The latest and greatest on CNN iReport, brought to you by Team iReport.
Comment of the day: "People hate (dislike) what they don't understand." --Nebulazure
One story about the late Pope John Paul II was a big talker throughout two articles about his possible sainthood. A beatification ceremony, led by Pope Benedict XVI, will take place May 1, the first Sunday after Easter. Response to these pieces contrasted quite a bit: Mostly negative sentiments were seen in the main story, while an entry on CNN's Belief blog about the pope's significance in history received a whole different response.
In the former, commenters had heated conversations about the concept of sainthood, as well as Catholic doctrine and sex abuse scandals. Some spoke of leaving the faith. In the latter story, about the man himself, commenters shared stories of meeting the pope, and spoke mostly positively about the faith even if they were not believers themselves. The difference between the two stories' response could not be more striking.
Do people view the religion and the man differently? Do the two stories attract different audiences and commenting communities? We follow this with a look at parenting troubled children as well as the recent zodiac shakeup. Check out some of the things CNN.com commenters had to say today:
steelerguin said, "I respect the Catholic religion, but their designation and process of sainthood isn't Biblical. All who believe in Christ are considered saints according to the New Testament. Also, one should only pray to God not man (dead or alive) since that is idolatry. I do believe in miraculous healings because I have witnessed them. I believe it comes from God alone and not man."
Along a similar theme, mintymint said, "Even the doctors on the case of that congresswoman who was shot in the head acknowledge that some healing is beyond the medicine that they practice and cannot take credit for healing that cannot be explained by medicine."
thebeeman said, "This is just another reason I have left the Catholic faith. The pope is taking us back to the dark ages. He is out of touch with the young people. Past popes and priests covered up or were involved in molestation of boys. How can this be God's way? Churches need to pay taxes and admit to what has been covered up." nick2 said, "This is a reward for the efforts of John Paul II -- the most traveled Pope in history -- whose jaunts were primarily motivated for the constant business of collecting money. A very clever way of using what is essentially idolatry to overwhelm the simple minded with religious fervor."
In an interesting exchange, jinxgt posted, "I'm a protestant and will not judge the Catholic Church or their decisions. I choose to respect the establishment and its followers as fellow Christians. Although we practice our faith differently, ultimately we believe in the same God, follow the teachings of the same Jesus, and learn from the same Bible." gardiego responded, "I used to be a protestant when growing up, but now do not believe in any organized religion. Unlike you, I don't respect the Catholic Church and blame the church for thousands of deaths due to the unwillingness of the church to do whats right, and not what is written in a book a fables. Go ahead, continue to believe in your God. There may have been a Jesus, but he was not the son of God, because there is no God."
9 reasons Pope John Paul II mattered
CD6910 wrote, "He seemingly reflected Jesus in all that he was. Charismatic, intelligent, engaging, humble, loving, firm, devout, prayerful."
A couple of commenters shared memories of the pope. trish said, "I was in elementary school when he came to Vancouver and although there were 60,000 people in the stadium it seemed like he was connecting directly with you. It was a really strange feeling and one that has never left when I think about that day. While I have some issues regarding the Catholic doctrine today, I do not think you can take away from what a great man he was." JohnQuest said, "I was a young man when he visited New York, I still remember how people (Non-Catholics) admired him. Although I came from a non-believing family, I understand how some would be inspired by him."
There were some dissenters, like Silicon Valley, who said, "He may have done much good, but he continued the legacy of Paul VI being theologically stuck in the Middle Ages, betraying the spirit of the Second Vatican Council called by John XXIII to move the Church into the modern era. Had he allowed priests to marry and/or allowed women in the priesthood the abuse scandal would not have reached the proportions that it did. This was a step back for the RCC."
Catholic or not, many people expressed love for the pope. TheDandyMan wrote, "Absolutely the greatest pope in history! Saint Karol Wojtyla, you are one of the greatest men that ever lived. May you inspire billions more in your sainthood. Signed, a non-Catholic." ANON said, "He is one religious leader in the modern history who was and still is loved by the followers of many other religions. I'm a Muslim, and I love him. He practiced what he taught (tolerance, for example)."
Milton said, "The entire World used to love him. Regardless of religion, caste and country everyone admired him. I traveled myself nearly 40 countries and wherever go, people were talking very highly about Pope John II and Mother Teresa."
What if he were your kid?
