Religion Pope on the Separation Between Church and State: Thumbs Up!
posted by April 15 at 13:53 PMon
Having recently read this long book review in the New Yorker, I was interested to learn Pope Benedict XVI (the head of a small theocracy) is apparently all about secular government, at least when it midwifes a fervently religious population:
Asked if the United States could serve as a religious model Europe and other areas of the world, the pope replied, ”Certainly Europe can’t simply copy the United States. We have our own history. We all have to learn from each other.”
But he said the United States was interesting because it “started with positive idea of secularism.”
“This new people was made of communities that had escaped official state purges and wanted a lay state, a secular state that opened the possibility for all confessions and all form of religious exercise,” he added. “Therefore it was a state that was intentionally secular. It was the exact opposite of state religion, but it was secular out of love for religion and for an authenticity that can only be lived freely.”