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  #1  
Old 02-26-2014, 01:13 AM
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Frontline on the Vatican

Aired tonight but is watchable online. If you have an interest in the internal politics of the largest religious institution in human history, you will like it.

Secrets of the Vatican | FRONTLINE | PBS

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  #2  
Old 02-26-2014, 01:23 AM
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Was quite the eye opener. Glad you posted.
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  #3  
Old 02-26-2014, 07:21 AM
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I saw parts of that last night. I came away very impressed with the new Pope...Francis? He recognizes the church must change and is an anecdote to the arrogance and corruption that has permeated it for so long.

Can he turn it around permanently? I will be impressed if he does given the size and number of people that need to be changed in their hearts.

His words and deeds are very powerful.
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  #4  
Old 02-26-2014, 11:52 AM
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They elect very old men on their last legs to front the corporation. Much like a chairman of the board. In the background is where all the real power and operations are conducted.

Of all the organized religeons I have the least use for the Catholic empire. Archaic in nature and totally out of touch with reality other than the aspect of making money. In that area they may have no equal.

They have done many things that are seriously questionable as they had the power to do so. Shielding and being part of the escape network for serious nazi war criminals right after the war spoke volumes to me about their morality. Money is job #1 to them I believe.

Allowing staff to sexually prey on congregations children. with a wink was very cute too. Almost a criminal organization if you take the window dressing away in many ways. Very secretive at the financial end of the spectrum as well.

When I was a young fellow it was quite impressive what they quietly owned in Canada alone. I suspect they may be the wealthiest corporation in the world by far but one will never know for certain. If they have a god it is money. Plus a situation and system to perpetuate it for a long time historically.

The more money acquired the more power and influence behind the scenes is about the only rational possible at their financial level. Their cash flow basically is and remains a one way street.
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Old 02-26-2014, 03:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by t walgamuth View Post
I saw parts of that last night. I came away very impressed with the new Pope...Francis? He recognizes the church must change and is an anecdote to the arrogance and corruption that has permeated it for so long.

Can he turn it around permanently? I will be impressed if he does given the size and number of people that need to be changed in their hearts.

His words and deeds are very powerful.
I hope he's more than an amusing story. An antidote would be nice.
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  #6  
Old 02-26-2014, 03:21 PM
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There was an argument put forward in the piece that he will be ineffective due to repeated prior attempts to undermine the various power centers within the Curia which have always failed.
Some people seem to think that since he's an outsider to the Vatican, that he has a chance. The downside to that is that he will have few allies within the established power centers to support his reforms.
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  #7  
Old 02-26-2014, 06:18 PM
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Didn't he pack the curia with his own people or am I mistaken?
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  #8  
Old 02-26-2014, 06:23 PM
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He did bring in many of his own people. Enough? I doubt it. For instance, it seems most unlikely to me that he can root out the homosexual culture widespread within the Vatican. Such a divergence from church teaching in lifestyle has to produce a whole set of cynical power hungry priests living in Rome off the largess of the church. They will not depart easily.
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Old 02-26-2014, 08:16 PM
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Is he allowed to exercise capital punishment?
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  #10  
Old 02-26-2014, 08:41 PM
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Is he allowed to exercise capital punishment?
I'm sure there must be at least one dungeon left on the premises full of all sorts of toys.
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  #11  
Old 02-26-2014, 08:45 PM
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Aquinas endorsed the execution of heretics.
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  #12  
Old 02-27-2014, 06:00 PM
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Originally Posted by barry12345 View Post
When I was a young fellow it was quite impressive what they quietly owned in Canada alone. I suspect they may be the wealthiest corporation in the world by far but one will never know for certain. If they have a god it is money. Plus a situation and system to perpetuate it for a long time historically.

The more money acquired the more power and influence behind the scenes is about the only rational possible at their financial level. Their cash flow basically is and remains a one way street.
I read once an allegation that the real reason the church installed the celibacy policy for clergy was to get around the wealth draining tendency of priests to leave wealth to their heirs. The temptation would be strong to siphon off wealth in whatever way possible. With no children, the only heir would be the church.

Sounds eminently plausible.
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Old 02-27-2014, 06:11 PM
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I read once an allegation that the real reason the church installed the celibacy policy for clergy was to get around the wealth draining tendency of priests to leave wealth to their heirs. The temptation would be strong to siphon off wealth in whatever way possible. With no children, the only heir would be the church.

Sounds eminently plausible.
Explains the baby bones under the rectory too.
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  #14  
Old 02-27-2014, 06:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmac2012 View Post
I read once an allegation that the real reason the church installed the celibacy policy for clergy was to get around the wealth draining tendency of priests to leave wealth to their heirs. The temptation would be strong to siphon off wealth in whatever way possible. With no children, the only heir would be the church.

Sounds eminently plausible.
The church had an anti-sex moral theology before it had accumulated a lot of wealth. (I think) Christians were castrating themselves in the 2nd and 3rd centuries. I've seen no figures on church assets at that time but I doubt they were huge.
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  #15  
Old 02-27-2014, 06:31 PM
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Here's an interesting piece on Catholic church finances:

Catholic Church and Pope Francis: Religious institutions are exempted from nonprofit disclosure rules, so nobody knows how rich they really are.


Related anecdote on the issue of whether parish finances are church assets or parish assets: BIL lives in a town with a Catholic parish. That parish is fiscally responsible and has a lot of $$. Membership was declining. Bishop decided to close that parish and merge it with a fiscally less responsible neighboring parish. In response, members of the responsible parish decided to spend down all their assets before the merger rather than having them become integrated into funds of less responsible parish.

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