In this case, "he" is Jared Lee Loughner, the suspect in the Arizona shootings. Families responded to this story and told us they thought it was a powerful look at what really goes on in a situation like this. What if, indeed? We heard lots of personal stories about battles with mental illness and lots of takes on what a concerned loved one should do and what hurdles the health care system may create. Check out this opinion piece from Joshua Coleman, and you'll find passionate responses, like from Blue2054:
"Even if he is mentally ill, the parents of an adult cannot have 100% control over him. They might be scared that he would harm himself but would never imagine(or want to imagine) him becoming a murderer. That's just how parents are. Love compels them to see the positive things in their child. They knew that he had drug problems, they knew that something was wrong with him. That was why the dad decided to inquire Jared about what was in the bag and cared enough to follow him. He was suspicious but I am sure he never thought that Jared was going to kill someone. I am probably too young to judge the parents but I wish they atleast took him to a psychiatrist or sent him to rehab after he was suspended. It's an unfortunate incident. What's even sadder is that the alleged main target is recovering but the 6 others around her had to die for no fault of theirs."
Belldandy112 said, "Easy answer. I would tell my child that his living in the family home was contingent on him remaining on medication; otherwise, he'd have to find another place to live. And, knowing his history, I would not give him the money to purchase drugs, a Glock, ammo, etc. Worked like a charm for a friend in the same popsition as this family."
sashlina liked the article: "It's amazing how many of us can point fingers and act like we have a doctorate in Know-it-allism when in fact the writer is clearly writing to the blinded society and NOT justifying what happened. Kudos to Coleman for sharing the lenses of we - the finger pointers. I can say that because my initial reaction was the same. In the end, it's not always possible to recognize the signs and/or stop evil from happening."
No, your zodiac sign hasn't changed
Starting to regret that dancing fish tattoo? "When [astrologers] say that the sun is in Pisces, it's really not in Pisces," Parke Kunkle, a board member of the Minnesota Planetarium Society, told the Minneapolis Star Tribune.
WHAT?! Well, wait a minute, Westerners generally adhere to the tropical zodiac, so maybe nothing's changed at all. That brings up the whole question of tropical and sidereal zodiacs, or whether this whole thing matters at all. Commenters went at it. Some were astrological devotees, some got lost in an endless sea of references to the very-similar-sounding astrology or astronomy, and quite a few simply thought the whole thing was a bunch of bunk. There were a lot of astrology skeptics on our comment boards, and a few of them said they were determined to prove that free will trumps the stars any day.
Among the seeming optimists were Jonathan, who wrote, "What a relief, I was worried there for a second that I wasn't who I thought I was all these years. I was afraid I'd have to learn a whole new personality. Which is really bad, because the signs on either side of me don't fit me at all." Julia was also relieved. "Thank you. I'm not a goal-setting, hard-working Capricorn and I knew it. I'm an aloof and eccentric Aquarius. Long live the Aquarians!"
Some thought perhaps the astrological system could be further refined. Aunt Linda took the time to pen a detailed explanation of the concepts at hand (omitted here) and concluded on this note: "The Babylonians designed a system of astrology that was as accurate as possible for their day. Wouldn't it make sense for modern astrologers to do the same?"
Joshua said, "'Fun and harmless.' Is that why there's people that won't leave their homes on days when their horoscope gives a bad outlook? Is that why people spend all their money going to astrologers to get their fortunes read? Astrology, tarot, etc, is all stupid B.S. that should be expunged from society, especially those astrologers that lie to their customers and tell them its real, when they know it to be fake." Neerav replied, "I agree, Joshua. The reality is, unless you believe in the idea of predestination, that you are in control of your destiny, and not what is told by the position of the stars and planets in an artificially (and arbitrarily) divided up sky. This year, I am challenging each and every yearly astrology forecast for my zodiac sign (Ariers) in order to prove once and for all that they are useless and have no relevance to how we live our lives or determine our destiny."
A fairly cynical hobart said, "I think someone should do a study with 1,000 subjects and three treatment groups: 1. tropical zodiac, 2. sidereal zodiac, and 3. a postmodern random essay generator. Each treatment group writes a horoscope for each subject, and at the end o of the day, we see which one wins. I bet it's a three-way tie."
this sucks said, "So can I continue to blast the soundtrack for HAIR from my car or do I need to buy a new CD because of all of this?" Bob replied, "You should get a new CD because the music in Hair sucks, not because its inaccurate."
In a follow-up story, we received even more heated comments:
RabiaDiluvio said, "Breaking news: we just discovered that the Easter Bunny might be brown instead of white and Santa wears yellow and black sweaters on the weekend." Doomguy said, "What a pile of crap. The fact that your sign can shift over the centuries is just more proof that astrology is a fantasy. In fact, some of the stars in the actual constellations themselves have moved since astrology was dreamed up. Please people ... this is the 21st century. Can we move past invisible boogey men, fiery pits and pitchforks and the layout of stars in the sky somehow controlling your life?" neptuneguy said, "If you are that concerned about your zodiac sign, then this may actually change your identity. For the rest of the world, you might as well worry about changing your underwear." LastLegUp said, "A quarter of a million Americans believe in astrology? That's really depressing."
