Station XV: Episode 108 — Popes, Saints, Veeps and Zuck

The 15th Station podcast

The canonisation of Mother Teresa — now St Teresa of Calcutta — was the big news story of the month, and it takes top billing in this episode of The 15th Station. But news of two Popes isn’t too far behind, after an interview with Pope Benedict was released, prompting a flurry of media stories. For Pope Francis, it was him being chosen as the world’s most inspirational leader by former NZ Prime Minister Helen Clark and his meeting with Mark Zuckerberg that features on the show. And, with less than two months until the US election, Democrat VP candidate Tim Kaine raised eyebrows with his prediction the Catholic Church might eventually join the ranks of those who support same-sex marriage. Find out if Don, James and Gavin disagree.

  • Jacob Mason

    Great show, gentlemen. Thank you again for your work, dedication, and love for the Church. Just a few points for James regarding American political parties:
    First, you cannot equate prudential judgements with moral absolutes. The Church teaches that the death penalty is a prudential judgement. (CCC 2266: “…the Church has acknowledged as well-founded the right and duty of legitimate public authority to punish malefactors by means of penalties commensurate with the gravity of the crime, not excluding, in cases of extreme gravity, the death penalty.”)
    Abortion is an absolute moral evil. Homosexual acts, while perhaps not always culpable, are an absolute moral evil.
    Again, even among moral absolutes there is a hierarchy. Some are more important than others, as the great Archbishop Chaput said “Here’s a simple exercise in basic reasoning. On a spectrum of bad things to do, theft is bad, assault is worse, and murder is worst…Humanity’s priority right — the one that undergirds all other rights — is the right to life.”

    Secondly, the Republican party is not against welfare or social justice, but against these things at a federal level. The US government is incredibly bad at top-down national policies (unsurprising in such a massive and diverse nation), and the Republican principle of limited government is the basis of this (in my opinion reasonable and charitable) federal policy against massive welfare legislation.
    The federal government here has a history of turning every special interest group it tries to assist into permanent wards of the state.

    While Trump may not be a solid ideological candidate, the Republican party platform is morally superior in every clear case to the Democrat’s. Admittedly there are a few issues, immigration perhaps the most notable where the Democrat consensus is closer to the local Church’s line. But these are entirely prudential matters, where we are called to exercise our own educated judgement. The Church is only authoritative in matters of faith and morals, not economics and global politics…

    This is generally recognized here in the US. A Gallup poll in 2004 showed that of Catholics who attend church weekly, republicans outnumber democrats 2-1.

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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