Sin 2.0

Thursday, March 20, 2008

John Allen Jr., Vatican correspondent for the National Catholic Reporter and author of The Rise of Benedict XVI: The Inside Story of How the Pope Was Elected and Where He Will Take the Catholic Church, talks about the new seven social sins.


John Allen Jr.

Comments [39]


just another reminder that catholicism is a particularly odious and barbaric religion.

Mar. 21 2008 10:08 AM

Actually the church's list is quite limited. The average person probably commits 10 to 15 thousand violations of natural law a day and maybe racks up 10 to 15 thousand good deeds. So I don't agree with the church's cherry-picking a few and leaving out thousands of others.

Mar. 20 2008 03:07 PM
Edward from Long Beach

I am offended by Mr. Leher's trivialization of the seven deadly sins by rewriting them as "sins" against WNYC call in programs. Why do people, who would never even consider making sport of a Jewish or Muslim tenet, so facilely make fun of Catholics and Catholicism? Shame on you, Mr. Leher and WNYC, especially now during Holy Week. I look forward to some fasting jokes during Ramadan or some repentence quips on Yom Kippur.

Mar. 20 2008 12:40 PM
Voter from Brooklyn

Oh come on! The deadly sins for the show were a pathetic attempt at humor, at best. They made light over what could have been a very serious segment about where the Catholic church was and where it is now.

I know it was a brief segment, and the list was not meant to be absolute, but the discussion could have been deeper. Especially on the topics of the church's wealth, sexual exploitation and religious intolerance (by ALL religions)

Mar. 20 2008 12:12 PM
Aaron Osborn from Brooklyn

I want to respond to the woman who was laughing at the "silliness" of some of these new sins, dealing in particular with environmental/social sin.

I applaud the Catholic church for dealing and addressing these issues. We need vocabulary to talk about "ecocide".

The view that environmental issues are secular and don't really deal with "personal" salvation misinterprets so much of the scriptures, and history of the church. It is a sad reality of evangelicalism in America. I know there are some young evangelical congregations dealing with environmental issues, but this older generation needs to see how environmental issues are directly linked to our "personal" salvation.
We are not an island unto ourselves, but, as Paul the apostle put it, "the body of Christ".

Social sins are much more dire than personal dirty little secret sins.

Mar. 20 2008 12:04 PM
Robert from NYC

HAHAHAHA, and for the show deadly sins, saying uh, and okay, and ya know what I mean after every two words.

Mar. 20 2008 12:00 PM
chestinee from Midtown

Aren't indulgences like carbon credits? You buy your way out of your doodie.

Mar. 20 2008 12:00 PM
Nora from Hell's Kitchenette

You could even go a step further and say the Inquisition was "population control". With the added benefit that the Catholic church confiscated all the wealth and property of the heretics, making it the fabulously wealthy entity it is today...

Mar. 20 2008 11:59 AM
chestinee from Midtown

Aren't indulgences a little like trading carbon credits?

Mar. 20 2008 11:59 AM
World's Toughest Milkman from the_C_train

The Catholic church, what hypocrites...and pedophiles, and aiding and abetting no less. How about the Catholic as well as every religious organization pays taxes on all of it's properties?

I find the whole "carbon credits" concept a scam, it's pay to pollute ponzi scheme. Isn't it the domain of the EPA to enforce such standards? The EPA should be radically revamped.

Mar. 20 2008 11:58 AM
eligit from astoria

liz....they are pretty much all equally is hearing them talked about in such a logical sounding way a show that normally addresses reality that brings out the derision.

it is cognitive dissonance in action.

the greatest absurdity of all is the degree of SERIOUSNESS with witch many otherwise sane people take all this.

however.....any way that we can get the pope on our side about global warming i suppose is a good way. courses for horses.....

Mar. 20 2008 11:58 AM
Robert from NYC

BTW that John Hage friend of John McCain says extreme wealth is not a sin but a blessing. But then he's not a catholic nor is he the Pope.

Mar. 20 2008 11:58 AM
Sarah from Bklyn

"Misogyny" should be included as a sin.

The majority of victims of destruction of human beings are women.

Mar. 20 2008 11:57 AM
Kathy from Glen Cove, NY

The last three of the new social sins are pretty much redundant, or at least #5 & #7 are very similar. And why isn't something morally reprehensible like rape or intentionally hurting another person or animal actually addressed? These two issues factor much more heavily into our lives than stem cell research.

Mar. 20 2008 11:57 AM
Cappaletti from Bklyn

How ironic that the link for the article is to!

Mar. 20 2008 11:56 AM
RAI from Manhattan

I would add an eighth "social" sin: promulgating absurd lists such the Vatican's list of seven "social" sins.

Characterizing something as a "sin" is counterproductive moral posturing.

More specifically:
Items 1 and 2 are "morally dubious" themselves.
Item 3, drug abuse, is an illness, not a sin.

Mar. 20 2008 11:56 AM
Robert from NYC

And...AND has it ever occurred to the church that homosexuality is God's way to control population growth!!

Mar. 20 2008 11:56 AM
Amy from Manhattan

I never heard that indulgences were based on a "virtue surplus" on the part of the saints! So does that make them the 1st cap-and-trade system??

Mar. 20 2008 11:56 AM
Nora from Hell's Kitchenette

eligit, that would be when the ignorant masses decide to stand up and tell the church to perform a biological act upon itself. Oh, and the church better not wear a condom when it does so.

Mar. 20 2008 11:54 AM
Jennifer from Astoria, NY

Wow...I actually thought this was a great step forward before I read the list. I've always felt the Church was behind the moral compass, so to speak...but the Church's exclusion of women from the category of humanity continues. Birth control...a sin? Unbelievable...

