News / Updates — 01 October 2010

When will the Catholic Church come out of the dark ages and become life affirmative?

The Catholic Church stepped into it again! Maybe to counterbalance the media frenzy and public outrage about a myriad of dire child abuse cases all over the world, the Archbishop of Melbourne, Dennis Hart issued new guidelines for Catholic funerals, banning romantic ballads, pop songs, rock music, political songs and sports anthems.

BBC reported that the ban comes after a study showed the signature anthem for Australian Rules football team Collingwood as one of the most popular funeral songs in Melbourne, together with Frank Sinatra’s ‘My Way’ and Louis Armstrong’s ‘Wonderful World’. Can’t a deceased have a last personal wish before he is dug six foot under? Must the Catholic Church control their flock even after death?

I am reminded of the story about a Zen Master who was about to die and told his disciples that he had taken his last bath, had changed his clothing, so they need not prepare him for the pyre but to put him right on top without delay. Of course the disciples respected their Master’s wishes and when the fire was started they all began to laugh and giggle – the Master had hidden firecrackers inside his clothes to make a point about his teaching that life should be a dance and death a celebration and they went off in a surge of color and noise!

When will the Catholic Church come out of the dark ages and become life affirmative? Become celebrative, rejoicing in life and death? With the present Pope around, I am not holding my breath.

Read full article: bbc.co.uk

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