Pope Francis on Tuesday announced sweeping revisions to the Catholic Church’s marriage annulment process, changes that are designed to speed up and simplify the often lengthy procedure. The revisions, according to Vatican experts, appear to be the most far-reaching made to the church’s annulment process in centuries….
The changes will eliminate a requirement that all annulment decisions get a second judgment and will allow local bishops to expedite the annulment process for some cases. The annulment process will be free of charge, though many dioceses had already eliminated the administrative fees for marriage annulments, according to a Vatican spokesman. The revisions also expand the role of local bishops in judging nullification proceedings.
I’m skeptical of this, as I am with the “abortion forgiveness” move. In both cases, the Pope is tweaking things so that the church doesn’t give up even an inch of ground when it comes to telling people they are a bunch of worthless sinners because they are sexual. It doesn’t do anything to change the sadistic church teaching that holds that God loves to punish and judge people for acting on urges that, by their own measure, he gave to people in the first place. All this is about is making it slightly less of a hassle for people who have had to leave the church to return, by making it possible—though still miserable—for them to get “forgiveness” for being human. All this accomplishes is drawing people in closer so they can be lectured more—and have to give tithing money for the pleasure!—about how they are wicked for wanting to enjoy their short lives while they still have them, instead of wasting away in family situations that are mentally destroying them.
It’s spiritual abuse, in other words. And like many abusers, the church is smart about luring victims back in, with promises about how it’s going to be different this time, when of course they intend to go right back to the old abusive behavior.
Yet as he upends church convention, Francis also is grappling with a conservative backlash to the liberal momentum building inside the church. In more than a dozen interviews, including with seven senior church officials, insiders say the change has left the hierarchy more polarized over the direction of the church than at any point since the great papal reformers of the 1960s.
I hope they just get more avid about this, honestly. I think they should start demanding the excommunication of everyone who has ever used contraception, masturbated, or even considered doing either. Just keep running people off and throwing people out until there’s no one left. And then pat yourself on the back about how “pure” you are in front of your completely empty pews. I don’t see any downside to that. The conservatives get to feel sanctified and the people who are caught up in the impossible task of trying to reconcile their very human selves with the misanthropic church teachings might actually get enough distance to realize that it’s really not healthy to hang around people who tell you that you’re wicked because you want basic things like to only be married to someone you love or only have children when it’s a good idea for you and your family.
After many years and many server changes and finally landing here at Raw Story, which has taken very good care of us, it's time to say goodbye to Pandagon. I've been blogging under this banner for ten years, after Jesse Taylor asked me to join. He, in turn, had been running this joint since he was in college. A lot has changed since then. I became a journalist, moved from Austin to New York and learned to play Dungeons & Dragons. Jesse became a lawyer and, just this past weekend, a married man.
Carly Fiorina defends her lie with a whole bunch of lies
I do like it when Republican candidates sport a resume full of corporate executive work, because it really shows the public how many fools and idiots coast into that position not on merit but on their bullshitting abilities. Donald Trump, Herman Cain, and now we have Carly Fiorina, who just can't understand why her perceived underlings (voters, journalists) won't scurry away, pretending to accept her bullshit like former employees of hers had to do, lest they lost their jobs.
And so it goes that Fiorina, who could make this entire Planned Parenthood controversy go away by saying something like, "I may have misremembered the video, but I still think abortion is wrong," instead is doubling and tripling down. And every time she does, she lies more and more. She was on Meet the Press and, so enamored of the idea that she is perfect and could never do anything wrong, just went to town with the defensive posturing.
Marco Rubio has an astoundingly low opinion of women’s intelligence
At RH Reality Check, I covered this story that I wish was getting more press, about how Marco Rubio goes back and forth between suggesting that women who get abortions are greedy monsters who get pregnant for cash:
I just think you’ve created an industry now … a situation where very much, you’ve created an incentive for people not just to look forward to having more abortions, but being able to sell that fetal tissue for purposes—these centers—for purposes of making a profit off it, as you’ve seen in some of these Planned Parenthood affiliates.