“All outside the pale of Rome..”

The Northern Ireland Assembly’s First Minister, Ian Paisley [no doubt speaking in a personal capacity or, perhaps, as the leader of the Free Presbyterian Church? – Ed] has responded to the document approved by Pope Benedict XVI yesterday – From the Press Association report

“This excommunication of all Christendom, by the Pope, spells out the strongest possible message that the Pope of Rome has not changed,” he said.

“All outside the pale of Rome are told dogmatically by him that they do not belong to the true church of Jesus Christ.”

Also from the report

The North Antrim MP, who will speak to members of the Independent Orange Order at Ballymoney, Co Antrim, this afternoon, said the dispute with the Pope was as relevant today as in reformation times.

“He celebrated the 12th of July by unchurching every church in Christendom with the exception of his own church,” he added.

And according to the BBC’s Mark Devenport

..he [Paisley] regards this as the excommunication of all Christendom by the Pope, and claims that resisting the Pope’s dogma is “the chief battle of the day. There is no other.”

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  • Mauds gone

    Never thought I’d say it but I kind of have to side with the big fella on this one. With the current world wide situation of religion being blamed for and often intensifying the wars raging over the globe, the pope needs to pull his head back in and in the “spirit of Christianity” shut the hell up!

  • jpeters

    yawn very yawn i must say. think benny just said the whole thing to let the Doc of the hook for the 12th!

  • Cruimh

    “think benny just said the whole thing to let the Doc of the hook for the 12th! ”

    I know you are kidding but I suspect this will mean there is very little chance that events in Coleraine will be prominent.

  • Oilibhear Chromaill

    I doubt very much that the Pope had Ian Paisley in mind when composing his controversial encyclical….no amount of insults and sectarian jibes about Rome being the Whore of Babylon will have registered on the pontifical radar.

    And the latest broadside won’t have increased that profile. This is a thing all religions do – even the Free Ps – in that they claim their own church is the one and only. It’s no different to picking a mobile phone provider, you pay your money and take your chances. There’s no need for a crusade, Big Man.

    My own feeling is that this particular line of attack from Ian Paisley is a diversionary tactic lest listeners at Ballymoney remind him of his words last year!

  • Sean

    Does any church truely consider another church as legitimate and equal with its own.

    Do the free p’s consider catholics the same as them ?

    I mean really is not this a standard belief of all churches.

  • Cruimh

    “I doubt very much that the Pope had Ian Paisley in mind when composing his controversial encyclical”

    An interesting thought – shows how NI has disappeared off the international radar – I’m sure the timing would have been different if we were still in the days when the world had it’s eye on us.

  • jpeters

    “I know you are kidding but I suspect this will mean there is very little chance that events in Coleraine will be prominent.”

    think you are right the beeb website had nothing last time i looked

    bbc is like a neurotic aunt trying to stop everyone one fighting so this christmas doesnt get spoiled

    as for the popes latest words the new policy is certainly revisionist but it has to be remembered that he is a caretaker pope at best seeing his words in terms of breaking a pan christian front are prob groundless, if anything american evangelicals could be seen to be to blame, their extreme politics doesnt exactly encourage anyone to associate with them

  • “He celebrated the 12th of July by unchurching every church in Christendom with the exception of his own church,” he added.

    Ah ha! So after basically selling out on all of his political principles, Paisley is going to “woo” his 12th audience by reverting to type with a good old rant against the papal demon himself…!

    I’m not actually sure that pope Benedict would be aware of the 12th. There surely must be (a million) more important things on his daily agenda.

    I guess that all churches have the democratic right to express their belief that they are the one true church. Surely Paisley has basically the same conviction in his own faith…?

    Also its a bit rich for Ian Paisley to insinuate that the Pope is not doing his ‘bit’ for inter-church mutual respect. I could launch into a million quotes over the years from the good Doctor re “the anti-christ” etc…etc…

  • overhere

    LOL I think Ian needs to concentrate on his own Wee Frees closer to home than critise His Holiness.

  • Frank Sinistra

    The beeb has tons on the Glorious 12th and an article on paint being thrown at an Orange Hall.

