The Lost Art of Catholic Drinking
      As the learned gentleman from Durham points out it tends to be an art among Catholics.  Here in India among the Malankaras who are in no way Latinized enjoying a beer is rare.  But when you meet seminarians and priests from European congregations, almost all enjoy a libation from time to time.  They will admit "I never had a beer until I was in the seminary".   Such was not the plan Ghandi had for India.
      The Benedictines in France make their own wine.  They use bought wine only for very special feasts. 
No offence taken, DJMitch.  Just wasn't sure why you sounded defensive in your previous post, that's all.  :tiphat:
By the way, just noticed your deviantart page - have we a fellow Mahlerian here?
That article is ridiculous to infer that there is some sort of difference in the way that different religions drink.

The problem with religion and alcohol is the pathetic and self-conflicting way that the church and religious people treat the consumption of alcohol. They say that drinking alcohol and getting drunk is a sin, but drinking in moderation isn't a sin, sometimes. but other times it is. also, we're brought up thinking that alcohol is this horrible societal poison, then we get old enough to drink and find out that not only is it not bad, but enjoyable, but also that all those people who used to say is was bad and a sin drink it themselves. I think that if the church treated alcohol realistically, telling their sheep that alcohol is an enjoyable intoxicant that can bring people together in revelry but also has a downside when used excessively, than people could start making informed decisions for themselves and learn how to rink appropriately.

If only so many people didn't take their ideals from the confused, hypocritical edicts of the church, maybe we wouldn't have some many societal problems with drugs and alcohol.
Quote:That article is ridiculous to infer that there is some sort of difference in the way that different religions drink.

Not at all: Islam prohibits the consumption of any alcohol whatever; Christ has made wine into Himself, and, as Chesterton, whom I strongly recommend that you read, wrote, the Church has elevated wine to the dignity of a sacrament.
You seem to lump "the church and religious people" into some kind of conglomerated monolith. I think you'll find most of us here would say the drinking in moderation is not a sin, but wilful drunkenness is. You may have been brought up thinking alcohol was "this horrible societal poison"; I imagine (I may be, and perhaps am, wrong) that you were brought up in America and not Europe, then, unless you are from a Muslim country like Turkey, where I am informed that many people drink wine but say that the important thing is that they know that it is wrong (which, in moderation, it isn't).
Strangely enough, the Church does exactly what you say it should in the last sentence of your penultimate* paragraph. I shall send you a private message.

* I originally wrote "last" here.  This was a mistake.
Drinking's no sin but getting drunk is...seems easy enough to me.

Ecclesiasticus 31:31-42, Douay-Rhiems Wrote:31 Fire trieth hard iron: so wine drunk to excess shall rebuke the hearts of the proud. 32 Wine taken with sobriety is equal lire to men: if thou drink it moderately, thou shalt be sober. 33 What is his life, who is diminished with wine? 34 What taketh away life? death. 35 Wine was created from the beginning to make men joyful, and not to make them drunk.

36 Wine drunken with moderation is the joy of the soul and the heart. 37 Sober drinking is health to soul and body. 38 Wine drunken with excess raiseth quarrels; and wrath, and many ruins. 39 Wine drunken with excess is bitterness of the soul. 40 The heat of drunkenness is the stumblingblock of the fool, lessening strength and causing wounds.

41 Rebuke not thy neighbour in a banquet of wine: and despise him not in hip mirth. 42 Speak not to him words of reproach: and press him not in demanding again.

No one would even dare contradict Scripture, except for those who consider this(Ecclesiasticus) book "apocryphal" or don't care about God at all.
The week after I graduated from highschool I was invited to the Catholic wedding of a friend of mine (I was still an Anglican). It was a morning wedding, of course, as they all were if the Nuptial Mass was offered. After Mass and after kissing the bride and shaking hands with the groom and all their relatives, everybody gathered on the Church lawn, just standing around. I wondered what was going on until I heard the shout of, 'Here it comes'. Two kegs of beer were being rolled across the lawn to be tapped. My first thought was what the Pastor would think. A bit later, with a beer in hand, I walked behind the school building to find Father, cigar in one hand and a glass of Jack at the other, playing poker with the guys.

After the beer, we all went home, changed into casual clothing and regathered at an hall for the wedding dance and more (moderate!) drinking.

You know, looking back, that experience may have begun my journey to Rome, tho' it didn't end for 15 more years!

And, BTW, it was a German marrying an Irish girl, so we had the best of two cultures going. And, D.g., they're still married 43 years later having had 11 (or is it 12?) children!
The story is told a desperate man running through a train saying in every car, "Is there a Catholic priest in this car?! He was unsuccessful for about four cars when finally a man came up to him and said, "I'm a Catholic priest", to which the other man said, "Ah, finally, someone with a corkscrew!"
Wherever the Catholic sun doth shine,
There’s always laughter and good red wine.
At least I’ve always found it so.
Benedicamus Domino!
~ Hilaire Belloc
Tiny Wrote:I think the puritan treatment of alcohol as inherently evil is an anachronism. Water was not a practical beverage; beer and wine and spirits were necessarily drunk.
The Puritans actually did drink alcohol--the reason they landed at Plymouth Rock, Mass.  instead of Virginia, their intended destination, was to brew more beer!  Kentucky Bourbon was invented by a Baptist minister!  The Protestant condemnation of alcohol did not come about until the 19th century and almost certainly originated in America.

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