Specifically, when I’m out after 9 p.m., I like to listen to EWTN’s open-line call-in show, where a priest or other host answers listerners’ doctrinal questions. The perspective often is fascinating, as the questions and answers frequently focus on Catholic doctrines with which I’m either totally or mostly unfamiliar. The show also comes from a conservative, even fundamentalist background, which leads to plenty of eyebrow-raising while I’m running whatever errand I’m on.
One of those moments came the other night, when the host – I don’t remember her name – piggybacked on Pope Benedict XVI’s Sunday sermon on insincerity. Benedict called insincerity a mark of the devil, apparently using Judas’ failure to stop following Jesus after he stopped believing in him as an example because Jesus calls Judas a devil in John 6. Let’s set aside the fact that Jesus also calls Peter the devil, and that insincerity is perhaps the least of the reasons Jesus would call Judas a devil – betrayal, hypocrisy, lack of concern about the poor all spring to mind.
The host used the point to jump into a talk about people who teach error, even if they do so sincerely. And she listed several of the things people teach that she – and the Catholic Church – find erroneous. Here are some of those, as best I can remember:
- That the Bible is not the inerrant Word of God
- That abortion is not murder
- That gay people should have marriage rights
- That oral contraceptives do not lead to breast cancer.
And that’s where the eyebrow went up.