    Animalistic sectarianism at bonfires and Kill All Taigs doesn’t fit the spin.

    Can’t show these twisted bigots up for what they really are.

  • joeCanuck

    I am not a Christian (in fact not an adherent of any religion, while Buddhism , although not a religion, has a certain appeal), so there are probably many who think I have no right to have anything to say. Comment is free, however, so here goes:

    Presumably this Bishop in Rome would dearly like all the Christian sects to be united, but to tell followers of the other sects that they are all bastards (illegitimate) is hardly the way to go about it.
    As an outside observer, I found it very strange that, in an increasingly liberal (western) world (for example the growing acceptance of the validity of gay love, even in the USA), that this fellow’s peers should have elected an unrepentant recidivist as their leader. It’s not as if they didn’t know his views, given his malign influence on his previous, oddly revered, predecessor.
    He has no compunction in condemning Islam as being a devisive force (to say the least), when he shows by his own words that he is cut from the cloth that he purports to condemn.
    And they wonder why the are losing droves of followers across the world, especially in South America, to other Christian sects!
    Sheesh.

    Let the attacks begin but know ye that I am impervious to them.

  • merrie

    Wasn’t it last year, or 2005, that the Free Ps send out CDs to all the Catholic clergy in NI saying to repent and to become a member of the one true church, the FreeP?

    When I saw Pope Benedict’s announcement yesterday I thought, I bet Pete Baker will raise this in Slugger. Wish I had had £10 on my bet.

  • Reader

    macswiney: I guess that all churches have the democratic right to express their belief that they are the one true church.
    Actually, most of them content themselves by saying that they are the ‘best’, not the ‘only’. It’s an important distinction that seems to be lost among some people here.

  • I would have thought that sensible people, especially non-Catholics, would have taken the current Pope’s pronoucements as just so much more hot air.

    And remember, that all his predecessors were not the same – e. g., Pope John Paul I, the reformer Pope John, etc.

    [See commenting policy – edited moderator]

  • Cruimh

    “And remember, that all his predecessors were not the same – e. g., Pope John Paul I, the reformer Pope John, etc.”

    in this respect they were.

    After all Vatican II was opened with John XXIII stating “I do accept entirely all that has been decided and declared at the Council of Trent.”

    I’m ignoring the nutty component of your post.

  • The Dubliner

    Wrong, Reader, all of the major religions (Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Sikhism, et al) profess monotheism, not polytheism. They all beleive in one true G-d (theirs) with all other gods being fallacies and not “take your pick, for your g-d is as good as my g-d.”

  • Cruimh

    The Dub – that’s wrong – the Abrahamic family all worship the same God.

  • Posters interested in piecing together the crimes I referred to – what the moderator thought so offensive that he removed it while allowing Criumh to dismiss it as “nutty” – see this link:

    http://www.breakfornews.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=855

  • Reader

    The Dubliner: Wrong, Reader, all of the major religions (Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Sikhism, et al) profess monotheism, not polytheism.
    However, most of the above aren’t going to be upset at being told they aren’t members of real Christian churches, are they? Presumably the rest of them will be disparaged in due course.

  • The Dubliner

    Cruimh, Abrahamic religion (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam) simply denotes religions that make claims to Abraham, monotheistic faith. They don’t share the same g-d – unless you want to argue that the Pope worships Allah and that Jews beleive in Trinity.

    Reader, if they truly beleive in eucemenical values, I expect their reactions to be consistent with those values and not opposite to them, i.e. not launching hostile attacks on other faiths while claiming that hostile attacks on other faiths are deplorable.

    Personally, I think all religious people have a screw loose, but I don’t think that Political Correctness should prevent them from stating what they actually beleive in (and don’t beleive in).

  • Cruimh

    You are wrong T-D.

    All three worship the God of Abraham and Isaac – and Islam accepts that both Jews and Christians can enter heaven.

  • merrie

    Joe Canuck

    I think Pope Benedict said of Buddhism that it was a form or auto-eroticism.

  • Mauds gone

    Gotta say auto-eroticism sounds like it could be fun!

