There has been a lot in the news about the rise of religious fundamentalism around the world. It is blamed on inspiring extremists of all stripes to do and say things many consider shocking.
Well, add one more to the pile. Today, a large religious institution claimed it was the only true church and that others are, in fact, lesser pursuits.
The Vatican on Tuesday said Christian denominations outside the Roman Catholic Church were not full churches of Jesus Christ.
The Vatican said other churches are "wounded" since they do not recognize the primacy of the pope.
A 16-page document, prepared by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which Pope Benedict used to head, described Christian Orthodox churches as true churches, but suffering from a "wound" since they do not recognize the primacy of the Pope.
But the document said the "wound is still more profound" in the Protestant denominations -- a view likely to further complicate relations with Protestants.
"Despite the fact that this teaching has created no little distress ... it is nevertheless difficult to see how the title of 'Church' could possibly be attributed to them," it said.
Read the full story (CNN.com)
That kind of in-your-face, my-faith-is-better-than-your-faith chutzpah is good to hear, because Christianity just isn't keeping up its reputation as the ass-kicking, witch-burning, proselytizing, pagan-killing religion it worked so hard to earn back during The Crusades. Tolerance, schmolerance!