St Thomas More committed horrible sins for a political church
I chose St Thomas More for my saint name.
Given that I’ve spent much of my adult life as the Chosen One, and Thomas More is the patron of the Chosen Ones, this might seem obvious. Of course, Thomas More’s political career has far exceeded anything I have been able to accomplish.
He was an internationally recognized thinker, who for a short time became the Chancellor of England.
He was also a martyr who gave his life rather than take the oath that Henry VIII was the new head of the church.
There is much to admire in Thomas More. It seems an obvious choice for the name Saint for someone who had started working in political campaigns at the age of 15 and continued until running for office myself and then holding that position for 18 years old.
Everything made sense.
I did not choose Thomas More because he was the patron saint of politicians. I chose him because he was a man who had done terrible things and been egregious – and I mean odious mistakes – as a politician, and yet, by the grace of God, I still managed to enter heaven.
Thomas More made the mistake that devout people often make by following his religious leaders, even when they were using it and lying about what their faith really requires. The Christian religious leaders who attempt to seize control of political power and use the faith of their followers to trade at the table of political power are the spiritual twins of the Pharisees who murdered Christ.
They always – and I mean still – end up being a force for evil and destruction. They always – and I mean still – demand a kind of senseless fanaticism from their followers, especially and especially from members of their faith who hold political power, which gets people killed.
Thomas More abused the power of his political office to auction off a corrupt and evil political Catholic Church. He burned people at the stake because they questioned the teaching authority of the Church. He decreed the most vile, sadistic, and cruel judicial murders in the name of spiritually dead clerics who colluded with satan, not with Jesus.
Read the Gospels. Jesus healed the blind, raised the dead, Healed lepers, saved women from being stoned for adultery, ate with sinners and spoke bluntly Give Caesar (government) what is Caesar’s. Give to God what is God’s.
Jesus clearly spoke in favor of the separation of church and state when he said this. Jesus said to Pilate My Kingdom is not of this world.
He asked his disciples to go to all nations. Baptize them in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach them what I have taught you.
There is no record that Jesus ever blinded anyone. He never gave leprosy to anyone. He never sent a sinner away and told him he was too dirty and a sinner to be near Him. Jesus never killed anyone. He suffered a horrific death and never lifted a finger to hurt his attackers.
How do you go from the Jesus of the Gospels to a Church that uses the government to burn those it hates at the stake?
St Thomas More fell into the hole of accepting the lies of his religious leaders when they told him that the Church belongs to politics; that political power should be exercised by priests and bishops. He believed in the evil lies of the evil religious leaders. And he abused the power he got through his God-given political talent to do horrible things to his fellow men in the name of these religious leaders.
He believed in the lie that political bishops, when using the faith of their followers to buttress their own earthly power, speak in the name of God, even when what they say reeks of sulfur.
It is for this, and not his martyrdom, that I have chosen Thomas More as a saint. I chose him because he’s a stunning example of the fact that no matter how hard you try to do the right thing, you’re going to stumble and fall for the wrong thing, and when you have political power, that wrong thing hurt other people.
I chose him because I knew his weakness, his fallibility, his great and terrible sins which he committed by blindly obeying his very evil and sinful church leaders could and will happen to anyone.
I chose it for these reasons. And then I forgot.
I fell into the abyss of following the Church when I should have thought for myself. I did not – and would not have – enacted deliberate legislative murder at the behest of my religious leaders as Thomas More did. I had his example to warn me of this.
I know that if the bishops had demanded that I cover up their crimes of allowing sex offenders to moleste children, I would have balked, even if it made me an outcast in the church. I have breaking points, and this is one. In fact, the Church’s love affair with rapists and sexual predators such as Trump and Kavanaugh has been my breaking point.
But I’ve fallen deep into the abyss thinking that Church teaching has relieved me of the responsibility of weighing the statements of bishops with the same sallow eye I use when looking at the selfish demands of allegiance. another power broker. I took them literally and saw them as priests. I believed, without seeking proof, in the authenticity of their intention. It took Kavanaugh to show me that they weren’t just politicians; they were corrupt politicians.
The truth is that the Catholic bishops played a huge role in ushering in the hellish destruction of public morals that we are currently experiencing. Not only did they preside over the destruction of public morals, but they supported those who did. They used moral blackmail to coerce their followers into supporting the monsters.
I tottered and tottered over whether or not to leave the Church. This is still an open question. The reason I don’t is because I’m really Catholic. I believe in the teachings of the Church. I am called by Christ in the Eucharist.
But I realized something about bishops that they won’t admit themselves. Many of them are corrupted by right-wing power and money. Some of them are downright unemployed for fascist money. Worse still, bishops who are not corrupt are unwilling or unable to stand up to those who are.
I decided after Kavanaugh’s confirmation that if bishops want to be politicians, then Ok. That’s how I will assess what they say and do, as politicians.
My holy name is Thomas More. I chose him because he called me with his terrible mistakes, with the horrible sins he committed while trying to do the right thing. Thomas More made heartless, cruel, sadistic, hideous things to his fellow human beings in the name of a corrupt and politicized Church that told him that burning people at the stake was justice.
And then he became a saint because he wouldn’t deny his faith, even if it meant his death.
Thomas More is a perfect saint for any politician. It is also a perfect cautionary tale for any bishop.
Bishops who are not corrupt; who don’t take money from the right to lie about Jesus to their followers and give fascism the vote, must stand up against their fellow bishops who are corrupt. Now is not the time to agree.
The Church failed with Hitler. The Church failed with Pinochet. The Church failed with Trump. And the Church is failing again with this neo-Nazi fascism that has taken over the Republican Party and is trying to destroy American democracy.
If America falls under fascism, the whole Western world risks collapsing. We are witnessing a wave of evil that is so great it could engulf humanity.
And bishops and evangelicals used their confident supporters to let him in.