June 13th, 2013
02:15 PM ET

The pope said what? Six stunners from Francis

By Daniel Burke, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor
[twitter-follow screen_name='BurkeCNN']

(CNN) –Pope Francis has challenged his flock of 1 billion Catholics not to be “starched Christians” who chat about theology over tea.

He’s been taking his own advice.

Since his election in March, Francis has delivered sharp and unscripted remarks on everything from homosexuality to atheism to his unlikely election to the seat of St. Peter.

Anyone who bet the 76-year-old Jesuit from Argentina would become Supreme Pontiff likely won a lot of dough, Francis joked on Sunday.

We’re wagering this pope’s got a few more surprises up the sleeves of his white cassock.

Meanwhile, here are six eye-openers Francis has uttered thus far.

1) There’s a “gay lobby” inside the Vatican

Meeting with Catholic leaders from his native Latin America and the Caribbean on Sunday, the pope said that there’s a lot of holy people in the Curia, Catholicism’s Rome-based bureaucracy.

But there is also a “stream of corruption,” Francis said, including a “gay lobby.”

"We need to see what we can do," he added, somewhat cryptically.

Only the pope knows exactly what he means. The Vatican has clammed up, refusing to explain.

Catholic experts believe Francis was referring to a secret dossier presented to his predecessor Pope Benedict XVI that investigated a series of embarrassing leaks from Vatican insiders to Italian journalists.

The dossier referred to a Vatican network of sexually active gay clergy who might have been subject to blackmail, according to Italian reports.

2) All atheists go to heaven?

During a homily in Rome on May 22, Francis said that God redeems everyone – not just Christians, but atheists, as well.

“We must meet one another doing good,” the pope said. ‘But I don’t believe, Father, I am an atheist!’ But do good: we will meet one another there.”

So, was the pope saying that people can go to heaven, even if they don’t believe in God?

Probably not, say church experts.

Catholicism has long held that salvation is open to everyone – but with a really big caveat. If you know about the church and don’t become a member, the door to heaven is likely closed, a Catholic spokesman later clarified.

Many American atheists say they appreciated the olive branch from the pope, however unclear his remarks may have been.

3) “I didn’t want to be pope”

Meeting with Catholic students from Italy and Albania on June 7, Francis ditched his “boring” speech and instead took questions from the children.

A little redhead in a blue scarf elicited laughter by bluntly asking, “Francis, why did you want to become pope?”

“I didn’t,” Francis answered. In fact, “a person who wants to become pope doesn’t love himself. And God doesn’t bless him,” the pontiff said.

4) Sleepy prayers

In May, the pope shared intimate details about his spiritual life with a crowd of 200,000 people gathered in St. Peter’s Square.

Every day, Francis said, he prays at an altar before he goes to bed. On occasion, the sandman arrives before the end of his prayers, the pope said.

“Sometimes I doze off, the fatigue of the day makes you fall asleep, but God understands,” Francis said.

5) Christians should mind their own beeswax

In some of his sharpest comments as pope, Francis criticized Christian busybodies in May.

“We all chat in church,” the pope said. “As Christians we chat.

“It is as if we want to put each other down,” Francis continued. “Instead of growing, one makes the other feel small while I feel great. That will not do.”

Gossip, the pope said, is like honey. It tastes sweet at first, but large doses deliver stomach aches.

6) Throwing food away is stealing from the poor

The first Latin American pope has made fighting poverty a top priority of his papacy. Scarcely a speech or homily ends without a mention of the homeless and disabled.

On June 5, Francis lambasted a “culture of waste” in which consumerism trumps compassion, people become just another disposable object, and little care is given to those who need help.

“This culture of waste has made us insensitive even to the waste and disposal of food, which is even more despicable when all over the world many individuals and families are suffering from hunger and malnutrition. ” Francis said.

“We should all remember, however, that throwing food away is like stealing from the tables of the poor, the hungry.”

- CNN Religion Editor

Filed under: Belief • Catholic Church • Christianity • Church • Pope Francis

soundoff (1,006 Responses)
  1. not my chair

    as an atheist i kinda like this pope better than the nazi he replaced

    June 14, 2013 at 10:17 am |
    • Losers

      There were a lot a atheists in the nazi party back then.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:19 am |
    • Alias

      No tere were not a lot of athiests in the Nazi party.
      The nazi party used christianity as a tool to control the masses and to act as if they had a high moral standard.
      try reading a history book some day.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:39 am |
    • Losers

      Educate yourself, there were a lot of atheists in the nazi party.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:42 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      I see you trollin' ....