  • Rory

    I can well understand Paisley’s annoyance especially given that the Pontiff is absolutely correct theologically. All protestant churches are not simply “in error” or even simply “in schism” They are heretical by definition and there is simply no side-stepping the theological consequences of their break from the Apostolic Church.

    Now I understand that this must be diificult for protestants to take but if you wish to aspire to be addressed as part of the Church of Christ then you must abide by the rules just as if you wish to play soccer you must abide by FA rules.

    If a disgruntled mid-manager from Fortnum & Mason leaves in a huff and sets up his own little corner store his business may benefit from his Fortnum & Mason experience but his little shop will never be Fortnum & Mason. This is bound to rankle as it seems to have with Pa Paisley, sole proprietor of The Good Ol’ Boys Country Store (kerosene and baseball bats on special offer!).

  • joeCanuck

    Does that mean Buddhists love their cars?

  • Rory

    Nah, Joe. You’re confusing Buddhists with Americans*. It’s probably that because the main Buddhist geezer is a big fat slob that you made the association with the Yanks.

    *Canadians and Latinos excluded of course.

  • merrie

    Rory: Agree with you on your 18:51. Protestants have to be protesting about the original which means they are not the original or no longer belong to it.

  • Cruimh

    “Rory: Agree with you on your 18:51. Protestants have to be protesting about the original which means they are not the original or no longer belong to it. ”

    Not necessarily – their point is that Rome deviated from the Original – so it is Rome which is in he wrong

  • merrie

    > their point is that Rome deviated from the Original

    Well, Prods should not accept their general title of “protestant” it is a reactionary term.

    There are so many different versions of Protestantism it would be hard to find what would have been the Original – Exclusive Brethren perhaps, or the Free Ps??

  • For all those posters prepared to lump all Popes together – as if Clement V is no worse than John XXIII, Benedict XVI no worse than John Paul I or II, as Cruimh has done – all apparently instruments of various criminal enterprises, see this link about the Pope who did the most to undermine the rulings of the Council of Trent:

    http://www.cceia.org/resources/to_be_read/207.html

  • Cruimh

    “as Cruimh has done”

    don’t bring me into your strange world.

  • Doctor Who

    Paisley has made many remarks referring to the status of the Catholic Church. These remarks have got hin into a lot of trouble and provided amunition for his detractors.

    Successive Popes make equally absurd statements about non RC christians, but no one seems to care.

    Could it be that the Pope and Papa Doc are left and right buttocks of the same arse.

  • There is no need to bring you into this strange world, Cruimh, as you have volunteered to be in its center, as your previous posts demonstrate.

  • Pete Baker

    My apologies in advance..

    But I can’t let the conversation continue without referring to this

    Girl: Follow the Gourd! The Holy Gourd of Jerusalem!

    Follower: The Gourd!

    Harry: Hold up the sandal, as He has commanded us!

    Arthur: It is a shoe! It is a shoe!

    Harry: It’s a sandal!

    Arthur: No, it isn’t!

    Girl: Cast it away!

    Arthur: Put it on!

    Youth: And clear off!

    Shoe Follower: Take the shoes and follow Him!

    Girl: Come,…

    Frank: Yes!

    Girl: …all ye who call yourself Gourdenes!

  • Rory

    “Well, Prods should not accept their general title of “protestant” it is a reactionary term.”.

    What do you suggest they call themselves, Merrie? Provisional Christians perhaps or perhaps even Provisional Catholics much like the breakaway Trotsyite groups like to insist they are the “true” Communist Party. As if!

  • Quite a bit late for any apologies in advance, Pete Baker, after you have censored my posts without justification, and allowed Criumh free rein to claim whatever he wants about me, and various Popes.

    Little wonder that you now descend to dismal drivel.

  • Cruimh

    “My apologies in advance..

    But I can’t let the conversation continue without referring to this ”

    If you believe in Insurance Pete send me a tenner and I’ll say a few prayers for you 😉

  • Merrie

    >> What do you suggest they call themselves

    I think Pete Baker might have a better idea than I would.

    Oooh, I think Big Ian P would not like to be called “provisional” in any form. He is the Way, the Truth and the Light – in his view. He’d probably prefer “protestant” to “provisional”.

