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The Bureaucracy of the Catholic Church
http://forums.avemariaradio.net/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=29197
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Author:  Edward Pothier [ Mon Mar 07, 2005 1:46 pm ]
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coolmk20x wrote:
but not all religions are bureaucratic. Islam, Judaism, and maybe the eastern religions all lack the bureaucratic structure of the Catholic Church, yet they continue to exist perfectly in doctrinal unity. Islam only has political differences, not theological. Judaism is divided in that the reform and conservative branches seperated, but even if we look at orthodox Judaism, which to my knowledge lacks a bureaucratic structure, it maintains doctrinal unity. So is a bureaucratic structure necessary to the doctrinal unity of a religious community?


While I do not deny that we in the Catholic Church have carried the bureaucracy and institutionalization of a religion to the Nth degree, I question whether any religion is completely un-bureaucratic and un-institutionalized (and I am primarily considering these words to be closely related, overlapping if not synonymous).

No one can deny that the Catholic Church, despite whatever claims are made/denied about a divine component, has a bureaucracy and institutionalization. From the Vatican through the dioceses and parishes it is obvious. But even a supposedly-independent store-front church is also institutionalized. It usually has a leader, even if rotating among the members. It agrees to meet together for worship at a given time and place. Even if it claims not to have a "liturgy" in the same sense as the so-called liturgical churches, one would find common repetitive words and actions in the worship.

In non-Christian religions such as Judaism and Islam, there is also institutionalization. In Orthodox Judaism there is the handing on of "ordination" of the rabbi as teacher and interpreter of the Torah. Even the use of a canon of sacred texts implies some institutionalization.

While the degree of institutionalization and bureaucracy can vary among religions, to deny that it exists in a particular religion (unless it is a purely idiosyncratic, one person, religion) is delusion.


Edward Pothier

Author:  tobit [ Tue Mar 08, 2005 12:29 am ]
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coolmk20x wrote:
how so? He argues that such thinker were reacting to the establishment of that time; the Catholic hierarchy and its adaptation of Aristotle's and Ptolemy's science and philosophy. He said Galileo would not have been problematic in the Islamic world because they never literally interpreted the classical cosmological view, as did midevil christianity.


Well if your nutty professor is right how come the great scientist came from the christian west and not Islam where are the scientific advancements of Islam if they are so open to science. Your professor is worse than a fundamentilist which is what I thought he was he is a post modernist wishing to reframe history in a different context that what really happened. THe catholic church financed Copernicus and his theories heck they financed Galileo until he started to bash the church interpretation of the Bible as being in conflict with Copernicus. Copernicus never pitted the two against each other thus his research was okayed and permittted and financed by the church. Most scientific research up until Galilleo was financed by the catholic church it was a lead supporter of science till Gallielo messed that up for everybody.
The church had a long history of financing art, medicine, art etc to further western civilization post modernist completly erase this reality from their history classes they want you to beleive if we were under a differnet religion we would be far better off your professor suggest Isalm is he kiddding right? Look at Islamic society and its lack of advancement in all these fields how supportive is Islam of such fields their is nothing superior in the Islamic view of its holy text than the catholic view.
Your professor is an idiot and you will be too if you don't question what is being spoon fed to you.

Author:  tobit [ Tue Mar 08, 2005 12:42 am ]
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coolmk20x wrote:
but not all religions are bureaucratic. Islam, Judaism, and maybe the eastern religions all lack the bureaucratic structure of the Catholic Church, yet they continue to exist perfectly in doctrinal unity. Islam only has political differences, not theological. Judaism is divided in that the reform and conservative branches seperated, but even if we look at orthodox Judaism, which to my knowledge lacks a bureaucratic structure, it maintains doctrinal unity. So is a bureaucratic structure necessary to the doctrinal unity of a religious community?


Your kidding right? The different Islamic schools are going to war against fellow Muslims daily or do you not watch the news? Sunni versus Shihitte, Wahabism verses Sufis etc There are 73 main sects not to medntion the many other subsects of Isalm. Some pray to the Virgian Mary some ban music even bird singing from their religious environment.
Some are liberal some are conservative as the Taliban.
Islam is as confuisng as protestantism since there is no central authroity.
Buddishm is similar the ones in Tibet recognize the Dalmi Lama as their leader the ones in Idnia wouldn't recognized him as any sort of leader.
Judaims is extremely fragmented there are Orthodox Jews, conserative Jews and Liberal Jews. In Orthodox Judaism you can't speak to woman unless your closely related to her in Liberal Judaism they now have Women as Rabbis.
WHoever your getting your information is giving you a bad bill of goods. Please read some objective resources other than the stuff your nutty professor is giving you.