      "We were convinced that the people need and require this faith. We have therefore undertaken the fight against the atheistic movement, and that not merely with a few theoretical declarations: we have stamped it out".
      The Speeches of Adolf Hitler, April 1922-August 1939, Vol. 1 of 2, Oxford University Press, 1942

      June 14, 2013 at 10:45 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      The truth is Hitler was a scientist:

      If, in the course of a thousand or two thousand years, science arrives at the necessity of renewing its points of view, that will not mean that science is a liar. Science cannot lie, for it's always striving, according to the momentary state of knowledge, to deduce what is true. When it makes a mistake, it does so in good faith. It's Christianity that's the liar. It's in perpetual conflict with itself.
      — Adolf Hitler
      In Adolf Hitler, Hugh Redwald Trevor-Roper, translated by Norman Cameron and R. H. Stevens, '14 October 1941', Secret Conversations (1941 – 1944) (1953), 51

      June 14, 2013 at 10:59 am |
    • catholic engineer

      @alias "The nazi party used christianity as a tool to control the masses and to act as if they had a high moral standard."
      The Nazis did this in the beginning to gain support. Once their power was consolidated, they showed their true colors. In fact, the theories of Charles Darwin appealed to the Nazis. Social Darwinism is the explanation for Auschwitz, Trablinka, and other such places. BTW,, atheists are doing some mind control themselves: spinning Christianity in the worst light to cover up for the massive blunders of science.

      June 14, 2013 at 11:02 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Catholic Engineer
      Eugenic is to evolutionary biology what phrenology is to neuroscience.

      June 14, 2013 at 1:08 pm |
    • AGuest9

      ... and a lot of Catholics and Protestants, too.

      June 14, 2013 at 1:33 pm |
  2. Bishop Hairy Pams

    Yes the priesthood is full of closeted gay men who hypocritically condem gays.

    June 14, 2013 at 10:13 am |
    • Losers


      June 14, 2013 at 10:17 am |
  3. mmaxum2002

    As an atheist, I can say "no thanks pope" to heaven

    June 14, 2013 at 10:10 am |
  4. Losers

    Won't be long before the atheists losers will fill up this blog with idiocies again. Atheists losers with no jobs and no life will bring this blog up to 60+ pages.

    June 14, 2013 at 10:09 am |
    • LOL!

      Since you spend so much time on here posting under multiple handles that makes you the biggest loser of all. LMAO!

      June 14, 2013 at 10:11 am |
    • ok...

      god wants you to call people losers. That much is true for sure.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:11 am |
    • My Dog is a jealous Dog

      We have something worth saying – you don't.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:12 am |
    • Losers

      You have nothing worth of saying losers. Drama queens is more precisely what you are.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:17 am |
    • not my chair

      what a great christian comment. i think i remember that passage from the bible where Jesus said mock everyone that has a different beliefs than me for they are losers

      June 14, 2013 at 10:19 am |
    • In Santa we trust

      Loser, As you have much of value to impart on the masses, let's hear your proof of a god and point out some of the atheists' comments that you refer to.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:22 am |
    • Losers

      I never said that i can prove that God exists, but i can prove that you losers love drama. You have no life. You just hang over here night and day whining and hoping that CNN will put up another topic about religion so you can cry on to.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:27 am |
    • ed dugan

      I have a job. I have a life. I am an athiest and you are full of sh**! However, as I read the posts I see that most people are already aware of your mind-boggling stupidity. You can change your name on the posts but your ignorance will shine through.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:32 am |
    • Losers

      Haven't you changed your name as well? lol

      June 14, 2013 at 10:38 am |
  5. Ghostriver Studios

    Reblogged this on Ghost River Studios Blog.

    June 14, 2013 at 10:09 am |
    • Romnesia

      So stay there.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:24 am |
  6. tallulah13

    If this pope was serious about fighting poverty, he would encourage the use of birth control. Until he addresses the issue of catholics with limited resources having more children than they can afford to feed, then he has no business chiding others about their lack of charity.

    June 14, 2013 at 10:07 am |
    • myweightinwords

      Very true.