  • Rory

    Never mind. Poor Paisley is a deeply troubled and wayward spirit and we must of our charity pray that he may yet find the grace to see his errors. In charity also we must always remember that he is a man largely deprived of any education to speak of, which has stunted his intellectual development and he may not be fully responsible for his muddled thinking

  • pith

    Paisley as usual he demonstrates that he hasn’t hte brains he was born with. He denounces the Catholic church as anti-Christian and then bleats that it won’t let him into the Christian fold.

  • james orr

    To try to bring the thread back to theological ground (and picking up on a few themes on the “Limbo” thread), for Christians, God the Father is not the prime personality. Christ is the key in the equation. He himself said “no-one cometh unto the Father but by me”. No-one can have a right relationship with God until he or she has a right relationship with Christ.

    The point of the Reformation was the realisation as to how far the Catholic Church had departed from the teachings of Christ and from the Bible.

    Grace alone, faith alone, scripture alone and Christ alone had been replaced by works, money, indulgences, church tradition, sacraments, clergy and saints.

    If the core of the Gospel message is “For there is one God, and one Mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus” (1Timothy 2:5), then anything that dilutes that message (for example, placing priests or popes in a position where they can claim to mediate on behalf of the sinner) is incompatible with Scripture.

    But most of us in Norn Irn don’t bother to examine the theology, we just hold to our own tribal traditions.

    And most of us in Norn Irn are no longer interested in our eternal destiny, just sport, beer and mortgages.

  • Sam Hanna

    Well said James – the hubris of the theologically illiterate Catholic bigots here like Rory is amazing.

    The Catholic Church is not the Apostolic Church. It started in Jerusalem and Antioch not Rome. The Catholic Church is a mutation from the original.

    It is interesting those who bash Big Ian for his denomination, yet he is widely known to accept as Christian Baptist, Methodist and Pentecostal Preachers and Churches as true churches from Africa and America etc who regularly speak in his church, like Dr Bob Jones.

    Pope Benny has done us all a favour by reminding us that the spirit of the Inquisition is not dead at Rome – it has just changed its tactics.

  • pith

    James Orr, that is a thoughtful post. However, excuse my ignorance of theology but I thought the Holy Trinity is comprised of God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit in equal measure. If the ultimate goal is to attain the grace of God the Father then surely he is as significant as Christ as mediator. It is the Holy Spirit I have always found the most difficult to comprehend. I suspect I am not alone.

    And what’s wrong with an interest in sport?

  • pith

    Sam Hanna, what is this silly “Pope Benny” nonsense?

    Lucky old Methodists will get a place in Paisley’s Heaven.

  • Just a thought but do you think Paisley took advantage of the situation to have a go at Rome in order to deflect attention away from his own “devilish” pact with the IRA? Not that I’m cynical and heaven forbid one thinks Paisley would be such an opportunist BUT….

  • joeCanuck

    Where have you been living on the 12th for all of your life David?
    When did Rev. Paisley not have a go at the Catholic Church?

  • IQHQ

    FAO Sam Hanna and James Orr

    Did you ever read the works of one Scott Hahn? Of particular relevance is his quasi-autobiographical journey from Evangelical Protestantism to Catholicism, call “Rome, Sweet Home”. He is quite evidently the most intelligent preacher alive today, and I say that without reservation.

    p.s:~ Whilst the title of the book may put you off, what have you got to lose? It’s a short book, and I know you’ll appreciate the poverty in restricting oneself to reading constant confirmations of one’s one beliefs . . . Just a thought.

  • Cruimh

    There’s only 12 months odd between them – I suggest a boxing match to sort this out once and for all.

  • GavBelfast

    Just a thought but do you think Paisley took advantage of the situation to have a go at Rome in order to deflect attention away from his own “devilish” pact with the IRA? Not that I’m cynical and heaven forbid one thinks Paisley would be such an opportunist BUT….
    Posted by David Vance on Jul 12, 2007 @ 10:08 PM

    Maybe he got his new chum Marty to put a word in with Benny, get the veteran Hitler Youth cleric to say something this week that would irk non-Catholic Christians everywhere and, hey presto, Paisley has a diversionary topic for the platform, well off the subject of the Paisley-McGuinness axis.

