California bishops are opposed to death penalty. They think life imprisonment without parole is an alternative to death penalty. They are wrong.
California bishops should look at Mexico and how things have gone wrong after Mexico stopped death penalty. Murders have shot up. Lives of ordinary people are not safe. Even lives of priests are not safe.
Christianity is not against death penalty. St. Thomas Aquinas justified death penalty. Jesus Christ was in favour of death penalty when he said if anyone causes little ones to sin a millstone shall be hung around his neck and he should be thrown into the sea. For a long time the church has put heretics to death.
What happens if a murderer escapes from prison and commits more murders?
It is better for California bishops to concentrate on the faithful instead of getting into matters of crime and punishment. More so the bishops should see that cases of child abuse do not happen and if anyone is found guilty he is not spared. The victims should not be bound by secrecy.
Death penalty has deterrent effect though those who oppose death penalty do not agree to that and come up with false statistics.
California bishops should also try for gun control in USA and repeal of the amendment that allows Americans to bear arms. That amendment may have been necessary in 1789 when USA did not have a strong army to defend itself but it is not necessary in 2010 when USA is a superpower. Vested interests like National Rifle Association oppose the repeal of amendment or gun control. If there is gun control the number of murders will come down drastically in USA. There are many shops on USA-Mexico borders that sell various weapons. California bishops will save many lives of innocent people if they try for gun control repeal of second amendment.
Wildfires destroy large parts of California every year. California bishops can have prayer services to deliver California from wildfires.
Marriage law in Nevada is a joke. One can get married one moment and next moment ask for divorce. California bishops can do something so that marriage in Nevada is taken seriously.
Chidambaram spoke of saffron terror. Some joined issue by saying terror has no colour.
However one describes terror by a particular group there are people who object to the nomenclature. Some speak of Jehadi/Islamic/Islamist terror. Some speak of Hindu/ Hindutva/ Saffron terror. Some speak of Maoist/Naxal/Red terror. There was Khalistani terror. There is terror in Kashmir and North-East India. There is Marathi terror which has forced multiplex owners to show Marathi films at prime time at reduced rates.
Some want saffron terror to be ignored because it is on a small scale and done by amateurs. They show their true colours. Some say saffron is a colour of valour and it is on national flag. They do not mention that some people arrested for terrorist acts wore saffron.
Someone has gone to court and filed a defamation case against Chidambaram for the use of the phrase saffron terror. Living persons are defamed. It is strange that a colour can be defamed and someone can file a defamation case on behalf of the colour.
For the victims of terror it does not matter who is the perpetrator of crime. Sikhs were victims of terror in 1984 in Delhi. Muslims were victims of terror in 2002 in Gujarat. Christians were victims of terror in 2008 in Orissa and Karnataka. The perpetrators were Hindus. Sikh terrorists who wanted Khalistan killed many Hindus and Sikhs and sometimes people of other religions. Hindu terrorists belonging to ULFA have killed many Hindus. In Kashmir Muslim terrorists have killed Hindus and Muslims.
Sometimes victims of terror are punished and criminals go scot-free. T. J. Joseph a victim of terror. Who had forgiven the criminals who had cut off his hand is sacked by his college. Kothamangalam dioceseâ€™s decision is outrageous. Fr. Thomas Malekudy, manager of Newman College where T. J. Joseph served, has said â€œThe management was forced to dismiss him because he failed to withdraw the question paper, which insulted the Prophet. It is up to the Muslim community to forgive Joseph for his crime. If the Muslim community exonerates him, we will think about taking him back. He is also free to move the court.â€
Sr. Stella, sister of T. J. Joseph, has said T. J. Joseph has apologised many times. T. J. Joseph must move court. The basis for sacking was unjustified. What does Fr. Thomas Malekudy mean by Muslim community? Is it Popular Front of India? Newman College is a Catholic institute. T. J. Joseph did not commit any crime that is punishable under Canon Law. Is Newman College governed by Shariat? Why is the bishop of Kothamangalam quiet? Why has he not told the college management to revoke the dismissal? Why is the Major Archbishop of Ernakulam Angamaly quiet? Fr. Thomas Malekudy is like Sr. Sebastina who sacked Ruchika Girhotra, a victim of molestation. Education Minister of Kerala, a CPI M led government has condemned the decision to sack T. J. Joseph. Fr. Thomas Malekudy must apologise to T. J. Joseph and revoke the dismissal.
BJP and Shiv Sena wanted tough line against terror and Afzal Guru hanged. Nitin Gadkari had asked why there is delay in hanging Afzal Guru, is he a son-in-law of Congress? UPA government recommended rejection of Afzal Guruâ€™s mercy petition over two months back. Pratibha Patil has not rejected of Afzal Guruâ€™s mercy petition. Why are BJP and Shiv Sena quiet? Is Shiv Sena quiet because Pratibha Patil is a Marathi Manoos?
Sex scandals involving Catholic priests are making news with regularity. USA, Canada, Ireland, Spain, Holland, Germany, Austria and some other countries have reported sex scandals. Some scandals are cases of paedophilia. One case refers to a priest who was in Munich when the present pope Benedict XVI was then Joseph Ratzinger, archbishop of Munich.
Though the number of priests involved in scandals is around 5% it tarnishes the image of the whole church and causes crisis of faith. The question of continuing clerical celibacy comes up.
While there is no proposal of changing the rule of celibacy to Latin rite regional rites without clerical celibacy may be allowed. Dutch, English, Irish, German and such rites for Holland, England, Ireland, Germany and other countries may free the church from paedophilia and other scandals. These rites need to be restricted to their regions otherwise there will be problems with multiple jurisdictions.
Many cases of scandals are said to be of long time back. Some of them are more than 30 years old. It is not clear why the victims kept quiet for so long and all of a sudden they have come out in the open. It is not known how many priests will face prosecution. Some are too old. In some cases the statute of limitations has expired. In USA the church paid huge sums to victims.
There may be more scandals to be revealed. Lessons are to be learnt from these scandals and steps should be taken to prevent them in future.
Link to e-book King â€“ a novel: http://go4quiz.com/vincent/king