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Is there anyway out ?

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Comments

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 834 ✭✭✭KWAG2019


    There is no doubt that for all sorts of reasons masses of people won’t be GDPRing the RCC into a frenzy of searching records. Couldn’t be arsed would be as good a conjecture as any other.

    I’m obviously a bit ahead of some posters here in that I know the RCC at parish and diocesan level hold personal data on me and the nature of it. So why am I not doing the GDPR thing and why didn’t I do count me out? Because as the events of my baptism etc were meaningless so would their removal. The record of my journey through the “sacraments of initiation” is simply saying that on a given date my poor parents held me over a stone basin while a man dressed in a type of gúna poured cold water over my head and said various paragraphs of gibberish. My poor aunt and uncle mumbled assent to a series of questions which described nothing and we all went home (except for the man in the gúna).

    Likewise for confirmation another man in a more elaborate gúna hit me across the face and spoke more gibberish. Nothing happened beyond that. All that stuff ceased to be relevant when I decided so. The RCC can call me lapsed, defected, heretical, apostate, or whatever made up word they want. It’s amusing.

    The way out, to go back to the OP, is to recognize your own agency in modern parlance and know that you were never in. You may as well think you had a role in Goldilocks and the three bears in reality.


  • Registered Users Posts: 40,123 ✭✭✭✭ohnonotgmail


    Peregrinus wrote: »

    Remember countmeout? Who doesn't remember countmeout! They operated for a period of about 5 years from 2006 to 2011. At the time, Catholic canon law had a procedure for recording your "defection" from the Catholic church that you had to follow if you wanted the church to recognise your defection for certain purposes of Canon Law. Countmeout saw this - correctly, I think - as an opportunity for people to create a formal, church-recognised record of their departure, and they reckoned there was a demand for this from ex-Catholics who either felt the need for an acknowledgement from the church, or simply wanted to bear witness, to coin a prhase, to their rejection of the church. So they ran a website providing instructions, forms, etc to assist people in completing the process.

    The website published figures on useage and, before it disappeared, in my nerdish way I posted about the figures here. The first paragraph is the relevant bit.

    Right. I competely understand why people would want to record their departure from the church, and/or would want some kind of acknowledgement. And yet, at a time when that was easy, and was made easier by the support of countmeout, it seems that only a tiny number of people actually bothered to do it. Between the 2006 and 2011 censuses, the number of self-identifying Catholics (in the Republic) in Ireland fell by more than 100,000 (at a time when the total population rose by more than 160,000). But only 531 people (in the whole island) completed the countmeout process. While others may have completed the canonical process without using countmeout, I'm guessing that number was even smaller.

    Which makes me think that the number of people willing to complete the much more bothersome task of writing to every parish they have ever lived in and supplying their name, their address within the parish and the dates when they lived there in support of a GDPR data request in order to annoy the church is not going to be large.

    how many of those 100,000 were aware of countmeout? I know i wasn't.


  • Registered Users Posts: 26,056 ✭✭✭✭Peregrinus


    how many of those 100,000 were aware of countmeout? I know i wasn't.
    Well, there you go. If getting a formal departure process completed was something that you had the least interest in, I dare say that through the wonderful magic that is Google today you would have found your way to countmeout quickly enough. Whbich kind of confirms my point; there wasn't a huge demand for the service they were offering.


  • Registered Users Posts: 40,123 ✭✭✭✭ohnonotgmail


    Peregrinus wrote: »
    Well, there you go. If getting a formal departure process completed was something that you had the least interest in, I dare say that through the wonderful magic that is Google today you would have found your way to countmeout quickly enough. Whbich kind of confirms my point; there wasn't a huge demand for the service they were offering.

    I didnt even know such a thing was possible. why would i go looking for something i didnt think was possible?


  • Registered Users Posts: 26,056 ✭✭✭✭Peregrinus


    Not knowing that something is possible is not the same as thinking that is isn't possible.

    If it bothered you that you hadn't completed a formal resignation process from the church, I don't see why you would assume for no reason at all that such a thing was impossible; you would look to find out whether it was possible and, unless your Google skills are utterly dismal, in but a few clicks you would have arrived at countmeout.

    My guess is that you didn't know that such a thing was possible because you never enquired, which suggests to me that you weren't bothered about it. Which is (a) fine, and (b) I think probably the position of most people who decide they are not Catholic any more, if indeed they ever were.

