Government funds saintly superstition

Mary MacKillop was canonised on October 17, 2010 in Rome. Then-Prime Minister Gillard attended a Mary MacKillop fund-raising dinner on 5 August and pledged $1.5 million toward the celebrations in Rome and Sydney. The Opposition quickly matched the offer.

$700,000 will go to the Mary MacKillop Foundation for its charitable works, which is tolerable. The remaining $800,000 is for youth and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander representatives who will attend and participate in the ceremony in Rome, production and distribution of ‘educational materials’ associated with the occasion, events at Mary MacKillop Place, and to assist with the expenses associated with the three official events in Rome. Equally significant financially is the extension of tax deductibility to the fundraising effort.

The Roman Catholic Church states that it does not make a saint but recognises a saint. Canonisation is the act by which the Pope declares person is actually in the glory of heaven, intercedes for us before the God and is to be publicly venerated by the Church.

As a Christian I find it distinctly odd and quite wrong that any Prime Minister should be giving public funds to support the celebration of such superstition.