Unpacking report that Katie Holmes has rejoined Catholic Church
Actress Katie Holmes recently filed for divorce from actor Tom Cruise.
July 11th, 2012
06:27 PM ET

Unpacking report that Katie Holmes has rejoined Catholic Church

By Eric Marrapodi, Co-Editor, CNN's Belief Blog

(CNN) - In the blizzard of reports surrounding Tom Cruise's recent split with Katie Holmes, this one stands out: After her years married to Scientologist Cruise, Holmes is said to be rejoining the Roman Catholic Church of her youth.

A report from the Huffington Post with the decisive headline "Katie Holmes Returns to Catholic Church" has been rattling around the Internet since Monday. But the Internet newspaper cites a lone unnamed member of the church choir, who claims Holmes has registered as a parishioner of the Church of St. Francis Xavier in New York.

“Everyone is thrilled to have Katie join us,” the church member told Huffington Post reporter Naughty But Nice Rob. “She has not yet attended a service, but when she does she will be welcomed with open arms.”

“We have no comment regarding Katie Holmes in the context of reports of her becoming a parishioner of the Church St. Francis Xavier,” said Patrick Brewis, the church’s director of stewardship.

Brewis said the church has been flooded with calls and e-mails about the prospect of Holmes’ possible registration. He noted that regardless of who a parishioner or potential parishioner might be, the church doesn’t disclose that information.

“If Jane Smith or John Doe or Katie Holmes was a parishioner, we would not be sharing that information,” he said.

Holmes has likewise been mum since the recent news of her divorce, save a joint statement issued by representatives of the star couple.

"We want to keep matters affecting our family private and express our respect for each other's commitment to each of our respective beliefs and support each other's roles as parents," the statement read. It's unclear whether Holmes ever formally joined the Church of Scientology.

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The pastor of Church of St. Francis Xavier, Father Joe Costantino, told the Daily Beast he was caught off-guard when reporters started calling about Holmes' alleged membership.

“I didn’t even know who she was,” Costantino told the site. He added that if she had registered or taken Communion there recently, “It’s news to me.”

Joseph Zwilling, the spokesman for the Catholic Archdiocese of New York, couldn't confirm or deny that Holmes had joined the Church of St. Francis Xavier or any other Catholic church, saying that "if a person joined the parish, it’s done on the parish level.” Zwilling said he had not heard one way or the other from St. Francis Xavier's administrative offices.

Celebrities have bemoaned their lack of privacy when it comes to matters religious. "Next time I'm in church, please no photos," raps Kanye West in "Run this Town," a hit song he recorded with Rihanna and Jay-Z.

The Archdiocese of New York is no stranger to celebrity guests at its services, particularly at the famed St. Patrick's Cathedral, Zwilling said, but "we have not had any incidents with paparazzi or other people approaching (celebrities) at Mass. If they did they’d be asked to leave."

"Anyone who comes to Mass would be expected to follow the proper protocols," he said. "I think people understand and respect when you're in church, you don’t disturb them when they’re in a house of worship.”

Tod Tamberg, spokesman for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, was born in Hollywood and grew up going to St. Charles Catholic Church in North Hollywood. He remembered going to services with "Farrah Fawcett on one side of me, John Wayne's family on the other side of me and the Bob Hope family behind me."

Tamberg said he has had few, if any, incidents surrounding celebrities attending worship services.

"When they come through the doors of the church, people know who people are, but people are doing their own thing," he said. “I’ve never seen anyone ask for autographs over the years ... and I’ve been in position to see it a lot.”

Should Holmes decide to return to the Catholic Church, she could follow a similar script as Nicole Kidman, who was also once married to Cruise and was also raised Catholic.

Tamberg said Kidman has returned to the church since her divorce.

“Usually, what happens is, there’s still some ties to the church through your family,” he said. "My understanding with the Kidman story is, she was close to a priest her family had known their whole lives. That was helpful to her in picking up the pieces after the divorce."

Should Holmes decide to return to Catholicism, Tamberg said, it's a fairly easy process.

“You basically can pick it up where you left off,” he said, pointing to Jesus talking often in the Bible of rejoicing over wandering adherents returning to the fold.

"There’s no test you have to take. Once you’ve received the sacraments, those are a permanent mark," he said, citing the sacraments of Communion, baptism and confirmation.

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Even if a person has publicly renounced his or her faith, Tamberg said, returning would only be a matter of private counseling with a priest, though even that process is not formalized.

As the unnamed member of the Church of St. Francis Xavier and hordes of reporters wait for Holmes to attend a service in New York, they may want to consider that the parish has an online registration form that anyone can fill out.

In most parishes,  Zwilling noted, that's a form you have to fill out in person.

