BlogWatcher - Schism in TomKat marriage


Not surprisingly, reports that Katie Holmes has rejoined the Catholic Church following her divorce from Scientologist Tom Cruise have stimulated blogger comment. 

CNN’s Belief Blog comments on the breach of privacy that occurred when “a lone unnamed member of the church choir” of St Francis Xavier’s in New York City reported that he or she witnessed Holmes registering as a parishioner. The CNN blog is about the fact that paparazzi have largely left church going celebrities alone until now. Then speculation turns to whether Holmes will follow Nicole Kidman’s lead.

Should Holmes decide to return to the Catholic Church, she could follow a similar script as Nicole Kidman, who was also once married to Cruise and was also raised Catholic.

[Los Angeles Archdiocese spokesperson Tod] Tamberg said Kidman has returned to the church since her divorce ... “Usually, what happens is, there’s still some ties to the church through your family,” he said. "My understanding with the Kidman story is, she was close to a priest her family had known their whole lives. That was helpful to her in picking up the pieces after the divorce."

Lisa Miller of the Washington Post says that in their interfaith marriage and divorce, Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes are “just like us”.

Perhaps, like so many couples, Cruise and Holmes believed that with mutual goodwill and respect (and possibly even love), they could work through their religious differences. Or maybe they convinced themselves that their differences weren’t so great after all. “I really like it,” Holmes said optimistically of Scientology in an interview with W magazine in 2005 and added that she was learning about Scientology.

“I feel it’s really helping. What I like about it is that, you know, I was raised Catholic, and you can be a Catholic and a Scientologist, Jewish and a Scientology ... But as with most interfaith couples, there’s one person who exerts more influence in the area of religion, and from the beginning, that person was Cruise ... [He told ABC’s Diane Sawyer why Suri could] not have a Catholic baptism. “I mean you can be Catholic and be a Scientologist. You can be Jewish and be a Scientologist. But we’re just Scientologists.”

Meanwhile the question David Timbs’ asks at v2catholic is can you be a Vatican II Catholic and a Pope Benedict XVI Catholic? 

It is of more than academic interest that reflections of former [Vatican II] peritus Ratzinger can now be closely compared with his later revised theological convictions as Cardinal and Pope... There is now a growing body of compelling evidence that this conscious and programmatic dismantling has been going on apace in the Catholic Church for years. It began in earnest under the watch of Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, Prefect of the CDF, (1981-2005) ...

Hans Kung, Ratzinger’s colleague at Vat II, has recently accused him of being dangerously close to a state of schism with the Catholic Church. He charges the Pope with arrogance, warning him of the extreme ecclesial dangers of the Curia’s negotiations with the SSPX on the terms and conditions of their reconciliation with the Church.

Schism ahead?” is the title of Michael O’Loughlin’s blog post at America. 

A leading scholar in the history of Christianity predicts that a widening chasm between the laity and leaders of the Catholic Church will lead to schism in the not too distant future. Diarmaid MacCulloch, a professor at Oxford, said that while the future of the Christian faith as a whole is bright, the Catholic Church should expect fracture ...  over the Vatican's failure to listen to European Catholic. ...

He predicted that Catholicism faces a division over attempts by popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI to "rewrite the story" of the 1962-1965 Second Vatican Council by portraying it as a "minor adjustment" in church governance, rather than as a "radical move to change the way authority is expressed”.

If there is such a thing as celebrity bloggers in the Catholic Church, Rocco Palmer would have to fit that description. He blogs at Whispers in the Loggia, and is the subject of what could probably be  called a celebrity profile at the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Rocco Palmo is only 29. The born-and-bred South Philly guy, thin at 5 feet 11 inches, is the go-to person for reporters and followers of the Catholic Church. The New York Times quoted him last month after the verdicts in the landmark Philadelphia church sex-abuse trial. So did the Washington Post. And CNN ...

The blog was a side thing, at first. He wanted to be a reporter at the Daily News, but the People Paper would soon have buyouts instead of job openings.

Over the past years, Palmo has built up sources in the Vatican and throughout the U.S. He often breaks news. ... 

As a full-time blogger, Palmo lives at home with his parents. He makes money through reader donations on his website.


Michael MullinsMichael Mullins, founding editor of CathNews, compiles this 'Blog Watcher' column every week.

Disclaimer: CathBlog is an extension of CathNews story feedback. It is intended to promote discussion and debate among the subscribers to CathNews and the readers of the website. The opinions expressed in CathBlog are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the members of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference or of Church Resources.

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