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Tag Archive | "Oscar Cruz"

FF Podcast 30: GMA-Bishop Anti-RH Alliance in Supreme Court

This week, we talk about suspicious links between former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, the Catholic Church hierarchy, and certain Supreme Court Justices, regarding the RH Law now facing the highest court in the land.

You may also download the podcast file here.

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Filipino Freethinkers Podcast feed

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Filipino Freethinkers podcast on iTunes

Posted in Media, Podcast, Politics, Secularism, Society, VideoComments (0)

Love is Thicker Than Water (But Not True Semen)

Andy_Gibbq_(2)Former CBCP President Oscar Cruz has said that LGBT weddings are OK, but there’s a catch: Lesbians can only marry gays, gays can only marry lesbians, and the rest can only marry someone from the LGBT community if the other party has a different set of sexual organs:

May a lesbian marry a gay man? My answer is ‘yes’ because in that instance the capacity to consummate the union is there. The anatomy is there. The possibility of conception is there.

Aside from having the right pair of genitals, Cruz mentioned two other requirements for couples: capacity to consummate the union, and the possibility of conception. Many commented with the same questions: What about love? Is marriage just about sex? What about straight couples who cannot have children?

This led a fellow freethinker to write a satirical article about Catholic marriage, reporting that the Church will now integrate a sperm count in the wedding ceremony. I hope that few would miss the fact that this is satire. But no matter how satirical, I don’t think it comes close to how absurd the official Church position is. I’ll get to this shortly, but first, a reminder: The following is not satire.

Correcting Cruz

First of all, I’m surprised that Cruz got an important detail wrong, considering he is the judicial vicar of the CBCP National Appellate Matrimonial Tribunal. Possibility of conception is not a requirement for marriage. Or stated another way, sterility is not a marital impediment:

Can. 1084: §3. Sterility neither prohibits nor nullifies marriage, without prejudice to the prescript of ⇒ can. 1098. (The marriage contract can be invalidated if one of the parties is dishonest about their sterility.)

Although Cruz was wrong about sterility, he was right about impotence. Couples who want to get married must have the capacity to “consummate the union”:

Can. 1084 §1. Antecedent and perpetual impotence to have intercourse, whether on the part of the man or the woman, whether absolute or relative, nullifies marriage by its very nature.

So sterility is OK, but impotence is not. But this was not always the case.

Cum Frequenter and True Semen

In 1587, Pope Sixtus issued a papal document known as the Cum frequenter. (Again, this is not satire.) In the document, Pope Sixtus said that because eunuchs cannot have intercourse, they shouldn’t be allowed to marry. This was interpreted as saying that for men to have proper marital intercourse, they must be able to produce “true semen.” True semen, as it was first understood, meant that it contained a crucial element that could only come from the testicles: sperm. In other words, even sterility was an impediment to marriage.

Scientists soon discovered that the male ejaculate contained not only sperm but other stuff as well. According to Dorland’s Medical Dictionary, semen is “composed of spermatozoa in a nutrient plasma, secretions from the prostate, seminal vesicles and various other glands, epithelial cells and minor constituents.” So it could be argued that sperm, although often found in semen, was not what made semen “true.”

The uncertainty on what constitutes true semen led the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) to allow marriage involving men who had legally imposed vasectomies. It was only in 1977 when the CDF declared with certainty that canonical potency “does not necessarily require anything in the ejaculate that has been produced in the testicles.” True semen need not have sperm.

What’s Love Got To Do With It

But if sperm is no longer crucial, what is? Three things: (1) an erect penis (2) penetrating a vagina and (3) secreting true semen. The reason for this, however convoluted, is easy enough to explain. When a married couple successfully procreates in the Church-approved way, all 3 things are present. Therefore, all 3 things are essential in every sexual act — even though it may not necessarily lead to procreation.

So even though sterile couples cannot have children when they have sex, the fact that they’re having sex in the same Church-approved way that fertile couples do makes their intercourse valid.

Unfortunately, the first requirement — an erect penis — rules out the Church-approved way for impotent men. And the fact that there has to be one penis and one vagina rules out the Church-approved way for same-sex couples.

