|Pope Should Resign, Says O'Connor
By Riazat Butt
September 5, 2010
In a new film, Sinead O'Connor argues that Catholicism has been brought into disrepute by an 'anti-Christian' Vatican
The pope should resign because he is anti-Christian and has brought Catholicism into disrepute through his handling of the paedophilia scandal, according to the Irish singer Sinead O'Connor.
In a film being shown on Channel 4 to coincide with the papal visit, she describes herself as "Catholic by birth and culture" and a campaigner on child abuse for more than 20 years.
O'Connor, who once tore up a picture of John Paul II on an Irish television programme, said: "'Catholic' has become a word associated with negativity, with abuse, with violence, but the essence of Catholicism is beautiful. The fact is, tragically, it's been brought into disrepute by the people running it."
"Benedict is in no position to call himself Christ's representative. The pope should stand down, the Vatican should stand down, not only because of the cover-up, they're incredibly arrogant, they're anti-Christian. They don't have the remotest relationship with God."
She appears in one of seven films commissioned by 4thought.tv, the channel's religion and ethics strand.
Other contributors include a mother of eight, Ann Peoples, who believes a papal blessing saved her unborn child from death and wants to thank Benedict for his stance on abortion, 19-year-old student Christine Parrano who thinks he is a "great man" and would like to sing Ave Maria for him, and Winnie Seruma, a Catholic with HIV, who wants Benedict to rethink his position on condom use. Lucy Pilkington, from Channel 4, said: "These are people's personal stories, their views and reactions to the pope.
"It's love, anger and the whole range of human emotion. For us, the whole idea is diversity and seven anti-pope films don't sound very diverse. Some people think he's amazing, others don't. Religion means different things to different people, this isn't intellectuals coming down from on high or someone who has been put forward by a religious institution."
That same week human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell will explore Benedict's beliefs and policies in an hour-long documentary, The Trouble With the Pope.
He looks at the impact papal pronouncements have had on the developing and western world – with filming in the Philippines, Italy, Germany and the UK – and examines the plans for the beatification of Cardinal Newman, the nineteenth century theologian on the verge of sainthood, and the lifting of the excommunication of a Holocaust-denying bishop, Richard Williamson.
The documentary also includes a first-person testimonial from sex abuse survivor, Sue Cox, who was raped by a priest and an interview with Catholic historian John Cornwell.
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