I admit I'm not a big fan of organized religion. That doesn't mean I'm not spiritual, and I do happen to believe in a higher force than we mere humans. You can call it God, or whatever, but something had to put us here. Whether that force oversees what we do on a day to day basis, I do not know, and neither does anyone else. I don't care how fancy a given house of worship is, the size or type of the building doesn't bring one closer to God. Why would you have to go to a particular building anyway if you want to pray? Does God only pay attention if you're located in a particular structure?
There may have been a time when a Pope announces he is resigning and masses of people would care, but that day is done. There are still people who care, but that number has dropped significantly. Here in the United States, a substantial number of people now view the Catholic Church as a criminal organization, and I'm one of them. Besides murder, I don't think there's too many crimes that could equal the horrid act of child molestation. The Catholic Church had too many Priests and other 'members" practicing the crime of child molestation for decades that we know of, and I'm sure well before that time that we know of. From what I've read and understand, Pope Benedict (in his former role) knew of some Priests who took part in some molestations, and were moved to another parish to escape detection. In another world where crime matters, that would make this Pope and other Bishops and Cardinals accomplices. No, the vast number of these people will never spend a day in jail: they've escaped prosecution and persecution for that matter. The Catholic Church was allowed to become a world unto itself. This was a crime.
The whole idea of celibacy is absurd and most rational people know it. Whatever the church's idea was when they deemed Priests should be celibate, the idea that it would free men up to concentrate on God's will only freed them up to molest children because they were so damn sexually excited. They chose children because they were most vulnerable. This is equal to a cop using the inherent trust they receive from most people, and sexually abusing someone in trade for not putting them in jail. These molested children will spend a life time in a sort of mental prison thanks to the Catholic Church. In essence, they've doomed thousands of people to a life of torment and misery because they created a bizarre lifestyle for their employees. To think these people including the Pope are of some special creed that they should receive respect is laughable.
Human beings need to learn the simple rules of how to treat fellow human beings from good parents and teachers. The golden rule of doing unto others goes much farther than some made-up drivel created by men, and that's not to say the Bible doesn't have some good life-lessons in it. But the Bible is not law, not in the real world. Let's face it, most Catholics in America don't follow the teachings of the Catholic Church.They get divorced, they have sex because it's enjoyable, they cheat on their spouse and taxes, and they have sex with whoever they want to. How can the church be against homosexuality when they practice it...and with children no less??
I do put the Catholic Church in a special place because of the massive child molestations, but I think most organize religion is a farce. If it makes you feel better to practice a religion-go for it. I just think the idea of religion is obsolete, and if you think the Catholic Church is kooky, go read up on the Mormon Church. I'm not sure the men of the Mormon Church are wearing "magic underwear", but the idea that wearing just white underwear because it makes you a more wholesome human being is science fiction. I was raised religious, but I never felt I learned much from it.
I immediately thought how less of a news story this is when it was announced the Pope's upcoming resignation. It's a curious thing that the preceding Pope, John Paul, was one very popular man. It was the climax (sorry to use that in this context) before the fall. The respect for this institution is at an all time low, and nothing in the future can erase the scandal of such pervasive abuse and cover-up against children. I think of child molestation as psychological murder. Because so many children were forced to partake in these vile acts, they grew up feeling they were in some way responsible. They must also be angry that the creepy perpetrators got away with such heinous acts because they were members of the Catholic Church. The Pope will have a nice retirement, living in luxury, fooling himself into believing he made life better for millions of people around the world. Sorry, but that charade doesn't minimize the diabolical crimes against children that would not have occurred had the Catholic Church not been in existence or simply structured the way it is. It's not good enough to excuse those crimes as a horrid trend that's now just a distant memory. The Catholic Church created the madness that manifested itself into massive child molestation the world over in the name of religion.When the new Pope is named, nothing will change( I agree the molestations-now uncovered have diminished-at best) because this institution is a relic of a different age incapable of dealing with today's humanity and the reality we all live. The new Pope will stick with age-old dictates nobody can relate to.Millions may feel good on Easter Sunday as they crowd into Vatican Square to take a snapshot of the big party going on, but as The Who claimed in song so many years ago: "meet the new boss-same as the old boss"....only this time, millions will continue to be fooled again, and again.