View from the choir

I am a Catholic layperson and Secular Franciscan with a sense of humor. After years in the back pew watching, I have moved into the choir. It's nice to see faces instead of the backs of heads. But I still maintain God has a sense of humor - and that we are created in God's image.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Vatican "comments" on anti-Mohammad cartoons

The Vatican has issued a statement that, while diplomatically worded, basically condemns the publication in some Western newspapers of caricatures of the prophet Mohammed.

The statement from the Vatican press office notes, “ The right to freedom of thought and expression, sanctioned by the Declaration of the Rights of Man, cannot imply the right to offend the religious sentiment of believers. This principle applies obviously for any religion.”

It says, “these forms of exasperated criticism or derision of others manifest a lack of human sensitivity and may constitute in some cases an inadmissible provocation.”

At the same time, the statement goes on to say, “violent actions of protest are equally deplorable. Reaction in the face of offense cannot fail the true spirit of all religion. Real or verbal intolerance, no matter where it comes from, as action or reaction, is always a serious threat to peace.”

I wish the statement had more directly addressed the situation instead of sounding like a perfunctory response to press questions.

I doubt it will do much to ease tensions or end the violence.

But given the current climate, I don’t know if even a strongly worded statement would have helped.


Post a Comment

<< Home