Tuesday, April 08, 2003

CASTING THE FIRST STONE
Reflecting on yesterday's Gospel, I got to thinking that a lot of those dissenting from the Holy Father's and bishops' judgement on the war in Iraq are using the suffering of the Iraqi people in the same way the Pharisees were using the prostitute. They didn't really care about her; they were using her sinfulness in order to get Jesus to sanction their violent solution to it.

In the same way, I don't think a lot of the folks expressing outrage about the terrible things Saddam does to his people would really give a darn about it if they couldn't use it to sanction the war we're facing now. But that's not enough -- they demand that the Holy Father bless this war, and say he's irrelevant if he does not.

But the Holy Father, like Jesus, refuses to see violence as the answer to sinfulness. And this refusal is not a dismissal or acquiescence to sin -- Jesus tells the woman to "refrain from this sin."

Maybe we should reflect on this before we ask the Holy Father and the bishops to bless our stone throwing.
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