Anne Rice, a well known novelist and Catholic “revert” (from atheism), has declared that she loves Christ but not Christians. Reading what she wrote, it is clear to me that she rejects Christ’s Church. In essence, she is proclaiming a special theology in which she is the only member.
This is nothing new, of course. Many people have their very own, customized versions of Christianity. They reject Church authority, interpret Holy Scripture to their liking and disregard the rest. Nothing is sinful, unless they say it is. Nothing is immoral unless it clashes with the value system they personally evolve. Truth is always relative.
In the name of Christ, I refuse to be anti-gay. I refuse to be anti-feminist. I refuse to be anti-artificial birth control. I refuse to be anti-Democrat. I refuse to be anti-secular humanism. I refuse to be anti-science. I refuse to be anti-life.
Personally, I find it very offensive that she says this in Christ’s name. If she is going to do so, she should know what she is talking about! Moving on, there is clearly a great deal of confusion jammed into few words.
The Church is not anti-gay in the slightest, but condemns all sinful acts for the sake of souls. We are pro-life and pro-family – which artificial birth control perverts. The Catholic Church has a distinguished and continuing history in support of science and all that it reveals of God’s creation. We are certainly not anti-Democrat or against any other political party. We are pro-God and place Him first.
She has us on the anti-secular humanism charge. The dictionary defines it as “the doctrine emphasizing a person’s capacity for self-realization through reason; rejects religion and the supernatural.”
The Anchoress (a/k/a Elizabeth Scalia) has a somewhat different and more scholarly analysis from mine:
So, what she is refusing is not so much church teaching, which she incorrectly represents, but the worldly distortion of church teaching both as it is misunderstood and too-often practiced. I do not know how anyone could read the USCCB’s pastoral letter, “Always Our Children” and then make a credible argument that the church is “anti-gay.”
But then, I do not know how anyone can read Humanae Vitae and credibly call the church anti-feminist or anti-humanist.
I do not know how anyone can read Pope John Paul II’s exhaustive teachings on the Theology of the Body and credibly declare the church to be reactionary on issues of sexuality or womanhood.
I do not know how anyone can read Gaudium et Spes and credibly argue that the church is out of touch with the Human Person or Society.
I do not know how anyone can read Fides et ratio and credibly argue that the church does not hold human reason in esteem.
I do not know how anyone can look at the Vatican supporting and funding Stem Cell Research, or the even the briefest list of religiously-inclined scientists and researchers and credibly argue that Christianity is “anti-science.”
Anne Rice wants to do the Life-in-Christ on her own, while saying “Yes” to the worldly world and its values. She seems not to realize that far from being an Institution of No, the church is a giant and eternal urging toward “Yes,”, that being a “yes” toward God – whose ways are not our ways, and who draws all to Himself, in the fullness of time – rather than a “yes” to ourselves.
Please read the entire article.
Either way you may look at it (at face value as I tend to – or more charitably as Elizabeth does), Anne Rice is wrong. We must pray for her and pray that her high-profile remarks do not lead others from the truth.