shutterstock_65854315I often struggle with what I am going to teach my children about religion. I am not a very religious person, but I don’t consider myself an atheist either. I want my children to make their own decisions about their spiritual path as they grow older. Above all, I want them to be kind, accepting people. At least I’ll have some good examples of how I don’t want them to think and act. Pope Benedict XVI is really providing a great example of how “not to be” religious. Thanks, Pope.

For the second time in two weeks he struck out against gay marriage. Last week, in his annual “peace message,” he singled out abortion, euthanasia, and gay marriage as “crimes against life.” Friday, he “pressed his opposition to gay marriage … denouncing what he described as people eschewing their God-given gender identities to suit their sexual choices – and destroying the very ‘essence of the human creature’ in the process.” It’s really nice that he’s trying to spread the paramount messages of the bible – love and non-judgement – right before the holidays. Oh wait, no he’s not. He’s basically telling a huge segment of the population they are unnatural, spiritual criminals who are all going to hell. Merry Christmas!

What’s really the most amazing part of his “peace message,” is that he doesn’t blame his ideologies on his spiritual beliefs – but rather claims to be right because that’s just the way it is. So there.

These principles are not truths of faith, nor are they simply a corollary of the right to religious freedom. They are inscribed in human nature itself, accessible to reason and thus common to all humanity. The Church’s efforts to promote them are not therefore confessional in character, but addressed to all people, whatever their religious affiliation.

Just to be clear, even if you don’t subscribe to the guilt-fest that is Catholicism, you’re still going to hell, whatever your “religious affiliation.” Okay? Even if you don’t believe in it, you’re going there. Happy Holidays! So if I want to teach my children how to be a narrow-minded, obstinate, hate-spewing, jerks – I know whose direction to point them in.

This is my problem with some organized religion. I can’t help but think of all of this during the holidays, what with the birth of Christ and all. How do I teach my child to be a kind, accepting human being, and hold up someone like the Pope as an example? In my opinion, I can’t. Which is why whatever religion my children choose, I sure hope they don’t take this guy seriously.

(photo: MIMMO FERRARO/ Shutterstock.com)