OF course the catholic church is going to have a bureacry its the home of 1 billion people worldwide no other institution comes close.
It has large head because it needs one it organization is one of the best in the world many governments acutally marvel on how the church does what it does when they can't hande their little countires.
Look at the protestant churches and how many divisions they have this is what happens when you don't have strong leadership.

Author:  coolmk20x [ Tue Mar 08, 2005 12:25 pm ]
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well the Islamic divisions are political, not theological. The sunnis and the shiites follow the same rule of faith (I trust what my muslim friend told me).

So are you saying that in order to have unity in a large community of people (like the Church), you need a bureaucratic system?

Author:  Zach [ Tue Mar 08, 2005 12:39 pm ]
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In my experence in a small non-denominational church (of which I was once a member), bureaucracy does exist. There are people fighting for pastor positions, chances to be missionaries, and to carry influence in the individual congregation. Even if you don't see it, bureaucracy is in every institution, no matter how small.

Author:  Cardinal Fang [ Tue Mar 08, 2005 1:39 pm ]
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coolmk20x wrote:
well the Islamic divisions are political, not theological. The sunnis and the shiites follow the same rule of faith (I trust what my muslim friend told me).

So are you saying that in order to have unity in a large community of people (like the Church), you need a bureaucratic system?


Cool, the way I look at it is:

It is not so much that you need a bureaucratic system in a large community of people, which it could be argued you do, but a large community of people naturally develops a bureaucratic system. It does so because there are people of differing abilities and charisms in the community, and in order for the community to live in harmony, some order must be generated or imposed. A community cannot exist in chaos; someone will step to the fore.

Author:  Doom [ Tue Mar 08, 2005 2:02 pm ]
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coolmk20x wrote:
well the Islamic divisions are political, not theological. The sunnis and the shiites follow the same rule of faith (I trust what my muslim friend told me).



Absolute nonsense. There are MAJOR theological differences between the 73 Islamic sects. Some are more strict that others, some place a higher degree of emphasis on secular political questions etc.... there are major, major theological differences.

Author:  coolmk20x [ Tue Mar 08, 2005 4:50 pm ]
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Doom, can you provide proof that there are 73 Islamic sects? My friend insists that all of Islam is united under one rule of faith without the presence of a bureaucratic system, because the Koran is clear enough to the extent that each Muslim can read it and come up with the same understandings. This sounds absurd, but she insisted that is true. I am doing some research into this because it does not sound feasible.

Author:  torn [ Tue Mar 08, 2005 6:16 pm ]
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Quote:
My friend insists that all of Islam is united under one rule of faith without the presence of a bureaucratic system, because the Koran is clear enough to the extent that each Muslim can read it and come up with the same understandings. This sounds absurd,


It sounds absurd because it is absurd.

Author:  Doom [ Tue Mar 08, 2005 8:13 pm ]
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coolmk20x wrote:
Doom, can you provide proof that there are 73 Islamic sects? My friend insists that all of Islam is united under one rule of faith without the presence of a bureaucratic system, because the Koran is clear enough to the extent that each Muslim can read it and come up with the same understandings. This sounds absurd, but she insisted that is true. I am doing some research into this because it does not sound feasible.


Your friend is either badly misinformed or lying. (And, I hate to tell you this but since Islam holdfs that lying to infidel is morally permissible, the latter is more likely.) That there are 73 Islamic sects is a common description given by Muslims themselves, here is just one link about it, to an Islamic website:

http://www.shiachat.com/forum/lofiversi ... 24719.html

Author:  1HCaAC [ Tue Mar 08, 2005 11:58 pm ]
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coolmk20x wrote:
when did the Church get bureaucratic?


Actually, I think it is not bureaucratic, it is hierarchical. But your question still stands. I do not know the answer. I would add as a follow-on question, when did the magisterium become recognized and called such?

Author:  coolmk20x [ Wed Mar 16, 2005 10:19 pm ]
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it seems that if Christ established the Church to be a visible human community, that the be bureaucracy was established by the Apostle’s themselves.

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