    As a matter of interest, were you bothered about completing a formal resignation process?


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  • Registered Users Posts: 40,123 ✭✭✭✭ohnonotgmail


    Peregrinus wrote: »
    Not knowing that something is possible is not the same as thinking that is isn't possible.

    If it bothered you that you hadn't completed a formal resignation process from the church, I don't see why you would assume for no reason at all that such a thing was impossible; you would look to find out whether it was possible and, unless your Google skills are utterly dismal, in but a few clicks you would have arrived at countmeout.

    My guess is that you didn't know that such a thing was possible because you never enquired, which suggests to me that you weren't bothered about it. Which is (a) fine, and (b) I think probably the position of most people who decide they are not Catholic any more, if indeed they ever were.

    As a matter of interest, were you bothered about completing a formal resignation process?

    If i had known it was possible I would certainly have done it.


  • Registered Users Posts: 26,056 ✭✭✭✭Peregrinus


    If i had known it was possible I would certainly have done it.
    But you never looked to see whether it was possible?


  • Registered Users Posts: 40,123 ✭✭✭✭ohnonotgmail


    Peregrinus wrote: »
    But you never looked to see whether it was possible?

    What is it you are trying to get at? You seem intent on picking holes and are coming across as quite nasty.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 834 ✭✭✭KWAG2019


    https://www.irishtimes.com/business/catholic-church-records-may-be-inspected-over-gdpr-concerns-1.4178767

    Interesting read and interesting to see interpretations between dioceses differing. Claiming exemption seems the most likely route to go for the RCC. A few complaints is enough for the DPC to investigate. Oh well. Those surplices won’t iron themselves!


  • Registered Users Posts: 26,056 ✭✭✭✭Peregrinus


    What is it you are trying to get at? You seem intent on picking holes and are coming across as quite nasty.
    Not trying to pick holes at all, and I sincerely apologise if that's how it seems.

    All this goes back to my belief that KWAG's suggestion of a campaign of annoying the church with a flood of GDPR requests is unlikely to get much traction because not that many ex-Catholics are bothered about the possiblity that church records may refer to them. And my reason for thinking this is that not that many ex-Catholics seem to be bothered about getting their rejection of Catholicism documented or acknowledged by the church. And my reason for thinking that is that, when there was a readily available process for this, plus guidance/support for completing the process, very few people did it.

    Your response was, if you had known the process was available, you would have completed it. And my response to that is, that doesn't really change anything; if you were sufficiently bothered about this, you would likely have come to know about the process, because it wasn't difficult to find out about. There were, after all, people who made it their business to promote awareness of it.

    That's not to imply that you should have felt strongly about this, or that your rejection of Catholicism is in any way invalidated or undermined by the fact that you didn't. Not at all. And, if it came across that way, I'm really sorry. If you didn't feel a strong need to formally register your departure from the church, nobody has any business telling you that you should have felt that. I understand why some people do feel that, but equally I understand why others don't, and in neither case do the people concerned need any validation or approval from me; I have no business to make or express any judgment about the validity of their feelings.

    So, I'm not laying down decrees about what ex-Catholics ought to feel; I'm merely observing what they do feel, based on how they choose to act. Which, for the great majority, is that they are not that fussed about getting their rejection of the church formally documented or acknowledged by the church. Which is absolutely fine, and in no way detracts from the sincerity, legitimacy or vehemence of their rejection of Catholicism. At most, it just means that concerns about record-keeping are not high on the list of their objections to Catholicism. Which is why I think the campaign KWAG suggests is unlikely to take off.

    PS: Since you say that you would have completed the process, had you known it was available, I should perhaps point out that it seems that in some dioceses it is still available. Canon law no longer requires bishops to make records of notifications they receive from people leaving the church, but it seems (from the report in the Irish Times that KWAG links to in the post above me) that some bishops still do. So if you were baptised in a diocese where they still make records of departure notifications, you can still get your departure recorded, if you want to.


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  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 15,707 Mod ✭✭✭✭smacl


    KWAG2019 wrote: »
    https://www.irishtimes.com/business/catholic-church-records-may-be-inspected-over-gdpr-concerns-1.4178767

    Interesting read and interesting to see interpretations between dioceses differing. Claiming exemption seems the most likely route to go for the RCC. A few complaints is enough for the DPC to investigate. Oh well. Those surplices won’t iron themselves!