      He could also maybe sell of some of the church's vast wealth to provide food, clothing and shelter to the poorest of the poor.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:13 am |
    • Losers

      Stupid atheists with their desire for huge genocide world wide to bring the population down in numbers. Talking a bout charities, start by doing some yourselves atheists, because you're doing a poor job at it.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:15 am |
    • Kevin

      "Talking a bout charities, start by doing some yourselves atheists, because you're doing a poor job at it."

      I have what have you done?

      June 14, 2013 at 10:21 am |
    • My Dog is a jealous Dog


      Do you have any idea what this planet will look like with 20 billion people? Right now, 1 out of 7 of US are hungry. Do you really think we can grow enough food, or pull enough fish from the sea to feed everyone? We can't do it now, but if we just stop using birth control, god will do his magic and we will all have loaves and fishes.

      Grow up and look at the world as it really is. You are calling us atheists "losers", but you are an uncaring, callous excuse for a human being.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:28 am |
    • myweightinwords


      1) I am not an atheist.
      2) You have no idea what kind or amount of charity work I do.
      3) Without birth control, we are dooming our planet to a slow, ugly death from starvation and depletion of resources.
      4) Birth control is not genocide.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:41 am |
    • Losers

      Birth control is a type of control over the population which is equal to genocide, Being gay and claiming that the planet is over populated and that h o m o s e x u a l i t y is the new way to control over population is a type of genocide as well

      June 14, 2013 at 10:46 am |

    Being poor, being naked, being thirtsty, being hungry ... these things pertain more about our human spirit or mind ... the soul that will live forever ! And not in accord with our physical existence which will only go to the ground and will return into ashes base in THE WORD of GOD ! It is our human mind or spirit that is poor in THE KNOWLEDGE of THE TRUTH so must be fed with THE WORD of WISDOM so as not to fall into THE SIN of IGNORANCE ! It is our very own soul that si naked and not clothed in white for it needs THE FORGIVENESS of THE LORD ! It is our very own mind that is thirsty , longing for the real water like as what JESUS said to THE SAMARITAN woman near the well . It is our very own spiritual existence that is hungry for THE REAL LIVING BREAD so as to have eternal life .And that LIVING BREAD IS .... THE RISEN CHRIST .... whom we can only find and have through THE WORD of THE ALMIGHTY FATHER. THIS IS OUR HOPE ... OUR NEW ALLIANCE WITH GOD THROUGH THE LORD CHRIST in THE WORD !

    June 14, 2013 at 10:02 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      What you sat is true, as far as it goes. It's just hard to focus on the spiritual when your child is starving.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:05 am |
    • Steve

      So you don't get that writing in all caps is equivalent to screaming and it's rude.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:06 am |
    • Kevin

      "Being poor, being naked, being thirtsty, being hungry"

      In round numbers there are 7 billion people in the world. Thus, with an estimated 925 million hungry people in the world, 13.1 percent, or almost 1 in 7 people are hungry. So other than wasting your time here with your babble what have you actually done to help stop all the people who are dying daily from hunger? I was at my local food pantry getting boxes together to help the poor last night and guess what not many of the people there were Christians, you're all too lazy.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:10 am |
    • My Dog is a jealous Dog

      You would rather feed the homeless a line of BS than actual food! You are a cruel and evil person – take your"charity" somewhere else – the Salvation Army needs people that think gays should die – I bet you would fit in just fine there!

      June 14, 2013 at 10:10 am |
    • WhenCowsAttack

      As a good friend of mine stated in his pulp fiction book about a very corrupt megachurch, "You have to get NAKED to be clothed in the LORD"!

      June 14, 2013 at 10:48 am |
    • HeavenSent

      Kevin, you posted ""Being poor, being naked, being thirtsty, being hungry" "In round numbers there are 7 billion people in the world. Thus, with an estimated 925 million hungry people in the world, 13.1 percent, or almost 1 in 7 people are hungry. So other than wasting your time here with your babble what have you actually done to help stop all the people who are dying daily from hunger? I was at my local food pantry getting boxes together to help the poor last night and guess what not many of the people there were Christians, you're all too lazy."

      Answer: We probably were working at our usual locations for helping people. Not seeing us in your location???? We don't live in the same city, never mind state or country.

      June 14, 2013 at 2:13 pm |
  8. Rev. Rick

    I think Pope Francis could be one to push the limits of RCC authority and its "policies". His off-hand and candid remarks will be telling in terms of who actually holds the power as the Vicar of Christ. If Francis truly holds the reins, these sorts of remarks may continue for a while. However, if those who surround him, the cardinals and bishops, hold the power, they may decide to rein him in and tell him to tone it down and the RCC will return to its stodgy, antiquated beliefs.