Brewis welcomed the attention paid to the Church of St. Francis Xavier, saying it is “striving to be a vibrant parishioner-driven community.” He added, “On the plus side, many people who hadn't heard about us and the extraordinary work we do have heard about us now.”

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Catholic Church

soundoff (1,139 Responses)
  1. Wow

    The Catholic Church was not founded during Chist's life time....there is a huge difference between Christianity and Catholicism. And just for the record Scientology is another attempt of some con artist nut job to make some money when his Dianetics crap failed. L Ron Hubbard was a pup fiction and science fiction writer which becomes glaringly clear when you start to read about his "Thetans". Another Joseph Smith who unfortunately had enough charisma and powers of persuasion to get his ideas across to the weak and insecure.

    July 12, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
    • TC

      Now here is someone that has accurately written about the history and trueness of the RCC and the 2 cults of mormonism and scientology

      July 12, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
    • Pat F

      Wrong. St. Peter is the first Pope. Catholicism is the Church Jesus founded – everything else is heresy.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:43 pm |
    • TC

      Pat – I am Catholic and WOW is right. When Jesus left, the RCC did not exist and Peter was the first pope but that term was not used at the time. He was bishop of Rome, first among equals of other Bishops. The formall RCC did not come into existence until the 4th century.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
    • CB

      The Catholic Church is the only church today that can claim to be the one church founded by Jesus Christ 2,000 years ago. Other denominations can trace their origins back to various human founders at a later date in history.

      In Matthew 16:18, Jesus said to Peter, “And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it.” Jesus handed the authority to guide the Church in His name to Peter and the apostles, to be passed down through the centuries.

      Christ established one Church, not a bunch of churches.

      catholicscomehome.org has a lot of great info.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:53 pm |
  2. t3chn0ph0b3

    Eat it, Hubbard!

    July 12, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
  3. Rainer Braendlein

    We don't know what we have to owe Frederic the Great, King of Pruzzia. He was not only a very promoter of European Enlightenment and Philosopher of Sanssouci, but he really finished the rule of the evil, demonic pope over Europe. Frederic defeated the Habsburgians (at last they dwelled in Austria) by military means. The Habsburgians were puppets of the pope and had ruled Europe for centuries.

    Regarding the Revelation of the Bible it is impossible that the pope seizes wordly rule again, because God has limited this time of rule on 666 years, which ended 1742. However, it is still a calamity, how many souls the pope daily kills spiritually by withhelding the true gospel of Jesus Christ.

    July 12, 2012 at 3:20 pm |
    • Who invited me?

      lovely spam, that wonderful spam.....

      July 12, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
    • TC

      Really? More spew from a heretic follwoing a heretical sect of christianity started by the ultimate heretic Luther? Dude, these convos don't even apply to your crazy religion.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
    • Tsar140

      Its Prussia...I could go on, but you clearly need to get back on your meds.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
  4. PhilG

    LOL-GROUPS of people that will help watch over her and her children.

    July 12, 2012 at 3:18 pm |
  5. Anita Bongtoke

    From one cult to another....

    July 12, 2012 at 3:17 pm |
    • clevercandi

      Like 🙂

      July 12, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
  6. PhilG

    Good for Katie.

    She should get very close to the church and stay within the goups of people that can help look after her and her children too.

    I don't trust Scientologists and I don't think they will leave Katie alone.

    July 12, 2012 at 3:17 pm |
    • religion; a way to control the weak minded

      just stay away from the priest....i hear they live 10 year old virg...in a..$$...

      July 12, 2012 at 3:32 pm |


      July 12, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
  7. dave taylor

    Good for you Katie! Come back to the true presence of Christ in the euchrist.Don"t listen to the hate on this site its awful! Still blaming a whole church of 1 billion people for the sick mistakes of a few morons.I wouldnt be surprised if they hated all blacks for a crime by a few of their race.Just the type of people these haters are by always pointing the finger at others.

    July 12, 2012 at 3:12 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      I'm sure she's excited to be back in the church of drowning and cannibalism.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:23 pm |
    • religion; a way to control the weak minded

      "for the sick mistakes of a few morons"

      When you continue to prey on helpless 10 year old boys, it goes past "mistake" and onto correlation. And when the church FAILS to stop it and covers it up, it turns into conspiracy.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
  8. matt

    i think scientology is a total joke and that katie holmes did the best thing for her and her kid – yes i agree with trying to respect all religions and the freedom associated with individual choices but scientology shouldn't be included IMO

    July 12, 2012 at 3:07 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Neither should Catholics.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Not my post; I just now sat down. I left at 12:38.

      My brother-in-law is a devout Catholic. I don't share his beliefs but I respect them and him, because he's nothing like HS or justsayin or the rest of thumpers here.