    Salient point from the article in the context of this thread seems to be the following;
    “Under canon law, there is no way to leave the Catholic Church, and that’s not a matter for this office,” Ms Dixon said.

    My take on it if you don't consider yourself a Catholic, you're not a Catholic, and what anyone else thinks about it is neither here nor there.


  • Registered Users Posts: 26,056 ✭✭✭✭Peregrinus


    smacl wrote: »
    Salient point from the article in the context of this thread seems to be the following . . .
    What the article says is true, in the sense that Canon Law doesn't provide a mechanism for leaving the Catholic church.

    On the other hand, it should also be pointed out that Canon Law doesn't require a mechanism for leaving the Catholic church - as in, it doesn't say "you can only leave the church by jumping through these hoops, decided by us" - it doesn't prescribe a process for leaving because leaving doesn't require a process. And it does recognise and accept that people do leave, and provides for various canonical consequences of that.
    smacl wrote: »
    My take on it if you don't consider yourself a Catholic, you're not a Catholic, and what anyone else thinks about it is neither here nor there.
    Amazingly enough, this is quite close to the position of the Catholic church. The only addition they would make is that they, as well as you, have the right to decide that you're not a Catholic.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 834 ✭✭✭KWAG2019


    smacl wrote: »
    Salient point from the article in the context of this thread seems to be the following;



    My take on it if you don't consider yourself a Catholic, you're not a Catholic, and what anyone else thinks about it is neither here nor there.

    There are more points of relevance as the discussion has developed particularly around scope of GDPR and the nuisance value of GDPRing the RCC. I’m very interested in the argument that an ad hoc system of keeping personal data is not governed by GDPR. I expect that will be hit on the head very quickly. Arguments about deleting the data also are taking interesting turn. RCC seems to be saying that as other people are involved in baptism the record of it cannot be deleted. Wouldn’t a finding that the name of the baptized is to be deleted while the others retained be a delight! Or copies of certs have to be redacted to remove personal data of others before being issued to anyone! I can’t stop laughing.

    Back to the nub of the issue of OP: you don’t need permission from the local wizard to leave the RCC. If you want it to register with the organization that their day is done promote the NO RELIGION option for the census. Promote an end to baptism in your friends and relations. Work for a secular Republic where no religion gets its rules put into civil law.


  • Registered Users Posts: 26,056 ✭✭✭✭Peregrinus


    KWAG2019 wrote: »
    There are more points of relevance as the discussion has developed particularly around scope of GDPR and the nuisance value of GDPRing the RCC. I’m very interested in the argument that an ad hoc system of keeping personal data is not governed by GDPR. I expect that will be hit on the head very quickly. Arguments about deleting the data also are taking interesting turn. RCC seems to be saying that as other people are involved in baptism the record of it cannot be deleted. Wouldn’t a finding that the name of the baptized is to be deleted while the others retained be a delight! Or copies of certs have to be redacted to remove personal data of others before being issued to anyone! I can’t stop laughing . . .
    We have discussed this a couple of times before; there's a short thread here, and the question of GDPR has come up in some of the longer threads on leaving the Catholic church. But I don't think we have arrived at any very clear answers.


  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 15,707 Mod ✭✭✭✭smacl


    KWAG2019 wrote: »
    There are more points of relevance as the discussion has developed particularly around scope of GDPR and the nuisance value of GDPRing the RCC.

    Depends whether you see any value in simply being a nuisance, personally I don't. Where I'm openly critical of the RCC is firstly where their actions are likely to negatively affect me, my family, my friends and Irish society and secondly to be held accountable for their historical criminal behaviour. While I'm a lifelong atheist, I have every reason to believe that most Irish Catholics would take a similar stance. From a secular perspective, I take no issue with the church beyond that.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 834 ✭✭✭KWAG2019


    smacl wrote: »
    Depends whether you see any value in simply being a nuisance, personally I don't. Where I'm openly critical of the RCC is firstly where their actions are likely to negatively affect me, my family, my friends and Irish society and secondly to be held accountable for their historical criminal behaviour. While I'm a lifelong atheist, I have every reason to believe that most Irish Catholics would take a similar stance. From a secular perspective, I take no issue with the church beyond that.

    Nuisance value has its uses in tying down enemy forces. Personally I couldn’t be bothered either.

