Beatifying Pope John Paul IIJanuary 16, 2011 at 1:05 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
Tags: beatification, Beatification of Pope John Paul II, Communism, Donna Haraway, downfall of Communism, International Movement We Are Church, Pope John Paul II, the god trick
I am not enormously enthusiastic about the beatification of Pope John Paul II which, we learned this week, is scheduled for May. JPII was a very smart man and deserves a great deal of the credit for making Roman Catholicism the second largest religious group on earth. And he is certainly a celebrity for many.
He also reversed, or at least undercut, the ground-breaking, hope-inspiring work of Vatican Council II. He not only spearheaded the defeat of Communism in Eastern Europe, he also learned from Communism, and from a career in the Roman Catholic hierarchy, how to control millions of people. Beatifying, and then quickly canonizing him, is an example in action of what feminist philosopher of science Donna Haraway called “the god trick.” People divinize those who embody a way of life to their own benefit. The current pope justifies his unilateral decisions by beatifying somebody who did the same sort of thing before him.
I could go into more detail about the actions of JPII that cause me to say all this, but the International Movement We Are Church has done an excellent job of outlining most of what I would say on its webpage. Why don’t you check it out?