Pope Francis’ Political Instincts Are Execrable

 

As a faithful, devout Catholic, I believe the pope to be infallible when he is pronouncing on matters of faith and doctrine. However, as I have told my own children many times, that does not mean that the pope is right about anything else. As a historian, I teach them of the history of the papacy, with all its lechers and weak-minded boobs, as well as its holy saints and wise and powerful leaders. In most of my lifetime, the pope has been someone whose wisdom I valued and whose reasoned statements on matters of international importance I could at least respect, even if I disagreed.

But, Pope Francis, as much as I pray for him as the leader of my church, has terrible political instincts. His self-important idea that if he doesn’t speak up, the Israelis will suddenly start oppressing religious worship, rather than being the only country in the Middle East that guarantees freedom of worship, makes me sick. The reality is that the threat of violence is not coming from the Israelis, and that only areas of Jerusalem that are under the control of the Israelis, not the Palestinians, are safe for people of all faiths.

May the Lord bless Pope Francis and bring him the wisdom to know when he should speak and when he should shut his mouth. Today I rejoice in the announcement that the US will stop acting as though reality is not real and accept Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. The Lord be praised! This time next year, or perhaps more like three or four years, in Jerusalem!

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  1. iWe Coolidge
    iWe
    @iWe

    Thank you for this.

    Yes, it bears repeating, time and again: toleration of all religious faiths has only happened in the Holy Land under Israeli control.

    (With the notable and egregious exception that Jews are not free to pray on the Temple Mount.)

    • #1
  2. Scott Wilmot Member
    Scott Wilmot
    @ScottWilmot

    How quaint that the Pope and the President of Iran speak out against this. What a fool that man is.

    CB Toder aka Mama Toad: May the Lord bless Pope Francis, and bring him the wisdom to know when he should speak and when he should shut his mouth.

    Amen to that. I said something similar on another thread, but not as politely and delicately as you have.

    • #2
  3. Doug Watt Moderator
    Doug Watt
    @DougWatt

    I pay attention to the Pope, and the Catechism when it comes to faith and morals. I listen to the Pope when it comes to prudential matters, but I’m free to disagree on those matters. I pay no attention to the vast majority of the German clergy, and some American clergy on any matter.

    • #3
  4. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Yes, agreed. He is a deeply foolish man. The only thing worse in a pope is being a heretical bully, and I’m afraid he might be those things, too. It’s a sorry state of affairs when any president, let alone Donald Trump, puts the Pope to shame. Prayers are needed.

    But, for Israel and Jerusalem, let us go rejoicing!

    • #4
  5. Manny Member
    Manny
    @Manny

    Agree. I cringed too when I saw the Pope’s reaction. We had a little discussion yesterday on Pope Francis on Scott’s post, here. From my limited, human point of view, Pope Francis seems like a mistake.

    • #5
  6. 9thDistrictNeighbor Member
    9thDistrictNeighbor
    @9thDistrictNeighbor

    When I heard on the radio about the Pope’s comments, I unfortunately called him the sort of name that used to be reserved for Hillary. One act of contrition later, I went back to this…

    Mazel tov, Mr. President

    • #6
  7. DocJay Inactive
    DocJay
    @DocJay

    Relatively silent on the murder of Christians in the ME , yet the first to pipe up about Islam being oppressed by Trump and Jews. By oppressed I mean following the Bible and recognizing the true capital of Israel. Oh the horror.

    • #7
  8. Ralphie Member
    Ralphie
    @Ralphie

    Pope has a log in his eye, and points out the sticks in Trumps.

    • #8
  9. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    9thDistrictNeighbor (View Comment):
    When I heard on the radio about the Pope’s comments, I unfortunately called him the sort of name that used to be reserved for Hillary. One act of contrition later, I went back to this…

    Mazel tov, Mr. President

    Me too! But, I didn’t get the Jessye Norman version (thanks! — she was my Dad’s favorite opera diva). I went to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir:

    • #9
  10. CB Toder aka Mama Toad Member
    CB Toder aka Mama Toad
    @CBToderakaMamaToad

    Last night I was cantoring at our church for a Vespers service and singing about Jerusalem the holy city. It felt so good knowing what I knew as I sang…

    (The service was planned months ago, so even though I am in poor health I couldn’t cancel. Singing can give me such strength, like I’m this vessel through which sound pours.)

    • #10
  11. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    CB Toder aka Mama Toad (View Comment):
    Last night I was cantoring at our church for a Vespers service and singing about Jerusalem the holy city. It felt so good knowing what I knew as I sang…

    (The service was planned months ago, so even though I am in poor health I couldn’t cancel. Singing can give me such strength, like I’m this vessel through which sound pours.)

