Thursday, April 01, 2010

All in the Name of Religion (My Easter Sermon)

(CNN) -- A Malaysian model who was sentenced last year to six strokes of a cane for drinking beer in public has had her sentence commuted, her lawyer said Thursday.

Kartika Sari Dewi Shukarno will now instead be required to perform three weeks of community service -- beginning Friday. The sentencing drew headlines worldwide at the time and caused an uproar, with many citing it as an example of growing fundamentalism in the multiracial country.
Muslims -- who make up about 60 percent of the 28 million who populate the country -- are forbidden from consuming alcohol. Other religious groups are exempt.

As one of my favourite preachers (Bart Simpson) once said "Dad if we are praying to the wrong god we are screwed".  And one of lifes largest sacrifices giving up drinking beer. Thats a bit of a red herring, with the biggest sacrifice here is that she is a woman 

And then there is the Catholic Church

It seems to me," he wrote, "that we owe Pope Benedict a great debt of gratitude for introducing the procedures that have helped the church to take action in the face of the scandal of priestly sexual abuse of minors."


And yes there may be steps taken, very tiny baby steps to a crime of literally molestation of children. The most vulnerable of our society. We retroactivley try war criminals, why not people in the church.

On the "Belief in God —Darwin
Religion. — There is no evidence that man was aboriginally endowed with the ennobling belief in the existence of an Omnipotent God. On the contrary there is ample evidence, derived not from hasty travellers, but from men who have long resided with savages, that numerous races have existed, and still exist, who have no idea of one or more gods, and who have no words in their languages to express such an idea. The question is of course wholly distinct from that higher one, whether there exists a Creator and Ruler of the universe; and this has been answered in the affirmative by some of the highest intellects that have ever existed."

But as this time of year is bit paradoxical. I love religion but I am not religious. I have a hard time with Easter as with the resurrection.  I have a hard time believing it  or translating the intended metaphor. But with a church does come community and a common good as opposed to a common foe and in it all I see the inherent self worth of every person I walk this planet with. We all matter. And I gave thanks to our minister who teaches an open mind and an open heart.  He is an inspiration.

Where the easter bunny fits into this is a conundrum to me. And peeps, I guess its about putting faith in your peeps, your community, your friends and family.