It’s also worth noting that even fertile couples who do not ever plan to have children are not allowed to marry. This, together with the other rules I’ve discussed reveal the Church’s true understanding of marriage: nothing more than a license to have sex. It doesn’t matter to the Church how much two people care for one another. Love may be thicker than water, but not true semen.

Posted in Politics, ReligionComments (2)

CBCP Adds Sperm Count to Marriage Ceremonies

MANILA, Philippines — Following Archbishop Oscar Cruz’s benevolence in allowing a lesbian woman and a gay man to marry each other under the auspices of the most Holy Roman Catholic church because “The anatomy is there. The possibility of conception is there”, Bishop Jose M. Ilya of the CBCP’s Jesus All Knowing Of Life Tribunal told the assembled press that Catholic marriage ceremonies will now include a sperm count at the altar to ensure that the marriage will result in procreation.

“Before the Catholic church puts two people together in holy matrimony we must ensure that the couple can actually procreate, even if they are a gay man and a lesbian woman, because procreation is the only reason ever for people to marry. We will ensure this even if the couple is straight, and not just for the gay and lesbian couples who wish to take up Archbishop Oscar Cruz’s kind love offering. As guardians of morality, we have to be consistent in our morals. Why do you think we’ve stood by biblical morality for so long?”

Responding to a question on whether this practice discriminates against couples who cannot conceive, Bishop Jose M. Ilya said, “Perhaps, but along with my colleague Archbishop Oscar Cruz’s allowance, I see this as the dawn of a more equal Catholic church. Instead of just discriminating against the gays, the Catholic church will also be discriminating against the straights, hence equality.”

He continues, “Besides, infertile couples who are already married will be grandfathered in. Well, obviously they still can’t be grandparents but, well, you get what I mean. I mean, they’re already married right? It’s not like we can do anything about an existing marriage that is based on love and not on making life. I mean, we don’t even allow divorce.”

The flustered Bishop Jose M. Ilya quickly concluded the press conference by leading a beautiful prayer espousing couples not to marry out of love and commitment to each other but for their mutual baby making.


While this is a satire piece, the actual doctrines of the Catholic church regarding conception and consummation in marriage is actually more absurd. Damnit Catholic church, stop standing up my satire pieces.

Posted in SatireComments (2)

The CBCP as a body IS guilty

“The CBCP as a body did not have any part in that… it also stands pat on its statement issued six years ago,” Quitorio said.

— Msgr. Pedro Quitorio


“We categorically deny that the CBCP as a body has ever solicited or knowingly received from illegal gamblers.

— 2005 CBCP Statement on Gambling

“The CBCP as a body did not have any part in that.” When I first heard this excuse, I suspected it was an implicit admission of guilt. And I was right.

In anticipation of some bishops getting caught, the CBCP distanced the group from its guilty members in advance. They further distanced themselves by explaining that “while there is a conference of Filipino prelates, all bishops and their dioceses are independent of one another and are directly responsible to Pope Benedict XVI.”

This is quite interesting. Because abroad, Vatican lawyers protect the pope from implication in child abuse cases by asserting that bishops are not directly responsible to the Pope.

Aside from contradicting the Vatican, the CBCP also contradicts itself. The CBCP cannot say that its bishops are independent (not part of a group) and then say that it does not receive bribes “as a body.” Either the CBCP takes responsibility for its members “as a body,” or they avoid making statements “as a body” at all.

And consider what would happen if a Catholic bishop were to do something truly independent — say, support the RH Bill. Would they say that the dissenting bishop is free to be pro-RH independently? Of course not. The CBCP wouldn’t waste a second censuring the pro-RH bishop for ignoring his obligation to be consistent with the CBCP “as a body.”

Because as long as the CBCP exists, they will continue to act as an organization. After all, this is where their perceived power comes from. Flock follows priest, priest follows bishop, bishop follows archbishop, and so on — this ideal hierarchy perpetuates the illusion that the CBCP speaks for 80% of the population. It’s why despite their unpopular, unscientific, and irrational opinions, some people — politicians in particular — listen to them at all.

If the allegations are true, it’s why then-President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo (GMA) bribed at least 7 bishops. When the election scandal broke, several bishops, including ex-CBCP President Oscar Cruz, asked GMA to step down. But after the CBCP declared its “collective decision … to not demand her resignation,” none of the bishops, not even Oscar, called for Gloria to step down. By buying at least 7 bishops, GMA bought the entire CBCP. This clearly shows that the CBCP acts as a body.

