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Author Topic: Pope Benedict Peace Message Calls For Wealth Redistribution  (Read 3538 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: December 17, 2011, 03:30:36 PM »

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VATICAN CITY (RNS) Noting a "rising sense of frustration" at the worldwide economic recession, Pope Benedict XVI said that a more just and peaceful world requires "adequate mechanisms for the redistribution of wealth."

The pope's words appeared in his message for the World Day of Peace 2012, released on Friday (Dec. 16) at the Vatican.

The message laments that "some currents of modern culture, built upon rationalist and individualist economic principles, have cut off the concept of justice from its transcendent roots, detaching it from charity and solidarity."

I think this is an issue the Orthodox and Catholics can come together on.
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« Reply #1 on: December 17, 2011, 04:33:14 PM »

The the pope can sell the vatican move into a couple acre property like the phanar.  He can get rid of his fancy vestments, his prada shoes, etc.. remember he is the last absolute monarch in europe.  As an American, who was educated from birth not to like monarchism I see this idea as nothing but a king who is richer than the world telling everyone else to live more poorly but yet we don't see him reducing his lifestyle or selling off anything in his kingdom, even if it is the vatican and small it is packed with riches beyond belief and his bank account is most likely larger than the federal reserve of half the world's countries.
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« Reply #2 on: December 17, 2011, 04:36:19 PM »

 Roll Eyes
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« Reply #3 on: December 17, 2011, 05:28:08 PM »

The the pope can sell the vatican move into a couple acre property like the phanar.  He can get rid of his fancy vestments, his prada shoes, etc.. remember he is the last absolute monarch in europe.  As an American, who was educated from birth not to like monarchism I see this idea as nothing but a king who is richer than the world telling everyone else to live more poorly but yet we don't see him reducing his lifestyle or selling off anything in his kingdom, even if it is the vatican and small it is packed with riches beyond belief and his bank account is most likely larger than the federal reserve of half the world's countries.

Whenever one of these plutocrats, whether religious or secular, says such a thing, the message is always for everyone else ...except for themselves.  Never fails.
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« Reply #4 on: December 17, 2011, 05:33:04 PM »

That's kind of funny, because I wasn't aware he actually owned the art in the Vatican. I thought they were all bought and paid for hundreds of years ago, but who cares about facts?

The Pope is elected by the College of Cardinals. His entire non-'kingdom' is less than the size of a modern state university, and only a couple hundred elderly priests, bishops and religious live there. All the security guards live over the border in Italy.

Really, you're afraid of a country that is less than 1/4 the size of a city. It is inside another city.

And as for plutocrat, it wasn't too long ago that the Vatican was millions in debt.

You're batting zero. Guess you're just swinging for the exercise.
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« Reply #5 on: December 17, 2011, 06:08:06 PM »

The the pope can sell the vatican move into a couple acre property like the phanar.  He can get rid of his fancy vestments, his prada shoes, etc.. remember he is the last absolute monarch in europe.  As an American, who was educated from birth not to like monarchism I see this idea as nothing but a king who is richer than the world telling everyone else to live more poorly but yet we don't see him reducing his lifestyle or selling off anything in his kingdom, even if it is the vatican and small it is packed with riches beyond belief and his bank account is most likely larger than the federal reserve of half the world's countries.
Whenever one of these plutocrats, whether religious or secular, says such a thing, the message is always for everyone else ...except for themselves.  Never fails.

I suppose by this standard, unless a priest is both the poorest and the most generous in his parish, he has no authority to preach on the widow with the two mites. But then again a priest in that position might not be able to preach on the parable of the talents where we are instructed to use discernment in what we do with what we have. Perhaps such a priest shouldn't preach at all about charity until he's given away all the icons, lampstands, and items in the sanctuary, and of course the church building.
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« Reply #6 on: December 17, 2011, 07:28:08 PM »

The the pope can sell the vatican move into a couple acre property like the phanar.  He can get rid of his fancy vestments, his prada shoes, etc.. remember he is the last absolute monarch in europe.  As an American, who was educated from birth not to like monarchism I see this idea as nothing but a king who is richer than the world telling everyone else to live more poorly but yet we don't see him reducing his lifestyle or selling off anything in his kingdom, even if it is the vatican and small it is packed with riches beyond belief and his bank account is most likely larger than the federal reserve of half the world's countries.
Whenever one of these plutocrats, whether religious or secular, says such a thing, the message is always for everyone else ...except for themselves.  Never fails.

I suppose by this standard, unless a priest is both the poorest and the most generous in his parish, he has no authority to preach on the widow with the two mites. But then again a priest in that position might not be able to preach on the parable of the talents where we are instructed to use discernment in what we do with what we have. Perhaps such a priest shouldn't preach at all about charity until he's given away all the icons, lampstands, and items in the sanctuary, and of course the church building.

I think the main point that username! was trying to make is that it is hypocritical for a man who controls massive quantities of valuable things that are kept locked up and never used or seen, to start talking about wealth redistribution (even using the term).
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« Reply #7 on: December 17, 2011, 07:36:55 PM »

The the pope can sell the vatican move into a couple acre property like the phanar.  He can get rid of his fancy vestments, his prada shoes, etc.. remember he is the last absolute monarch in europe.  As an American, who was educated from birth not to like monarchism I see this idea as nothing but a king who is richer than the world telling everyone else to live more poorly but yet we don't see him reducing his lifestyle or selling off anything in his kingdom, even if it is the vatican and small it is packed with riches beyond belief and his bank account is most likely larger than the federal reserve of half the world's countries.
Whenever one of these plutocrats, whether religious or secular, says such a thing, the message is always for everyone else ...except for themselves.  Never fails.

I suppose by this standard, unless a priest is both the poorest and the most generous in his parish, he has no authority to preach on the widow with the two mites. But then again a priest in that position might not be able to preach on the parable of the talents where we are instructed to use discernment in what we do with what we have. Perhaps such a priest shouldn't preach at all about charity until he's given away all the icons, lampstands, and items in the sanctuary, and of course the church building.

I think the main point that username! was trying to make is that it is hypocritical for a man who controls massive quantities of valuable things that are kept locked up and never used or seen, to start talking about wealth redistribution (even using the term).

1.  At his coronation/installation a new Pope takes an oath not to dispose of the Vatican's chattels, works of art, etc.

2.  Several years go the Vatican almost fell into the red because it had overreached itself with charitable and missionary works, disaster relief.

« Last Edit: December 17, 2011, 07:39:39 PM by Irish Hermit » Logged
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« Reply #8 on: December 17, 2011, 07:44:42 PM »

The the pope can sell the vatican move into a couple acre property like the phanar.  He can get rid of his fancy vestments, his prada shoes, etc.. remember he is the last absolute monarch in europe.  As an American, who was educated from birth not to like monarchism I see this idea as nothing but a king who is richer than the world telling everyone else to live more poorly but yet we don't see him reducing his lifestyle or selling off anything in his kingdom, even if it is the vatican and small it is packed with riches beyond belief and his bank account is most likely larger than the federal reserve of half the world's countries.
Whenever one of these plutocrats, whether religious or secular, says such a thing, the message is always for everyone else ...except for themselves.  Never fails.

I suppose by this standard, unless a priest is both the poorest and the most generous in his parish, he has no authority to preach on the widow with the two mites. But then again a priest in that position might not be able to preach on the parable of the talents where we are instructed to use discernment in what we do with what we have. Perhaps such a priest shouldn't preach at all about charity until he's given away all the icons, lampstands, and items in the sanctuary, and of course the church building.

I think the main point that username! was trying to make is that it is hypocritical for a man who controls massive quantities of valuable things that are kept locked up and never used or seen, to start talking about wealth redistribution (even using the term).

1.  At his coronation/installation a new Pope takes an oath not to dispose of the Vatican's chattels, works of art, etc.

2.  Several years go the Vatican almost fell into the red because it had overreached itself with charitable and missionary works, disaster relief.



Thank you.  I'm glad someone said it.  If I am thinking correctly, I believe the Vatican distributes about 25% of its yearly income to those in need throughout the world. 
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« Reply #9 on: December 17, 2011, 10:11:48 PM »

The the pope can sell the vatican move into a couple acre property like the phanar.  He can get rid of his fancy vestments, his prada shoes, etc.. remember he is the last absolute monarch in europe.  As an American, who was educated from birth not to like monarchism I see this idea as nothing but a king who is richer than the world telling everyone else to live more poorly but yet we don't see him reducing his lifestyle or selling off anything in his kingdom, even if it is the vatican and small it is packed with riches beyond belief and his bank account is most likely larger than the federal reserve of half the world's countries.

You sound just like the protestant kids who came into my parish church when I was a child and made fun of all the gold and lace and gems...Said we should sell it all and give it to the poor. 

I think that the Vatican should send less to Orthodox countries for a while.  I cannot imagine, after my time here, that it's much appreciated in any event.
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« Reply #10 on: December 17, 2011, 10:48:58 PM »

I think that the Vatican should send less to Orthodox countries for a while.  I cannot imagine, after my time here, that it's much appreciated in any event.

Hope the Pope likes the 50 Christmas trees sent to the Vatican by the Ukraine.

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« Reply #11 on: December 17, 2011, 10:55:07 PM »

I think that the Vatican should send less to Orthodox countries for a while.  I cannot imagine, after my time here, that it's much appreciated in any event.

Just send back what you Roman Catholics stole from Orthodox churches. We'll be content with that.
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« Reply #12 on: December 17, 2011, 11:04:45 PM »

I think that the Vatican should send less to Orthodox countries for a while.  I cannot imagine, after my time here, that it's much appreciated in any event.

Just send back what you Roman Catholics stole from Orthodox churches. We'll be content with that.

It's all coming back, my boy!  :-)

Russians Plan to Sack Rome (USP, November 4,2010).  News has leaked out of special Russian paramilitary forces being trained at secret locations in Transbekistan.  Their purpose is the sacking of Rome and Venice, Florence and other major Italian cities as well as those of France and Germany should it becomes apparent that the forces of Islam, political or military, are about to take possession of these countries.  The Russian Government intends to rescue the priceless artistic treasures of Italy and Western Europe.  Islam, known for its iconoclasm, may wish to destroy these items.  Some Russian advisors are advising that there should be a pre-emptive strike in the near future rather than wait for the Islamic threat to grow any stronger.  His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI who took an oath at his papal election to maintain the treasures of the Vatican will be invited to accompany the works to Russia and accept the position of Supreme Curator at one of the Russian museums which will be built to house them.

The Grand Mufti of Hydrobul has expressed his agreement:  "Da, da, let the Russians take them all away,  We'd only have to destroy them when we take control of Europe anyway.  The Taliban boys would want to blow them all up."

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« Reply #13 on: December 17, 2011, 11:50:23 PM »

I think that the Vatican should send less to Orthodox countries for a while.  I cannot imagine, after my time here, that it's much appreciated in any event.

