It looks likely the Popenfuhrer will take the advice of his experts and amend the Catholic church’s stance on limbo, the nebulous state between salvation with God and damnation in Hell (where at least you can get a decent drink and listen to some good rock’n’roll). Specifically they seem a little concerned that the understanding that babies who die before being baptised go straight to limbo should be amended, not least because it increases the suffering of bereft parents who are devout believers (although why you would choose to believe in a god of love who has just taken your baby is something I’ll never understand). It’s never actually been official church teaching and has no basis in the Bible, but that hasn’t stopped a lot of people believing it over the years (bit like the Rapture that millions of intellectually feeble folks, especially in the US, believe in, despite having no basis in the Bible which they purport to take literally – another example of the contradictory nature of organised religion).
There are some commenters saying that this whole exercise is a cynical marketing move to improve the appeal of the Catholic church in Third World countries where there is a large amount of infant mortality and, coincidentally, countries where more are turning to Islam. Naturally the church denies this. I can’t help but also think it is a bid to improve their appearance in the West too; after all, no-one is going to like a group of people who tell grieving parents their dead baby can’t go to Heaven, are they? But mostly I think this whole intellectual exercise illustrates the sheer folly of unquestioning belief in organised religion (not least believing the Pontiff is magically infallible when he takes the Holy office – isn’t that almost blasphemous to assume that a mere human can never be wrong? Isn’t that a faculty reserved only for God??). I mean, what happens to all those souls that since the Middle Ages are held to be trapped in Limbo?
Does this change mean the older church stance was wrong and they never were in limbo? And if so, where did those souls go? Heaven? Hell? Can they get into Heaven without being baptised? If several hundred years of teaching were wrong on this then what else is false? Just as when the same church had to finally allow that the Earth really did orbit the sun, thus disputing centuries of belief and dogma, it invites the question of how valid can any of the structures the church has built actually be? And why do so many still follow without question like sheep? Perhaps they are the lambs Christians go on about?!? Or perhaps they are just too terrified to question because then belief collapses like a house of cards and they would have to take respnsibility for their own soul and explore belief themselves instead of being told what to believe? Isn’t all of this a prime example of what happens when you construct an idea on false grounds, just like the aforementioned Helio-centric universe which simple observation of the stars and planets disproved, it requires constant additions and alterations to try and make the entire wobbly structure stay upright in the face of legitimate questioning. And thus we have the lesson of the foolish man who built his religious dogma-house on sand… I’m so glad I’m a Seventh Day Cartoonist; now, my sisters and brothers, go in peace and may the Great Animator ensure you never run off a cliff while wearing Acme jet skates.