    God’s grace with you, Mama. Great moments, those! Wish I had been there to share it.

    • #11
  12. Manny Member
    Manny
    @Manny

    DocJay (View Comment):
    Relatively silent on the murder of Christians in the ME , yet the first to pipe up about Islam being oppressed by Trump and Jews. By oppressed I mean following the Bible and recognizing the true capital of Israel. Oh the horror.

    Oh I think that first part is a unfair. I have heard him speak up about Christians being martyred in the middle east, often, after every atrocity. He just doesn’t link it to a core Islamic belief. You know, the “not true Islam” nonsense.

    • #12
  13. 9thDistrictNeighbor Member
    9thDistrictNeighbor
    @9thDistrictNeighbor

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Me too! But, I didn’t get the Jessye Norman version (thanks! — she was my Dad’s favorite opera diva). I went to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir…

    There’s always Jeanette MacDonald and a sweet little boy choir, with a bonus Spencer Tracy in a biretta:

    • #13
  14. Mate De Inactive
    Mate De
    @MateDe

    I struggle with this Pope. He seems to be way to influenced by the left.

    • #14
  15. Whistle Pig Member
    Whistle Pig
    @

    This post was worth it just for the three beautiful renditions of The Holy City.

    • #15
  16. DocJay Inactive
    DocJay
    @DocJay

    Manny (View Comment):

    DocJay (View Comment):
    Relatively silent on the murder of Christians in the ME , yet the first to pipe up about Islam being oppressed by Trump and Jews. By oppressed I mean following the Bible and recognizing the true capital of Israel. Oh the horror.

    Oh I think that first part is a unfair. I have heard him speak up about Christians being martyred in the middle east, often, after every atrocity. He just doesn’t link it to a core Islamic belief. You know, the “not true Islam” nonsense.

    Relatively was my qualifier, but you’re right, I looked it up. I was unfair.

    I just don’t like the man. I disagree with almost every one of his opinions that are political. He’s a socialist and a dangerous one.

    • #16
  17. 9thDistrictNeighbor Member
    9thDistrictNeighbor
    @9thDistrictNeighbor

    Mate De (View Comment):
    I struggle with this Pope. He seems to be way to influenced by the left.

    Marinated in leftism….

    • #17
  18. RightAngles Member
    RightAngles
    @RightAngles

    and bring him the wisdom to know when he should speak and when he should shut his mouth. 

    Francis is the Barack Obama of Catholicism.

    • #18
  19. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    RightAngles (View Comment):
    and bring him the wisdom to know when he should speak and when he should shut his mouth.

    Francis is the Barack Obama of Catholicism.

    I feel that most acutely when he is scolding us.

    • #19
  20. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    The current pope strikes me as being completely consumed by the Left’s dogmas. It is so weird. He responds the way the NYT would have him respond to everything.

    I think he is a victim of the left’s grip on the mass media. He probably spends his time on the Internet. I’ve noticed it with our local priests too. They seem to be parroting the news stories of the day, using the terminology and emphasis that I see in the news media. Pope Francis sounds just like them to me. (Thank goodness, we still get some original thinking when they are talking about matters of faith rather than matters of the current news cycle.)

    The pope’s friendship with the PLO descendants currently running the Gaza strip is bizarre. In the article about his reaction, he is talking about the United States’ recognition of Jerusalem as being the end of the two-state solution. From where did he get that conclusion? The only place would have been the mass media. The two issues are not related.

    Trump has said repeatedly that he hasn’t a hard-and-fast opinion on that aspect of the issues concerning Israel. He has said it is a hard call. And it is! On the side of keeping them separate states, incorporating the Gaza Palestinians into Israel would be bringing a Trojan horse inside Israel. And leaving them as an independent state makes them accountable for terrorism in the court of world public opinion. On the side of incorporating them into Israel, doing so would at least give Israel a good shot at civilizing them.

    It is a hard call. Trump has never made it. And recognizing Jerusalem was not Trump’s way to endorse a single-state solution.

    • #20
  21. iWe Coolidge
    iWe
    @iWe

    CB Toder aka Mama Toad (View Comment):
    Singing can give me such strength, like I’m this vessel through which sound pours.)

    G-d ensouled us with His breath. When we sing, we are using that divine power to create beauty from nothing. Our souls express themselves in our words and song – the body is merely the vessel, as you say.

    • #21
  22. EDISONPARKS Member
    EDISONPARKS
    @user_54742

    I get the sense Pope Francis instinctively leans Left on some issues operating under the cockamamie theory that it will attract some wayward lapsed Lefty Catholics to come back to the Church.