      Suck on that, troll.

      July 12, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  9. Ryan

    Leaving one cult for another.

    July 12, 2012 at 3:04 pm |
    • Izoto

      I don't think you even know what a cult is if you're calling the Catholic church one.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:13 pm |
    • derp

      "I don't think you even know what a cult is if you're calling the Catholic church one"

      You might want to invest in a dictionary you dunce.

      Cult: noun

      1.a particular system of religious worship, especially with reference to its rites and ceremonies.
      2.an instance of great veneration of a person, ideal, or thing, especially as manifested by a body of admirers.

      The RCC is by definition a cult.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:18 pm |
    • Rusty

      The only difference between a cult and a religion...numbers

      July 12, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
    • religion; a way to control the weak minded

      "The only difference between a cult and a religion...numbers"

      The only difference between a cult and a religion.....MONEY

      July 12, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
    • TC

      @derp the dork – grea tyou know how to quote a dictinary but education material goes beyond what you use in the 7th grade. Relgions work to further the successes of their members – cults try to cotrol and use members for their purposes. Grow up little boy

      July 12, 2012 at 3:35 pm |


      You're just in denial that made up stories on small or big levels are different. Cosmology is cosmology, and theologies (cultish or not) are just mythologies. Grow up.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
    • Izoto

      You really don't get what a cult is, do you, as a concept? *sigh*

      July 12, 2012 at 4:03 pm |
  10. mrTestosteroni

    If Catholicism and Scientology don't make you an atheist, nothing will. Good luck Ms.

    July 12, 2012 at 3:04 pm |

      omg dude you're going to (christian, muslim, hindu, egyptian, mormon....) hell, REPENT!

      July 12, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
  11. GT

    Whats the deal with all the rude comments to this article. I thought this Country was founded on the freedom of religion. If Katie wants to go to the Catholic Church, so be it.

    People should really stop using the Catholic Church as a punching bag, and respect all religions. If you want respect in your beliefs, than you are going to have to give respect....that includes giving respect to the Catholic Church.

    July 12, 2012 at 2:59 pm |
    • Dan Gonzalez

      So True! Why is it that Catholicism is one of the few mainstream religions that public opinion deems it OK to mock. Imagine if Jay Leno made fun of Jews or Muslims. They outcry would be deafening. But he can go on and on about priests and the Pope and it doesn't even raise an eyebrow. Sad.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      @ GT
      It’s was. Do you see anyone trying to imprison or hurt Katie for her choice? It was also founded on freedom of speech. If you don’t like it move to Iran.

      @ Dan Gonzale
      You should come here more often. All religions/cults are mocked. You are not special and you are not a victim.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:11 pm |
    • Rainer Braendlein

      We don't know what we have to owe Frederic the Great, King of Pruzzia. He was not only a very promoter of Enlightenment and Philosopher of Sanssouci, but he really finished the rule of the evil, demonic pope over Europe. Frederic defeated the Habsburgians (at last they dwelled in Austria), which were puppets of the pope and had ruled Europe for centuries.

      Regarding the Revelation of the Bible it is impossible that the pope seizes wordly rule again, because God had limited this time of rule on 666 years, wich ended 1742. However, it is still a calamity, how many souls the pope daily kills spiritually by withhelding the true gospel of Jesus Christ.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
    • Dude

      The Catholic Church, and Scientology for that matter, are officially monolithic. There is an official organization that creates and controls its dogma and public image. There are not opposing Catholic, or Scientology, sects.

      The same is not true for Protestants, Muslims or Jews. All of them have various sects with different, often opposing, beliefs.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:16 pm |
    • Who invited me?

      I do not respect a religious organization that molests children, then conspires to hide it, that murders in gods name, that controls and corrupts governments, kings and queens, That destroys other civilizations and replaces it with their own...etc, etc, etc...
      respect is earned....beatings are free....

      July 12, 2012 at 3:16 pm |
    • TC

      @invited – see my response below to your last lame attempt to explain your position.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:18 pm |
    • TC

      @GT – invited is an angry atheist and will focus on the evil doers of any organization to sway their view. People like this fail to see that every organization has evil doers and inside corruptors. While they villify religion as evil, they peacefully follow corrupt governments and endorse harmful commerce.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
    • religion; a way to control the weak minded

      sorry but respect is EARNED not given.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
  12. Dan Gonzalez

    Cathlolics don't have a "service" we have Mass. The only time we do not have Mass is on Good Friday. That would probably be the only time of the year you could refer to the liturgy as a "service" and be correct.

    July 12, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
    • sam stone

      How is Mass any different than a service?

