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Catholic Archbishop: End Church-State Separation

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opednews.com Headlined to H2 11/16/12

The most powerful Catholic leader in the state of Minnesota warned a mother to change her mind about her gay son or plan on going to hell.  Which helps explain why many would like to tell Archbishop John Nienstedt to do the same.

Nienstedt seems confident God will support his judgments of the mother and countless others who've trespassed into his wrath over the years--many, like the mother, in relationship with GLBT people. 

Whether Nienstedt has converted anyone in the three decades since his ordination is unclear. What is clear is that the bishop is not praised for being compassionate. Public consensus and Neinstedt's communications convey little evidence he is. What all--including the Bishop--agree on, is that his motives extend well beyond his religion.

Politics needs Religion?

The Bishop is on a political mission. He himself told me as much.

I doubt Nienstedt expected his revelation would get much past our short but respectful conversation last December. Though I shared that my personal and professional values had me very concerned about institutionally propagandized polarization, including by religions. Still, we didn't know each other until then. I'm sure if we had, the Bishop would never have spoken with me with such candor.

This was after a Mass in economically distressed North Minneapolis, Minnesota. Where in his sermon the bishop spoke of St. Peter, the "Rock" and founder of the Catholic church, who ominously "informed us that the world as we know it will be consumed in flames, giving way to a new heaven and a new earth." It ended with Nienstedt's "call to examine our consciences in regard to our daily attitudes and actions." 

He posed rhetorical questions for all to consider: "What am I like when no one is looking? How have I helped the poor? "What kind of an example do I give others? "

Hard Questions, No Answers

I chose questions similar to his to orient our discussion, knowing

 bishop's actions affect far more people than those in his Church's pews. It's no secret Nienstedt has long preached his polarizing politics to everyone both from his pulpit, and his pen in faith and media pieces and many letters, including to public officials and at least two presidents: one who leads a globally prominent American Catholic University of Notre Dame, the other the leader of the United States.

As we spoke, I wondered aloud how his questions could be translated in the real world. Where so many pontificate seemingly reasonable perspectives, but with such polarizing evangelism that little but social purgatory prevails. The bishop said he didn't know.

Archbishop John Nienstedt

His uncertainty starkly contrasted his Mass demeanor. Gone 

were the ceremonial vestments, high-peaked hat and shepherds-  

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Andrea Morisette Grazzini is a writer, leader and consultant. She founded the cross-sector civil discourse initiative DynamicShift, in 2009. Her work has influenced numerous global and national conversations on co-productive change. Among them are (more...)
 

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I look forward to the day when Catholics and Fundi... by kappie on Friday, Nov 16, 2012 at 9:50:51 AM
LOL!  I always enjoy that cat fight myself.&n... by Sister Begonia on Sunday, Nov 18, 2012 at 1:04:18 PM
I guess it boils down to some people all ways see ... by Matthew Jacobs on Thursday, Nov 22, 2012 at 12:13:55 AM
Having sex with males over the age of 18 will lan... by Mrt Baggins on Friday, Nov 16, 2012 at 2:12:56 PM
You put forth a superb comment.Yes, they should pa... by Dee Saucer on Friday, Nov 16, 2012 at 9:16:59 PM
Pardon me, but I do not recall this ego maniacs vo... by Dee Saucer on Friday, Nov 16, 2012 at 9:22:50 PM
and gist of the article was, "Oh yes, another clos... by Daniel Geery on Saturday, Nov 17, 2012 at 10:12:59 AM
Hey Bishop,Let us have a debate, you and I.  ... by Dee Saucer on Friday, Nov 16, 2012 at 9:28:37 PM
The Catholic Church is basically the remnants of t... by Michael Hayes on Saturday, Nov 17, 2012 at 10:12:32 AM
Sir, you have hit the nail on the head!  Lord... by Sister Begonia on Sunday, Nov 18, 2012 at 1:08:32 PM
Sister, you are my kind of Nun! I have enjoyed r... by Michael Hayes on Tuesday, Nov 20, 2012 at 1:24:01 PM
The wall between church and state must be made wid... by kanawah on Saturday, Nov 17, 2012 at 3:58:28 PM
I bet he'd like that.  Once that protection i... by Sister Begonia on Sunday, Nov 18, 2012 at 1:03:07 PM
Religious freedom was the essentially of America's... by John Nolan on Sunday, Nov 18, 2012 at 4:54:04 PM

 

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