THE seal of confession can never be broken.
Confession is a sacrament in the church and it's solemn seal is governed under canon law. Every ordained priest is bound to obey the church's laws.
No civil law can force a change to what is a right to practice religion in every facet of its tenets and laws.
However, because of the failings and sins of the catholic clergy, and the requirement that there should be justice, is rightfully pursued by the law of the land.
Canon law has a system, whereby priests and religious people can be disciplined for child sexual abuse, which could result in dismissal and return to the lay state.
This practice was, however, not undertaken and priests were moved "away from temptation", only to result in further abuse.
There is little doubt that the failures of the clergy have had a catastrophic effect on its members.
The Catholic Church must obey canon law, regardless of civil law attempts to change the very core principles of a sacrament, that of confession.
The Church is built on the teachings of Jesus Christ and it will only further damage the very faith of its members, should civil law force its way into the very sanctity of confession.
There must be justice for the little ones, so damaged by abuse, and financial compensation will never alter their disillusionment, disbelief, and mental injuries, which are with them for life.
Mary T. Bates, Exeter.
LABOR MP Brian Mitchell is right in his comments on Centrelink (The Examiner, August 16).
It is my experience that they are ruthless in demanding payment from their clients even when, in some cases, the alleged debt would not hold up to scrutiny, refusing to take no for an answer and refusing to allow the matter to be looked into.
Centrelink are robbing people.
They are thieves.
They should be locked up.
Instead of pursuing innocent people like they have been, their employees need to take a good, long, hard look at themselves in the mirror.
Ask whether the bullying and harassment of clients, who had done nothing wrong, is really what they want out of a career.
If this type of thug and criminal is really who they want to be.
Davis Seecamp, Trevallyn.
THE Prime Minister has made it clear he has no intention of listening to his constituents.
Like every arrogant leader before him, he only wants to hear the voices which back up his own opinions and he will only do the bidding of those who pay his marketing bills; the coal industry.
By threatening GetUp he threatens free speech and intelligent citizens who deserve to be heard.
Instead, he should be listening to the voices of reason, acknowledging scientific facts, and stop demolishing our future by denying climate change.
Democracy is for everyone and I demand to be heard.
Teresa Beck-Swindale, Ulverstone.
Science and society
THE science process is the most reliable method humans have invented to help understand how we, and the universe, work.
Millions have been helped and had their lives extended, or saved, but it has not been a perfect process.
Overconfident humans and some influenced by greed and self interest, have rushed on with disastrous consequences, but it has also always been science processes that revealed the errors in the end.
The environment experiences many adverse effects as our numbers swell. The message is clear, even if the social will is not.
Global climate change, which is being ignored by our federal government, is perhaps our latest and biggest threat.
But what is the alternative - ban study, ban invention and ongoing learning? Revert to a subsistence and chance existence? Let millions die of preventable disease?
Bring back the iron lung and the polio calipers, rely on religious myth and untested biased claims, or should we move forward with ever better understanding and learn to better manage ourselves?
We need new ideas and a new approach.
For us to succeed the scientific process will be a part of our future, even if the existing government system and capitalism as we know them, will not be.
Government needs to be more fit for purpose, which means changing the self interest inevitable in the current style of democracy.
M Fyfe, Riverside.
I STAND corrected by Andrea Dawkins because I had assumed, without checking, that land 2000 kilometres from the North Pole would not be part of the Arctic, and what a furphy to argue smoke from these bushfires can be seen from space - so could the smoke from 9/11.
Also, once again only part of the story is being told.
Rather than the certainty that these fires were caused by climate change, the Russian government is investigating the cause, believing they may have been deliberately lit to conceal illegal logging activities.
Either way, it is indisputable that the fires lit by men would otherwise have been caused by lightning.
Arctic fires are a natural part of the environment and both the Aborigines of Australia and the Indigenous people around the Arctic practiced controlled burning.
These fires are not unprecedented. In the North-West territories in 2014, 8.4 million hectares were burned; in Alaska 5.1 million hectares burned in 2015.