    June 14, 2013 at 9:49 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      You use the word antiquated as if it's a bad thing. Are you aware that the antiquity of our beliefs is one aspect that Catholics treasure? I propose a third option to your scenario. Neither Pope Francis or the Bishops hold real power. The power lies in the ancient Gospel truth they are charged to pronounce. Perhaps Francis has a style which will engage the world in a way some have described as a blend of JPII's charisma and Bendiict's intellect. In that event, the antiquated may become relevant again.

      June 14, 2013 at 9:55 am |
    • antiquity

      I prefer the antiquity of beliefs that precede the RCC.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:13 am |
    • JMEF

      Bill Deacon
      Calling Catholics Christians is a bit ludicrous when the whole organization is all about wealth and power. The catechism is just the snake oil they use to brainwash the delusional.
      No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money. Luke 16:13
      Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth Mat 16:19
      However, Jesus denied that wealth is a sign of God's favor Luke 16:19
      You would think that the Princes of the Church would want to follow Francis the Jesuit's example and live less of the high life and more of the spiritual life. The RCC is more Mafia like than spiritual.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:15 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      antiquity, that's ok with me.

      JMEF, you're funny. Did you know the annual budget for the Vatican is about $330 million? Seems like a lot doesn't it? Do you know what the annual budget is for The Museum of Modern Art? $160 million. Glenn Lowry, the President of the Museum makes $2.8 million/year. I say we close it down, sell the art and give the money to the poor. Are you with me?

      June 14, 2013 at 10:49 am |
    • Science

      Hey Bill what is this about a chain(s) ? and who is getting yanked ?

      June 14, 2013 at 10:50 am |
    • JMEF

      No Bill I will never be with you. Your use of the excuse others are worse than we are rings so hollow. When you have a Bishop living in a 39,000 square foot mansion or the Vatican being considered the largest residence in the world, you are a hypocrite. One thing I thought was good on your lot what selling the Bishop's residence in Boston to help pay off the $85 million in abuse awards, unlike the diocese in Wisconsin that hid all the assets they could so they could declare bankruptcy and avoid paying the abuse claims. Deny all you want that your church is no better than the evangelical hustlers that shear the sheep, your lot has just been doing it better and longer.
      PS: Same excuse for the abuse cover ups by the hierarchy, others are worse than us, pathetic troll that you are.

      June 14, 2013 at 11:02 am |
    • JMEF

      Forgot to include. Is the Museum of Modern Art trying to sell a highway to some mythical heaven along with the admission fee to view the art for those that are interested? It is like the charity offered by the RCC, it is used as a recruiting tool, you get a sermon along with the aid you need.

      June 14, 2013 at 11:11 am |
    • derp

      "Are you aware that the antiquity of our beliefs is one aspect that Catholics treasure?"

      Nothing more awesome than believing the earth is flat.

      June 14, 2013 at 11:29 am |
    • In Santa we trust

      Bill, The museum doesn't purport to be a champion of the poor and as far as I know all donations were voluntary which was not true historically for the RCC. It didn't become one of the world's richest institutions by doing good works.

      June 14, 2013 at 11:37 am |
  9. palintwit

    Sarah Palin = the turd that won't flush.

    June 14, 2013 at 9:49 am |
    • mmaxum2002

      Lol, the most apt description I've ever heard!

      June 14, 2013 at 10:07 am |
    • Losers

      This something that we both can agree on.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:20 am |

    No one is really perfect among us except JESUS BEING THE SON of GOD and THE SON of MAN FROM THE HOUSE of DAVID. We are already CONDEMNED for who we are ... GAYS or ATHEIST . SO , WHY WORRY ? As long as we are still ALIVE , there is HOPE to see the REAL ONE TRUTH in THE WORD of GOD ALMIGHTY FATHER said by tTHE MIGHTY GOD SON JESUS. WE REALLY HAVE TO MIND our LIFE AFFAIRS and HAVE TO WORK – OUT for our very own salvation with fear and trembling unto the LORD . And why worry about the food wasted ? Would it be better to worry about THE TRUE REAL LIVING BREAD which is THE WORD of GOD ? THIS IS THE ONE THAT MUST NOT BE WASTED and MUST BE SHARED THROUGHOUT THE SO – CALLED UNIVERSAL CHURCH ! Will I be worry also if I am sleepy while praying ? NO ! I will worry more if my prayers will be dedicated into THE ACT of IDOLATRY instead ! WE ARE ALL FREE WHOEVER WE ARE THAT EVEN OUR VERY OWN GOD HAS RESPECTED THAT FREEDOM . BEING POOR IN MATERIAL THING DOES NOT MEAN SPIRITUAL POVERTY ! WHAT I DO KNOW IS ... A PERSON CAN HAVE ALL but still poor in spirit by not setting his heart and mind in all that he has like KING DAVID , KING SOLOMON , and JOB ! SPIRITUAL POVERTY IS NOT BLIND OBEDIENCE but seeing the LIght in THE TRUTH like humilty and obedience to THE WORD of GOD !