And if the CBCP knew about these bribes or illegal donations — as their statements and actions imply — why did they remain silent? They could have told the authorities, and the “standard practice” would have stopped. By keeping quiet, they allowed the illegal donations to continue. They may not have directly committed the crime, but the silent bishops are guilty of aiding and abetting. So although the CBCP did not officially declare it, condoning bribery practically made it an organizational policy. And for this, the CBCP as a body is definitely guilty.


In a way, this excuse is meaningless. Of course the CBCP “as a body” cannot accept a bribe. Each bribed bishop received a PCSO check individually. And only individuals, not organizations, go to jail for a crime.

The inanity of this excuse becomes more obvious when you apply it to another scandal. Recently, a 17-year-old girl in Agusan del Norte accused a Catholic priest of rape. Do you think they’ll try to use “the CBCP as a body did not rape the girl” as an excuse?

Posted in Politics, Religion, SocietyComments (10)

Ex-CBCP President implicitly admits bribery allegations

“I believe the allegations that bishops got Pajeros and other bribes are all true.” Ex-CBCP President Oscar Cruz did not say this, but he should have just as well. Because although Oscar did not explicitly say it, his response to the bribery allegations was almost as good as an admission of guilt.

First, he never denied the allegations. Like Msgr. Pedro Quitorio, Oscar could have simply said that there is no truth behind the allegations. But neither of them did.

Nor did Bishop Bacani. It seems that he already knows that bribery went on. Because the only “if” in Bacani’s mind is whether the bribery would be proven true:

“If proven true that some bishops are on take, it could dent the credibility of the Church,” said retired Bishop Teodoro Bacani.

Oscar Cruz seems to agree. He is so sure that there are indeed bishops accepting bribes that he addresses them directly, and there is nothing implicit about this:

“I think those concerned should speak up… otherwise the whole hierarchy will be affected,” said Cruz, a former president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines.

“Whether this is proven by the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) or not, they should come out. The truth will set you free,” he said.

Again, by saying that the bribed bishops should come out “whether this is proven by the PCSO or not,” Oscar is clearly saying that regardless of the outcome of PCSO’s investigation, there is no doubt in his mind that some bishops were bribed.

If the ex-President of the CBCP himself is sure that there was bribery, then that’s probably the case. Oscar should work with Father Robert Reyes and expose the corruption within their ranks. Oscar would only be consistent. And he’d be hitting two birds with one stone — isn’t Oscar against both gambling and corruption? Otherwise, he would be just another CBCP hypocrite.

Posted in Politics, Religion, SocietyComments (1)

Oscar Cruz’s Sex, Sex, Sex, Sex, Sex Bill

*shudders* Oh the horrible, loaded imagery contained in that title. But let’s put on a brave face and soldier on to face the horrible new missive that ex-archbishop Oscar Cruz has written against the Reproductive Health Bill.

Three days ago, Oscar Cruz wrote another one of his brilliant editorials against the RH bill. His latest editorial was an unlikely breath of fresh air in the debate about the RH bill. In his writing he calls for honesty, an unlikely breath of fresh air coming from his side of the anti RH camp.

His clarion call for clarity? That the RH bill to be called for what it is: The Sex Bill.

Well, okay so his own honesty might need some working on. His main point can be summarized in this sentence:

To call it “Reproductive Health Bill” is a big distortion. Reason: the Bill is not “reproductive” simply because it is against reproduction.

In response to this bit of stupidity Risa Hontiveros has written an incredible, witty response on the same publication. It’s Not a Sex Bill, Bishop. Feel free to indulge yourself with saying, “Oh Snap!” and “Burrrn”, while reading her response.

However, I am but a simple man and the simple, succinct rebuttal to Oscar Cruz’s piece of stupidity comes from the text of the RH bill itself. Perhaps Ex-Archbishop Oscar Cruz should apply himself to reading the bill so that he knows what he is ranting and raving against. Under Section 4, definition of terms (emphasis mine):

Reproductive Health Care refers to the access to a full range of methods, facilities, services and supplies that contribute to reproductive health and well-being by preventing and solving reproductive health-related problems. It also includes sexual health, the purpose of which is the enhancement of life and personal relations. The elements of reproductive health care include the following:
(j) prevention and treatment of infertility and sexual dysfunction;

Whoa. Hey. Ex-Archbishop Oscar Cruz! The bill is actually for honest to goodness reproduction! Would you look at that?