Just send back what you Roman Catholics stole from Orthodox churches. We'll be content with that.

It's all coming back, my boy!  :-)

Russians Plan to Sack Rome (USP, November 4,2010).  News has leaked out of special Russian paramilitary forces being trained at secret locations in Transbekistan.  Their purpose is the sacking of Rome and Venice, Florence and other major Italian cities as well as those of France and Germany should it becomes apparent that the forces of Islam, political or military, are about to take possession of these countries.  The Russian Government intends to rescue the priceless artistic treasures of Italy and Western Europe.  Islam, known for its iconoclasm, may wish to destroy these items.  Some Russian advisors are advising that there should be a pre-emptive strike in the near future rather than wait for the Islamic threat to grow any stronger.  His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI who took an oath at his papal election to maintain the treasures of the Vatican will be invited to accompany the works to Russia and accept the position of Supreme Curator at one of the Russian museums which will be built to house them.

The Grand Mufti of Hydrobul has expressed his agreement:  "Da, da, let the Russians take them all away,  We'd only have to destroy them when we take control of Europe anyway.  The Taliban boys would want to blow them all up."

 Smiley

Would you provide a link to the source of this material, please? Thank you.
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« Reply #14 on: December 18, 2011, 12:14:24 AM »

That's kind of funny, because I wasn't aware he actually owned the art in the Vatican. I thought they were all bought and paid for hundreds of years ago, but who cares about facts?

The Pope is elected by the College of Cardinals. His entire non-'kingdom' is less than the size of a modern state university, and only a couple hundred elderly priests, bishops and religious live there. All the security guards live over the border in Italy.

Really, you're afraid of a country that is less than 1/4 the size of a city. It is inside another city.

And as for plutocrat, it wasn't too long ago that the Vatican was millions in debt.

You're batting zero. Guess you're just swinging for the exercise.

I think you misunderstood, the pope is an absolute monarch.  If he wanted to sell anything art, paper, curtain atm machine, a shrub that exists in vatican or any catholic church property he is well within his rights as monarch to do so.  No one is afraid, but the vatican is one of the world's largest land owners and they hold companies and property world wide.  So, maybe they could sell some stuff and re-distribute the wealth.
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« Reply #15 on: December 18, 2011, 12:17:07 AM »

I think that the Vatican should send less to Orthodox countries for a while.  I cannot imagine, after my time here, that it's much appreciated in any event.

Just send back what you Roman Catholics stole from Orthodox churches. We'll be content with that.

It's all coming back, my boy!  :-)

Russians Plan to Sack Rome (USP, November 4,2010).  News has leaked out of special Russian paramilitary forces being trained at secret locations in Transbekistan.  Their purpose is the sacking of Rome and Venice, Florence and other major Italian cities as well as those of France and Germany should it becomes apparent that the forces of Islam, political or military, are about to take possession of these countries.  The Russian Government intends to rescue the priceless artistic treasures of Italy and Western Europe.  Islam, known for its iconoclasm, may wish to destroy these items.  Some Russian advisors are advising that there should be a pre-emptive strike in the near future rather than wait for the Islamic threat to grow any stronger.  His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI who took an oath at his papal election to maintain the treasures of the Vatican will be invited to accompany the works to Russia and accept the position of Supreme Curator at one of the Russian museums which will be built to house them.

The Grand Mufti of Hydrobul has expressed his agreement:  "Da, da, let the Russians take them all away,  We'd only have to destroy them when we take control of Europe anyway.  The Taliban boys would want to blow them all up."

 Smiley

Would you provide a link to the source of this material, please? Thank you.

Me.   Message 166 http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,30969.msg489890.html#msg489890  It is a joke in response to the claim sometimes made by the Catholics that we ought to be grateful that the Italians and others looted Constantinople in 1204 and the 60 subsequent years since it prevented the destruction of our treasures when the Muslims took Constantinople in 1453.
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« Reply #16 on: December 18, 2011, 12:17:27 AM »

The the pope can sell the vatican move into a couple acre property like the phanar.  He can get rid of his fancy vestments, his prada shoes, etc.. remember he is the last absolute monarch in europe.  As an American, who was educated from birth not to like monarchism I see this idea as nothing but a king who is richer than the world telling everyone else to live more poorly but yet we don't see him reducing his lifestyle or selling off anything in his kingdom, even if it is the vatican and small it is packed with riches beyond belief and his bank account is most likely larger than the federal reserve of half the world's countries.

You sound just like the protestant kids who came into my parish church when I was a child and made fun of all the gold and lace and gems...Said we should sell it all and give it to the poor. 

I think that the Vatican should send less to Orthodox countries for a while.  I cannot imagine, after my time here, that it's much appreciated in any event.


Well the church having gold and lace is fine.  
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« Reply #17 on: December 18, 2011, 12:22:12 AM »

That's kind of funny, because I wasn't aware he actually owned the art in the Vatican. I thought they were all bought and paid for hundreds of years ago, but who cares about facts?

The Pope is elected by the College of Cardinals. His entire non-'kingdom' is less than the size of a modern state university, and only a couple hundred elderly priests, bishops and religious live there. All the security guards live over the border in Italy.

Really, you're afraid of a country that is less than 1/4 the size of a city. It is inside another city.

And as for plutocrat, it wasn't too long ago that the Vatican was millions in debt.

You're batting zero. Guess you're just swinging for the exercise.

I think you misunderstood, the pope is an absolute monarch.  If he wanted to sell anything art, paper, curtain atm machine, a shrub that exists in vatican or any catholic church property he is well within his rights as monarch to do so.  No one is afraid, but the vatican is one of the world's largest land owners and they hold companies and property world wide.  So, maybe they could sell some stuff and re-distribute the wealth.

He cannot sell because of his pre-coronation oath.  Without his taking the oath there would be no coronation/installation.

I don't see the economic sense in selling off land and companies for the sake of a short term gain when they will continue to bring in income if retained.
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« Reply #18 on: December 18, 2011, 01:19:21 AM »

monarchs can break oaths, can re write law.  not saying he would..
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« Reply #19 on: December 18, 2011, 01:24:50 AM »

monarchs can break oaths, can re write law.  not saying he would..
What if he took an oath, with hand on the Bible? Shocked
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« Reply #20 on: December 18, 2011, 01:59:09 AM »

The the pope can sell the vatican move into a couple acre property like the phanar.  He can get rid of his fancy vestments, his prada shoes, etc.. remember he is the last absolute monarch in europe.  As an American, who was educated from birth not to like monarchism I see this idea as nothing but a king who is richer than the world telling everyone else to live more poorly but yet we don't see him reducing his lifestyle or selling off anything in his kingdom, even if it is the vatican and small it is packed with riches beyond belief and his bank account is most likely larger than the federal reserve of half the world's countries.
Whenever one of these plutocrats, whether religious or secular, says such a thing, the message is always for everyone else ...except for themselves.  Never fails.

I suppose by this standard, unless a priest is both the poorest and the most generous in his parish, he has no authority to preach on the widow with the two mites. But then again a priest in that position might not be able to preach on the parable of the talents where we are instructed to use discernment in what we do with what we have. Perhaps such a priest shouldn't preach at all about charity until he's given away all the icons, lampstands, and items in the sanctuary, and of course the church building.

I think the main point that username! was trying to make is that it is hypocritical for a man who controls massive quantities of valuable things that are kept locked up and never used or seen, to start talking about wealth redistribution (even using the term).

1.  At his coronation/installation a new Pope takes an oath not to dispose of the Vatican's chattels, works of art, etc.

2.  Several years go the Vatican almost fell into the red because it had overreached itself with charitable and missionary works, disaster relief.



I was unaware of this, Father.  I suppose it isn't nearly so hypocritical as it seemed, then.  I was completely unaware that the Pope could not, in fact, simply sell off some of the locked away items the Vatican has.

Thank you
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« Reply #21 on: December 18, 2011, 02:48:56 AM »

monarchs can break oaths, can re write law.  not saying he would..
What if he took an oath, with hand on the Bible? Shocked

he's the king, he can do what he wants. 
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« Reply #22 on: December 18, 2011, 07:38:13 AM »

Does this mean he is willing to give up his prada shoes Gucci sunglasses and royals royce popemobile? I hate it when these religious socialist clowns get involved in politics.
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« Reply #23 on: December 18, 2011, 07:52:59 AM »

Does this mean he is willing to give up his prada shoes Gucci sunglasses and royals royce popemobile? I hate it when these religious socialist clowns get involved in politics.

I remember Mother Theresa of Calcutta - "When I pick up babies from the gutters and when I give a bed to the dying they call me a saint, when I say that there social and political ways to prevent these things they call me a communist."

Some religious leaders handle it the way the Pope does;  others take cruises on luxury yachts on the Mediterranean to advertise the plight of the dolphins.
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« Reply #24 on: December 18, 2011, 08:12:41 AM »

Does this mean he is willing to give up his prada shoes Gucci sunglasses and royals royce popemobile? I hate it when these religious socialist clowns get involved in politics.

I remember Mother Theresa of Calcutta - "When I pick up babies from the gutters and when I give a bed to the dying they call me a saint, when I say that there social and political ways to prevent these things they call me a communist."

Some religious leaders handle it the way the Pope does;  others take cruises on luxury yachts on the Mediterranean to advertise the plight of the dolphins.

I believe that was Dorthy Day.
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« Reply #25 on: December 18, 2011, 08:46:56 AM »

The the pope can sell the vatican move into a couple acre property like the phanar.  He can get rid of his fancy vestments, his prada shoes, etc.. remember he is the last absolute monarch in europe.  As an American, who was educated from birth not to like monarchism I see this idea as nothing but a king who is richer than the world telling everyone else to live more poorly but yet we don't see him reducing his lifestyle or selling off anything in his kingdom, even if it is the vatican and small it is packed with riches beyond belief and his bank account is most likely larger than the federal reserve of half the world's countries.
This is bogus reasoning.
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« Reply #26 on: December 18, 2011, 11:29:22 AM »

The complete text of BXVI's Peace Message:

Excerpt:
Quote
We cannot ignore the fact that some currents of modern culture, built upon rationalist and individualist economic principles, have cut off the concept of justice from its transcendent roots, detaching it from charity and solidarity: “The ‘earthly city’ is promoted not merely by relationships of rights and duties, but to an even greater and more fundamental extent by relationships of gratuitousness, mercy and communion. Charity always manifests God’s love in human relationships as well, it gives theological and salvific value to all commitment for justice in the world”(7).
....
Peace, however, is not merely a gift to be received: it is also a task to be undertaken. In order to be true peacemakers, we must educate ourselves in compassion, solidarity, working together, fraternity, in being active within the community and concerned to raise awareness about national and international issues and the importance of seeking adequate mechanisms for the redistribution of wealth, the promotion of growth, cooperation for development and conflict resolution. “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God”, as Jesus says in the Sermon on the Mount (Mt 5:9).
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« Reply #27 on: December 18, 2011, 01:54:31 PM »

As I said there is never any gratitude for the churches and seminaries that have been built or any other funds for orphanages and other sorts of social welfare concerns in Orthodox lands.  There never will be any acknowledgement as long as the kinds of attitudes that I see here prevail.

