Wednesday, July 15, 2015

An ever-queasier feeling about Pope Francis

Dennis Prager at NRO on the acceptance by Francis of a very provocative gift:

Last week the Marxist quasi-dictator of Bolivia, Evo Morales, presented Pope Francis with a gift — a carved wooden hammer-and-sickle cross on which the figure of Christ is crucified. The Vatican announced that the pope had not been informed in advance about the gift. And some commentators said that photos of the pope and Morales show that the pope was actually offended. That was a false — probably wishful — interpretation. The pope himself later announced that he was keeping the hammer-and-sickle crucifix and taking it home, saying, “I understand this work. For me it wasn’t an offense.”

More troubling is the context.  The pope is but a symptom of what the rot of the West.

It also reconfirms what is probably the single most important development one needs to understand in order to make sense of the contemporary world: The most dynamic religion of the past hundred years has been leftism, not Christianity, not Islam, not any other traditional religion. Indeed, regarding traditional religions, leftism has influenced them — particularly Christianity and Judaism — far more than they have influenced the Left. Mainstream Protestant Christianity, much of Catholicism (especially in Latin America, where Pope Francis lived his whole life before becoming pope), and most of non-Orthodox Judaism have become essentially liberal/Left movements with religious (and in the case of Judaism, ethnic) identity. 

So very late in the day.


  1. Francis reportedly muttered to Morales, “Eso no está bien.” Translation: We are not amused.

    But insert a balloon over Francis’ head, and I'll bet he was also thinking: “Gee, thanks, Evo. As if I didn’t have enough trouble with conservatives.”

    Read more here:

  2. I will defend my Pope regardless of who God anointed.


  3. As Catholics, we believe that the Holy Spirit is operative in the Church. Therefore, there is an unbroken succession of appointed men from Peter to John Paul II. The words of Jesus, "Tu es Petrus" echo throughout the ages. We believe that the Pope is the Vicar of Christ on earth, appointed by men under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.


  4. Heard the horseshit circulating that Francis said the Bible and the Koran are the same--inspired by God? Nope, never said it. The first causualty of war is truth. Liars on all sides.


  5. Some interesting comments in response to Prager's posting about the Pope on facebook:

    Mark Brown This incident is not at all what Prager thinks it is, and neither is this Pontiff. Prager is not often obtuse, but on things Catholic he is. For a more sensible analysis of this incident read the thoughts of John Allen, someone who knows Francis and the Church.

    Bolivia’s propaganda coup with papal visit may be short-lived
    This is not the Vatican’s first rodeo in terms of regimes...

    Doug Walsdorf The reception of this gift was well covered due to the unususal aspect of it. Early interpretations of the video had the Pope saying "no". Later translations softened it some. Regardless, you can tell he did not think much of it. But you do not insult your host either based on an artistic interpretation. Maybe he did not have the luxury of time to think it through like Dennis did. The bottom lone is that the Pope has no economic agenda. The Pope has the responsibility for guiding Catholics along their path in this world. Every step he takes will not please everyone. He is only a man.

    Mark Brown For those of you who think Francis it's a Marxist, that is demonstrably false. In his recent interview on that subject he specifically acknowledged the Jesuit General's and the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith's rejection of Marxist liberation theology. I did read Francis' words, but unlike Prager, I understand those words. He recognises that the hammer and sickle crucifix, like the bomber crucifix, which he mentioned, is not the most appropriate representation. As he mentioned, protest art is sometimes offensive, but this cross was the work of a fellow Jesuit in Bolivia who was murdered by right wing paramilitary. The meaning of the work was a hope of detente between Marxists and Christians.

    Mark Sarni I am no fan of this Pope, although I initially held out hope for him. In fairness I think he promptly stated, upon first seeing the cross at issue, that "this is not right." He stated it out loud for the presenter to hear. While he may have accepted the gift so as not to offend the host, he certainly did not endorse the message represented by it.

    Cathy Smoorenburg Dear Dennis Prager, it's obviously you are frustrated with the Pope and with that your anger blocks your otherwise sensible nature to lead you. I think it is the Jewish historical rejection of Jesus not being the messiah that Jews were looking for. Jesus say in John 12:27, "If anyone hears my words and doesn't keep them, I don't condemn him, because I didn't come to condemn the world, but to save it."
    Please consider these points, "In terms of the gifts, the Vatican cannot control what another head of state gives the pope"
    More fundamentally, this is not the Vatican’s first rodeo in terms of regimes of various sorts attempting to exploit a papal visit..."

    Christine Kilroy I read he left the gifts at the foot of a statue of the Blessed Mother in Bolivia. Assuming that's true, he did not keep them.

    Cathy Smoorenburg "In terms of the gifts, the Vatican cannot control what another head of state gives the pope
    Like · Reply · 1 hr

    There are 171 comments so far. a lot of them are from Prager sycophants. Prager is no peacemaker, but, then again, that's a dirty word to your ilk.

  6. And I don't believe what Prager says about the Pope saying he is keeping the crucifix either.

  7. Pope Francis rebuked Bolivian President Evo Morales when he presented him with a crucifix mounted on the symbol of Communism – a hammer-and-sickle.

    “That’s not right,” said the Pope, who appeared to be taken aback by the gift. He and Morales engaged in the customary exchange of gifts when the pontiff paid a courtesy call to the Bolivian president. A video of the encounter highlights the Pope’s obvious displeasure at the object, which combines the central Christian symbol with that of a system built on atheism and the destruction of religion.


  8. And leftism is no more a religion than conservatism.

  9. You may have shed some light on the actual crucifix situation, but leftism has indeed supplanted Judeo-Christian faith throughout the West over the last century. Leftism sees the state as the ultimate overarching power within the human experience and asserts that it can mold human nature to a noble collectivist purpose.

  10. More like individualism and rationalism have done that here in America. You know what those isms assert. And it ain't communism.