Time Magazine’s dopey and erroneous remarks about Pope Benedict

Time Magazine chooses, usually poorly, some “person of the year”.  Time this year included Benedict XVI among “people who matter”, indicating his “Highs” and “Lows”.

Time usually gets things about the Catholic Church wrong.  I suspect they do that on purpose.  This time, however, I think the writer just doesn’t have a clue.

First, ask yourself by what criteria things are “high” or “low”.

My emphases and comments:

Highs: While [This means “in spite of the fact that”, which means that what follows is bad…] the Pope remains firm on his decree that ordaining women as priests is a grave crime (the same designation given to pedophilia), [This is just plain dopey.  That fact that the crime of pretending to ordain a woman is a grave crime, that doesn’t mean that it is as bad, or is as bad in the same way, as the crime of harming a child.] he was willing to loosen up [how clever the writer is] — albeit ever so slightly — on another firmly-held edict. [Again, this is dopey.  The Church’s teaching about the use of contraceptives is not an “edict”.  But watch for this slight of hand.  She pretends to be making a knowledgeable distinction and then falls flat on her face again. ] But while [There’s that “while” as “in spite of” again…] headlines around the world claimed Pope Benedict XVI endorsed the use of condoms, what the Pope actually said [Oh those rascally headlines!] was a bit different.  [And here she gooooooes!] He still strongly disapproves of condom use as contraception, and said only that a male prostitute may choose to use a condom to prevent the spread of the HIV infection[She is either a dope or is purposely distorting the facts.  She can’t have missing the numberless explanations of the Holy Father’s remarks, clarifications from the Holy See.  The Pope said that, in that instance, were a male prostitute to choose to use a condom that choice would be a first step towards a more human morality.  He stated clearly that condoms are not a solution to anything.  But, for the writer, that was a “high”!]

Lows:  [If those were “highs” what are the “lows”?] Accusations of sexual abuse first from Ireland and later mainland Europe smashed any remaining perception that predatory priests were an American anomaly [HUH?  Who thought they were restricted to the Americans?  Also, the very idea of the “predatory priest” is itself the anomaly. They are a tiny percentage of priests, and not greater than the incidence of predators who prey on minors than in other religious groups or sectors of life. ] and thrust the Vatican into its greatest crisis since the 2002 revelations of abuse in the U.S. The scandal brought the church’s standing to a new low [I am surprised this isn’t a “high” for Time, given the other “highs”.] among believers in Europe and, in March when allegations surfaced in Germany, turned the spotlight on the Pontiff himself. [Here we go again… the same twisting of the facts…] It seems 30 years ago, during a brief tenure in Munich, the Pope, then Archbishop Joseph Ratzinger, had transferred a known abusive priest to his own archdiocese, ostensibly for therapy. But just days after his arrival, the priest was allowed to serve among the flock and subsequent sexual assaults occurred. While Benedict has done a number of substantial things to deal with the crisis, including meeting with abuse victims and accepting the resignation of high-ranking clerics, he remains silent on his time in Germany. [Nasty, that.  This implies that, just because the Pope isn’t gabbling about it, he must be guilty of something.  Again, there were numerous explanations and clarifications.   But all we have here is a baseless “J’accuse!”]
—Kayla Webley

For shame, Kayla.

And, oh yes, Time named Mark Elliot Zuckerberg as Person of the Year.   Discerning lot, those editors of Time.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. lhwhitaker says:

    >>>She can’t have missing the numberless explanations of the Holy Father’s remarks, clarifications from the Holy See.

    Don’t you think that it’s at least part of the problem that the Holy See must make numerous remarks and clarifications about the Pope’s statement? Doesn’t this suggest that the initial statement was unclear? After all, one need not make “numberless explanations” and “clarifications” about a statement which is clear and precise. But the “everyone’s Anti-Catholic” argument is a lot more fun, isn’t it?

  2. Ismael says:

    Like the Ecclesiaster 1:9 says:
    “What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.”

