Friday, February 1, 2008

Catholicism and Monarchy

Catholicism and Monarchy: Any Catholic ought to understand the innately monarchical structure under which the Church operates. And as the period of Lent approaches, it becomes important for Catholics to reflect on the nature of the Church. Why is it inherently exclusive? Why is it so slow to change its Catechism? Why is the Pope the "Supreme Pontiff"? These questions beg American Catholics to ponder their ultimate allegiance. As a Catholic in the U.S., with whom should I side? The President or the Pope? Democracy or Monarchy? Is there truly a middle ground? Wars have been waged over these kinds of questions. Take King Henry VIII in England for example. He did not see eye-to-eye with the Pope, especially when it came to the sacrament of matrimony. As a result, he broke away from the Catholic Church and formed the Anglican Church, or what is known as the Episcopalian Church in the United States. The English Civil War and the Glorious Revolution of the seventeenth century essentially occurred in reaction to Henry VIII's controversial maneuver. Even so, where does the Pope derive his monarchical authority? In effect, every Pope, who is ironically "ELECTED" by the College of Cardinals, assumes the throne given to Simon Peter by Christ. Therefore, Simon Peter (Saint Peter), one of Christ's Twelve Apostles, was ordained the first Pope by Christ himself to spread the "Good News" of the Gospels. And Peter was subsequently crucified (upside down at his request) for the role he played in promulgating Christianity.

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