YOUR TURN: Now that you've read what other people are saying, do you find that your views align with theirs? Think of this as a wishing well in need of your 2 cents. Post a comment below or sound off on video.
Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.
One minute Catholics are pedophiles, next minute, saints Just tell me please, what religion has not been in on the pedophile act. Jehovah's Witnesses?
If anyone was ever qualified to be a saint it would have been my grandfather. I think it's God who decides who is and who isn't a saint. Man doesn't have the authority.
The award of sainthood is too often made for political or feel good purposes and always made by men. He was appointed Pope by men and I would be hard pressed to classify John Paul a saint.
So...some men in the Vatican and some so called doctors will determine if some miracle occurred? Some nun who might have had a disease claimed to pray to this dead pope and this dead pope cured this disease and it can not be scientifically verified. Wow...people actually buy this? This is 2011, right?
First of all, pedophiles hide in many places... some are teachers, coaches, even family members. Does that mean ALL teachers, coaches, and family members are pedophiles?
NO! So not all priests are pedophiles, in fact most are not. Did the vatican make a terrible mistake? Yes! The Vatican has apologized repeatedly and is now working on defrocking priests suspected of molestation. Are you so perfect? Jesus said, "You fault your brother for the splinter in his eye, yet you ignore the log in your own."
And unless you have read and are educated in the Catholic Catechism, and did not get all your information about the Catholic faith from the media, your comments about the faith and its rituals are rooted in sheer ignorance.
Man made delusions
What a farse.
I believe the same as steelerguin in the article. All those who follow Christ are saints. If the Pope has done great thing, then sure, honor him. Just do it in a way that is biblical. If he follows Christ he is a saint anyway. Think of some other way to honor him.
It is not nice to poke fun at someones religion but I cannot just read this stuff about a "POPE" without losing my good intentions. People pray to this guy? I never knew that...anyway what gets me is that awful KKK looking outfit they run around in. Is that supposed to create awe or wonder whether to call the guys in the white suits? And you isadore why are YOU preaching? No I am not perfect, judge not, that you be not judged...pretty much says it huh? I won't say get a real religion, but you might give it some serious consideration. Any so called religion that does not and will not take care of reports of sexual abuse is no good to anyone and Catholic Catechism has been guilty for a century at least and you say WE need to get new info, you need to realign your viewpoint buster or better yet check to see if you have a brown ring around your neck....
Christ says "love your neighbor" *includes every one on this earth *enemies as well. thanks to all for sharing your views. Comments are good if they add value people! if an act such as elevating JP2 to sainthood will make this world i better place, by helping those believers and non believers alike, i say each of us should do our part. prayers go out to all humanity. peace! the world needs spiritual growth *positive peer pressures not negative peer pressures! cheers
@ steelerguin and Robzc, You're not looking at the Bible correctly. The Catholic Church (and the earliest Christians) believe that it takes both faith and works to become a saint. ALSO important is the fact that anyone that makes it to heaven because of the good life he/she has lead is considered a saint according to the Catholic Church. Of course, nobody can be sure if someone who has died has reached heaven UNLESS THAT PARTICULAR PERSON HAS LIVED A LIFE SO CONSPICUOUSLY HOLY THAT THE CATHOLIC CHURCH, THROUGH A DEEP EXAMINATION OF FACTS,MIRACLES, AND TESTIMONY, ALONG WITH PRAYER, CAN MOVE TO CANONIZE SOMEONE AND BECOME A "RECOGNIZED SAINT"
Every institution on this earth has good and bad people. However, what can you say about JP2 that is negative? NOTHING. The only comment I see is that he kept the Church in the "Dark Ages". However, I think if we study history then we see that the same ideas that we espouse today are actually not as novel as we might think. JP2 was simply doing his job - to proclaim the "Veritatis splendor", the splendor of Truth. If only folks would honestly seek the Truth, they would find that its fullness lies in the Catholic Church.
What a waste of time. I didn't even bother reading this rubbish article. If it was printed on paper it would be in the bin.
You do realize that Religion is just a fairy tale mythical story created by ordinary people just like you and me, right? Nothing in the Bible has ever taken place and no Catholics have EVER performed any miracles. It's all lies, just like the Pope...A BIG WRINKLY FACED LIAR.