One thing I will applaud Oscar Cruz though, is his honesty. While his fellow bishops seem to skirt around their actual issue with the RH bill, Oscar Cruz comes outright and says it. Sex. The Roman Catholic church has always had a problem with sex. While the “pro-life” hem and haw with things like “protecting the unborn”, Oscar Cruz has the temerity to say it.


Actually, he had to say sex quite a lot. Sex sex sex sex sex. (warning, auto-playing music). Uhm. Does someone seem obsessed here?

Moar Ex Archbishop Oscar Cruz Memes at Dead Heroes Society.

Posted in HumorComments (9)

Should the CBCP excommunicate themselves?

In a recent interview, Ex-CBCP President Oscar Cruz said that Noynoy deserved to be excommunicated if he was proven to have an indirect hand in abortions due to the passage of the RH Bill (emphasis mine):

There are 2 ways for someone to be excommunicated. Abortion or harming the pope. But just in case the President signs the bill into law…he will not be excommunicated. Unless, if the church proves that he has an indirect hand on abortions, meaning because of his approval of the bill and abortions happen, then he becomes guilty,” Cruz warned.

According to Oscar, indirectly causing an abortion is grounds for excommunication. According to this logic, if the passage of the RH Bill causes a single person to have an abortion, then all those involved in passing the RH Bill are equally deserving of excommunication.

If the RH Bill passes, popular support will be one of the main reasons. According to a 2008 SWS survey, 7 out of 10 Catholics favor the passage of the RH Bill. Should pro-RH Catholics be excommunicated as well?

Whatever the CBCP decides, excommunication is their call — the Vatican’s, to be more precise. But consider this: If indirectly causing an abortion is grounds for excommunication, then the CBCP should excommunicate themselves first.

Here are the facts. Studies from all over the world show that increased contraception use reduces the number of induced abortions1:

Recent studies offer strong evidence of a widely supposed but difficult-to-demonstrate benefit of reproductive health services: that increasing the use of effective contraception leads to declines in induced abortion rates.

In 2008, there were an estimated 560,000 induced abortions. If CBCP hadn’t been blocking the passage of an RH Bill for 13 years prior, this number would probably be a lot smaller. Stated more plainly, the CBCP is indirectly responsible for every abortion in the Philippines that could have been avoided through the information and contraception that a family planning program could have provided.

So before Oscar and the CBCP goes excommunication-happy on pro-RH Catholics, they should study the facts and check whether they still have the authority to excommunicate. They might have been auto-excommunicated a long time ago.


1 In cases where increased contraception use fails to reduce abortion incidence, here’s the story:

In seven countries—Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Uzbekistan, Bulgaria, Turkey, Tunisia and Switzerland—abortion incidence declined as prevalence of modern contraceptive use rose. In six others—Cuba, Denmark, Netherlands, the United States, Singapore and the Republic of Korea—levels of abortion and contraceptive use rose simultaneously. In all six of these countries, however, overall levels of fertility were falling during the period studied. After fertility levels stabilized in several of the countries that had shown simultaneous rises in contraception and abortion, contraceptive use continued to increase and abortion rates fell. The most clear-cut example of this trend is the Republic of Korea…

Rising contraceptive use results in reduced abortion incidence in settings where fertility itself is constant. The parallel rise in abortion and contraception in some countries occurred because increased contraceptive use alone was unable to meet the growing need for fertility regulation in situations where fertility was falling rapidly.

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Is Oscar Cruz threatening Malacanang with revolution?

“It is true that even the CBCP stands ready to call for some kind of a repeat of EDSA 1 and EDSA 2 when eventually called for – for its exasperation in the kind of programs and priorities of Malacanang?”

This is the question ex-CBCP president Oscar Cruz asks in his latest article, “What’s Going on?” Although Oscar uses a question as his title, it’s clear by reading the article that there is no doubt in his mind about what’s going on. And it’s also clear that the answer to this post’s titular question is YES.

But first, what exactly does Oscar think is going on?