I think that the Vatican should send less to Orthodox countries for a while.  I cannot imagine, after my time here, that it's much appreciated in any event.

Hope the Pope likes the 50 Christmas trees sent to the Vatican by the Ukraine.


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« Reply #28 on: December 18, 2011, 03:20:52 PM »

monarchs can break oaths, can re write law.  not saying he would..
What if he took an oath, with hand on the Bible? Shocked

he's the king, he can do what he wants. 

Its good ta be da king!!!
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« Reply #29 on: December 18, 2011, 03:32:10 PM »

As I said there is never any gratitude for the churches and seminaries that have been built or any other funds for orphanages and other sorts of social welfare concerns in Orthodox lands. 

This is a very destructive statement.  Why make it without substantiating it unless the purpose is simply to encourage your fellow Catholics to dislike Orthodox Christians as ingrates?

Quote

There never will be any acknowledgement as long as the kinds of attitudes that I see here prevail.

I think that the Vatican should send less to Orthodox countries for a while.  I cannot imagine, after my time here, that it's much appreciated in any event.

Hope the Pope likes the 50 Christmas trees sent to the Vatican by the Ukraine.


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« Reply #30 on: December 18, 2011, 03:44:08 PM »

As I said there is never any gratitude for the churches and seminaries that have been built or any other funds for orphanages and other sorts of social welfare concerns in Orthodox lands. 

This is a very destructive statement.  Why make it without substantiating it unless the purpose is simply to encourage your fellow Catholics to dislike Orthodox Christians as ingrates?

I really don't have to do anything of the sort.  The comments here speak for themselves.

Many Catholics and many Orthodox do not have any idea how much material help the Vatican gives to Orthodox lands annually...or that they give anything at all.  Actual dollar amounts are not published but they are not insignificant.  Once in a while there will be an article about a seminary, a library, a parish church, an orphanage.  I was simply trying to point out that which is often unknown.

Leave it to you to make something ugly out of even that much.
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« Reply #31 on: December 18, 2011, 03:59:14 PM »

As I said there is never any gratitude for the churches and seminaries that have been built or any other funds for orphanages and other sorts of social welfare concerns in Orthodox lands. 

This is a very destructive statement.  Why make it without substantiating it unless the purpose is simply to encourage your fellow Catholics to dislike Orthodox Christians as ingrates?

I really don't have to do anything of the sort.  The comments here speak for themselves.

Many Catholics and many Orthodox do not have any idea how much material help the Vatican gives to Orthodox lands annually...or that they give anything at all.  Actual dollar amounts are not published but they are not insignificant.  Once in a while there will be an article about a seminary, a library, a parish church, an orphanage.  I was simply trying to point out that which is often unknown.

Leave it to you to make something ugly out of even that much.

So you didn't intend to make a generalisation that the Orthodox are ingrates.  You were speaking of two or three people on this forum?  That's quite a different complexion.  Thank you for clarifying.

The Catholic "Aid to the Church in Need" funded some projects in Russia in the years after Perestroika. but I think they ceased operations there as the Russian Church very quickly strengthened and had access to its own money.
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« Reply #32 on: December 18, 2011, 04:08:36 PM »

The Pope makes a statement quite in line with Christian faith and immediately goes the ol' American telling others to mine their beams (in this case motes really).

Pure American non-critical, middle class piety.

The RCC for sometime has taken a very admirable stand and actions on behalf of all the world's poor.

Too bad so much was lost in getting hamstrung by the sexual scandals.

If you don't think the RCC hasn't given a lot to the world in terms of time, money, and care, especially as an American, I suggest you do a little more in depth looking at the world around or what was here a few decades ago.

It ain't for nothing that many (most?) hospitals, nursing homes, and food kitchens were under the supervision of the RCC.

The amount of time given to this country by RCC women could not be counted. Heck, nearly every person I know who is really putting themselves out there for charity wise are often RC women, no matter how lapsed they are.

It genuinely grieves me the behavior of the RCC in handling the sexual abuse cases not just for the cases in themselves, but to the degree they undermine the incredible gift the RCC has given the world, does, and still could.

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« Reply #33 on: December 18, 2011, 04:10:28 PM »

As I said there is never any gratitude for the churches and seminaries that have been built or any other funds for orphanages and other sorts of social welfare concerns in Orthodox lands. 

This is a very destructive statement.  Why make it without substantiating it unless the purpose is simply to encourage your fellow Catholics to dislike Orthodox Christians as ingrates?

I really don't have to do anything of the sort.  The comments here speak for themselves.

Many Catholics and many Orthodox do not have any idea how much material help the Vatican gives to Orthodox lands annually...or that they give anything at all.  Actual dollar amounts are not published but they are not insignificant.  Once in a while there will be an article about a seminary, a library, a parish church, an orphanage.  I was simply trying to point out that which is often unknown.

Leave it to you to make something ugly out of even that much.

So you didn't intend to make a generalisation that the Orthodox are ingrates.  You were speaking of two or three people on this forum?  That's quite a different complexion.  Thank you for clarifying.

The Catholic "Aid to the Church in Need" funded some projects in Russia in the years after Perestroika. but I think they ceased operations there as the Russian Church very quickly strengthened and had access to its own money.

There are all kinds of on-going things being done in all Orthodox lands and locations.  Debts paid...among other things.  I don't have a list of "projects" at hand.  I simply run into these things.

I think that the ignorance of these things goes well beyond two or three on this forum and the kinds of responses that one sees here, one sees in other venues as well.

I think it is pretty much par.

Also I have never seen any positive thing said about it ever...even from you...till today and I am not sure this is positive as much as it is simply stating a fact and making it appear that it happened once and is over... Wink

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« Reply #34 on: December 18, 2011, 04:20:48 PM »

As I said there is never any gratitude for the churches and seminaries that have been built or any other funds for orphanages and other sorts of social welfare concerns in Orthodox lands.  

This is a very destructive statement.  Why make it without substantiating it unless the purpose is simply to encourage your fellow Catholics to dislike Orthodox Christians as ingrates?

I really don't have to do anything of the sort.  The comments here speak for themselves.

Many Catholics and many Orthodox do not have any idea how much material help the Vatican gives to Orthodox lands annually...or that they give anything at all.  Actual dollar amounts are not published but they are not insignificant.  Once in a while there will be an article about a seminary, a library, a parish church, an orphanage.  I was simply trying to point out that which is often unknown.

Leave it to you to make something ugly out of even that much.

So you didn't intend to make a generalisation that the Orthodox are ingrates.  You were speaking of two or three people on this forum?  That's quite a different complexion.  Thank you for clarifying.

The Catholic "Aid to the Church in Need" funded some projects in Russia in the years after Perestroika. but I think they ceased operations there as the Russian Church very quickly strengthened and had access to its own money.


There are all kinds of on-going things being done in all Orthodox lands and locations.  Debts paid...among other things.  I don't have a list of "projects" at hand.  I simply run into these things
.

Tell us about the last one you ran into.

Caritas is in Russia but it does not aasist with Orthodox Church projects but with general humanitariam programmes.

Aid to the Church in Russia assists with Catholic projects.
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« Reply #35 on: December 18, 2011, 04:21:00 PM »

I think that the Vatican should send less to Orthodox countries for a while.  I cannot imagine, after my time here, that it's much appreciated in any event.

Just send back what you Roman Catholics stole from Orthodox churches. We'll be content with that.

It's all coming back, my boy!  :-)

Russians Plan to Sack Rome (USP, November 4,2010).  News has leaked out of special Russian paramilitary forces being trained at secret locations in Transbekistan.  Their purpose is the sacking of Rome and Venice, Florence and other major Italian cities as well as those of France and Germany should it becomes apparent that the forces of Islam, political or military, are about to take possession of these countries.  The Russian Government intends to rescue the priceless artistic treasures of Italy and Western Europe.  Islam, known for its iconoclasm, may wish to destroy these items.  Some Russian advisors are advising that there should be a pre-emptive strike in the near future rather than wait for the Islamic threat to grow any stronger.  His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI who took an oath at his papal election to maintain the treasures of the Vatican will be invited to accompany the works to Russia and accept the position of Supreme Curator at one of the Russian museums which will be built to house them.

The Grand Mufti of Hydrobul has expressed his agreement:  "Da, da, let the Russians take them all away,  We'd only have to destroy them when we take control of Europe anyway.  The Taliban boys would want to blow them all up."

 Smiley

Would you provide a link to the source of this material, please? Thank you.

Me.   Message 166 http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,30969.msg489890.html#msg489890  It is a joke in response to the claim sometimes made by the Catholics that we ought to be grateful that the Italians and others looted Constantinople in 1204 and the 60 subsequent years since it prevented the destruction of our treasures when the Muslims took Constantinople in 1453.
Okay. That works for me. Thanks, Father.
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« Reply #36 on: December 18, 2011, 04:26:50 PM »

The Pope makes a statement quite in line with Christian faith and immediately goes the ol' American telling others to mine their beams (in this case motes really).

Pure American non-critical, middle class piety.

The RCC for sometime has taken a very admirable stand and actions on behalf of all the world's poor.

Too bad so much was lost in getting hamstrung by the sexual scandals.

If you don't think the RCC hasn't given a lot to the world in terms of time, money, and care, especially as an American, I suggest you do a little more in depth looking at the world around or what was here a few decades ago.

It ain't for nothing that many (most?) hospitals, nursing homes, and food kitchens were under the supervision of the RCC.

The amount of time given to this country by RCC women could not be counted. Heck, nearly every person I know who is really putting themselves out there for charity wise are often RC women, no matter how lapsed they are.

It genuinely grieves me the behavior of the RCC in handling the sexual abuse cases not just for the cases in themselves, but to the degree they undermine the incredible gift the RCC has given the world, does, and still could.



I agree with you here on all counts but particularly on the very last comment.  A few horridly twisted men can do a world of damage.  I understand the dangers and the need to make sure the accusations are real and true, but to protect the sordid few at the expense of all has been nearly an insurmountable wrong on the part of many bishops, some of whom still refuse to acknowledge their own myopia, stupidity and perfidy...depending on the extent of complicity.
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« Reply #37 on: December 18, 2011, 04:28:24 PM »

I think that the Vatican should send less to Orthodox countries for a while.  I cannot imagine, after my time here, that it's much appreciated in any event.

Just send back what you Roman Catholics stole from Orthodox churches. We'll be content with that.