It's not as simple as you make it to be. Maybe you should try to look a little deeper into the occurrences that happen in the world and try to honestly seek the truth. There are MANY doctors who will testify to the possibility of miracles. Also, there is always the possibility of a divine creator.
Seek the truth, that is all that matters.
The basis for Pope John Paul II's beatification was a Catholic nun who prayed to him and was subsequently cured of Parkinson's disease. Did no one in the Catholic church wonder why this nun was content to break the First AND Second Commandments in her quest for a cure and then bought it when she said it worked? Even by making the grand assumption that there was a hint of truth in Catholicism, how could they expect to believe that a woman who was violating God's law (as given to Moses) by placing the Pope above God and by praying to John Paul instead of God is in any way, shape or form telling the truth?
Saints are not made by fabricating miracles and the Catholic Church has proven itself to be immoral, irrelevant and self-richeous. You could also say the same thing about the so-called Christian right group.
Thankfully we have Science which kicks Religions fairy tale stories right out of the water !
So the catholic church is going to give a NAZI popedom, then sainthood. YAYY!
O wait-- wrong pope... He's just a child molester.
he is the biggest child molesteing cunt
Astronaut Kelly for sainthood! The lady with a hole in her brain may recover and maybe even live a good life because of HIM! Miracle, said a doctor in Tucson.
Is it a coincidence? Is Astronaut Kelly a Catholic? As far as I know, only Catholics still make new saints after a thorough 'scientific' verification of the unverifiable - miracle or a statistical glitch.
So, both Pope Paul II and the Atronaut Kelly should be made saints at the same time. If he will have to return to space, he will have a special protection from the Almighty. No more shuttle/capsule explosions for him.
KELLY FOR SAINTHOOD!
baaah baaah lead me baaah baaah
Glad I made it out before it was to late...
Given all the things John Paul II did with the catholic church's monstrous power and money he was one of the best popes possibly people ever. However if you believe in all the christian BS a saint can't be determined by people on earth. But you know christianity changes with whatever brings in the $$$$
The church does not make saints it only recognizes them to imagine john Paul 2 already a saint in either paradise or awaiting paradise is a simple process there are two more saints that one day will be recognized bishop claudio gatti and Marisa Rossi
Catholics believe in multiple Gods :) Like the Hindus. The Pope is now a 'semi-God' or whatever. Catholics have different levels of Gods, e.g. the son, Saints, Popes... Catholics are very similar to the Pagan religions of Rome and the ancient World. What is interesting is that so many people are such suckers for it. Monotheism is logically sound, but humans want to worships lots of things. The popularity of Catholicism is proof, -we need lots of Gods. A new one is being created.
... But Mother Teressa, does not become a Saint? She had no one to lobby for her :)
CNN you disappoint. This "article" is a bunch of posts by "commentators" followed up by more "commentator" posts.
Will these posts be made into an "article" as well?
I was raised Catholic, my mother died when I was very young, and astrolgy was my psycological toughstone for years in my teens and beyond. I think there is some truth in everything and/or anything that helps people through life. I'm no longer a Catholic nor a true believe in astrology, but I'd opt for astrology over religion any time. For one thing, it's free. Although there is an intense study involved for those who are serious. It's probably the best religion out there, but I don't hold much sway over religion. Peace.
I saw JP2 open for Cheap Trick live at Bodukan in '78, man did he rock!
I feel that this is just another attempt to try and take advantage of stupid people around the world as the fan base shrinks. Hopefully, all people will realize that religion is shit and eventually learn to live and love without old assholes like this guy controlling them with promises of heaven and hell.
How can a religion that condones child molestation even hope to appear legitimate in the field of morality?
"my brother non-believer, if God does not exist, I have lost nothing, but if God exists then you have lost everything"
Father Raniero Cantalamessa (the Pope's preacher)
Hoeech, the nun who was cured because she asked JP2 to pray for her did not break the first and second commandments. She simply asked JP2 to pray for her the same way you would ask a friend to pray for you. I wish people who are anti Catholic would first make an effort to understand what the Catholic Church really believes before they attack her. Now you may ask, how does JP2 hear people's prayers since he is "dead"? For believers this is not hard since an angel can take up the prayer or the spirit of the person who has passed away, empowered by God, can hear the prayer
To belive or not belive, seriously more time is wasted in religon, the devil has influtrated religion, wake up people and move on...
It's all a show
A nun prayed to the pope? You don't pray to the pope! From the very beginning of Christianity the church changed things ... Dec. 25 for Christ's b'day, easter, praying on the rosary ... where does this come from?
I'm having trouble with the praying to the pope part! I pray to God through Jesus Christ.