    Your approach strikes me as very much grand but I think society cannot indulge a group who believe that they have an access to truth and human destiny superior to human reason and experience based on “revelations” to Middle Eastern nomads etc 3000-2000 years ago. Said organisation routinely claims a superiority to civil law in its pronouncements. It is an absurd organization and its absurdity needs to be presented continuously. They haven’t gone away you know.


  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 15,707 Mod ✭✭✭✭smacl


    KWAG2019 wrote: »
    Nuisance value has its uses in tying down enemy forces. Personally I couldn’t be bothered either.

    Your approach strikes me as very much grand but I think society cannot indulge a group who believe that they have an access to truth and human destiny superior to human reason and experience based on “revelations” to Middle Eastern nomads etc 3000-2000 years ago. Said organisation routinely claims a superiority to civil law in its pronouncements. It is an absurd organization and its absurdity needs to be presented continuously. They haven’t gone away you know.

    I'm perfectly happy to let people believe in whatever they want to, no matter that I find it both absurd and oft times objectionable, just so long as they don't try and foist it on me or mine.

    In my opinion, I think any attack you make on a person or organisation should be based primarily on their actions rather than their assumed beliefs. There are no shortage of fronts on which to attack the RCC on this basis most of which have the broad support of the majority of the population. Once you start attacking people of the basis of their beliefs rather than actions you'll quickly find yourself isolated to a minority, labelled as a narky atheist, and easily dismissed as such. I find a lot to like in both Machiavelli and Sunzi on when to take a fight and why, and how to play the long game.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 834 ✭✭✭KWAG2019


    smacl wrote: »
    I'm perfectly happy to let people believe in whatever they want to, no matter that I find it both absurd and oft times objectionable, just so long as they don't try and foist it on me or mine.

    In my opinion, I think any attack you make on a person or organisation should be based primarily on their actions rather than their assumed beliefs. There are no shortage of fronts on which to attack the RCC on this basis most of which have the broad support of the majority of the population. Once you start attacking people of the basis of their beliefs rather than actions you'll quickly find yourself isolated to a minority, labelled as a narky atheist, and easily dismissed as such. I find a lot to like in both Machiavelli and Sunzi on when to take a fight and why, and how to play the long game.

    I think a neologism is needed: smaclsplaining. I’ll Passover your post in that manner except for pointing out that I’m not attacking any person, I’m attacking the organisation and its beliefs. People cannot hold those beliefs and think that believing absurdity passionately gives them the right to avoid having those beliefs held to the light of day and seen for what they are. If people want to draw a conclusion about the people who hold such beliefs I’m not going to stop them.


  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 15,707 Mod ✭✭✭✭smacl


    KWAG2019 wrote: »
    I think a neologism is needed: smaclsplaining. I’ll Passover your post in that manner except for pointing out that I’m not attacking any person, I’m attacking the organisation and its beliefs. People cannot hold those beliefs and think that believing absurdity passionately gives them the right to avoid having those beliefs held to the light of day and seen for what they are.

    You're contradicting yourself even in that short post. You say you're not attacking any person and then go on to say how we should deal with people and their beliefs.
    If people want to draw a conclusion about the people who hold such beliefs I’m not going to stop them.

    Of course you're not going to stop anyone. To do so would need them to countenance that anything you had to say might be credible and in their interest whereas it is clearly derisory.


  • Registered Users Posts: 40,123 ✭✭✭✭ohnonotgmail


    smacl wrote: »
    You're contradicting yourself even in that short post. You say you're not attacking any person and then go on to say how we should deal with people and their beliefs.

    I dont see anywhere where KWAG2019 advocates attacking anybody. can you clarify what you perceive as an attack?


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  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 15,707 Mod ✭✭✭✭smacl


    I dont see anywhere where KWAG2019 advocates attacking anybody. can you clarify what you perceive as an attack?

    When KWAG2019 says

    "People cannot hold those beliefs and think that believing absurdity passionately gives them the right to avoid having those beliefs held to the light of day and seen for what they are."

    I would suggest asserting that someone "believes absurdity passionately" is a form of attack on that person regardless of whether that belief is or is not absurd in my world view. KWAG2019 says his argument is against the organisation and not against any person yet it is people s/he is addressing.


  • Registered Users Posts: 40,123 ✭✭✭✭ohnonotgmail


    smacl wrote: »
    When KWAG2019 says

    "People cannot hold those beliefs and think that believing absurdity passionately gives them the right to avoid having those beliefs held to the light of day and seen for what they are."