      July 12, 2012 at 2:56 pm |
    • TC

      Dan – spot on but most people in here posting barely even know the basic tenets of Christianity and its accurate history much less what a mass is all about. Sad I know but true.

      July 12, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
    • Dan Gonzalez

      Catholics believe in the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist. In our liturgy, the sacrifice of Christ on Calvary is re-presented. Since the 4th century, this has been called Mass taken from when the celebration was in Latin: "Ite Missa est." In contrast, most Protestant denominations believe Jesus was speaking symbolically when he said "This is my body." Their celebrations do not involve a sacrificial aspect and are called services. I hope that helps to clarify. 🙂

      July 12, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
    • derp


      So you think that red wine IS actually blood from jesus?

      July 12, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
    • TC

      derp – have you actually taken time ot study transubstantiation? And if so, would you be willing to try to have some faith? If not, Dan's answer is not going to satisfy or convince you.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:27 pm |


      You believe in transbutation? That's no different than believing in symbolic magick. Grow up, these stories are so silly, sad and unreal. Unbelievable. Terrific at times. And none of those in a good way either. Seriously, self hypnosis in believing in magic tricks is what it comes down to. Sorry.

      July 12, 2012 at 4:01 pm |
    • Bubba

      "So you think that red wine IS actually blood from jesus?"

      "That depends on what the meaning of the word 'is' is."

      July 12, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
  13. Pat F

    Katie is going to need an annulment if she wants to get married in the Church again. I think marrying a closeted queen will be adequate grounds.

    July 12, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
    • Dude

      He is as straight as John Travolta.

      What? Too soon?
      Scientology is having some problems lately. . .

      July 12, 2012 at 3:26 pm |
    • Tsar140

      Depends. Her marriage to Tom might not be considered valid according to the Catholic church. I doubt they had a Catholic wedding. Catholics marrying in a non-catholic ceremony must meet certain requirements. So she might not have to get an annulment. It may be that the Church does not consider her married. (A civil ceremony or a ceremony performed outside for example would not normally be considered valid–it gets back to the sacramental thing.)

      July 12, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
  14. Jesus Christ

    OOOhhhh progress. Moved from one school of non-sense to another.

    July 12, 2012 at 2:49 pm |
  15. derp

    A catholic priest and Jerry Sandusky walk into a bar.............................

    July 12, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
    • ChaCha

      And order a mudslide?

      July 12, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
  16. Solo

    If she hasn't attended a service, then is she really back in the Catholic Church? Let her decide – she's spent the past seven or eight years having someone else tell her how to live every facet of her life. Personally, I don't understand how she could do this – especially becoming a mother during all of it – and not want a voice of her own.
    I had a situation in which a boyfriend of mine and I were nearing engagement, but he became part of a "church" (Boston Church of Christ) that was so controlling, they decided who you could date and marry. Because I questioned the validity of this so-called faith, I was not deemed a suitable match for my boyfriend, who took the advice of church members to break up with me. It was painful for a long time since he was also my best friend. But it also probably saved my life.

    July 12, 2012 at 2:38 pm |
    • OrangeSkies

      I hate to break it to you, but the church you are referring to is indeed considered to be a part of a real life cult. They call themselves Church of Christ, but they are a part of a denomenation called the International Church of Christ or ICOC. There is an entire website with people who managed to escape this cult, including the exact church your boyfriend was sucked into: Reveal.org

      The only reason i know about this, is because I ALMOST got sucked into their church in Gainesville FL, but luckily i was able to do some research and got out before they had me in hook, line and sinker. I was able to find another church i could attend, but even then some of the students from the "cult" church kept calling me and asking me why i had left and if i wanted to attend services with them.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:20 pm |
  17. Joyce

    Hell is an absence of God. God is Good. Hell is an absence of goodness. This is why hell is full of torture, because it is lacking in God, that is in the source of all goodness. God does not send anyone to hell. People choose hell by choosing not to live with God. Not to live with God is a choice not to live with goodness in your life. No goodness, your life is hell.

    July 12, 2012 at 2:34 pm |
    • Madtown

      How do you know this to be true? Is there anyway out of it?

      July 12, 2012 at 2:38 pm |
    • *facepalm*

      God is Good? Murdering infants for an unsuccessful extortion campaign is good?

      I hope you don't live near me. I hate to see what you think is bad.

      July 12, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
    • BRC

      i'm acutally pretty good with this concept. "God" is not in my life now, and I'm really quite happy. if your saying hell is just eternity like this, works for me. I still don't think it exists, but nice to know it won't be a big deal if I'm wrong.

      July 12, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
    • Pat F

      Nicely put.