First, Oscar thinks the government is anti-life — to the point of banning reproduction:

Population is the underlying cause of poverty in the Country. More human lives are thus taboo. Reduction of population at all cost is wherefore a priority.

Second, he thinks that the government is evil:

Thus: The “Reproductive Health Bill” that precisely prevents human reproduction but promotes promiscuity, and that in effect undermines women’s health by anti-life chemical in-takes – courtesy of the Multinational Pharmaceuticals whose business is the manufacture and sell of contraceptives, and whose main preoccupation is profit. Ethics have no place in their agenda. Morals are irrelevant in their options.

Third, he thinks that the government is incompetent:

Thus it is that the signs of the times under the incumbent national leadership are neither that promising, much less that optimistic – after but a few months of governance. This is one big bad news. The growing perception of an incapable if not incapacitated present government is only good for revels [sic] and separatists – but bad for citizens desirous only of the triumph of truth, the emergence of justice and reign of peace in accord with their sound and solid value system, right ethical standards and proper moral principles.

Considering the certainty with which Oscar has made these statements, it’s clear that the titular question, as well as the rest of the questions in his article, are rhetorical ones. Consider the questions in Oscar’s final paragraph:

Is it true that more and more people are dissatisfied with the nature and quality of their present government – notwithstanding all suspect surveys to the contrary?

It is true that there are already groups of people now slowly by surely preparing for mass actions when called for – despite of [sic] all denials to the contrary specially by the beneficiaries of the incumbent leadership?

It is true that even the CBCP stands ready to call for some kind of a repeat of EDSA 1 and EDSA 2 when eventually called for – for its exasperation in the kind of programs and priorities of Malacanang?

Since Oscar thinks that the government is anti-life, evil, and incompetent, it’s obvious that he would answer the first question “yes.” And it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that this is how he would answer the second and third questions as well. Thus, the article is a thinly veiled threat of revolution at Malacanang should it support the RH Bill.

Oscar’s pathetic attempt at denying that this is a threat only makes his true intentions even clearer:

No. It is not a threat. It is simply an invitation for collective action when needed. It is neither a foreboding design. It is merely a reminder and recourse to the sovereignty of the people when required.

But should we take Oscar’s threat seriously? Should we take anything that he says seriously? Will he ever learn the correct spelling of “rebels”? Whatever. This is just another case of an anti-choicer attempting to use misinformation and blackmail to further delay the passage of the RH Bill. That’s what’s going on.

Posted in Politics, SocietyComments (22)

The HR Bill, Mutants, and the Man Called "Ona"

“The slovenliness of our language makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts.”

~ George Orwell

In this post, I won’t argue for the irrationality of Ex-CBCP President Oscar Cruz’s stand on the RH Bill or contraception. I’ve done that before, and the sad reality that many still agree with him is the only reason his opinion is worth refuting. Instead, I’ll focus on Oscar’s sloppy writing, which I believe reflects an equally sloppy mind.

In his latest blog post, Oscar said that the RH Bill battle is down to two parties: the president, with “the power of the office and the command of public funds,” and the CBCP, that “has but the tenure of truth based on faith and reason.”

Their “tenure of truth” might be based on faith, but judging by Oscar’s statements below, it’s hardly based on reason.

“Now it can be said in the open and with certainly : The Battle is joined.”

~ Oscar Cruz

What’s so special about a battle being “joined”? Maybe Oscar meant to say something like “the real battle has begun.” Because certainly, Noynoy and the CBCP have been part of this battle long before Oscar wrote his recent post. And isn’t this battle also “joined” by the legislators, the other religious and secular groups, and most importantly, the Filipino citizens?

On one side, there is this middle-age bachelor president who officially and emphatically proclaimed his support for and affirmation of “Responsible Parenthood” through the use of all kinds of artificial contraceptive pills, injectable and rubbers – self-mutations included like male vasectomy and female tubal ligation.

Is Oscar implying that procedures like vasectomy and ligation can alter a person’s DNA?

He claims that in perfect accord with democratic principles, people have the prerogative of “free choice” – although and strangely so, physicians and other experts unwilling to cooperate with the HR Bill, are considered in trouble with the law.

In fairness, if “physicians and other experts” don’t cooperate with company policies, it could become an HR issue.