    As usual stupid journalists write stupid articles baesd on ignorance…

    BTW: some recently shown documents have shown that Ratzinger cracked down hard in the end of 80’s early 90’s when it came down to sexual abuse committed by clergymen.

  3. I never even heard of Mark Elliot Zuckerberg. I think Time is becoming less and less relevant. It’s a shame– I was just listening to my collection of Dick and Bert commercials from the late ’70s and their Time commercials were outstanding. It’s too bad that the magazine no longer meets that high standard.

  4. Joe in Canada says:

    Who is Mark Elliot Zuckerberg?

  5. That people of the world is so tiresome. They persist in the same errors again and again.

  6. benedetta says:

    It reads like a gossip column. That is what these weeklies have been reduced to. Add this to just another erroneous headline and tidbit category.

    Ismael and paula, you both have great blogs going there!

  7. Young Canadian RC Male says:

    Wow Father, this has to be the entry of the year where you’ve “spilled the most blood” a.k.a. painted almost the whole article in your flowing red commentary.

  8. teomatteo says:

    These educated reporters/writers. I’m piqued by so much but the word ‘ostensibly’ draws my quiriosity. Does she mean by that ‘to pretend’, to give a false impression that therapy was just there for show and a ‘we don’t care’ attitude was at play? (so much for ‘therapy). Who was the victim of the assault by the way? She seems to leave that item out (they ALL do).
    Yes, who is Mark Zuckerberg?

  9. rhetoric57 says:

    Well, TIME has made some great choices down the years:

    1938 – Adolf Hitler
    1939 – Joseph Stalin

    Pope John XXIII was recognised in 1962 ad Pope John Paul II in 1994.

    For those wondering, Mark Zuckerberg is the face behind Facebook.

  10. HighMass says:

    Time Magazine is so out of touch with reality…………Pope Benedict has done so much good, but they dont’ acknowlege one thing positive about this Holy Man. We who follow his teaching of the Holy Gospel know the truth and I guess that is all that matters. Didn’t Jesus say “if the world hates you know that it hated me before you???”

    God Bless our HOLY FATHER, the Pope of Christian Unity.

  11. HighMass says:

    Sorry I meant to say Acknowledge…..my typing…:(

  12. Supertradmum says:

    I am not surprised, as anti-Catholicism is at an all time high. The Pope suffers for all of us, God Bless Him. Let us commentators here declare him the Man of the Year on Father Z’s blog. Here is my vote!

  13. HighMass says:


    He Has mine also! :)

  14. TJerome says:

    Time Magazine, is not a credible news publication. It’s a left-wing loon publication, for, well left-wing loons.

  15. irishgirl says:

    Supertradmum and High Mass,
    I third that motion! Our Holy Father Benedict deserves to be made ‘Man Of The Year’!
    Of course, TIME won’t do that–it’s a left-leaning publication, anyway.

  16. MaryMaria says:

    Pope Benedict has my vote!!!

  17. lhwhitaker: >>>>Don’t you think that it’s at least part of the problem that the Holy See must make numerous remarks and clarifications about the Pope’s statement? Doesn’t this suggest that the initial statement was unclear?

    If you didn’t know the person making the statement, that would be a reasonable inference. But we know from all evidence that the present Holy Father is a clear thinker and a precise enunciator of his thought, even in an interview setting.

    >>>>After all, one need not make “numberless explanations” and “clarifications” about a statement which is clear and precise.

    If we didn’t know the people receiving and interpreting for the public this statement and could assume they were reasonable fair minded and intelligent, again, that would be a reasonable inference–but we happen to know they are main stream secular journalists .


  18. Traductora says:

    One of the problems is that our enemies are so dumb it’s almost embarrassing to call them on their idiotic remarks. This poor writer is probably a graduate of J-School, not evil and not even necessarily anti-Catholic, but she just limps along on her inadecuate knowledge of everything from Western Civ to the Catholic Church and says what is the received wisdom in her circle.

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