Jesus ‘n’ Mo ‘n’ spirits

September 11, 2019 • 9:00 am

Today’s Jesus and Mo strip, called “angel”, came with this note:

Today’s story comes from behind The Times paywall. Summary: the Pope is trying to approve “spirit worship” to tackle the shortage of priests in the Amazon, and traditionalists are against it!

I can’t get access to the full Times story, nor could I find it anywhere else, but here’s a screenshot of what’s available:

Now I’m not sure what “spirit worship” is, but in the strip below Jesus seems to think it’s the spirits venerated by people in the Amazon, in which case they would be pagan spirits. At any rate, Jesus sees through the Papal ruse:

22 thoughts on “Jesus ‘n’ Mo ‘n’ spirits

    1. Still today, in Southern Europe (e.g Italy) religious people needing something difficult to get (like their football team winning) would pray their favorite saint rather than god. I think the Catholic church was never completely monotheistic.

      1. Luigi Scrosoppi is supposed to be the patron saint of footballers. However, I suppose he has to remain impartial and not help any one side more than the other.

    2. A large dose of pantheism (among the faithful) would probably do a good deal of good as far as preserving the Amazon forest is concerned. In any case syncretism is rampant in Brazilian religions, with the notable and dangerous exception of unforgiving hard-core Pentecostals and other stripes of Evangelical Protestantism.

    3. Churches taking over pre-Christian worship sites? Who’d’a’thunk’it ? The people of Midmar
      Midmar? (and it’s oh-so-subtle Balblair stone, delicately shielded from the kirk by a belt of woodland). Sancta Maria ad Martyres? The Catedral Metropolitana de la Asunción de la Santísima Virgen María a los cielos.
      What is sauce for the goose is pretty good on the gander too. How many christian churches have been taken over by other churches, office and strip clubs in the last few decades, I don’t know but the list for England alone is over 200 strong.

  1. Chrissake, next thing you know the Church will be incorporating pagan solstice rituals in an effort to bring heathens into the fold.

      1. In terms of preparation, ayahuasca is more in the “tea” family of drinks than the beers, spirits, or … well, I’m not terribly up on ways of turning vegetable matter into drinkable matter, but I think I’ve covered most bases. Unless we’re talking about extracting alkaloids and such like chemical processing.

    1. I don’t know about you, but I think it has been far too long since the Baby Jesus Butt Plug was mentioned here.
      Hmmm, I’m not sure.

      Use him as the ultimate pacifier or …1 1/2 inches diameterHigh quality silicone

      I may be getting my languages wrong, but aren’t “pacifiers” what American’s call “dummy tits” ? But isn’t this a bit big? You’d really need to hammer it home. Which may be the point.

  2. Here’s the transcript. Sorry it’s so long:

    “The Pope is paving the way for Vatican approval of spirit-worship in a desperate attempt to tackle a shortage of priests in the Amazon, critics have claimed.

    A synod planned by Pope Francis for next month has provoked the fiercest clash yet between the pontiff and his conservative critics.

    The council is due to discuss the dearth of clergy in the Amazon as well as the fires affecting the region.

    However, Walter Brandmüller, a German cardinal, has claimed that a document prepared ahead of the synod is “heretical” because of its respect for indigenous faiths and their veneration of nature.

    “In the context of the call for harmony with nature, there is even talk about the dialogue with the spirits,” he complained in a scathing essay published in June. The 90-year-old cardinal claimed references to “Mother Earth” echoed the Hitler Youth, who he said also evoked “a pantheistic idolatry of nature”. The synod document also backs the ordaining of older married men in the Amazon as a one-off solution to a clergy shortage so severe that some remote parishes are visited by a priest only twice a year.

    Detractors fear that it is the thin end of a wedge that will lead to the acceptance of married priests throughout the church.

    Marco Tosatti, an influential conservative Catholic blogger, said: “This is a plan hatched by the German bishops who back Pope Francis to introduce married priests in the Amazon so they can then export it to Europe, justified by the shortage here.”

    The Argentine Pope, 82, was elected in 2013 and has been supported by liberal German prelates but some of their compatriots in the college of cardinals have become his enemies.

    Gerhard Müller, 71, the German former prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith who was ousted over his conservative views by Francis in 2017, joined the fray last month.

    He claimed that the working document treated Catholic faith as if it were “European opinion” and criticised the document’s focus on nature being God’s creation, a cornerstone of Francis’s green agenda.

    “Man is the centre of creation and Jesus became man, he did not become a plant,” Cardinal Müller said. “This identification of God with nature is a form of atheism, because God is independent of nature.”

    Raymond Burke, 71, an influential American conservative cardinal, described the document as an “apostasy from the Catholic faith” in a letter to cardinals. Burke and Brandmüller are well-known critics of Francis and are championed by a small but well-funded section of the US Catholic media. The Pope appeared to shrug off the attacks this week, saying he was “honoured” to be in their crosshairs.

    Mr Tosatti, however, said that critics were also to be found in the pews. “The growing unease of rank-and-file Catholics will take another step forward with this synod,” he said. “Two million fewer Italians donating to the Church in the last five years means something.”

    Austen Ivereigh, a biographer of the Pope, defended the proposals. “The Church must have an Amazonian face, just as it must have an American or British face, and there needs to be respect for local, existing relationships with God,” he said”

  3. “Two million fewer Italians donating to the Church in the last five years means something.” My Catholic friends say it’s because they’re really pissed off about the pedophilia. They’re not too concerned about spirits in the Amazon.

  4. The English anthropologist E. B. Tylor discovered already in the nineteenth century that the essence of religion is animism, that is, the belief in separable souls of physical bodies. Primitive humans elaborated the animistic hypothesis to try to explain phenomena such as death (they imagined that the body dies when the soul definitively abandons it) and the oniric appearances of the dead (it would be about encounters with spirits from beyond).
    Modern science teaches us that the animistic hypothesis constitutes a trickery, since mental life is an emergent property of bodily matter. In the more advanced countries, the percentage of believers is gradually decreasing. Religions will eventually disappear when democratic institutions and scientific knowledge have spread throughout the planet.

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