“To understand ISIS, look at Anglicanism
Chalk and cheese, the Islamic militants of ISIS and Anglicans? Actually, they have a lot in common.”
– LMS Chairman.
That’s a quote (out of context of course) that Dr Shaw will have a hard time living down for a long time. Have a read of the post (I may copy it for future reference, as I wouldn’t be surprised if he took it down).
So the Internet Memes based on his words have already started…
These Memes are crass and unbalanced.
But I would like to comment on his post.
I’m not going to comment about the fire-storm of wrath that Dr Shaw has whipped up for himself, but looking at his logic. Something which the Memes may have stumbled upon.
There are two concepts in action.
Firstly the Theory of Catholic Just War/violence and secondly the Dogma Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus – Outside the [Roman Catholic] Church there is no salvation.
The concept that a Catholic can justifiably use violence is now so ingrained from 1700 years of teaching, so sub-conscious, that to say otherwise is considered Anathema. This is particularly the case with Traditionalists (for those who aren’t quite clear about the factions within the Catholic Church, I will attempt to elucidate in another post.).
Dr Shaw presents 16th Century Protestant England as being savage persecutors. He goes on to decry the acts perpetrated by the Sovereign powers of England as unjust – because it “was based on the idea that Catholics were idolatrous, and toleration would bring the wrath of God down on the land.”
When presented with facts that Catholic “savagery was based on the idea that Protestants were idolatrous, and toleration would bring the wrath of God down on the land”, Catholics, especially Traditionalist Catholics such as Dr Shaw, is often completely blinkered by the ingrained concept that a Catholic can be violent justifiably. They will simply respond “we were defending ourselves in [England during the reign of Mary, the Holy Land during the Crusades etc]”, and here we see the root cause of the argument.
The root cause is not the double standard that a Just Violence Catholic recognises that a Catholic can be violent and be justified, but not a Protestant.
It is the combination of a Catholic who combines the theory that a Catholic can be violent, with the Dogma that there is no salvation outside of the Catholic Church (meaning union in belief and practice with the Pope in Rome).
This combination makes for a particularly ugly prospect, for the Catholic justifies his violence by his conformity and union with the Pope in Rome (and therefore God), and junks everyone else’s “right” to be violent.
The reality is however, that for 1700 years the Catholic Church (and all the mainstream Christian Churches for that matter) have obfuscated the actual teachings of Messiah concerning violence. There is no justifiable violence according to the Messiah.
The praxis that Catholics are commanded to observe is “to love ones enemy, to do good to those that hate you” (Matthew 5:44), “love your neighbour as yourself” (Matthew 22:39), “love one another as I have loved you” (John 13:34).
There is no glory in pointing the finger at those that are violent in the world, if we Catholics ourselves are unable to rid ourselves of the enduring delusion that we can be violent justifiably.
Christ taught quite the opposite.
We Catholics should ask ourselves “what would Jesus do?”. I can assure you He would not write to the UN and compel “the international community, particularly through the norms and mechanisms of international law, to do all that it can to stop and to prevent further systematic violence against ethnic and religious minorities“. I can assure you He would not go on Crusade to “defend” His homeland, or purge “dissenters”.
The Way is not easy, but it is the only Way. No-one professing to be a Catholic is exempt, the elderly, the young, pregnant women etc. We must ask “What would Jesus do” and do it.
To understand ISIS, don’t look at Catholics who justify violence. We don’t even follow what our Founder (Who we believe is God Incarnate) said regarding violence…
“It’s God’s will…
(but we can’t quote Him on it…)”