Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews apparently thinks he has a better grasp of Catholicism than the Archbishop of Melbourne, the entire Catholic hierarchy, and the Pope.
Which is kind of astonishing, to be honest. It’s as if the premier walked into the Melbourne Hebrew Congregation on St Kilda Road and demanded the Rabbi eat a bacon sandwich. On a certain level, you just have to admire the level of arrogance here. For his next trick, Dan might just start trying to teach kangaroos how to jump and birds how to fly.
Dan was responding to Archbishop Peter Comensoli, the state’s most senior Catholic, who said on Thursday the premier’s comments about the recent forced resignation of Essendon CEO Andrew Thorburn for being Christian were harmful. Andrews described the mainstream Christian views of Thorburn’s church as being “absolutely appalling”, “bigotry” and “intolerant.”
When the freaking Archbishop of his supposed church warned that such language is divisive and could lead to Christians being targeted for their faith Dan set him straight stating: “I’m not here to be having a debate with faith leaders but I will just say this: I am a Catholic. I send my kids to Catholic schools.”
Wow. He sends his kids to Catholic school huh? That certainly gives an aura of ecclesiastical authority.
After all, the Archbishop only holds a Bachelor of Theology, a Bachelor of Sacred Theology, a Licentiate of Sacred Theology, a Master of Letters degree in moral philosophy and a Doctor of Philosophy degree in theological ethics. Plus, you know, he’s been a priest since 1992.
But Dan sent his kids to Catholic school. So when Dan says:
“calling out homophobia is not the problem. Homophobia is the problem.”
I guess the Archbishop just needs to shut up.
Dan went on to say that it was his passionate belief that all Victorians should be treated equally and fairly.
“For me, that’s my Catholicism. That’s my faith,”
Which is wonderful for him.
But the issue is whatever you think of Catholicism one of the definitive characteristics of the church is that the individual believer is not able to make up whatever interpretation they like.
That’s kinda what the concepts of apostolic succession, papal primacy and the last two-thousand years of schism, reformation, counter-reformation and the rest of church history are all about.
So the answer to the question. Is Dan Andrews a Catholic?
No. No, he’s not.