      July 12, 2012 at 2:48 pm |
    • sam stone

      Joyce: The god you describe is a petty punk

      July 12, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
  18. A dose of reality

    Ten Reasons You Know you are an Atheist.
    1. You were likely brought up a theist (probably a Christian if you live in the USA) and had to do your own thinking to rise above the beliefs that still occupy the mind of the believer. This usually involved being smart and working hard at school and college so as to get a good, accurate view of the natural Universe and overcoming significant social pressure to dumb yourself down and conform. In short, you had the guts to ask the hard questions and the brains to spot the weak answers. The more you came to understand the Universe, the less reason there was to believe in a god and the more you came to appreciate human nature, the more you understood why billions of us still do.
    2. While rejecting the supernatural elements of the Bible, you nevertheless retain a large amount of the morality taught today by mainstream Christianity. To the extent you reject Christian morality, it is where it is mean spirited – such as in the way it seeks to curtail freedoms or oppose the rights of $exual minorities. In most other respects, your basic moral outlook is indistinguishable from that of the liberal Christian – you just don’t need the mother of all carrots and sticks hanging over your head in order to act in a manner that you consider moral.
    3. You know a great deal more about the Bible than most believers. This is because you took the time to read it yourself and did not rely on the primary-color simple stories you learned in Sunday school. You have also probably done some research into the historical Jesus and have a good handle on where he REALLY fit in to the broader picture of the Middle East at the time. Needless to say, his miracles and other magic powers soon started to look pretty unlikely.
    4. Your knowledge of basic science and history is much stronger than that of your average believer. You likely have a basic working knowledge of physics, astronomy, evolutionary biology and cosmology and a good idea of the history of life on this planet. This acc.umulated knowledge puts you in a position to judge the claims of the Bible in a critical light and they are almost always found wanting. To the theist, this makes you “elitist” and ‘arrogant”.
    5. You relish your role as a religious minority in the USA, as this gives you an impetus to fight and you understand how others with unpopular, but doubtlessly correct views have felt throughout history. There is something altogether satisfying to you about having a deep conviction you are right and being viewed with disdain for your views by the errant majority. You feel a quiet confidence that future generations will look back on you as a member of a class of trailblazers, as religious supersti.tions go into inevitable decline in popularity.
    6. You are likely more environmentally aware than your theist friends and colleagues and unlikely to fall for claims of industry and wind-bag politicians concerning the impact of man’s activities on the environment. You could no more act in an environmentally irresponsible manner because “god will keep us safe” than you could jump of a ship, believing King Neptune will keep you safe.
    7. You generally have a live and let live atti.tude, but will fiercely defend any attempts by theists to thrust their views on you or your children, directly or through control of school boards, the legislature or the executive. While you are prepared to debate and argue passionately with the theist on an intellectual level, you would never wish them harm or ill will. You know you are likely to be smugly told you will “burn in hell for all eternity” for your healthy skepticism. This highlights what you despise about religion, as you would not wish a bad sunburn on another, simply because they have a different religious view to you. You have never heard of an evolutionary biologist strapping a bomb to himself and running into a church yelling “Darwin-u akbar”.
    8. You likely know more about other religions than your average theist. This makes you less fearful of them and enables you to see parallels. You realize that, if you were born in India, you would have been brought up with a totally different religion. You realize that every culture that has ever existed has had its own god(s) and they always favor that particular culture, its hopes, dreams and prejudices. They cannot all exist and you see the error all faiths make of thinking only theirs exist(s). This “rising above” the regional nature of all religions was probably instrumental in your achieving atheism.
    9. You likely have a deep, genuine appreciation of the fathomless beauty and unbelievable complexity of our Universe, from the 4 nucleotides that orchestrate every aspect of you, through to the distant quasars, without having to think it was all made for you. You likely get more out of being the irrelevant ant staring up at the cosmos than you do in having to pretend that it was all made to turn in majestic black-and-white pirouette about you.
    10. While you have a survival instinct, you cannot fear death in the way the theist does. You know that the whole final judgment story, where you may be sent to hell if you fail, is Dark Ages nonsense meant to keep the Church’s authority. You also know that you were dead for 13,700,000,000 years before you were born. It is impossible for you to fear death, for the simple reason that you know the capacity to fear (or to feel pain or discomfort) itself dies. You will not even know you are dead. Fear of death is as meaningless to you as is the fear of a vacuum, the fear of not being born. You feel a lot more secure, and indeed a deep comfort, in this knowledge, than you would in trying to yoke yourself to some quasi-hope that every part of your intellect tells you is untenable.

    July 12, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
    • mean

      Wow, you pretty much described heck of a lot of people at my church, who are mostly converts from atheism.

      July 12, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
    • TC

      Actually most atheists have little knowledge of theology and scripture; hence, the not understanding the intellectual piece of God and going your own way. Also, your post is way too long and boring that no one is going to read it all – again lacking awareness and education to what is important.

