide their numbers by making it hell on Earth for anyone wanting a certificate of apostasy: they want your reasons, they wanna talk you out of it, they wanna keep treating you like a child.

I could try again.

You said you simply wrote a letter to the dioceses of your baptism?  Did they actually reply and send you a certificate of apostasy or excommunication?

Can you provide a link to a website that helps people wanting to declare apostasy, to streamline the process?  I know the network of victims of sexual abuse is a bit more organized in activism against the church than the atheists are, maybe they have an excommunication campaign of some sort that leads people in the right direction.  It would be useful to provide similar services through atheist nexus: helping people to connect with the right place to be able to declare their apostasy without so much bureaucracy.

I sent you an "add" as a friend. Apparently, the only way you can email someone on A|N. Once I'm added, I'll send you the form. It's called "Actus Formalis Defectionis Ab Ecclesia Catholica." Or, Declaration of Defection from the Roman Catholic Church.  It needs to be sent to the bishop of the diocese where you were baptized. Along with the form, you need to send a letter explaining that this is a voluntary act, along with the reasons why you want out. The following is what I sent the bishop in my letter of explanation.  Feel free to cut, paste, edit or modify anything you want.

"This is a completely knowing and voluntary act on my part, understanding full well the consequences of this action, as you can see from the enclosed declaration.  I realize this means excommunication, which is exactly my request.  Though, in this case it is I who am  excommunicating your organization.

In case you may be wondering why, allow me to list some of the reasons (all of them would take way too long)

1.   First and foremost, I have been an atheist for at least thirty-five (35) years, having come to the understanding and realization that there are no gods of any sort which populate an ethereal world invented by humans.  This includes, but is certainly not limited to, bronze and iron aged middle eastern desert gods invented by semi-literate nomads whom, in the context of the modern world, would be considered barbarians.

2.   I was quite content to let this go for years.  However, in recent decades, there has been a dangerous resurgence of religion in the political realm; both here in the U.S. and abroad.  The Catholic Church in the U.S. has interjected itself into the political realm by publicly announcing that it will withhold magic incantations (sacraments) from otherwise good people who are candidates should they not tow the official Vatican party line.  All of this done in a crass effort to affect the outcome of a secular vote.  I realize protestant churches do the same thing of which I disapprove, but I am not in any way affiliated with them.  There is no appreciable difference between Catholic and/or Christian doctrine imposing itself on the body politic of secular society, than the imposition of Sharia law in other nations.  Something which I fight here, and will continue to fight until my dying breath.

3.   I can no longer allow my name to be used by the Catholic Church as one of its statistical “members,” when the church is adamantly and diametrically opposed to what I am convinced is a moral view of the world.  Three examples come to mind, though there are many more.  First, a conscious cover-up of child rape and pederasty.  I have spent over fifteen (15) years of my professional life as a prosecutor who put child molesters in prison.  I will not be affiliated with an organization that condones it; notwithstanding public protestations to the contrary.  Second, I vehemently disagree with the church’s policy of discouraging condom use, especially in Africa.  Preying on the ignorant and uneducated by disseminating false information about sexually transmitted diseases is not only immoral, but is tantamount to murder.  And third, I will not be affiliated with an organization that is so openly misogynistic. Rules and moral precepts of the 21st century should not be based on doctrines of medieval Europe promulgated by those who placed Galileo on house arrest for the crime of advancing human knowledge.

Please do not take the foregoing personally.  It is certainly not intended to be a personal attack on you, or your staff.  Never having met you, I have no reason to doubt you’re a nice fellow who is kind and generous to those around you.  It’s the organization which I oppose.

Sincerely,

Etc., etc., etc"

Ohh, and it probably didn't hurt that I put the letter on my office letterhead - Attorney at Law.

 

accepted you

Alright, submitted the email to a person in the dioceses of Brooklyn who said she would accept an act of defection to the Brooklyn bishop and gave me her email addrs.  Below is the letter, for the sake of having witnesses to my formal apostasy, it's loosely based on another act of defection letter that I found online and used as template.

This coincides with my formally assuming the secular humanist doctrine of Epicureanism as my personal philosophy and as my formal framework for philosophical discourse so the timing is actually ideal and fits into my seeking authenticity ......