It's all coming back, my boy!  :-)

Russians Plan to Sack Rome (USP, November 4,2010).  News has leaked out of special Russian paramilitary forces being trained at secret locations in Transbekistan.  Their purpose is the sacking of Rome and Venice, Florence and other major Italian cities as well as those of France and Germany should it becomes apparent that the forces of Islam, political or military, are about to take possession of these countries.  The Russian Government intends to rescue the priceless artistic treasures of Italy and Western Europe.  Islam, known for its iconoclasm, may wish to destroy these items.  Some Russian advisors are advising that there should be a pre-emptive strike in the near future rather than wait for the Islamic threat to grow any stronger.  His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI who took an oath at his papal election to maintain the treasures of the Vatican will be invited to accompany the works to Russia and accept the position of Supreme Curator at one of the Russian museums which will be built to house them.

The Grand Mufti of Hydrobul has expressed his agreement:  "Da, da, let the Russians take them all away,  We'd only have to destroy them when we take control of Europe anyway.  The Taliban boys would want to blow them all up."

 Smiley

Would you provide a link to the source of this material, please? Thank you.

Me.   Message 166 http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,30969.msg489890.html#msg489890  It is a joke in response to the claim sometimes made by the Catholics that we ought to be grateful that the Italians and others looted Constantinople in 1204 and the 60 subsequent years since it prevented the destruction of our treasures when the Muslims took Constantinople in 1453.
Okay. That works for me. Thanks, Father.

Preventative looting   laugh
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« Reply #38 on: December 18, 2011, 04:37:17 PM »



Tell us about the last one you ran into.


Aid for the care of HIV/AIDS victims in Orthodox communities from African communities to central Europe, Romania in particular but I don't have a reference at hand.

Also money for the Orthodox Church in Cyprus.
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« Reply #39 on: December 18, 2011, 04:47:41 PM »

The the pope can sell the vatican move into a couple acre property like the phanar.  He can get rid of his fancy vestments, his prada shoes, etc.. remember he is the last absolute monarch in europe.  As an American, who was educated from birth not to like monarchism I see this idea as nothing but a king who is richer than the world telling everyone else to live more poorly but yet we don't see him reducing his lifestyle or selling off anything in his kingdom, even if it is the vatican and small it is packed with riches beyond belief and his bank account is most likely larger than the federal reserve of half the world's countries.

Whenever one of these plutocrats, whether religious or secular, says such a thing, the message is always for everyone else ...except for themselves.  Never fails.
I question the very premise of "wealth redistribution."  A society that is fair, with amble opportunity (I hesitate to say "equal" opportunity, as that offer is taken as an invitation to punish the progeny of those who have chosen wisely, to float the children of fools) is all that is morally required.  Guaranteeing equal results is not only impossible, but immoral.
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« Reply #40 on: December 18, 2011, 04:53:12 PM »

  A society that is fair, with amble opportunity...

Interesting...
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« Reply #41 on: December 18, 2011, 04:53:25 PM »


Aid for the care of HIV/AIDS victims in Orthodox communities from African communities to central Europe, Romania in particular but I don't have a reference at hand.


Well of course that is wonderful that Catholics are assisting those suffering from AIDS but it is a bit peculiar to see that as Catholic aid to the Orthodox Church.  The Presbyterian Church here runs programmes in Nepal for cataract sufferers but I don't imagine they see that as aid to the Buddhist religion.
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« Reply #42 on: December 18, 2011, 05:02:46 PM »


I question the very premise of "wealth redistribution.

With very few exceptions "wealth redistribution" is an integral feature of the social and governmental policies of every Christian country.
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« Reply #43 on: December 18, 2011, 05:08:31 PM »


Aid for the care of HIV/AIDS victims in Orthodox communities from African communities to central Europe, Romania in particular but I don't have a reference at hand.


Well of course that is wonderful that Catholics are assisting those suffering from AIDS but it is a bit peculiar to see that as Catholic aid to the Orthodox Church.  The Presbyterian Church here runs programmes in Nepal for cataract sufferers but I don't imagine they see that as aid to the Buddhist religion.

The money is given to Orthodox institutions to aid Orthodox believers. 

Nevermind...!!
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« Reply #44 on: December 18, 2011, 05:19:43 PM »

Wealth Redistribution and the Principles of Christianity

 That is not meant to be an affront to you or to any other Americans on list.
After all, my own ideas on this are themselves grounded in my own New
Zealand culture which is derived from that of Great Britain, but I would
contend that my country's way of dealing with issues of poverty and the like
is a much better outworking of Christianity than the American way. In other
words Christian principles are more deeply embedded in New Zealand's social
and political structures than they are in the US.

This country, and many Commonwealth countries, is orientated towards the
common weal. We see the duty of Government as primarily that of managing
the country for the common good of the entire populace. In order to achieve
this common weal we cheerfully hand over our taxes. And while there is
nothing to prevent a man becoming immensely rich there is, thank God, a
government policy which protects a man from becoming obscenely poor.


But this is *not* the view of American government, at least among those who
hold to the original founding of the US. Your Declaration of Independence
specifically states, "...Governments are instituted among men to preserve
these rights..." In other words, you did *not* see government as managing
the country or imposing a blue print; you saw it as the means to guarantee
people liberty. It is a very different concept.

Neither concept of government is in and of itself Christian, but I would
argue that government established for the common weal is more Christian than
government focused on personal liberty.

Now the NZ (and Commonwealth) approach is all based on a legacy of English
church/state established relationships with a dollop of 19th century Methodist
good works thrown in and this has spread out to the Commonwealth so I can
see how the American culture of separation of Church and State with the pot
of wholesome libertarianism thrown in (I always find your libertarian take on things
intriguing, and sometimes frightening - but always fascinating to read!) can
be horrified by the thought of actively engaging in ‘wealth redistribution.”

But for us social security provision ("wealth redistribution") as a safety net
to help the most needy, and a free health care system for all is a Christian
response and a Christian use of our taxes.

Now as Church and State drift further apart it remains to be seen if that
partnership will continue but I still argue that we in New Zealand (and
perhaps slightly less now in the UK) enjoy a culture where people have
invested into the state the outworking of its Christian principles(getting
more and more diluted of course but still there) as the basis of its law and
care for its citizens.

In my experience, the people who extol the dignity and sense of self-worth
to be found in grinding labour for miserable pay, no health care
and no future have themselves experienced none of those things.

Do the principles and values  advocated by the Neo-classical Capitalists (self-reliance,
entrepreneurship, success as the achievement of wealth, etc.) mesh with what
we read in Scripture, the Fathers of the Church and the Saints? Or do they
contradict the sources of our faith?

Can one be a true Christian and a social Darwinist?

Fr Ambrose
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« Reply #45 on: December 18, 2011, 05:29:36 PM »


Aid for the care of HIV/AIDS victims in Orthodox communities from African communities to central Europe, Romania in particular but I don't have a reference at hand.


Well of course that is wonderful that Catholics are assisting those suffering from AIDS but it is a bit peculiar to see that as Catholic aid to the Orthodox Church.  The Presbyterian Church here runs programmes in Nepal for cataract sufferers but I don't imagine they see that as aid to the Buddhist religion.

The money is given to Orthodox institutions to aid Orthodox believers. 

Nevermind...!!

On behalf of all those Orthodox sufferers who benefit from the provision of Catholic money I salute you and say thank you.    The Catholic Church being the richest Church in the world, this is a wonderful example of 'wealth redistribution."
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« Reply #46 on: December 18, 2011, 05:50:47 PM »


Aid for the care of HIV/AIDS victims in Orthodox communities from African communities to central Europe, Romania in particular but I don't have a reference at hand.


Well of course that is wonderful that Catholics are assisting those suffering from AIDS but it is a bit peculiar to see that as Catholic aid to the Orthodox Church.  The Presbyterian Church here runs programmes in Nepal for cataract sufferers but I don't imagine they see that as aid to the Buddhist religion.

The money is given to Orthodox institutions to aid Orthodox believers. 

Nevermind...!!

On behalf of all those Orthodox sufferers who benefit from the provision of Catholic money I salute you and say thank you.    The Catholic Church being the richest Church in the world, this is a wonderful example of 'wealth redistribution."

That is very kind of you.
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« Reply #47 on: December 18, 2011, 05:55:26 PM »

The the pope can sell the vatican move into a couple acre property like the phanar.  He can get rid of his fancy vestments, his prada shoes, etc.. remember he is the last absolute monarch in europe.  As an American, who was educated from birth not to like monarchism I see this idea as nothing but a king who is richer than the world telling everyone else to live more poorly but yet we don't see him reducing his lifestyle or selling off anything in his kingdom, even if it is the vatican and small it is packed with riches beyond belief and his bank account is most likely larger than the federal reserve of half the world's countries.
This is bogus reasoning.

Sorry that I'm not a sheeple. 
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« Reply #48 on: December 18, 2011, 06:02:39 PM »

I just looked up the stats.  In Romania 0.074% of the population have the disease.
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« Reply #49 on: December 18, 2011, 06:36:11 PM »

At the risk of offending anyone involved in this Orthodox/Catholic **ssing contest, I'd like to return to the Pope's statement per the OP.  If I recall, Jesus told the rich man to sell his property, give it to the poor, and follow Him.  Jesus did not tell anyone to use governmental authority to take property from everyone and redistribute it. 
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« Reply #50 on: December 18, 2011, 06:40:33 PM »

I just looked up the stats.  In Romania 0.074% of the population have the disease.

Higher if you include Moldava and the vast majority of them present as infants with HIV-AIDS.  It's been pretty horrible for the past few decades and Romania has not been in a position to manage alone.  Here's an older but excellent article that tracks the work and the improvements.  God willing there will be more improvements and increasingly fewer new cases:

http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/528693
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« Reply #51 on: December 18, 2011, 06:41:07 PM »

At the risk of offending anyone involved in this Orthodox/Catholic **ssing contest, I'd like to return to the Pope's statement per the OP.  If I recall, Jesus told the rich man to sell his property, give it to the poor, and follow Him.  Jesus did not tell anyone to use governmental authority to take property from everyone and redistribute it.  

lulz @ this. But you will use the government to enforce all other Hebrew / Christian morality, like abortion, murder, and the like.
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« Reply #52 on: December 18, 2011, 06:52:29 PM »

At the risk of offending anyone involved in this Orthodox/Catholic **ssing contest, I'd like to return to the Pope's statement per the OP.  If I recall, Jesus told the rich man to sell his property, give it to the poor, and follow Him.  Jesus did not tell anyone to use governmental authority to take property from everyone and redistribute it.  

lulz @ this. But you will use the government to enforce all other Hebrew / Christian morality, like abortion, murder, and the like.
Hold on just a minute here! police Bigsinner said nothing about the use of government authority except to state his opposition to government-enforced redistribution programs, which means you're putting words into his mouth to build up a straw man image of his arguments. The subjects of abortion, murder, and "the like" are also off topic for this thread.
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« Reply #53 on: December 18, 2011, 06:55:00 PM »

At the risk of offending anyone involved in this Orthodox/Catholic **ssing contest, I'd like to return to the Pope's statement per the OP.  If I recall, Jesus told the rich man to sell his property, give it to the poor, and follow Him.  Jesus did not tell anyone to use governmental authority to take property from everyone and redistribute it.  

lulz @ this. But you will use the government to enforce all other Hebrew / Christian morality, like abortion, murder, and the like.
Hold on just a minute here! police Bigsinner said nothing about the use of governmental authority except to state his opposition to government-enforced redistribution programs, which means you're putting words into his mouth to build up a straw man image of his arguments. The subjects of abortion, murder, and "the like" are also off topic for this thread.