Wasn't John Paul a socialist and all for this new world order/one-world government? If this is true, the pope also knows who will head this one-world government.
Everything is man made and man written .
OMG!!! Saint Kid FUC$ER - what next.
Well if your petty, jealous, vengeful god is even close to the a$$hole that is described in that fares the bible, then they should all burn.
Oh but wait, all you have to do is eat a tale cracker and get drunk and all is forgotten...
I don't think so, once a pedophile always a pedophile - the catholic religion should be disbanded and the vatican burned to the ground and salted...
Catholicism is a cult. Period.
John Paul II does not deserve canonization. He was largely responsible for ordering Ratzinger (Benedict XVI) to cover up the pedophile scandal in the Roman Church. Why the Roman Church promotes people like Bernard Cardinal Law, and seeks to canonize people like John Paul II is beyond me. This shows support for the very policies that are destroying the Roman Church, and shows that the Roman Church has completely lost any connection to the ancient One, Holy, Apostolic and Catholic Church, which is still found in Orthodoxy.
sainthood is a personality cult
John Paul performed a miracle in the catholic church - he didn't molest a child.
There's no such thing as a saint. It's just moronic superstitious nonsense. People need to get a brain.
Though I have read several comments disregarding the Catholic Church, the Roman Catholic belief system, and the Canonization process, there are but a few pointers I'd like to make.
First and foremost when you pray to a Saint, you are not treating him or her, as a God. Rather, you are treating him as a figure that can intercede for you before God.
Now, the Catholic Church does not have multiple Gods. What you referred as the God Father, God Son, and God Holy Spirit, is actually the most complex belief system we poses. It is a belief that God is three holy figures and, at the same time, those three figures are one God.
The act of Canonization is extremely complex. It's not a process were people just randomly get together and decide to make someone a saint. Rather, it is a series of trials where two groups, those in favor of the canonization and those against, present evidence as to why a person should be considered for sainthood. In this process, it is required that those in favor of the Canonization present three proofs of miracles that the figure experienced which should be both in life and in death. And, even then, after proving that said figure did perform a miracle, it is highly difficult for them to be considered for Sainthood.
As far as the pedophelia goes, I have to agree with Isadore. Pedophiles hide in all places; they can be teachers, relatives, coaches, counselors, and, yes, in occasions, they can be religious leaders. BUT, this is not restricted just to the catholic church--it can happen every where, in all groups, in all belief systems. Yes, the pope made a mistake when it came to this, but first and foremost he was human and, now, the Catholic Church seems to be doing the best they can to fix their previous mistake.
Finally, the Bible is a book of teaching.It is not meant to be taken as a literal account of facts; rather, it is a book on which one takes the basis of their fate and they examine stories, miracles, and morals that have been simplified and that, that way, can be applied to multiple groups and people.
Ultimately, religion is a decision made by people on their own. Whilst I do not expect to convince you to respect my own religion as I respect yours, or your lack of one in the case of atheists, I would like to believe that I defended my religion, my belief, something that is, inherently, part of me.
Funny, seems like sainthood for Catholics is kinda like the Hall of Fame for sports.
By looking at the comments here, it's apparent that 99% of people (including Catholics) have no idea what or why the Catholic Church believes and does the things they do. Don't get me wrong, I blame the people of the Church for not doing a better job teaching it, but if news agencies and individuals want to seriously comment on the things the Church does, they would do well to study the reasons for the Church's beliefs rather than burn down the straw men they've erected in place of the truth.
This man lives in complete luxury while his fellow man suffers from lack of food and medical treatment just to name a couple of things, sainthood is not what I think he should be nominated for
to the poster named veracity504, jehovah's witnesses were involved in a pedophile scandal. go to silentlambs.org regarding this pope, well he covered up the abuse, so in my opinion does not deserve to be a saint. saints do not do things like that. if there was a real miracle on the nun, then God cured her not the former pope.
I am a catholic myself and still don't know what a Saint does. Maybe someone enlight me.
I love how CNN's cherry-picks the eloquence of "mintymint," "ANON," and "thebeeman" as commentary. What happened to "Biggdi-c-c" and his ilk?
Ok, so a couple of "miracles" and we are to forget about his and Ratzinger's gutting of Vatican II, the approval of relocations of pederast priests and the diplomatic immunity of the associated Bishops by having them "retire" to the Vatican, and the hubris he showed by staying in office even though he could no longer physically or mentally carry out his duties. He forced other priests and bishops to retire when they could no longer carry out their priestly offices!
Like I said, a couple of well-placed miracles and everyone forgets about the other stuff!