Religion and Spirituality

Paedophiles, Millstones and Hellfire

I just couldn’t resist sharing this short article on the Pope’s promises of hellfire for priests who abuse children. In the article, the Pope promised that the punishment awaiting the priests in Hell was greater than the secular death penalty.

As Ben Goldacre put it on Twitter

“you will be punished… in my imaaaagination”

But actually, the funniest part of this article is the punishment Monsignor Scicluna recommends:

Scicluna added that those who hurt children should be thrown into the sea with a millstone around their neck.

That’s positively medieval and arbitrary enough that it probably aligns rather well with the rest of their doctrines. No doubt the chorus of laughter at this arbitrariness would drown out the crash of the waves as the paedophiles would sink down. Of course, now one has to wonder where to get all the millstones… eBay?

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  1. June 3, 2010 at 6:06 am —

    Hmm, I’m going to guess and say that was a reference to Matthew 18:6 –

    “But if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a large millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.” – NIV

    So it makes a certain kind of sense for someone steeped in bible lore to make that connection. The passage does have a ring of blaming the victim though- it still assumes the child is committing the sin.

  2. June 3, 2010 at 8:56 am —

    In the absence of a millstone, a cinderblock will work just fine.

  3. Lyra Lynx
    June 8, 2010 at 9:17 am —

    “In his sermon, he also suggested that priests who covered up abuse committed by colleagues would also face the fires of hell.”

    Does this mean the Pope is going to hell too?

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