By Steve McSwain, Huffington Post
I was reading recently of the bravery of the Irish Catholic priest, Fr. Tony Flannery, who, at 66, is being threatened by the Vatican.
No! I thought. The Vatican never threatens anyone!
The history of Christianity, and not just in Catholicism but in all Christian denominations, is similar. The Church has found that it thrives best not in a world it sacrifices itself to redeem — not in a world it lays down its life in order to give life to others — but, instead, it survives best by demanding coercion, by making itself into a “god” and insisting this God can only be known “our” way; by making its beliefs into an idol that the faithful must bow the knee. The church has found that, by drawing lines in theological and doctrinal sands, battle lines between “us,” the theologically “correct” and “them,” the doctrinally “wrong,” that, by doing so, the church wins.
But does it really?
Of course, it does not, as history has repeatedly demonstrated. Unfortunately, however, history, at least as far as the church is concerned, has never been a very good teacher for church leaders.
For all the good the church has done, and it has done much good, the history of Christianity is in large measure the history of madness. This morning’s story is simply another case-in-point.
Last year, for example, the Vatican suspended Flannery’s ministry. And, today, Flannery is being threatened with charges of “heresy” and possible “excommunication” from the church.
Read the full article at Huffington Post.