Mar. 20 2008 11:54 AM
Matt from Bronx, NY

So virtually every molecular biologist in the country is committing the mortal sin of genetic manipulation. Genetic manipulation is the basis of virtually all medical research over the last 20 years. Catholics therefore should not be able to use any drugs whose developed through this research. Way to go, Vatican.

Mar. 20 2008 11:53 AM
Mike from NYC

How much wealth is sinful? There are some who maintain that the average American has too much wealth. Or is the Pope our standard?

Mar. 20 2008 11:52 AM
Ken from Manhattan

Sue, don't forget a catchy motto at the bottom of your business card. For example:

"Let us indulge you!"

Mar. 20 2008 11:52 AM
Liz from brooklyn

How can you be so sarcastic and snide about one religion yet so respectful of others.

Mar. 20 2008 11:52 AM
Robert from NYC

In my catechism book of the 1950s mortal sins were represented by a totally black heart on a human child figure and venial sins were represented by black spots here and there on the heart. Now, the worst part about this is that the mortal sin heart was in a little girl who had an evil look on her face and the venial sins were on a little boy who had a gentle look on his face. For whatever reason the little girls in my catechism represented evil. Isn't it odd!

Mar. 20 2008 11:50 AM
eligit from astoria

here's a new sin for ya....

fighting to prevent condom use in africa. many millions have to sicken and die before ignorant adherence to dogma becomes one of the greatest of all sins??


Mar. 20 2008 11:50 AM

As a former "Evangelical" I have to question the sin of excessive wealth, does the Vatican put itself in that category of excessive wealth.

Mar. 20 2008 11:49 AM
seth from Astoria

No Genetic enhancing to "save" children, and no abortions to "kill" children, very general thoughts about what people are actually doing with stemcell research, and what could happen to a womans body if she has a pregnancy that could harm her.

Mar. 20 2008 11:47 AM
Robert from NYC

You bought the tomatoes, Brian, You bought them? You couldn't resist, could you. Yes, you're going to hell for buying genetically_modified_tomatoes. That's it! See ya when you get there.

Mar. 20 2008 11:46 AM
Sue from North Salem, NY

Department of Sin and Forgiveness....I love that, I want that on a business card.

"VP of Marketing, Department of Sin and Forgiveness"

Mar. 20 2008 11:46 AM
Bryony from Bedford

Excessive wealth is a give all that excess money to the church so they can:

*run orphanages for all the unwanted, abandoned babies;

*run charitable hospitals for people with unspeakable diseases that can't be cured by "morally dubious" stem cell research;

*run drug rehab centers to put junkies back on the path to salvation

*run environmental organizations to tend and care for God's green earth

Right, church? That's what you're going to do with all that excess money? Right? Ben? Anyone?

Mar. 20 2008 11:44 AM

Ha. Priests screwing little children not on the list. Why am I not surprised.

Mar. 20 2008 11:43 AM
Fish from brooklyn

Excessive Wealth A Sin?

Gimme a break.

Isn't the Roman Catholic Church one of the riches institutions out there? Its property alone in America is valued at $837,271,000!

Mar. 20 2008 11:39 AM
Ken from Manhattan

Get George Carlin in here!!!

Mar. 20 2008 11:38 AM
Voter from Brooklyn

So, let me see if I've got this straight, a religion known for ostentation as a means of proselytization (to praise and show the grandeur of God) is coming down hard on excessive wealth?

The Pope wears luxurious clothing, lives in opulence the vast majority of Catholics couldn't begin to imagine, and has a wealth of internationally renown art treasures. Yes, the wealth is the wealth of the church and not the Pope; however, it does smack of hypocrisy.

Also, wrong or right, number five seems to be a direct attack against capitalism and a call for socialism. Numbers six and seven are the result of number five (capitalism). It's shifting around a finite resource; wealth. They could have tried a little harder for seven. Genocide and similar social/ethnic/cultural/racial extermination, lack of compassion, sexual crimes like rape or exploitation, religious intolerance (yeah, I know), or being disingenuous or outright deception?!?!?!?

Mar. 20 2008 11:35 AM
Anonymous from NY

The new IMPROVED social sins! Call now, operators are standing by! Call now and we'll throw in next year's sin upgrade ABSOLUTELY FREE! Have your credit card ready, this is one offer you won't want to miss!

Mar. 20 2008 10:52 AM
Maya from Brooklyn're saying a woman has no choice but to carry to term a child with congenital birth defects. But out the other side of your mouth you prohibit the stem cell research that could prevent those birth defects?

Make up your mind - do you value life or not, Ben?

Mar. 20 2008 10:39 AM
Sue from North Salem, NY

Notice this is handed down from a guy with the genetic and occupational privilege of never having to deal with an unwanted pregnancy.

Mar. 20 2008 10:37 AM
michael winslow from INWOOD

Birth control is not a sin and it is outrageous anyone would consider it one.

The Earth can not sustain an infinite number of people.

There are only a couple things that control population: Birth control, abortion, war, food shotages, poverty, disease, natural disasters and a couple others.

Who is going to feed all these people????

Morally Dubiuos??? I guess it's morally dubious to cure people of Parkinsons Disease.

These "Social Sins" are offensive.

Not all of them mainly the first two.

I guess it's not a social sin for preists to sexually abuse children.

Mar. 20 2008 09:34 AM

Leave a Comment

Email addresses are required but never displayed.

Get the WNYC Morning Brief in your inbox.
We'll send you our top 5 stories every day, plus breaking news and weather.