    I would suggest asserting that someone "believes absurdity passionately" is a form of attack on that person regardless of whether that belief is or is not absurd in my world view. KWAG2019 says his argument is against the organisation and not against any person yet it is people s/he is addressing.

    So if i think your beliefs are absurd i am attacking you? Is that where you place the bar? that is so low a limbo dancer would be terrified.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 834 ✭✭✭KWAG2019


    smacl wrote: »
    When KWAG2019 says

    "People cannot hold those beliefs and think that believing absurdity passionately gives them the right to avoid having those beliefs held to the light of day and seen for what they are."

    I would suggest asserting that someone "believes absurdity passionately" is a form of attack on that person regardless of whether that belief is or is not absurd in my world view. KWAG2019 says his argument is against the organisation and not against any person yet it is people s/he is addressing.

    If your position is that no belief can be examined rationally and found to be absurd because that belief is held by a human being and in pointing out the absurdity of that belief the human being might be offended you have effectively shut down examination of those beliefs. Such an approach is an intellectual contortion for some purpose other than promoting reason. I can see a few possibilities but perhaps you should spell it out.


  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 15,707 Mod ✭✭✭✭smacl


    So if i think your beliefs are absurd i am attacking you? Is that where you place the bar? that is so low a limbo dancer would be terrified.

    If I state "you believe absurdity passionately" is not the same as stating "I consider your beliefs absurd". The first says something negative about the person you're talking to, the second says something about yourself.


  • Registered Users Posts: 40,123 ✭✭✭✭ohnonotgmail


    smacl wrote: »
    If I state "you believe absurdity passionately" is not the same as stating "I consider your beliefs absurd". The first says something negative about the person you're talking to, the second says something about yourself.

    You're picking out parts of a quote. Here is the full quote. It very much says that the other persons beliefs are absurd. It is only right that we hold beliefs to the light of day. That is what reasonable people do. That others hold their beliefs passionately has no bearing on that. Attacking your beliefs is not attacking you. Unless of course you think you are the embodiment of your beliefs in which case no reasonable discussion is possible.

    "People cannot hold those beliefs and think that believing absurdity passionately gives them the right to avoid having those beliefs held to the light of day and seen for what they are."


  • Registered Users Posts: 282 ✭✭patsman07


    There's one positive, that I can think of, to the church's stubbornness on this issue. The religious like to argue that Stalin and Hitler were atheists (erroneously so in Hitler's case.) But both were baptised. Once a Catholic, always a Catholic!


  • Registered Users Posts: 26,056 ✭✭✭✭Peregrinus


    patsman07 wrote: »
    There's one positive, that I can think of, to the church's stubbornness on this issue. The religious like to argue that Stalin and Hitler were atheists (erroneously so in Hitler's case.) But both were baptised. Once a Catholic, always a Catholic!
    Except that the church doesn't say that. As pointed out above in the thread, Catholic canon law accepts that people can and do leave the church, and addresses some consequences of that.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 834 ✭✭✭KWAG2019


    “Canon law”. Was this once described in an Irish court as having the status of the rules of a golf club?


  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 15,707 Mod ✭✭✭✭smacl


    KWAG2019 wrote: »
    “Canon law”. Was this once described in an Irish court as having the status of the rules of a golf club?

    Does being a Catholic have any meaning in any other laws or set of rules though? Queue jumping in getting into state funded Catholic schools is the only time that comes to mind. Can you think of any situation where your stated position of not being a Catholic, acknowledged by the RCC, is going to have any impact when compared to the same position not acknowledged by the RCC?


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 834 ✭✭✭KWAG2019


    smacl wrote: »
    Does being a Catholic have any meaning in any other laws or set of rules though? Queue jumping in getting into state funded Catholic schools is the only time that comes to mind. Can you think of any situation where your stated position of not being a Catholic, acknowledged by the RCC, is going to have any impact when compared to the same position not acknowledged by the RCC?

    What an interesting question. But I am the latter of the two
    options offered in the final sentence. Perhaps you’ve confused me with someone else.

    The Education Act 1998 established “characteristic spirit/ethos” without specifying RCism as far as I remember so other religions benefit too.

    Oh for a secular republic. I think I’ll reread some histories of the French Revolution. Comfort blanket if you will.


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