The Diary Of John
What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans, and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or the holy name of liberty and democracy? - Gandhi
Thursday, February 09, 2006

Slaves..

Anglicans say sorry for role in slave trade

The Church of England has apologised for profiting from the "dehumanising and shameful" slave trade, two centuries after its members helped bring about its abolition in Britain.

Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, spiritual head of the world's 77 million Anglicans, said the church had a duty to share the "shame and sinfulness of our predecessors".

"It is not about political correctness ... wanting to wipe the record clean," he told a meeting of the church's governing body, the General Synod, in London on Wednesday. "It is part of what we are as a Christian community: A corporate acknowledgement of repentance."

More than 10 million people were exported as slaves from Africa during 350 years of the trade, the meeting heard. Each year, about 80,000 people were sold to work on sugar and cotton plantations.

One speaker, the Reverend Simon Bessant, from northern England, said the church must accept it was "part of the problem as well as part of the solution".

"We were at the heart of it, we were directly responsible for what happened," he said. "We must recognize our history and offer an apology."

He said members of the Anglican church owned slaves and plantations. In 1833, the then Bishop of Exeter and his three colleagues received 12,729 pounds in compensation after they were forced to free their 665 slaves.

The synod voted unanimously to apologize as the church prepares to commemorate next year's 200th anniversary of the abolition of slavery in Britain.

The church hopes to use the anniversary to promote Christian values and to focus attention on the plight of people caught in the modern slave trade.

It wants to encourage people to examine the stance of Anglican reformer William Wilberforce, who led the campaign in parliament to abolish slavery in the early 19th century

Don't you just get the feeling that religious organisations are involved in just about every evil thing in the world? If they just banned some of these groups it would make ther world a lot better. This story shows how low these big religious groups will go to line their fucking bank accounts with cash, telling everyone to do as they say and not as they do! They should take this guy outside and publically whip him for his sins, after all it was good enough for Jesus to be whipped, right? Once people get it into their heads that the churches are a huge multi billion dollar business and that they don't give a toss about anyone or anything else and put their devotions (as well as their hard-earned cash) into something better these fucking so called orders of God will fade away. What fucking use is it to apologise for slavery now? Those families are still sufferiing from being uprooted from their cultures and family members and some little piece of shit dressed up in a dress can't take that away. Imagine if people just led good lives and didn't need to have a priest telling them what to do all of the time, it would make peoples lives so much better..

posted at 5:32 AM by john |  

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Nice..

Italian atheist sues priest over Jesus' existence

An Italian atheist is suing a parish priest for saying Jesus Christ existed.

The hearing in a court in Viterbo, a city located in a valley 25 miles northwest of Rome, opened Friday and could take weeks to decide. Luigi Cascioli, 72, a lifelong atheist, is suing the Rev. Enrico Righi, 75, a local parish priest.

The case has opened debate here over whether it's appropriate for a civil court to decide matters of religious faith.

To some Italians, the case is a sign of growing secularism in their society. "I don't think this belongs in the court, and it never would have got there if the church was held in high esteem, as it used to be," retired Roman teacher Lana Napoli, 62, says.

"I don't think I would want the church deciding on taxes or foreign policy," said Federico Massaroti, 35, a city worker in Rome. "Why should the court worry about a religious topic?"
Cascioli filed a civil suit against Righi in 2002 citing an Italian anti-fraud law designed to target advertisements that make unrealistic health or beauty claims. Righi wrote in a church newsletter that Jesus was born in Bethlehem to a couple named Mary and Joseph and that he lived in Nazareth. Cascioli's lawsuit claims the statement was an "abuse of popular belief."


Wider implications

"The court will have to decide whether the statements Father Righi made were indeed fraudulent to decide whether the case has merit," says Antonio Schieppati, a retired director of the law faculty at the University of Rome and a legal consultant. "It has to make a judgment about the existence of Christ. As far as I know, no court has ever been required to do such a thing."


In a telephone interview, Cascioli says he chose to name Righi in his suit because he was local, but his case has a wider target. "If Father Enrico Righi is found guilty of all this, it will have clear implications on all levels of the church," he says. "The question isn't who is guilty because if one person is, then many, many people are. The question is whether the case can be proved."
Schieppati says that if Cascioli is successful, the church will be forced to use conditional language when writing about some faith-related issues for the public. Even if the suit fails, it may damage the Catholic church's reputation. "This is allowing the church to be sued in court the same way someone who borrows money and doesn't pay it back is sued," Schieppati says.

Cascioli's suit is based on several complaints. Among them:

That Righi's parish has profited financially from promoting what Cascioli calls "the fable of Christ's life."

That the church is guilty of "impersonation" by confusing the persona of Jesus with another man named John of Gamala, said to have lived in Israel around the time of Jesus.

That the four Gospels are filled with conflicting and inaccurate evidence about Jesus.
Burden of proof


The burden is on Cascioli to prove Jesus is a fabrication.

Magistrates tried to have the case thrown out on the grounds that no damages could be proved and that there was not enough empirical evidence of Jesus' existence. Cascioli repeatedly challenged that conclusion until Judge Gaetano Mautone in Viterbo agreed to set a court date of Jan. 27.

The Vatican has not commented on the case. Righi has declined to be interviewed on the advice of his lawyers. In December, he wrote an article in his parish bulletin that pointed out some of the historical evidence that supports the existence of Jesus. He cites Jewish historian Flavius Josephus, who wrote in 93 A.D. that 31 years earlier, there was an execution of "the brother of Jesus, the so-called Christ, who was called James by name." In the second century, Roman philosophers Pliny the Younger and Tacitus mentioned Jesus' execution.

"Cascioli says that Christ never existed," Righi wrote. "If he (Cascioli) doesn't see the sun at midday, he shouldn't denounce me just because I do see it."

Cascioli admits he doesn't believe he will win his case at the local level. "I am smart enough to know that a court in a country that is 95% Catholic is never going to rule that Jesus did not exist. It would take a miracle," he jokes. "But maybe this will make people think about the contradictions of what they believe."

If he loses, Cascioli says, he will appeal to the European Court of Human Rights, where he feels he has a better chance. He says the church has less power on a European level.

This caught my eye in the news today, I am always amazed that more and more people don't see all the inconsistences in the bible and the fact that things don't simply add up in almost everything the churches teach. I think mainly its simply the fact that people have sad lives and don't wanna see the truth for what it really is. After all imagine how much more sad their lives would be if they had their church condemned in the justice systems, well actually they would be around 10% better off, right? And in a poorer family that could be the difference between living and dying of starvation. I for one will follow this case with interest, seeing the Roman Catholic church trying to prove the existence of Jesus should be quite fun, after all there is no physical evidence to back up their claims. For one, I would like to see the remains of Noah's Ark. After all it features quite prominantly in the bible in the story of everything in the world being killed and if the pyramids have survived for thousands of years there must be huge pieces of the Ark laying around somewhere. So where is it? Lets see what will happen..


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