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Mount Orégano
Sue Burke
Spain: worse off than Haiti? 
15th-Jan-2010 07:22 pm

Spain is suffering more than Haiti right now, according to José Ignacio Munilla, Archbishop of San Sebastián, Spain.

"There are worse evils than the ones that the poor people of Haiti are suffering these days," he said in a radio interview. "We should also weep for ourselves, for our poor spiritual situation, for our materialistic concept of life. ... Perhaps we are suffering from a bigger evil than the one these innocent people are enduring."

Like other people in Spain, my husband and I made cruel fun of his words:

"Such horrible materialism. We have all the food we need. In fact, more than we need."

"We could invite a Haitian to dinner."

"Several Haitians. We have enough."

But it would hardly be practical to bring them here to Madrid, though it would be a pleasure to serve them a fine meal, and I know they're hungry right now. And even if I could find a big round padded envelope, I couldn't send a paella through the mail very well.

So instead, we could only make a donation to charity — like so many other debased materialists in Spain and around the world.

Don't weep for me. Material comfort is not worse than unimaginable death and destruction. Really.

— Sue Burke

15th-Jan-2010 07:11 pm (UTC)
This is an excellent example of why it's good that I am not a deity. Because the Archbishop's comment would perk my attention, and that wouldn't be a good thing. As in I'd have to fight the temptation to say, "You get to switch places permanently with someone in Haiti who has just lost his home and his entire family, and then you can do a boots-on-the-ground comparison."
16th-Jan-2010 07:42 pm (UTC)
Having someone switch places to teach them a lesson sounds like the sort of rough justice common to old Spanish legends, just the sort of thing God would do here. Except He'd let the Archbishop switch back after he learned his lesson, and he'd be a model of goodness and compassion for the rest of his life.

Now, the Archbishop is saying his quote was lifted out of context, and he was using theological terms with people who don't understand it...
15th-Jan-2010 08:09 pm (UTC)
Wow, Archbishop, myopic much? He and Pat Robertson ought to get together for an ecumenical council.

Yeah, I'm going to take my shameless materialism on the road and donate to Oxfam.
16th-Jan-2010 07:43 pm (UTC)
Though I am in no way empowered to speak on behalf of Oxfam, thank you for your donation.
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