Your understanding of rhetoric doesn't encompass all.

It is not a straw man.

If he doesn't agree, he can respond.
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« Reply #54 on: December 18, 2011, 06:59:25 PM »

At the risk of offending anyone involved in this Orthodox/Catholic **ssing contest, I'd like to return to the Pope's statement per the OP.  If I recall, Jesus told the rich man to sell his property, give it to the poor, and follow Him.  Jesus did not tell anyone to use governmental authority to take property from everyone and redistribute it.  

lulz @ this. But you will use the government to enforce all other Hebrew / Christian morality, like abortion, murder, and the like.
Hold on just a minute here! police Bigsinner said nothing about the use of governmental authority except to state his opposition to government-enforced redistribution programs, which means you're putting words into his mouth to build up a straw man image of his arguments. The subjects of abortion, murder, and "the like" are also off topic for this thread.

Your understanding of rhetoric doesn't encompass all.

It is not a straw man.

If he doesn't agree, he can respond.
But the discussion you seem to want is still off topic.
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« Reply #55 on: December 18, 2011, 07:07:15 PM »

At the risk of offending anyone involved in this Orthodox/Catholic **ssing contest, I'd like to return to the Pope's statement per the OP.  If I recall, Jesus told the rich man to sell his property, give it to the poor, and follow Him.  Jesus did not tell anyone to use governmental authority to take property from everyone and redistribute it. 
"Give to Caesar what is Caesar".
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« Reply #56 on: December 18, 2011, 07:11:00 PM »

At the risk of offending anyone involved in this Orthodox/Catholic **ssing contest, I'd like to return to the Pope's statement per the OP.  If I recall, Jesus told the rich man to sell his property, give it to the poor, and follow Him.  Jesus did not tell anyone to use governmental authority to take property from everyone and redistribute it. 
"Give to Caesar what is Caesar".
But what does Caesar have the right to claim for his own?
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« Reply #57 on: December 18, 2011, 07:14:04 PM »

At the risk of offending anyone involved in this Orthodox/Catholic **ssing contest, I'd like to return to the Pope's statement per the OP.  If I recall, Jesus told the rich man to sell his property, give it to the poor, and follow Him.  Jesus did not tell anyone to use governmental authority to take property from everyone and redistribute it.  

lulz @ this. But you will use the government to enforce all other Hebrew / Christian morality, like abortion, murder, and the like.
Hold on just a minute here! police Bigsinner said nothing about the use of government authority except to state his opposition to government-enforced redistribution programs, which means you're putting words into his mouth to build up a straw man image of his arguments. The subjects of abortion, murder, and "the like" are also off topic for this thread.

 Agreed.  This comment made absolutely no sense as the poster was against government intervention.
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« Reply #58 on: December 18, 2011, 07:18:45 PM »

At the risk of offending anyone involved in this Orthodox/Catholic **ssing contest, I'd like to return to the Pope's statement per the OP.  If I recall, Jesus told the rich man to sell his property, give it to the poor, and follow Him.  Jesus did not tell anyone to use governmental authority to take property from everyone and redistribute it. 
"Give to Caesar what is Caesar".

Taxes didnt approach 90% as they do in modern socialist countries.  Christ could have simply said in this case, "Render EVERYTHING material to Caesar!" 
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« Reply #59 on: December 18, 2011, 07:23:58 PM »

At the risk of offending anyone involved in this Orthodox/Catholic **ssing contest, I'd like to return to the Pope's statement per the OP.  If I recall, Jesus told the rich man to sell his property, give it to the poor, and follow Him.  Jesus did not tell anyone to use governmental authority to take property from everyone and redistribute it. 
"Give to Caesar what is Caesar".
That was for the defense budget and law enforcement.
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« Reply #60 on: December 18, 2011, 07:25:09 PM »

At the risk of offending anyone involved in this Orthodox/Catholic **ssing contest, I'd like to return to the Pope's statement per the OP.  If I recall, Jesus told the rich man to sell his property, give it to the poor, and follow Him.  Jesus did not tell anyone to use governmental authority to take property from everyone and redistribute it. 
"Give to Caesar what is Caesar".
But what does Caesar have the right to claim for his own?

I tend to believe all things are God's.  

Anyways, I'd just like to make one quick statement.  To those who do support wealth redistribution, by way of government, know that this is not charity.  You are not being charitable by supporting these programs.  You are not be charitable if the government takes your money and gives it to someone else.  Now, this does not mean that it is a bad thing; but all too often, people who support wealth redistribution seem to think advocating for government money for the poor makes them charitable people.  Anything given out of compulsion is not charity.
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« Reply #61 on: December 18, 2011, 07:31:55 PM »

Wealth Redistribution and the Principles of Christianity

 That is not meant to be an affront to you or to any other Americans on list.
After all, my own ideas on this are themselves grounded in my own New
Zealand culture which is derived from that of Great Britain, but I would
contend that my country's way of dealing with issues of poverty and the like
is a much better outworking of Christianity than the American way. In other
words Christian principles are more deeply embedded in New Zealand's social
and political structures than they are in the US.

This country, and many Commonwealth countries, is orientated towards the
common weal. We see the duty of Government as primarily that of managing
the country for the common good of the entire populace. In order to achieve
this common weal we cheerfully hand over our taxes. And while there is
nothing to prevent a man becoming immensely rich there is, thank God, a
government policy which protects a man from becoming obscenely poor.


But this is *not* the view of American government, at least among those who
hold to the original founding of the US. Your Declaration of Independence
specifically states, "...Governments are instituted among men to preserve
these rights..." In other words, you did *not* see government as managing
the country or imposing a blue print; you saw it as the means to guarantee
people liberty. It is a very different concept.

Neither concept of government is in and of itself Christian, but I would
argue that government established for the common weal is more Christian than
government focused on personal liberty.

Now the NZ (and Commonwealth) approach is all based on a legacy of English
church/state established relationships with a dollop of 19th century Methodist
good works thrown in and this has spread out to the Commonwealth so I can
see how the American culture of separation of Church and State with the pot
of wholesome libertarianism thrown in (I always find your libertarian take on things
intriguing, and sometimes frightening - but always fascinating to read!) can
be horrified by the thought of actively engaging in ‘wealth redistribution.”

But for us social security provision ("wealth redistribution") as a safety net
to help the most needy, and a free health care system for all is a Christian
response and a Christian use of our taxes.

Now as Church and State drift further apart it remains to be seen if that
partnership will continue but I still argue that we in New Zealand (and
perhaps slightly less now in the UK) enjoy a culture where people have
invested into the state the outworking of its Christian principles(getting
more and more diluted of course but still there) as the basis of its law and
care for its citizens.

In my experience, the people who extol the dignity and sense of self-worth
to be found in grinding labour for miserable pay, no health care
and no future have themselves experienced none of those things.

Do the principles and values  advocated by the Neo-classical Capitalists (self-reliance,
entrepreneurship, success as the achievement of wealth, etc.) mesh with what
we read in Scripture, the Fathers of the Church and the Saints? Or do they
contradict the sources of our faith?

Can one be a true Christian and a social Darwinist?

Fr Ambrose

"Do not muzzle the ox that treads the grain."
"If they will not work, neither shall they eat."
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« Reply #62 on: December 18, 2011, 07:36:29 PM »

At the risk of offending anyone involved in this Orthodox/Catholic **ssing contest, I'd like to return to the Pope's statement per the OP.  If I recall, Jesus told the rich man to sell his property, give it to the poor, and follow Him.  Jesus did not tell anyone to use governmental authority to take property from everyone and redistribute it. 
"Give to Caesar what is Caesar".
But what does Caesar have the right to claim for his own?

I tend to believe all things are God's.  

Anyways, I'd just like to make one quick statement.  To those who do support wealth redistribution, by way of government, know that this is not charity.  You are not being charitable by supporting these programs.  You are not be charitable if the government takes your money and gives it to someone else.  Now, this does not mean that it is a bad thing; but all too often, people who support wealth redistribution seem to think advocating for government money for the poor makes them charitable people.  Anything given out of compulsion is not charity.
"Socialism is great-until you run out of someone else's money."-Lady Margaret Thatcher.
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« Reply #63 on: December 18, 2011, 07:41:05 PM »

Isn't that old hag dead yet? go meet her admirer, the late Christopher Hitchens.
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« Reply #64 on: December 18, 2011, 07:51:45 PM »

Isn't that old hag dead yet? go meet her admirer, the late Christopher Hitchens.
I don't know if she is dead, but her words are immortal.

As I brought up on another thread, compare the Erie Canal and the Danube Canal on the prospective merits of capitalism and socialism.
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« Reply #65 on: December 18, 2011, 08:16:22 PM »

The Pope makes a statement quite in line with Christian faith and immediately goes the ol' American telling others to mine their beams (in this case motes really).

Your post agrees with my impression as well.


Quote
It genuinely grieves me the behavior of the RCC in handling the sexual abuse cases not just for the cases in themselves, but to the degree they undermine the incredible gift the RCC has given the world, does, and still could.

And this was/is my feeling as well.

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« Reply #66 on: December 18, 2011, 08:26:31 PM »

At the risk of offending anyone involved in this Orthodox/Catholic **ssing contest, I'd like to return to the Pope's statement per the OP.  If I recall, Jesus told the rich man to sell his property, give it to the poor, and follow Him.  Jesus did not tell anyone to use governmental authority to take property from everyone and redistribute it. 
"Give to Caesar what is Caesar".
But what does Caesar have the right to claim for his own?

The Christian Caesars in Constantinople claimed the right to exact taxes and to redistribute some of this wealth for the social welfare of their people.

The Byzantine State used taxes to run

Gerocomeia - homes for the aged

Xenotapheia -provided funerals for poor citizens and strangers

Orphanotropheia - orphanages

Ptocheia - homes for the poor

(Forget the Greek word) - homes for reformed prostitutes.

Modern Christian Governments do well to follow the example of the greatest of all Christian cities which strove to be an icon of the heavenly Jerusalem.
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« Reply #67 on: December 18, 2011, 08:31:22 PM »

At the risk of offending anyone involved in this Orthodox/Catholic **ssing contest, I'd like to return to the Pope's statement per the OP.  If I recall, Jesus told the rich man to sell his property, give it to the poor, and follow Him.  Jesus did not tell anyone to use governmental authority to take property from everyone and redistribute it. 
"Give to Caesar what is Caesar".
But what does Caesar have the right to claim for his own?