    June 14, 2013 at 9:42 am |
    • Steve

      Guess you missed the article that talked about how rude it is to write in all caps.

      June 14, 2013 at 9:56 am |
    • Kevin

      "OUT for our very own salvation with fear and trembling unto the LORD "

      Your God must be a real dick.

      June 14, 2013 at 9:57 am |
    • tallulah13

      I can't imagine going through life hating my own humanity. I can't imaging going through life begging a supernatural figment to forgive me for being myself. It's posters like Florinda who remind me how terrible religion can be.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:02 am |
    • mama k

      Oh goodness, FLORINDA is never going to make it in country music. The poor thing needs an agent or coach that can teach her how important song choice is. She needs something in there about flowers along the road or old flames – not all this screaming.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:20 am |
  11. Johnny 5

    Yes, a Jedi's strength flows from the force. But beware of the dark side. Anger, fear, aggression; the dark side of the force are they. Easily they flow, quick to join you in a fight. If once you start down the dark path, forever will it dominate your destiny, consume you it will, as it did Obi-Wan's apprentice.

    -Yoda of the Dagobah system 3:21

    June 14, 2013 at 9:42 am |
  12. Zeke2112

    The Pope should be praying to our true savior, Harry Potter, who gave his life for us. In the seventh year, he rose from the dead and defeated the Dark Lord. Only Harry Potter can grant us life and everlasting peace as evidenced in the holy scrolls.

    "All was well."
    Deathly Hallows 19:25

    June 14, 2013 at 9:16 am |
    • Jody

      Perfect, thats all I have to say about your post, perfect.:)

      June 14, 2013 at 9:46 am |
    • Zeke2112

      Thanks, Jody! May you be blessed by his holy wand today! 🙂

      June 14, 2013 at 11:25 am |
  13. Science

    The RCC is the biggest joke under the sun.................if you think about it................with the talking donkey and snake.

    June 14, 2013 at 9:15 am |
  14. Vic

    Breaking News...Breaking News...

    Pope Francis has publicly announced that he is gay!

    Breaking News...Breaking News...

    Just kidding! 😆

    June 14, 2013 at 9:14 am |
    • Science

      Hey Vic do you know if that is chads favorite..............beast............the talking donkey ?

      June 14, 2013 at 9:25 am |
    • Science

      To funny Vic ..........the little blue box works.............with attributes I guess.


      Catholic ads in NY: Jesus was 'the original hipster' – CNN ...


      Apr 24, 2013 · only a monster would stand by and watch innocents be killed when he could stop it with a snap ... sin you think Jesus ... the talking donkey in ...

      June 14, 2013 at 9:44 am |
    • Vic

      Check this out:


      Note: Except that I eat pork and drink beer, and I love it!

      June 14, 2013 at 10:00 am |
    • Science

      Oldest Primate Fossil Skeleton Found In China

      Seth Borenstein, Associated Press | Jun. 5, 2013, 2:14 PM

      Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/oldest-primate-fossil-skeleton-found-in-china-2013-6#ixzz2VS35T5QS

      June 14, 2013 at 10:03 am |
  15. Byrd

    You're doing alright so far, Francis, considering the nest of vipers you've inherited.

    June 14, 2013 at 9:10 am |
    • Ty

      I agree. He's great.

      June 14, 2013 at 9:12 am |
  16. wayne

    @ Ken and Kerry. Ha,ha,ha,ha,ha.

    June 14, 2013 at 9:03 am |
  17. mo

    This guy (Daniel Burke) is so stupid .. he doesn't even understand what is the word "redeems" means .. my God CNN hiring uneducated people this days .. know nothing about nothing

    June 14, 2013 at 8:58 am |
    • Losers

      It because these topics are created by a bunch of atheists working for CNN. They love to create drama.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:23 am |
    • In Santa we trust

      Wasm't he just quoting the pope?

