November 19, 2008

Catholic Bishop: Education is Ruining My Church

Education is only a good thing when it doesn't lead people to question the authority and moral infallibility of the Pope and the Catholic Church according to British Bishop Patrick O'Donoghue. He admits that education has an upside, too, but asserts that it has a "dark side" when it comes to people coming to conclusions about empirical and social reality that disagrees with what a bunch of Latin-chanting clerics think those people ought to believe.

Educated Catholics have sown dissent and confusion in the Church, claims bishop

University-educated Catholics are to blame for the crisis in the Church and the growth of secularism, according to the bishop charged with tackling the decline in Mass attendance.

The Rt Rev Patrick O'Donoghue, the Bishop of Lancaster, has claimed that graduates are spreading scepticism and sowing dissent. Instead of following the Church's teaching they are "hedonistic", "selfish" and "egocentric", he said.

In particular, the bishop complained that influential Catholics in politics and the media were undermining the Church.

While not naming names, he suggested that such people had been compromised by their education, which he said had a "dark side, due to original sin"...

...every human endeavor has a dark side, due to original sin and concupiscence. In the case of education, we can see its distortion through the widespread dissemination of radical scepticism, positivism, utilitarianism and relativism.

"Taken together, these intellectual trends have resulted in a fragmented society that marginalizes God, with many people mistakenly thinking they can live happy and productive lives without him"...

He says that he supports Catholics receiving a university education, but urges they should be "better-equipped to challenge the erroneous thinking of their contemporaries"...
By erroneous he means "anything that doesn't agree with what we told you to believe," of course. O'Donoghue's contention is that the standard by which education should be judged is the extent to which it agrees with church doctrine.

The Bishop himself has a degree from Oxford, but apparently it's an MA in Agreeing with the Catholic Church. The sort of education that leads people to question their beliefs in an intellectually honest fashion, to hold them up to standards of evidence... well, that's just all wrong. A good, Catholic education should consist of rote memorization of Papal talking points.

Bishop O'Donoghue should go squat on a steeple. If that seems disrespectful, that's because it is. This man is nothing more than the Thought Police dressed up in a cassock, an enemy of reason, a stooge, a failure who found acceptance in a big, feudalistic organization that cloaks him with authority and demands it be respected — a sure sign that it shouldn't be.

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