      July 12, 2012 at 2:50 pm |
    • Who invited me?

      TC is bearing false witness again...

      July 12, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
    • TC

      Lying about what? Is it just easier for you to call the truth a lie and hope no one notices?

      July 12, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
    • Who invited me?

      "Actually most atheists have little knowledge of theology and scripture;"
      Incorrect. I have studied your bible, and many other religious texts, I am involved in many groups of many beliefs and the atheists always seem to be the ones who have studied the most.
      Don't assume you know what an atheist has studied.

      July 12, 2012 at 2:58 pm |
    • Humanbeing

      Well, it appears that TC has a small attention span. This could not have been communicated better.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
    • TC

      I agree – don't assume. Atheists shouldn't assume they know so much – that tends to be your problem and why you follow the belief in absence of spirituality. Your assumptions lead to arrogance. If both of you english experts will read the original post I responded to then you wil see that your atheist buddy ASSUMED atheists are more educated in the bible than Christians. Yeah a bunch of non-believers know more than scholars of 2000 years worth of Christianity. Hmmm... I think I won't take your word for it.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:13 pm |
    • PhilG

      I'm not reading a half a thread high single paragraph.

      There's your dose of reality.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:14 pm |
    • B

      That's a very long way of expressing the stereotypical arrogant atheist view that anyone that believes in God and associates with a religion is unintelligent. And it's remarkable to me that you spend so much time to express your feeling of intellectual superiority, yet you are not intelligent enough to recognize that you are displaying the same type of "I'm better than you" arrogance that you accuse every religious person of. There are those on both sides who are ignorant and will always feel they are better than the other, but it is ignorant in itself to lump everyone on the other side of the argument from yourself in that category. I've been a Catholic all my life, but I always enjoy discussing religion, morals, etc. with an open minded, intelligent atheist. Unfortunately those that post online tend to come from the other side of the spectrum.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:17 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      I’m afraid you're wrong and that’s not an opinion. Survey after survey and shown Atheist and other 'non-religous' types know FAR more than religious types about the Christian (and other) mythologies.
      You don’t have to believe me… (but you’ll believe there is an invisible man in the clouds /muffled laugh.) feel free to look it up.


      July 12, 2012 at 3:18 pm |
    • TC

      Yes, look it up Piper. Find a valid confirmed study that shows atheists know more than the scholars of religion. Ex-christians who can quote a bible do not qualify. You don't have to believe me but you can believe in a universe that magically appeared.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:23 pm |
    • TC

      @B – exactly. Atheist posters are never here ot discuss only to try and state religion is evil and the people in it stupid. Such an intelligent agenda.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
    • Humanbeing

      Actually most atheists have little knowledge of theology and scripture; hence, the not understanding the intellectual piece of God and going your own way. Also, your post is way too long and boring that no one is going to read it all – again lacking awareness and education to what is important.
      This is your post. Where does your information come from? How is it that you think you know what everyone else is going to do? You speak of arrogance, I have read your responses to many of these posts. I am sure you know all about arrogance. How many of the world's religions do you know about? How many have you studied? Ever hear of Joseph Campbell?

      July 12, 2012 at 3:32 pm |
    • Richard J. Dackow, Ph.D.

      You seem to be confusing Christianity with Fundamentalism. Darwin did not make that error. Huxley " so called Darwin’s Bulldog" added the Science Vs Religion spin.
      From Wikipeada (sources checked by me, you should look it up too) Page ii (Of Origin of the Species) contains quotations by William Whewell and Francis Bacon on the theology of natural laws,[75] harmonising science and religion in accordance with Isaac Newton's belief in a rational God who established a law-abiding cosmos.[76] In the second edition, Darwin added an epigraph from Joseph Butler affirming that God could work through scientific laws as much as through miracles, in a nod to the religious concerns of his oldest friends.[57] The Introduction establishes Darwin's credentials as a naturalist and author,[77] then refers to John Herschel's letter suggesting that the origin of species "would be found to be a natural in contradistinction to a miraculous process":[78]

      The Cathoilic church sees no problem with Darwin since we view the bible as, Inspried by God, written through men, to a people at a time which requires a historical and contexual understanding. The Catholic Church gave us the Scientific Method, to understand natural Law better. John Paul II said it better.


      My Venerable Brother Bishops,
      Health and the Apostolic Blessing!

      Faith and reason are like two wings on which the human spirit rises to the contemplation of truth; and God has placed in the human heart a desire to know the truth—in a word, to know himself—so that, by knowing and loving God, men and women may also come to the fullness of truth about themselves (cf. Ex 33:18; Ps 27:8-9; 63:2-3; Jn 14:8; 1 Jn 3:2).”