Specifically in conjunction with the phrase “Responsible Parenthood” – the strange, interesting and disturbing fact is that the same blessed single head of state does not even butt a eye in believing and presuming that “Responsible Parenthood” and artificial contraception are a compatible pairing.

I’m not sure what it is, but I think it’s not good to “butt an eye.”

But while all those who wanted her doctrine out and teaching done away with, are eventually nowhere to be found – except six feet under the ground, and mostly even forgotten.

I’m certainly not a zombie, and neither are the majority of Filipinos who want the doctrine on contraceptives done away with.

The Church teaching against man-made contraception is as old as the Scriptures: There was this man called “Ona” who engaged in sexual acts with his wife, and finished this by scattering his seeds on the ground.

If you’re going to cite scripture, at least get the spelling right (it’s Onan). Has Oscar even read that part of the Bible? Maybe not — it was not his wife but his brother’s wife Onan was having sex with. At least he’s admitting that his opposition to the RH Bill is based on a biblical tale about spilling sacred sperm.

* * *

Oscar also said that the Church “has been abandoned by her supposed following, in addition to appearing like one good joke.” I wonder why.

Posted in Humor, Politics, ReligionComments (23)

Cruz on Choice: The Curse of Free Will

Ex-CBCP President Oscar “the Borg” Cruz wrote a new post on his blog, and once again it defies logic, reason, and grammar. But what’s surprising in this post is it seems to defy Catholic theology as well. Then again, that could just be his poor writing skills. You be the judge.

He starts by praising the concept of “pro choice:”

“It is salutary to hear and encouraging contemplating. It is very human in its substance and humane in its implications. ‘Pro Choice’ properly means and correctly implies that all ordinary adults in particular, have their respective intellectual faculty plus will functions to depend on and use accordingly.”

Fair enough. But then it gets weird. Whether our choices result in good or bad, we take it for granted that choice is something that we have; choice implies having options. But Cruz seems to think that the choice we take for granted is optional:

“Strictly speaking wherefore, choosing instead what is inherently wrong and in effect unjust can be made an option – but for a cost always, for a profound and pervasive cost at times.” (emphasis mine)

After revealing his premise — that choice is optional — he starts to reveal his argument: We should not make choosing bad things a choice. Only the option that leads to what is good — by Oscar’s standards — should be given to people.

But again, his argument changes direction. While he first argued that choice is optional — that people can choose to make unethical choices — he now says that choice is not optional — that people can only choose what is ethical:

“Again, given his or her operative deliberative faculty, a man or a woman is only free to choose what is ethical or moral – certainly not what is unethical or immoral.” (emphasis mine)

Finally he reveals his twisted logic. He says that choice is only good to have when there are only good options to choose from:

“The phrase wherefore ‘Pro-Choice’ is great to contemplate and noble to act upon, not unless it is intentionally coined and twisted in order to purposely accommodate – – favor or defend – the freedom to choose what is objectively vicious or evil, purposely depraved or nefarious.”

So let’s review Oscar’s argument (the most recent version of it anyway). He is arguing that choice is good unless there are options that lead to bad outcomes. But there are always options that lead to bad outcomes. Does it then follow that choice is bad? Shockingly, Oscar thinks it is:

“Is there really a right or sound choice between life or death, between peace or war, between integrity or deceit, between poverty and development, and so on?”

Each person can and does make right or sound choices (based on their own judgment) on a daily basis. Although individual choices may be different , there is a right or sound choice between the options you mentioned above.

Catholic morality is based on prescribing a certain criteria for choosing among sound and unsound options. Why would such a criteria be necessary if only sound options were available? So yes. Most people believe — Catholic theologians, especially — that there is a “right or sound choice.”

“Is there? If there really is, then this is really a helpless world, a cursed humanity!”

Has Oscar heard of a Catholic doctrine called “free will“? For Oscar’s benefit, Catholics believe that free will is God’s gift to man. Is Oscar saying that free will is not a gift but a curse? Does he really think the world is helpless?

Oscar Cruz should go back to the seminary and brush up on his theology. (While he’s at it, he should brush up on logic, grammar, and rhetoric as well.) His message is not consistent with the creed he professes, which may lead some of his flock to do evil. Therefore, going back to the seminary is, by his own standards, the moral and ethical thing to do.