The Christian Caesars in Constantinople claimed the right to exact taxes and to redistribute some of this wealth for the social welfare of their people.

The Byzantine State used taxes to run

Gerocomeia - homes for the aged

Xenotapheia -provided funerals for poor citizens and strangers

Orphanotropheia - orphanages

Ptocheia - homes for the poor

(Forget the Greek word) - homes for reformed prostitutes.

Modern Christian Governments do well to follow the example of the greatest of all Christian cities which strove to be an icon of the heavenly Jerusalem.
No, Father: no emperor claimed taxes to redistribute wealth.  They claimed it as their right as sovereign, and they gave it out as charity as God's chosen son of the Church.  That was the charity of the emperor, but not of those whom he taxed.
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« Reply #68 on: December 18, 2011, 08:39:45 PM »

I've got an idea. It's simple, and has something for both sides in this dispute.

How about the Vatican donate X percent of the take of tourism at its museum and other sites to charity every year? Maybe $1 from every ticket. Or 50c. Whatever is the equivalent. A lot of people go there every year. It'll add up.

See? We can do both, and nobody lost an eye.  Smiley
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« Reply #69 on: December 18, 2011, 08:39:57 PM »

"If they will not work, neither shall they eat."

I do not see what this has to do with the discussion? The difference between refusal to work and inability to work.

This does not apply to those who cannot work - who would leave the soldier paralysed by a landmine to starve to death because he cannot work?  The police dog blinded by a criminal - left to starve because he cannot work?
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« Reply #70 on: December 18, 2011, 08:47:34 PM »

I've got an idea. It's simple, and has something for both sides in this dispute.

How about the Vatican donate X percent of the take of tourism at its museum and other sites to charity every year? Maybe $1 from every ticket. Or 50c. Whatever is the equivalent. A lot of people go there every year. It'll add up.

See? We can do both, and nobody lost an eye.  Smiley

If I'm not mistaken, the Vatican makes almost nothing off the fees for museums.  Virtually all the intake is used for upkeep.
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« Reply #71 on: December 18, 2011, 08:50:01 PM »

At the risk of offending anyone involved in this Orthodox/Catholic **ssing contest, I'd like to return to the Pope's statement per the OP.  If I recall, Jesus told the rich man to sell his property, give it to the poor, and follow Him.  Jesus did not tell anyone to use governmental authority to take property from everyone and redistribute it. 
"Give to Caesar what is Caesar".
But what does Caesar have the right to claim for his own?

The Christian Caesars in Constantinople claimed the right to exact taxes and to redistribute some of this wealth for the social welfare of their people.

The Byzantine State used taxes to run

Gerocomeia - homes for the aged

Xenotapheia -provided funerals for poor citizens and strangers

Orphanotropheia - orphanages

Ptocheia - homes for the poor

(Forget the Greek word) - homes for reformed prostitutes.

Modern Christian Governments do well to follow the example of the greatest of all Christian cities which strove to be an icon of the heavenly Jerusalem.
No, Father: no emperor claimed taxes to redistribute wealth.  They claimed it as their right as sovereign, and they gave it out as charity as God's chosen son of the Church.  That was the charity of the emperor, but not of those whom he taxed.

Now we get to talk about what "is" is...
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« Reply #72 on: December 18, 2011, 08:56:01 PM »

Taxes didnt approach 90% as they do in modern socialist countries. 

I live in a country New Zealand with a highly developed social welfare system.  Here are our tax rates...

2011–2012
 
Income.....................Tax rate
 
$0 – $14,000............. 10.5%
 
$14,001 – $48,000..... 17.5%
 
$48,001 – $70,000..... 30%
 
Over $70,000............. 33%
 
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« Reply #73 on: December 18, 2011, 09:03:49 PM »

The Pope makes a statement quite in line with Christian faith and immediately goes the ol' American telling others to mine their beams (in this case motes really).
I understand your angst. We Americans see the words "wealth redistribution", and immediately the little red flags pop up in our minds saying "taxation, government, and the like". Wealth redistribution actually does not require that the government get involved, though, so the connection is artificial. If the wealthy among us wish to give generously of their wealth to the poor or to non-government organizations whose mission is to serve the poor, then I say more power to them! I would like to see all the wealthy give generously and freely like this, even to the last penny if they so desire. (I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.)
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« Reply #74 on: December 18, 2011, 09:06:50 PM »

Taxes didnt approach 90% as they do in modern socialist countries. 

I live in a country New Zealand with a highly developed social welfare system.  Here are our tax rates...

2011–2012
 
Income.....................Tax rate
 
$0 – $14,000............. 10.5%
 
$14,001 – $48,000..... 17.5%
 
$48,001 – $70,000..... 30%
 
Over $70,000............. 33%
 

Father, since we are playing that game (not started by you, I note) could we please have these figures amended to include GST, other forms of sales and consumption tax, luxury taxes, land tax, capital gains tax, stamp duty, other forms of payable duty, estate/death taxes, inheritance taxes, probate taxes, &c., &c.?

Also, can we please explain why someone earning NZ$70K should pay the same rate of income tax as someone earning multiple millions? As usual, it appears that there is a band of people somewhere around the middle who are disproportionately shouldering the tax burden.

Disclaimers:

1. Apologies for attempting to set the agenda of this discussion but these two points above particularly irk me.
2. I would not and do not question the faith and piety of those who take a contrary view to my own on these points.
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« Reply #75 on: December 18, 2011, 09:11:53 PM »

Taxes didnt approach 90% as they do in modern socialist countries. 

I live in a country New Zealand with a highly developed social welfare system.  Here are our tax rates...

2011–2012
 
Income.....................Tax rate
 
$0 – $14,000............. 10.5%
 
$14,001 – $48,000..... 17.5%
 
$48,001 – $70,000..... 30%
 
Over $70,000............. 33%
 

Father, since we are playing that game (not started by you, I note) could we please have these figures amended to include GST, other forms of sales and consumption tax, luxury taxes, land tax, capital gains tax, stamp duty, other forms of payable duty, estate/death taxes, inheritance taxes, probate taxes, &c., &c.?

Also, can we please explain why someone earning NZ$70K should pay the same rate of income tax as someone earning multiple millions? As usual, it appears that there is a band of people somewhere around the middle who are disproportionately shouldering the tax burden.

Disclaimers:

1. Apologies for attempting to set the agenda of this discussion but these two points above particularly irk me.
2. I would not and do not question the faith and piety of those who take a contrary view to my own on these points.
I suggest that what you want may venture too much into politics for the context of this discussion. You may wish to take this question to the Politics board and see if Fr. Ambrose would be willing to follow you there.
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« Reply #76 on: December 18, 2011, 09:18:30 PM »

(I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.)

In reality, the Christan countries of the Western  world (but not the US?) use taxation for social welfare needs ("redistribution of wealth" in this context.)   Is there a spirit of resentment in those countries among the rich and influential?  If so why have they not used the ballot box to rid themselves of a resented system?
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« Reply #77 on: December 18, 2011, 09:23:50 PM »

(I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.)

In reality, the Christan countries of the Western  world (but not the US?) use taxation for social welfare needs ("redistribution of wealth" in this context.)   Is there a spirit of resentment in those countries among the rich and influential?
I don't know. You tell me.

If so why have they not used the ballot box to rid themselves of a resented system?
It stands to reason that if the rich make up only a minority of the voters, then they will never succeed at using the ballot box to rid themselves of the system they resent, for the poor will always have more votes.
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« Reply #78 on: December 18, 2011, 09:39:18 PM »

(I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.)

In reality, the Christan countries of the Western  world (but not the US?) use taxation for social welfare needs ("redistribution of wealth" in this context.)   Is there a spirit of resentment in those countries among the rich and influential?
I don't know. You tell me.

You wrote: "since such taking engenders a spirit of resentment.."

I can say of New Zealand where I have lived these last 65 years that it does not engender a spirit of resentment.  People are agreed that part of their taxation is used for education and for the health system.  They are reasonably content that some of it is used for the unemployed -  employers and government believe that a 7% unemployment rate is ideal for a successful economy.  So no, "redistribution of wealth" to the needy is not resented.

On what countries are you basing your statement?

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« Reply #79 on: December 18, 2011, 09:43:58 PM »

Did you seriously just quote Margaret Thatcher?
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« Reply #80 on: December 18, 2011, 09:45:02 PM »

I've got an idea. It's simple, and has something for both sides in this dispute.

How about the Vatican donate X percent of the take of tourism at its museum and other sites to charity every year? Maybe $1 from every ticket. Or 50c. Whatever is the equivalent. A lot of people go there every year. It'll add up.

See? We can do both, and nobody lost an eye.  Smiley

If I'm not mistaken, the Vatican makes almost nothing off the fees for museums.  Virtually all the intake is used for upkeep.

I see. Well, if I were planning a trip, and they told me there was a new surcharge for charity, I would still go and pay. Just a thought.  Smiley

Thanks.
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« Reply #81 on: December 18, 2011, 09:45:58 PM »

Did you seriously just quote Margaret Thatcher?

Me? Peter?
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« Reply #82 on: December 18, 2011, 09:48:14 PM »

(I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.)

In reality, the Christan countries of the Western  world (but not the US?) use taxation for social welfare needs ("redistribution of wealth" in this context.)   Is there a spirit of resentment in those countries among the rich and influential?  If so why have they not used the ballot box to rid themselves of a resented system?
In the US, 49% do not pay any income tax.  That's a lot to stuff a ballot box,  Father.

Don't know about "for social welfare needs." I know it is labeled that, but to delve into the substance might land this into politics.
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« Reply #83 on: December 18, 2011, 09:57:24 PM »

In the US, 49% do not pay any income tax.

Who are the 49%?
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« Reply #84 on: December 18, 2011, 10:01:42 PM »

The Pope makes a statement quite in line with Christian faith and immediately goes the ol' American telling others to mine their beams (in this case motes really).
I understand your angst. We Americans see the words "wealth redistribution", and immediately the little red flags pop up in our minds saying "taxation, government, and the like". Wealth redistribution actually does not require that the government get involved, though, so the connection is artificial. If the wealthy among us wish to give generously of their wealth to the poor or to non-government organizations whose mission is to serve the poor, then I say more power to them! I would like to see all the wealthy give generously and freely like this, even to the last penny if they so desire. (I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.)
I remember a story about the founder of "La Choy," when he sold the company.  He took what he thought enough for himself to live comfortably, and then divided the rest among the employees based on strict seniority (i.e. a janitor of 20 years got more than a C.E.O. of 5 years).  But then, it was his money, to do what he pleased with it.  Including redistributing the wealth.
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« Reply #85 on: December 18, 2011, 10:02:59 PM »

In the US, 49% do not pay any income tax.

