Station XV: Episode 61 — The butler did it, and so did the German bishops

The 15th Station podcast

The magic of the Internet brings Don, James and Gavin together for this month’s episode of The 15th Station, in which the papal butler’s conviction, the sale of a Catholic school to a Muslim education trust and the German bishops’ ruling that Catholics who stop paying a Church tax can’t receive the sacraments all get a run. That story has us a bit stumped, so this blog post (or this one) can offer a more learned exposition of the situation. We also chat about the changing religious landscape in Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city, and revisit the evolving story of the fresco restoration fail.

  • Barbmom6

    Hi Guys,
    Just listened to this podcast last night, and I have to say I was yelling at my ipod in the van when you were having your debate about the religion tax in Germany.  You didn’t hear me, I’m guessing.  What I was yelling was that you all had the whole thing totally wrong!  First of all, the issue shouldn’t be whether you should still be able to receive the sacraments if you don’t pay the religion tax.  I believe the local Church in Germany should be against any religion tax at all, whether or not it hurts their coffers. People shouldn’t be forced to give to any religious organization, it totally negates what Christ said about giving from our want, and not our surplus, and giving with a generous heart.  It kind of made me think of teachers’ gifts at Christmas.  If I buy or make a gift for a teacher for Christmas, it’s a generous act of giving on my part and really benefits us both.  But if the room mom sends me an email telling me we are getting a gift card for the teacher, and I am required to donate a specific amount, my end of the gift giving goes away, and only the teacher reaps the rewards. 
    Also, when you commented on what the Vatican had to say on this subject, you misunderstood the intent and meaning of their words.  They were not really commenting on the , moral correctness of the tax, but rather saying that any Catholic, who for whatever reason publicly denounces their membership in the Church, has separated themselves so much from the Church that they cannot validly participate in the Sacraments or Church activities until they formally undo that renouncement.  So whether I publicly say I am not a member of the Catholic Church to get out of paying a tax, or so that my new pagan friends willl accept me into their club, or for whatever reason, I have done the separating, and I can’t participate until I undo it.  
    Sorry to be so verbose, hope you get my point.  Keep up the podcasting.  I enjoy hearing a more international perspective on all the goings on.

The 15th Station is our active monthly news podcast.  We get a panel of Kiwi Catholics together to provide a Catholic perspective on the news and current events of the month.
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