      June 14, 2013 at 10:29 am |
  18. Michael

    One thing I don't understand is why people who claim to be atheists come on this site and bring others down who do believe. I mean, if you're atheists, that's fine, but why come on here and put other people down who choose to believe?

    June 14, 2013 at 8:33 am |
    • Kerry

      Michael, because they are haters and resent people who have found something to believe in.

      June 14, 2013 at 8:45 am |
    • Ken

      They are trying to brainwash us.

      June 14, 2013 at 8:49 am |
    • Zeke2112

      I'll make you a deal: pay taxes on church land and cease crafting laws designed to oppress others based on your beliefs, and we'll let you go back to worshiping your imaginary friend. Deal?

      No? Very well. We will continue to fight the plague that religion brings upon the world.

      "They are trying to brainwash us."

      I hope that's sarcasm. If not, it's hilarious irony that someone who was brainwashed out of atheism since age 2 would be brainwashed back in.

      June 14, 2013 at 9:02 am |
    • Mike

      One thing I don't understand is why people who claim to be religious come on this site and bring others down who do not believe. I mean, if you're religious, that's fine, but why come on here and put other people down who choose not to believe?

      It works both ways here. But it appears that the people most insecure in their own convictions are the ones who do it.

      Live and let live – as long as you aren't using your faith/non-faith as a pretext to do harm unto others, you're cool with me and I'll be cool with you.

      June 14, 2013 at 9:48 am |
    • tallulah13

      First Amendment rights, Michael. You can believe any story you like, but we have the right to reply however we chose.

      We're here to remind you that your religion has no place in public schools or secular laws. We're here to remind you that there is no more proof of your god than there is of any of the other thousands of gods humans have worshiped. We're here because once upon a time, most of us were believers and we want to make our presence known so other doubters can know they aren't alone and that they don't have to be afraid to admit that doubt.

      Disagreeing with you isn't hate. Not believing what you do isn't hate. Your pretend persecution doesn't make you a martyr, but it does make you look silly.

      June 14, 2013 at 9:55 am |
    • Ken



      a forcible indoctrination to induce someone to give up basic political, social, or religious beliefs and attitudes and to accept contrasting regimented ideas

      I see a lot of brainwashing by atheists. It goes both ways really.

      June 14, 2013 at 10:27 am |
    • atheists

      Hey Michael. I don't know about other atheists, but for me I come on here for several reasons. One, this pope is the first to address atheism in a positive way. I mean... that is a pretty big deal. Two, I find that the "belief" column is interesting. I don't feel like I have to shed all things religious just because I'm an atheist. I love the architecture, art, music. I like meditation and some of the lessons for life are very informative. The doctrine though, and the faith in spite of knowledge I don't like at all. The culture of subservience (I know this isn't true of all faithful, but is more about my experience and what I see in my family) is detrimental to men and women. The practice of shaming people seems like a horrible thing to me. And the worst for me, is the shaping of public life by religion: public prayer, textbooks with the creation story, the devaluing of science, etc. Those I feel a strong will to defend.

      I grew up in the church, but the faith I saw modeled and what I still see today seems to be like using a 2000 year old hammer when we don't even use nails any more. It just doesn't apply to life today. I know .. I know.. it is supposed to be forever true. For me it isn't... any more than avoiding eating pork. So, I apply what I can from various models of faith as best I can and I vociferously defend the changes from faith that need defending (of course, "in my opinion.").

      June 14, 2013 at 10:33 am |
    • waddayamean?

      cuz as Zeke2112 just established they are insanely afraid that a bunch of priests with ninja like communion wafers will dominate them to slavery.

      June 27, 2013 at 5:58 pm |
  19. RickintheCity

    @Avdin you really need to remove your head from your backside and join the real world! And learning the spell would be a nice first step! It's "phrase" not "fraze"! Your argument is so fallacious there's not time nor space to address all the silly points here but let it be said you're living in a dream world to say the least! The Catholic Church stood in the way of every advancement of science they could until they were forced to accept the reality of most truths. Grow up and read some adult books and not that fairy tale the Bible!!

    June 14, 2013 at 8:28 am |
  20. yeah budy

    The Catholic church can do whatever it wants. Progress is happening with or without them.

    June 14, 2013 at 7:56 am |
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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.