      May the Holy Spirit bring you to the fullness of truth, so that you may experience the Love of a merciful God.
      May the universal creative force which created existence without a progenitor, that some term God , metaphorically, hold you close to his heart.

      Dr. Richard Dackow

      July 12, 2012 at 3:40 pm |
    • TC

      Part of really knowing your faith is learning others. Taoism, Judaism, Islam. Ever heard of Heinrick Schtautzer?

      July 12, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
    • Spike

      I like it.

      July 12, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
  19. WASP

    @HS: REPLY UNDER YOUR ANSWER."so by your statement most religious folks are wasting their lives seeing they spend so much time not enjoying everyone around them. want proof?
    gay rights”
    A: As with everyone, we all have our crosses to bare. Gay folks need to read, comprehend and abide in Jesus' truth.
    REPLY: ummmmm how about no. we live in and i fought for a free secular nation. our consti-tution was founded on "all men created equal" second on that one, your jesus truth leads to people like david koresh.
    A: murder. Women should be encouraged and helped financially, emotionally and spiritually to have their babies.
    REPLY: these women don't deserve being attacked.....and sometimes literally by religious zealots that believe a fetus is equal to a child. it isn't, never will be due to the fact a fetus isn't aware it's alive, the "kicking" a mother feels is merely neural discharge along the nervous system. second a fetus can be naturally lost, we call that miscarriage.....so would that qualify under your definition as the woman's body commiting murder?

    “universal health care”
    A: There isn't an emergency room in this country that turns away a patient in need of medical care. Hence, why those that pay for medical insurance have such high costs involved. Don't drag me into baloney political debates.
    REPLY: i find it a shame that other countries can run universal health coverage but our country can't due to religious and other parties blocking what the government does for our soldiers daily.

    “using the bible to be racists,womanizers, child abusers the list goes on and on........”
    A: Some humans, from any/all walks of life have been racists or womanizers or child abusers. How convenient to blame these actions on a Christian who probably never opened the Bible to read it in their life. Typical carnal thinking.
    REPLY: first your use of "carnal" is truly horrible.
    definition"a : relating to or given to crude bodily pleasures and appeti-tes b : marked by s-e-xuality."
    i have witnessed first hand the use of the bible to validate hate toward, gays, people of various national origin and females. your bible itself tells females to obey the men.

    “let's not forget the crazys that "hear god" and murder their children or refuse them medical attention due to their beliefs.”
    A: I don't know the specifics that you are referring to. You don't believe atheists have done the same? Oh, it isn't recorded in the paper or announced by any of the media ... wonder why? Oh, that's right ... atheists are perfect people who live perfectly and never make mistakes. Give it a rest with this illusion. All media uses situations for sensational benefits for ratings. That's the name of the game. I guess you atheists just aren't newsworthy. Carnal humans being carnal.
    REPLY: again with the ignorant use of carnal, trying to sound educated and truly being educated shows in proper sentence structure and word useage HS.
    second thing up for bids is this wonderful, atheists can't claim to "hear god" or any other god to excuse our violent actions. if i walk up and shoot you point blank, what defense do i have? none. i have no lie i can tell my family or community to make them feel better. our actions aren't broadcast because we don't claim the boogieman or some other fairytale creature made us do anything. we have to accept our actions, thus it isn't a likely to sell papers or get people to watch on the evening news.

    “so let's see, i have absolutely no qwams with any person unless they burn me first and enjoy picking people brains for information and learning of their lives..............yeah i'm wasting away. lol
    oh and BTW nice stealing my statement of "wasting your life" and using it against others.”
    A: I didn't know you had a patent on the statement “wasting your life”. What other phrases are off limits according to you? I used the sentence because it was appropriate to the post I used it in."
    REPLY: no i don't have a.......hint the word you were looking for was copyright, patent is for an invention or physical object. copyright is used for ideas and other things placed on paper. it sort of bothered me that you would so quickly steal something used by an atheist to suit your own needs, guess that only proves that you truly do not think for yourself but get through life copying off the other kids papers. ROFLMFAO!!!!!!!
    July 12, 2012 at 12:49 pm

    noticed you missed replying to my repost. 🙂

    July 12, 2012 at 2:20 pm |
    • TC

      Also, too long and boring and will get read very little.

      July 12, 2012 at 2:51 pm |
    • OTOH


      I think that this post was meant for @Heaven Sent, so no skin off of your nose.

      Gee, you sure get bored easily, don't you? People who are bored are often boring.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
    • TC

      Easily offended or annoyed are you? Breathe and calm (ocean sounds)

      July 12, 2012 at 3:17 pm |
  20. Rainer Braendlein

    I am studying the book "Antimachiavel" by Frederic the Great, King of Pruzzia who was the most noble, virtuous and righteous political leader since Constantine the Great, Emperor of the Eastern Roman Empire.