    😉

  • Pounder

    I don’t think this was anything other than pure politics from Paisley. In the nast year he’s gone from “no! no! never! never!” to “Oh ok Martin you twisted my arm”. The rapid DUPers where turning up baying for his blood, he had to throw them a bone. I think Paisley is smarter then some of you guys gave him credit for.

  • james orr

    Pith,
    Yes the Trinity is indeed made of three equal, separate, personalities. But for humankind Christ is the essential. When He became human, lived, died and was resurrected, He became (as He Himself said) the “Door” by which people could access God the Father, and in turn the blessing and ongoing presence of the Holy Spirit.

    Nowt wrong with sport (as my Sky subscription proves!), but anything that we allow to distract us from our eternal destiny is high-risk stuff.

    We live in a prosperous and decadent society – people these days are obsessed with trivia and fluff. We know more about David Beckhams various haircuts than we do about spiritual matters because we’re bombarded with garbage every waking moment. The challenge is to cut through it all and continually refocus our vision on the things that matter.

    IQHQ,
    I’ve got a copy of Hahn’s book but haven’t read it yet. It’s on the “to do” list. I’m not so sure about him being “the most intelligent preacher alive today”; Michael Green (Anglican, formerly England but now North Carolina) and Liam Goligher (Baptist, currently Richmond-upon-Thames and author of “The Jesus Gospel”) are excellent expositors of a relevant yet solid Christian message.

  • IQHQ

    James Orr

    It’s interesting that, in one sentence you claim not to have read his work as yet, and yet in the very next one you pass judgement as to the relative strength of his thought.

    Incidentally, as a sample of his Covenental thinking, the aforementioned book is not a recommendation. I recommend it solely in relation to this thread, to demonstrate how such an esteemed evangelical can to the “unthinkable” and become a Catholic. The book could take no more than a few hours to read. What’s stopping you ? ! ? !

  • IQHQ
    a better read is-
    The Lost Religion of Jesus
    by Keith Akers

  • DK

    IQHQ and James Orr

    A better read than any of those is “The God Dellusion” by our very own Dawkins.

  • Merrie

    OK, if we are recommending reading, I’ll put a plug for this book (again):

    The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying by Sogyal Rinpoche

    Dawkins is rubbish. Have read a couple of his other books – even his “science” is suss.

  • Cruimh

    “Dawkins is rubbish. ”

    Heresy!!!!!

  • darth rumsfeld

    laughable
    The ould hypocrite must have used a back channel to get a message to the Antichrist-“Any chance of a wee theological spat to get me through a difficult week?”
    Yup, the First Minister speaking to his community on a symbolic occasion makes no mention of the seismic shift in politics.
    Boxcar Willie sticks to the oldtime religion and says nothing about how his stomach is feeling these days
    Jeffrey-who once spoke at two demonstrations in the one day-goes all shy and declines a platform this year

    Cue sighs of relief in Punt Towers that nobody could be bothered to heckle this shower of hypocrites- they just damn them as being “worse than Trimble”. At least Punt has the decency never to put on a collarette of any description and display fake loyal credentials Phase 2 of DUP strategy is now to hold off any election for as long as possible- hence no reorganisation of local councils.

    BTW- didn’t Paisley banging the drum on BBC last night look like an overgrown baby, and Madam Ceausescu beside him like a stern governness? Ho hum, many a true word etc…..

  • james orr

    IQHQ
    You haven’t seen the pile of books I’m wading through! 😉

    I’ve read about Hahn and have seen some interviews he has given (didnt he also do a lengthy interview on “Sunday Sequence” on Radio Ulster in late 06?).

    DK,
    Try Alister McGrath’s “The Dawkins Delusion”; McGrath is a former atheist.

  • merrie

    It’s good we live in a society where we can pick and choose and argue about what’s right and what isn’t and what’s in between.

  • The Third Policeman

    Dawkins is dead. Dawkins remains dead. And we have killed him.