    To me the Pope should be admonished with the old adage: “you don’t poop where you eat”. Which is to say why does Francis alienate millions of practicing Catholics, in a futile attempt to attract those who will never(ie: due to the Church’s position on abortion and homosexuality to name just two Lefty deal breakers) have a sincere interest in living as a Catholic Christian.

    • #22
  23. Mike LaRoche Inactive
    Mike LaRoche
    @MikeLaRoche

    RightAngles (View Comment):
    and bring him the wisdom to know when he should speak and when he should shut his mouth.

    Francis is the Barack Obama of Catholicism.

    Amen.

    • #23
  24. RightAngles Member
    RightAngles
    @RightAngles

    Oh now he wants to change the words of the Lord’s Prayer. Instead of “Lead us not into temptation,” he wants “Do not let us fall into temptation” or something like that.

    I’m just going to keep saying “Lead me not into temptation, I already know the way.”

    • #24
  25. Peter Robinson Contributor
    Peter Robinson
    @PeterRobinson

    CB Toder aka Mama Toad: May the Lord bless Pope Francis and bring him the wisdom to know when he should speak and when he should shut his mouth.

    Mama Toad is a gift. She writes with clarity, piquancy, and wisdom, and–have you noticed this?–she’s always right. And although this may be a matter that resonates only with our fellow papists, I can’t tell you what a sheer sweet relief it is to learn that Mama Toad feels the same way about the present supreme pontiff–and, for that matter, about his mostly sainted recent predecessors–as do I. If I get held up at customs when I reach the Pearly Gates, I’ll just tell St. Peter that I was a regular reader of Mama Toad’s. That’ll do the trick.

    • #25
  26. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    I just read the transcript of the speech. It contains this at the end. Clearly the pope did not read the speech:

    In making these announcements, I also want to make one point very clear. This decision is not intended in any way to reflect a departure from our strong commitment to facilitate a lasting peace agreement.

    We want an agreement that is a great deal for the Israelis and a great deal for the Palestinians. We are not taking a position of any final status issues including the specific boundaries of the Israeli sovereignty in Jerusalem or the resolution of contested borders. Those questions are up to the parties involved.

    The United States remains deeply committed to helping facilitate a peace agreement that is acceptable to both sides. I intend to do everything in my power to help forge such an agreement.

    • #26
  27. CB Toder aka Mama Toad Member
    CB Toder aka Mama Toad
    @CBToderakaMamaToad

    Peter Robinson (View Comment):
    she’s always right.

    (blush) I’ll try not to let this go to my head…

    • #27
  28. CB Toder aka Mama Toad Member
    CB Toder aka Mama Toad
    @CBToderakaMamaToad

    MarciN (View Comment):
    I just read the transcript of the speech. It contains this at the end. Clearly the pope did not read the speech:

    This morning at Toad Hall, we listened to the President’s announcement on youtube and danced and cheered. It was fun.

    • #28
  29. Postmodern Hoplite Coolidge
    Postmodern Hoplite
    @PostmodernHoplite

    As a schismatic heretic (Southern Baptist flavored) I suppose that I have no right to have an opinion in so far as my Roman Catholic brothers and sisters in Christ are concerned. Pope Francis is THEIR problem, and I’m grateful not to have to answer for him.

    That being said, the Bishop of Rome’s clear ignorance of official standing US policy towards the capital of Israel since the Clinton administration (turns and spits on the ground) only makes his comments more unpalatable. US presidents have been kicking this can down the road, six-months at a time, and I, for one, say, “It’s about da*n time!”

    • #29
  30. Hartmann von Aue Member
    Hartmann von Aue
    @HartmannvonAue

    DocJay (View Comment):

    Manny (View Comment):

    DocJay (View Comment):
    Relatively silent on the murder of Christians in the ME , yet the first to pipe up about Islam being oppressed by Trump and Jews. By oppressed I mean following the Bible and recognizing the true capital of Israel. Oh the horror.

    Oh I think that first part is a unfair. I have heard him speak up about Christians being martyred in the middle east, often, after every atrocity. He just doesn’t link it to a core Islamic belief. You know, the “not true Islam” nonsense.

    Relatively was my qualifier, but you’re right, I looked it up. I was unfair.

    I just don’t like the man. I disagree with almost every one of his opinions that are political. He’s a socialist and a dangerous one.

    And this Jay is one of many reasons I am pleased to know you and call you a friend even though we have yet to meet in person. You are more than willing to correct yourself when you overstate a case.

    As for Pope Frank, I find him a near-constant and bitter disappointment. In terms of Evangelical-Catholic reconciliation and matters related to that direct he has been very good, but nearly every statement out of his mouth on world politics and economics ranges from bafflingly and unconscionably ignorant to clearly awful.

    • #30

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