-----------
 
January 2, 2013
Nicholas DiMarzio 
Bishop of Brooklyn
310 Prospect Park West
Brooklyn, NY  11215
Dear DiMarzio,
I am hereby formally defecting from the Catholic Church and request an execution of the Actus Formalis Defectionis Ab Ecclesia Catholica for myself to begin this process in accordance with canons 1086, 1117 and 1174 of the Code of Canon law as well as notification Prot. N. 10279/2006 from the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts (PCLT).
This request is being made by me personally, freely and consciously in order to sever all bonds of Catholic faith, sacraments, and pastoral governance and constitutes a willful act of apostasy of my part.  I am providing herein all necessary information with an explanation for my decision.
I was born on ... in Brooklyn, NY and as a matter of custom received baptism as an infant in New York.  In 1991, shortly after turning 15, I stopped believing in Catholic doctrine and left the Catholic Church.  I have now chosen to leave the Catholic Church in a formal and open manner for a number of reasons:
  • I am not a believer in Catholic teachings or any other salvific or revealed doctrine 
  • I am not religious, and in fact consider organized religion to be fraudulent and harmful to society in many ways
  • I exhibit a profound distrust and skepticism of supernatural claims in general
  • I am a gay male and consider the anti-gay doctrine and the open hostility of many in the ranks of your clergy to be insulting to our human dignity and harmful to LGBT youth struggling to come out 
  • I am a firm believer in the equal validity of same-sex marriage
  • I am appalled at the culture of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church
  • The decision to baptize me, and to raise me as a Catholic, was made without my consent when I was an infant
  • As an adult, I have found that most of the authentic questions I have are best answered within the realm of secular philosophical discourse
  • I find that my political and ethical views are in direct contradiction with those of the Catholic Church and I vehemently disagree with Church teaching with regards to, among other things, human sexuality.  I consider these doctrines as harmful, feudal, archaic and irrelevant
The decision and declaration of initiating excommunication is made out of my own free will, being of sound mind, and in full cognizance of the repercussions.  I do not expect to ever get married in a church and see no need to be a hypocrite in order to participate in sacraments.  I also do not wish to be considered Catholic for census and demographics purposes.
 
I recognize that many members of your church exhibit a high quality of character and it is not my intent to personally attack you or any member of your staff, but simply to respectfully assert my right and my choice of pursuing philosophy instead of religion and to raise my voice in stalwart dissent against the teachings and actions of Catholic leadership.
For these reasons, I hereby request to be officially excommunicated as soon as possible, to have my name removed from all church accounts, to provide that this act be noted in the baptismal registry (cfr. can. 535, § 2) with explicit mention of the occurrence of a “defectio ab Ecclesia catholica actu formali” and to record that I am no longer a member of the Catholic church according to the PCLT. I want no membership in your church for the rest of my life and expect these wishes to be honored.
Should you require further information to proceed, please advise accordingly.  I look forward to receiving official confirmation of this action at your earliest convenience.
 
Sincerely,

..... (signed)

I commend you and Pat for this action.  I just simply resigned my membership from my most recent protestant church.  Therefore, I am a member of no church.  Gosh, what a good feeling that is.  Never even thought about it until you brought it up.  Interesting how the catholic church counts its members.  They are probably still counting you.

As good a throw-down as I've ever read, Hiram, BRAVO!

As a separate note, I wonder how many of these the church has processed recently and if there has been an up-tick in such processes recently?

Hiram,

Excuse me for saying so, but HELL YEAH! :D

Best post I have read in ages. Asked my family's church to take me of their roles back In 2011 due to my loss of faith several years prior, to which they responded, "Oh, it's okay! We still want you here!" Perhaps I need to send a letter like THAT! Ha!

A Chicago Sun Times article on Obama's support for IL marriage initiative -- most interestingly, at the bottom of the page there's a poll where one can vote on whether marriage should be illegal in IL.  I encourage all to vote.  Currently, 92 % of poll voters have said yes to gay marriage in the Sun Times poll.

http://blogs.suntimes.com/sweet/2012/12/obama_urging_state_lawmaker...

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