Sunday, October 19, 2014

What the hell is a Synod?

This had to be the least comfortable
conversation in the history of the world.
In a not-so stunning move for an organization that took 400 years to admit that maybe Galileo was on to something when he said the Earth moved around the sun, the Catholic Church has decided that  gay people are still not welcome after all. The hopes of progressives were briefly raised when Pope Francis, widely regarded as the cool Pope (let's face it, it's a low bar), convened a meeting of Bishops (or Synod, if you're fancy) to discuss family issues like divorcees getting remarried and same-sex relationships.

You know, because who knows more about marriage and gay people than 253 elderly, celibate priests? Am I right?
The answer, of course, is everyone else on Earth.
"Let us all rise and sing
hymn 235: Poker Face."
Anyway, it's not like the Church was going to start renting out St. Peter's for gay weddings, or singing Lady Gaga at Mass, all the Pope was pushing for was for the Bishops to agree on a report which stated that '[h]omosexuals have gifts and qualities to offer the Christian Community...' which is, at best, a grudging acknowledgement. The report would would have then gone on to knock same-sex marriages saying that they cannot be equal to those between a man and a woman (or Marriage Classic®). So why the hell can't these guys, in 2014, suck it up?

Well, it turns out a lot of them were prepared to suck quite a bit up. The draft with the language about gays maybe not being so bad after all got 50% of the vote, but needed a 2/3rd's majority to pass. The fact that half the priests in the room were willing to join the 21st century is itself kind of a miracle.
The Bishops finally agreed to:
"Gay people, um, exist."

Blessed Pope Paul VI, soon-to-be
Patron Saint of the Rhythm Method
Hey, uh, speaking of miracles, the Pope ended the conference with the beatification of Pope Paul VI, which is sort of a step on the road to sainthood. In nerd terms, he leveled up. The important thing is that Pope Paul VI was the guy who clarified the official Catholic stance on birth control, you know, the position that says that nothing, not even a condom, should stand in the way of God's plan, or say the rampant spread of STD's. Um, way to go guys. Way to go.

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