Who are the 49%?
Those who earn income.
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« Reply #86 on: December 18, 2011, 10:03:50 PM »

Don't know about "for social welfare needs." I know it is labeled that, but to delve into the substance might land this into politics.

Have you experienced life in a country with a developed system of redistribution of wealth (by that I mean the use of taxation income to assist the poor
)?

The Pope sees the redistribution of wealth as a factor necessary for a peaceful society.
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« Reply #87 on: December 18, 2011, 10:11:35 PM »

Don't know about "for social welfare needs." I know it is labeled that, but to delve into the substance might land this into politics.

Have you experienced life in a country with a developed system of redistribution of wealth (by that I mean the use of taxation income to assist the poor
)?
Sure. I live in the US.

The Pope sees the redistribution of wealth as a factor necessary for a peaceful society.
It's not the only difference of opinion I have with him.  And the Green pope too.
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« Reply #88 on: December 18, 2011, 10:15:04 PM »

I suggest that what you want may venture too much into politics for the context of this discussion. You may wish to take this question to the Politics board and see if Fr. Ambrose would be willing to follow you there.

Apologies, Peter.

I think we've covered the ground before so I'm content to let my questions stand as unanswered, rhetorical ones.
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« Reply #89 on: December 18, 2011, 10:16:22 PM »

MESSAGE OF HIS HOLINESS
POPE BENEDICT XVI
FOR THE CELEBRATION OF THE
WORLD DAY OF PEACE

1 JANUARY 2012

http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/benedict_xvi/messages/peace/documents/hf_ben-xvi_mes_20111208_xlv-world-day-peace_en.html

This is the whole document which forms the basis of this thread


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« Reply #90 on: December 18, 2011, 10:22:36 PM »

The reason that 49% of people in the U.S. do not pay the federal income tax, Federal Income Cap Assesment (FICA), is because they can't- their income is not high enough for them to qualify. It's the same reason I don't own a house: I can't afford one.

However, everyone pays sales tax, and almost all states charge state tax; there are plenty of other taxes as well, including city taxes, depending on where you live. Local counties assess property taxes.

So please don't try this ridiculous right-wing talk radio notion of conflating lack of payment of the FICA tax with not paying any taxes. It's bull.
 you have received 7 days official warning for talking politics in this forum.  if you want to talk politics please contact fr. chris for access to the private fora -username! orthodox catholic moderator
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« Reply #91 on: December 18, 2011, 10:24:26 PM »

The reason that 49% of people in the U.S. do not pay the federal income tax, Federal Income Cap Assesment (FICA), is because they can't- their income is not high enough for them to qualify. It's the same reason I don't own a house: I can't afford one.

However, everyone pays sales tax, and almost all states charge state tax; there are plenty of other taxes as well, including city taxes, depending on where you live. Local counties assess property taxes.

So please don't try this ridiculous right-wing talk radio notion of conflating lack of payment of the FICA tax with not paying any taxes. It's bull.

This post is like the mirror image of my earlier one with sides of politics reversed. I think there's a lesson in that, somewhere.
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« Reply #92 on: December 18, 2011, 10:28:28 PM »

The reason that 49% of people in the U.S. do not pay the federal income tax, Federal Income Cap Assesment (FICA), is because they can't- their income is not high enough for them to qualify. It's the same reason I don't own a house: I can't afford one.

However, everyone pays sales tax, and almost all states charge state tax; there are plenty of other taxes as well, including city taxes, depending on where you live. Local counties assess property taxes.

So please don't try this ridiculous right-wing talk radio notion of conflating lack of payment of the FICA tax with not paying any taxes. It's bull.
I response could be misconstrued as politics outside the political forum.
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« Reply #93 on: December 18, 2011, 10:30:43 PM »

 Anything given out of compulsion is not charity.

Why would we consider the payment of tax as charity or compulsory charity?

Taxation money is used to build roads for the population with cars to drive on, to educate young people, to support the elderly, the poor and the unemployed.  Are the roads and the schools seen as an act of charity?  Are these not the services we expect our government to provide for the population out of tax money?
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« Reply #94 on: December 18, 2011, 10:38:49 PM »

 Anything given out of compulsion is not charity.

Why would we consider the payment of tax as charity or compulsory charity?

Taxation money is used to build roads for the population with cars to drive on, to educate young people, to support the elderly, the poor and the unemployed.  Are the roads and the schools seen as an act of charity?  Are these not the services we expect our government to provide for the population out of tax money?
Taxation is also what the politicians and the well connected line their pockets with, Father.

To take one topic, schools as a responsibility of the government is relatively a new concept.  In the US, we have the situation where people pay the tax for the school system on top of paying tuition to send their children to parochial or private schools.
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« Reply #95 on: December 18, 2011, 10:51:36 PM »

(I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.)

In reality, the Christan countries of the Western  world (but not the US?) use taxation for social welfare needs ("redistribution of wealth" in this context.)   Is there a spirit of resentment in those countries among the rich and influential?
I don't know. You tell me.

You wrote: "since such taking engenders a spirit of resentment.."

I can say of New Zealand where I have lived these last 65 years that it does not engender a spirit of resentment.  People are agreed that part of their taxation is used for education and for the health system.  They are reasonably content that some of it is used for the unemployed -  employers and government believe that a 7% unemployment rate is ideal for a successful economy.  So no, "redistribution of wealth" to the needy is not resented.

On what countries are you basing your statement?


I think you misunderstand my statement, which is largely because I didn't make my statement clear enough.  I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking for the purpose of giving the money to the poor engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.

Now I notice that you're arguing that some taxation for purposes other than gifts to the poor is necessary, and that you're defining "needy" to include needs other than poverty. I don't have a problem with that, and I'm sure very few people will have a problem with that. Government does provide some important services, and those services do cost money. How's the government going to get that money except through taxation? What I'm arguing against is taxation for the sole purpose of redistributing the money to the poor.
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« Reply #96 on: December 18, 2011, 11:09:08 PM »

The reason that 49% of people in the U.S. do not pay the federal income tax, Federal Income Cap Assesment (FICA), is because they can't- their income is not high enough for them to qualify. It's the same reason I don't own a house: I can't afford one.

However, everyone pays sales tax, and almost all states charge state tax; there are plenty of other taxes as well, including city taxes, depending on where you live. Local counties assess property taxes.

So please don't try this ridiculous right-wing talk radio notion of conflating lack of payment of the FICA tax with not paying any taxes. It's bull.

Factor in the EIC and there may well be some families who break even or come out ahead when looking at all taxes paid versus what they get back in their refund.
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« Reply #97 on: December 18, 2011, 11:22:42 PM »

The reason that 49% of people in the U.S. do not pay the federal income tax, Federal Income Cap Assesment (FICA), is because they can't- their income is not high enough for them to qualify. It's the same reason I don't own a house: I can't afford one.

However, everyone pays sales tax, and almost all states charge state tax; there are plenty of other taxes as well, including city taxes, depending on where you live. Local counties assess property taxes.

So please don't try this ridiculous right-wing talk radio notion of conflating lack of payment of the FICA tax with not paying any taxes. It's bull.

Factor in the EIC and there may well be some families who break even or come out ahead when looking at all taxes paid versus what they get back in their refund.
No doubt about it.  I haven't had a cogent argument of how someone who doesn't pay taxes gets a tax refund (or that extra check that was sent out a few years back).
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« Reply #98 on: December 19, 2011, 12:14:44 AM »

I think you misunderstand my statement, which is largely because I didn't make my statement clear enough.  I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking for the purpose of giving the money to the poor engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.

I can only repeat that my experience in my own country which has a comprehensive social welfare system  is that no spirit of resentment is engendered.    Different factors at work in the USA may generate resentment?
Quote


What I'm arguing against is taxation for the sole purpose of redistributing the money to the poor.

I would argue the opposite - that a Christian country has an obligation to care for the poor and those who are vulnerable whether through sickness or unemployment.

Just to briefly restate what I wrote earlier...   This country, and many Commonwealth countries, is orientated towards the common weal. We see the duty of Government as primarily that of managing the country for the common good of the entire populace. In order to achieve this common weal we cheerfully hand over our taxes. And while there is nothing to prevent a man becoming immensely rich there is, thank God, a government policy which protects a man from becoming obscenely poor.  In other words we have deliberately chosen to deeply embed Christian principles in New Zealand's social and political structures.  We would see this as a better and more equitable system than haphazard assistance from kindly neighbours or local parishes and synagogues or companies like the Chrysler Corporation.
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« Reply #99 on: December 19, 2011, 01:23:33 AM »

I think you misunderstand my statement, which is largely because I didn't make my statement clear enough.  I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking for the purpose of giving the money to the poor engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.

I can only repeat that my experience in my own country which has a comprehensive social welfare system  is that no spirit of resentment is engendered.    Different factors at work in the USA may generate resentment?
Quote


What I'm arguing against is taxation for the sole purpose of redistributing the money to the poor.

I would argue the opposite - that a Christian country has an obligation to care for the poor and those who are vulnerable whether through sickness or unemployment.

Just to briefly restate what I wrote earlier...   This country, and many Commonwealth countries, is orientated towards the common weal. We see the duty of Government as primarily that of managing the country for the common good of the entire populace. In order to achieve this common weal we cheerfully hand over our taxes.
In which case, we're probably much closer to agreeing on this issue than you may think, for I have argued that if the rich want to give generously and without compulsion, then they should be encouraged to do so. If your system of taxation is based on that sense of free will giving, then that's something to be commended. However, my experience is that people don't like paying taxes and think of it as compulsion. In this culture, distrust of government is virtually written into the Constitution, and taking money from the rich in order to give it to the poor is often thought little more than robbery.
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« Reply #100 on: December 19, 2011, 01:43:24 AM »



Tell us about the last one you ran into.


Aid for the care of HIV/AIDS victims in Orthodox communities from African communities to central Europe, Romania in particular but I don't have a reference at hand.

Also money for the Orthodox Church in Cyprus.

That's interesting, and very laudable.  One that I've "run into" involves giving Orthodox children in parts of the Middle East a free education.....just as long as they convert to Catholicism first.  Yes, it is true that the Catholic Church does a lot of good things for a lot of people, including Orthodox people.  Perhaps partly because the Catholic Church is such a vast institution with many diverse faces and motives, it is not surprising to see that at times its right hand really does not know what its left hand is doing.  Not that the Roman Church has a monopoly on this kind of behaviour, by any means, but I've also "run into" Catholic institutions employing very Machiavellian strategies in their dealings with others.  For this reason, the "Catholic knight in shining armour" position you champion in some of your posts here strikes me as being either somewhat disingenuous or naive, or at the very least extremely one-sided.    
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« Reply #101 on: December 19, 2011, 01:46:15 AM »



Tell us about the last one you ran into.


Aid for the care of HIV/AIDS victims in Orthodox communities from African communities to central Europe, Romania in particular but I don't have a reference at hand.

Also money for the Orthodox Church in Cyprus.

