The foul stench of religious cant emanating today from the airwaves and pages of the world’s press is nauseating, but it should subside within a day or two. In the meantime, best that those of us who hold religion in contempt make the satirical most of the “shock” resignation of Joseph Aloisius Ratzinger from his position as Bishop of Rome, held since the death in 2005 of a Polish geezer named Karol Józef Wojtyła, an amateur footballer with a number of other redeeming personal qualities. The current “Holy Father”, who styles himself Benedict XVI, is apparently too old and decrepit to continue in the job, and so will quit by month’s end. Ho hum.
As a Recovering Catholic™ turned god-free heathen I cannot join in paying tribute to the retiring pope, but neither do I jump for joy at this latest crisis in the Church of Rome, mildly entertaining though it be. Today’s papal abdication is a significant event on the world stage, and the path taken by the global religious cult known as the Catholic Church will to some degree influence the lives of those who do not subscribe to its absurd beliefs and barbaric strictures.
As for the person of Joseph Ratzinger, he is certainly not a good ’un. Ratzinger’s clerical career is summed up pictorially in the photo above, and below in words by the late Christopher Hitchens…
“The Roman Catholic Church is headed by a mediocre Bavarian bureaucrat once tasked with the concealment of the foulest iniquity, whose ineptitude in that job now shows him to us as a man personally and professionally responsible for enabling a filthy wave of crime. Ratzinger himself may be banal, but his whole career has the stench of evil—a clinging and systematic evil that is beyond the power of exorcism to dispel. What is needed is not medieval incantation but the application of justice—and speedily at that.”
Hitchen’s essay was published in 2010, and the summary bears repeating in 2013, not least owing to the foul deeds of the Roman Catholic Church committed or revealed in the past few years.