    There is a book called "The Prince" by Machiavelli which is one of the most satanic books which has ever been written. Frederic's book is a refutation of "The Prince". Machiavelli allows a political leader to be greedy for honor, power and riches and to achieve his aims with bad and evil methods: The end justifies the means. One of this methods is a socalled spiritual princedom which means that a Catholic bishop is leader of a country. Machiavelli says that this is a most cunning method to rule a country and to gain honor, power and riches on the cost of the people, not being in distress of any revolution or attack of another prince, because nobody would dare to attack the Holy Catholic Church indirectly by attacking a country, which is ruled by a Catholic bishop.

    Frederic anyway condemned any greed for honor, fame, power and riches concerning worldly princes. Frederic wanted a yet a worldly prince to be an unselfish man concerned for his people wishing to make them happy and to increase their wealth, freedom, order and progress, whereby spiritual health or wealth was more important for Frederic than material wealth. Frederic was a lover of virtue and righteousness. In his eyes a prince should be a model of virtue and righteousness and it is ridiculous, when a prince aspires after honor, other countries, power, military victories, etc..

    Frederic completely condemns the Catholic Church, because he got historical evidence that the Catholic popes and bishops were the most satanic, demonic leaders which the earth has ever seen, greedy for honor, power and riches, full of adultry and fornication, liars, murderers, etc., totally neclecting their actual job to care for the people's soul health.

    Someone who goes to such a church must be a moron.

    July 12, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
    • BRC

      Have you ever read "The Prince", or "The Discourses" that Machiavelli included with it in his letter to an Italian leader of the time? Do you know the background of it? It's not satanic, nor is it the cutthroat ruthless manual that it's demonized to be.

      At the time Italy was fractured into many warring states, suffering greatly, being yanked around by the influences of Rome, and facing intermittent conflict and harassment with France. Machiavelli wrote a letter to the leader of his city-state, and called it The Prince. In it, he gave examples of what made a group strong, and what made them weak, and how a leader could best influence things to ensure they were strong. Yes, he is an advocate of the fact that there are times when a leader must make cold, rational, and what would be considered harsh decisions for the good of all, and he made it clear that a ruler's job was not to be loved, it was to do what was best for their state.

      Machiavelli was AGAINST the influences of Rome, but wasn't wrong in noting that people claiming to act on the Holy Catholic Churches behalf were given almost unquestioned leeway and authority. And Frederick couldn't have been that upset, as I'm sure you well know, the Prussians and later the Germany would repeatedly come to the aid of the city-states of Northern Italy in trouncing France.

      July 12, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
    • derp

      "Have you ever read "The Prince", or "The Discourses" that Machiavelli included with it in his letter to an Italian leader of the time?"

      It was assigned reading in a negotiations class I took many years ago at Rider University.

      July 12, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
    • ChaCha

      Have you guys read the Hunger Games trilogy? Fascinating stuff....

      July 12, 2012 at 2:42 pm |
    • Rainer Braendlein


      In chapter 18 Machiavelli writes a prince always should keep his people in the fiction that he would be righteous, but inside he should be evil like a wolf and cunning like a fox. Exactly this was Cesare Borgia, a prince of Italy and Son (ba-stard) of pope Alexander VII.

      July 12, 2012 at 2:47 pm |
    • TC

      Too long and this guy is a crazy heretic of Christianity and belongs to a crazy church

      July 12, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
    • BRC

      IF you're looking for me to disagree with you that Borgia was an evil man, and his father and puppet master the Pope even more so it's not going to happen, they were. But unless I missed something, Machiavelli never endorsed their actions, he didn't write "you should aslo invite those who stand between you and your political goals to dinner and poison the soup".

      And at the time, you did have to be cunning, the important distinction is to direct it at your enemies, not your own people.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
    • OTOH

      Yes, please write only bumper stickers, ad jingles, fortune cookie messages and brief plati'tudes to please @TC.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:03 pm |
    • JohnnyC

      The Catholic Church is the Church Christ founded in Matthew 16:18. Christ founded the Church on Peter and gave him "the keys to the Kingdom" the power to "bind and loose" and promised that the gates of Hell would not prevail against the Church. They haven't, though the Church has been attacked from without and infiltrated from within for 2000 years. Do not confuse corruption or evil among some so-called members of the Catholic Church with its supernatural founding. It would not continue to exist if it were manmade. Go to the Tridentine (Latin) Mass a few times and get a sense of how God is present in the liturgy. It will change your life. There is nothing else like it on Earth, nor could there be.

      July 12, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.