That's interesting, and very laudable.  One that I've "run into" involves giving Orthodox children in parts of the Middle East a free education.....just as long as they convert to Catholicism first.  Yes, it is true that the Catholic Church does a lot of good things for a lot of people, including Orthodox people.  Perhaps partly because the Catholic Church is such a vast institution with many diverse faces and motives, it is not surprising to see that at times its right hand really does not know what its left hand is doing.  Not that the Roman Church has a monopoly on this kind of behaviour, by any means, but I've also "run into" Catholic institutions employing very Machiavellian strategies in their dealings with others.  For this reason, the "Catholic knight in shining armour" position you champion in some of your posts here strikes me as being either somewhat disingenuous or naive, or at the very least extremely one-sided.    
Like this?
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« Reply #102 on: December 19, 2011, 01:50:19 AM »

I think you misunderstand my statement, which is largely because I didn't make my statement clear enough.  I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking for the purpose of giving the money to the poor engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.

I can only repeat that my experience in my own country which has a comprehensive social welfare system  is that no spirit of resentment is engendered.    Different factors at work in the USA may generate resentment?
Quote


What I'm arguing against is taxation for the sole purpose of redistributing the money to the poor.

I would argue the opposite - that a Christian country has an obligation to care for the poor and those who are vulnerable whether through sickness or unemployment.

Just to briefly restate what I wrote earlier...   This country, and many Commonwealth countries, is orientated towards the common weal. We see the duty of Government as primarily that of managing the country for the common good of the entire populace. In order to achieve this common weal we cheerfully hand over our taxes.
In which case, we're probably much closer to agreeing on this issue than you may think, for I have argued that if the rich want to give generously and without compulsion, then they should be encouraged to do so. If your system of taxation is based on that sense of free will giving, then that's something to be commended. However, my experience is that people don't like paying taxes and think of it as compulsion. In this culture, distrust of government is virtually written into the Constitution, and taking money from the rich in order to give it to the poor is often thought little more than robbery.

Peter, I can certainly not getting at you but I cannot avoid the feeling that a society which shies away from assisting its poor is not a society based on Christian principles. And that assistance  needs to be comprehensive, organised, equitable and nationwide.  Entrusting it to the well-meaning but capricious efforts of neighbours and friends, church groups and mosques just won't work effectively in delivering sustained assistance as needed.
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« Reply #103 on: December 19, 2011, 02:11:34 AM »



Tell us about the last one you ran into.


Aid for the care of HIV/AIDS victims in Orthodox communities from African communities to central Europe, Romania in particular but I don't have a reference at hand.

Also money for the Orthodox Church in Cyprus.

That's interesting, and very laudable.  One that I've "run into" involves giving Orthodox children in parts of the Middle East a free education.....just as long as they convert to Catholicism first.  Yes, it is true that the Catholic Church does a lot of good things for a lot of people, including Orthodox people.  Perhaps partly because the Catholic Church is such a vast institution with many diverse faces and motives, it is not surprising to see that at times its right hand really does not know what its left hand is doing.  Not that the Roman Church has a monopoly on this kind of behaviour, by any means, but I've also "run into" Catholic institutions employing very Machiavellian strategies in their dealings with others.  For this reason, the "Catholic knight in shining armour" position you champion in some of your posts here strikes me as being either somewhat disingenuous or naive, or at the very least extremely one-sided.    
Like this?


Ummmm.....I was hoping to come across as being not quite this inflammatory in my post.
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« Reply #104 on: December 19, 2011, 02:16:01 AM »



Tell us about the last one you ran into.


Aid for the care of HIV/AIDS victims in Orthodox communities from African communities to central Europe, Romania in particular but I don't have a reference at hand.

Also money for the Orthodox Church in Cyprus.

That's interesting, and very laudable.  One that I've "run into" involves giving Orthodox children in parts of the Middle East a free education.....just as long as they convert to Catholicism first.  Yes, it is true that the Catholic Church does a lot of good things for a lot of people, including Orthodox people.  Perhaps partly because the Catholic Church is such a vast institution with many diverse faces and motives, it is not surprising to see that at times its right hand really does not know what its left hand is doing.  Not that the Roman Church has a monopoly on this kind of behaviour, by any means, but I've also "run into" Catholic institutions employing very Machiavellian strategies in their dealings with others.  For this reason, the "Catholic knight in shining armour" position you champion in some of your posts here strikes me as being either somewhat disingenuous or naive, or at the very least extremely one-sided.    
Like this?


Ummmm.....I was hoping to come across as being not quite this inflammatory in my post.

Must be the clash between Arab understatement and British (>Canadian) intemperance.
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« Reply #105 on: December 19, 2011, 02:28:58 AM »

^ Undoubtedly.
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« Reply #106 on: December 19, 2011, 03:17:23 AM »

I think you misunderstand my statement, which is largely because I didn't make my statement clear enough.  I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking for the purpose of giving the money to the poor engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.

I can only repeat that my experience in my own country which has a comprehensive social welfare system  is that no spirit of resentment is engendered.    Different factors at work in the USA may generate resentment?
Quote


What I'm arguing against is taxation for the sole purpose of redistributing the money to the poor.

I would argue the opposite - that a Christian country has an obligation to care for the poor and those who are vulnerable whether through sickness or unemployment.

Just to briefly restate what I wrote earlier...   This country, and many Commonwealth countries, is orientated towards the common weal. We see the duty of Government as primarily that of managing the country for the common good of the entire populace. In order to achieve this common weal we cheerfully hand over our taxes.
In which case, we're probably much closer to agreeing on this issue than you may think, for I have argued that if the rich want to give generously and without compulsion, then they should be encouraged to do so. If your system of taxation is based on that sense of free will giving, then that's something to be commended. However, my experience is that people don't like paying taxes and think of it as compulsion. In this culture, distrust of government is virtually written into the Constitution, and taking money from the rich in order to give it to the poor is often thought little more than robbery.

Peter, I can certainly not getting at you but I cannot avoid the feeling that a society which shies away from assisting its poor is not a society based on Christian principles. And that assistance  needs to be comprehensive, organised, equitable and nationwide.  Entrusting it to the well-meaning but capricious efforts of neighbours and friends, church groups and mosques just won't work effectively in delivering sustained assistance as needed.
I suppose one could question whether your Kiwi culture is based as solidly on Christian principles as you seem to think it is.
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« Reply #107 on: December 19, 2011, 03:49:51 AM »

One that I've "run into" involves giving Orthodox children in parts of the Middle East a free education.....just as long as they convert to Catholicism first.

Bob,

I'm certainly not about to hop on Mary's bandwagon, but I'd seriously like to see a source for any claim of this nature in anything approaching modern times - especially as regards the Middle East, where the excellent relations among the Eastern and Oriental Churches - both Catholic and Orthodox, are probably the best of anywhere in the world. None of the three Catholic Patriarchs of Antioch would countenance such and neither of the two Orthodox Patriarchs of Antioch would allow such to pass unnoticed. Educational resources are not infrequently shared among these Churches, as are social service and other charitable resources. The Middle East, whatever else one can say about it, is an example - on a daily basis - of collegiality, in which the concerned hierarchy puts the needs of the extended body of Christian faithful first, not body counts.

Your statement does not fly!

Many years,

Neil
« Last Edit: December 19, 2011, 03:54:37 AM by Irish Melkite » Logged

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« Reply #108 on: December 19, 2011, 04:37:28 AM »

I think you misunderstand my statement, which is largely because I didn't make my statement clear enough.  I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking for the purpose of giving the money to the poor engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.

I can only repeat that my experience in my own country which has a comprehensive social welfare system  is that no spirit of resentment is engendered.    Different factors at work in the USA may generate resentment?
Quote


What I'm arguing against is taxation for the sole purpose of redistributing the money to the poor.

I would argue the opposite - that a Christian country has an obligation to care for the poor and those who are vulnerable whether through sickness or unemployment.

Just to briefly restate what I wrote earlier...   This country, and many Commonwealth countries, is orientated towards the common weal. We see the duty of Government as primarily that of managing the country for the common good of the entire populace. In order to achieve this common weal we cheerfully hand over our taxes.
In which case, we're probably much closer to agreeing on this issue than you may think, for I have argued that if the rich want to give generously and without compulsion, then they should be encouraged to do so. If your system of taxation is based on that sense of free will giving, then that's something to be commended. However, my experience is that people don't like paying taxes and think of it as compulsion. In this culture, distrust of government is virtually written into the Constitution, and taking money from the rich in order to give it to the poor is often thought little more than robbery.

Peter, I can certainly not getting at you but I cannot avoid the feeling that a society which shies away from assisting its poor is not a society based on Christian principles. And that assistance  needs to be comprehensive, organised, equitable and nationwide.  Entrusting it to the well-meaning but capricious efforts of neighbours and friends, church groups and mosques just won't work effectively in delivering sustained assistance as needed.

I suppose one could question whether your Kiwi culture is based as solidly on Christian principles as you seem to think it is.

Our law and our social institutions still are, but..... like all the Western world we are seeing what was once a pervading Christian culture in the years up until the 1970s eroded by secularism, and also by immigration from non-Christian areas of the world, the Muslim countries, China, and Asia generally.  In Auckland, our largest city,  41% do not have English as their first language.  This has happened in the last 20 years.  

As I wrote earlier.....

"Now as Church and State drift further apart it remains to be seen if that
partnership will continue but I still argue that we in New Zealand (and
perhaps slightly less now in the UK) enjoy a culture where people have
invested into the state the outworking of its Christian principles(getting
more and more diluted of course but still there) as the basis of its law and
care for its citizens."
« Last Edit: December 19, 2011, 04:40:22 AM by Irish Hermit » Logged
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« Reply #109 on: December 19, 2011, 06:24:01 AM »

I am locking this thread until the mod team reviews it.  I already warned one poster because he was political.  I must go through all posts and figure out who crossed the line and then apply modertorial action.  This was about the pope not about taxation and politics -username! section moderator[color/]
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« Reply #110 on: December 19, 2011, 08:45:15 AM »

Did you seriously just quote Margaret Thatcher?

Me? Peter?
I was referring to Isa. My posts come in late due to being on moderation.

I was shaking my head in disbelief.
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« Reply #111 on: December 19, 2011, 08:45:15 AM »

The reason that 49% of people in the U.S. do not pay the federal income tax, Federal Income Cap Assesment (FICA), is because they can't- their income is not high enough for them to qualify. It's the same reason I don't own a house: I can't afford one.

However, everyone pays sales tax, and almost all states charge state tax; there are plenty of other taxes as well, including city taxes, depending on where you live. Local counties assess property taxes.

So please don't try this ridiculous right-wing talk radio notion of conflating lack of payment of the FICA tax with not paying any taxes. It's bull.
Every job I had, from the lowest paying job on Earth to now I always paid income tax. But once I moved into a different tax bracket, my return was not so great so I started doing exemptions to get out of paying the govnt too much of my own money.
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