Does he have a choice?

Posted in Politics, Religion, SocietyComments (21)

Fighting may be “inutile,” but reform is inevitable

Ex-CBCP President Oscar V. Cruz has been assimilated by the Borg. Or at least he sounds like one: “Fighting is [sic] the Catholic Church is inutile!” he wrote in a recent post on his blog.

Unfortunately, some screws are loose in his language processor. First of all, inutile means “lacking in utility or serviceability; not useful.”  He probably meant “futile,” which means ” having no useful result” or “completely ineffective.”

To his credit he made it clear that this was not meant for “for agnostics who acknowledge no God” or “eclectics who simply choose what they want to believe as their own private and personal choice” or “people who subscribe to any sect here and there that come and go, or any system of beliefs that blatantly defies all logic and reason.”

In other words, this is meant for the Katoliko Sarado (fundamentalist Catholic). But why is he giving the “Resistance is Futile” speech to the already assimilated?

This and the following fallacies and faulty reasoning shows that his rational processor needs upgrading as well.

“The Catholic Church is the only worldwide institution that is some 2000 years old and counting.”

Old Paganism – 30,000 years ago
Modern Paganism – 1,000 BCE
Hinduism – 1,500 BCE
Judaism – 1,400 BCE
Buddhism – 500 BCE

“There is not a single entity in the whole universe that is as one and universal, that has remained that global and vibrant as the Catholic Church. Yes, they are other old creeds – but there are neither one and universal.”

First , where did Cruz get his data about the whole universe?

Second, is he sure that “there is not a single entity in the whole universe that is as one and universal”? Even God? And please don’t tell me that God is the same as the Catholic Church — panentheism is anathema.

And yes, “Catholic” translates to “universal,” but that’s all. That there are more than a thousand other religions (and over 30,000 denominations of Christianity alone) tells us how no single organized religion has been and can be “one and universal.”

“The fact is that the central site of the Catholic Church is officially known, called and acknowledge by the civilized word as the “Vatican City State” that has formal diplomatic relations with most Countries, that sends to and receives Ambassadors from said Countries.”

Are you sure you want to play that card, Oscar? The Vatican was only made a state in exchange for recognizing the fascist government of Benito Mussolini.

“One: In the past, there were Priests, Bishops and even Popes who tried to destroy and erase the Catholic Church from the face of the earth – not to mention secular potentates of all kinds that attempted to do the same. Yet, the Church is still here.”

The Church of 2,000 years ago is no longer here. It has gone through several schisms which resulted in over 30,000 different denominations. The Roman Catholic denomination may be the largest, but it is a modern creation, influenced by all the schisms, internal improvements, and changes in culture caused by mostly secular influences.

The Catholic Church of 2,000 years ago no longer exists, and that’s a good thing. The Crusades and religious wars, the Inquisition and witch hunts, banning books, allowing slavery — these are gone today, and so is the version of the church that condoned it.

“Two: In this period of Phil. History, there are a number of politicians and citizens who harbor hatred for the Church — and if possible, want her out of their way. But as sure as the sun will shine tomorrow, the Church will be then up and about.”

I don’t really get what Cruz wants to prove when he argues for the Church’s power and resilience. There is one institution that is more widespread and resilient than the Catholic Church — slavery.

Does the fact that it was practiced in all continents and that it’s been around for 11,000 years validate its existence? If Cruz wanted to prove the value of the Catholic Church, why didn’t he give reasons it’s a force for good in the world instead of spouting appeals to antiquity and popularity?

“Three, finally, it is good to remember an ominous reality, viz., those Catholics of whatever political affiliation and ideological persuasion, will be usually brought to the cemetery by the Church.”

Ominous means “giving the impression that something bad or unpleasant is going to happen.” At least Cruz got one thing right.

“Lesson: Fighting is the Catholic Church is inutile!”

Trying to reform an institution is different from fighting it. You might not like the word “reformation” but it is inevitable. (Please review Church history, Oscar.)

If the Church has become a more humane, more beneficial, and more relevant institution than it was 2,000 years ago, it is thanks to the people who have fought to reform it.

Awesome image by Jeiel

Posted in Politics, Religion, SocietyComments (44)