Jesus was poor but he wasn't a bum.

Jesus was poor but he wasn’t a bum.

At Vatican Radio:

Pope Francis said on Tuesday that poverty is the great teaching Jesus gave us and we can find his face among the poor and needy.

Does Our Lord teach ‘poverty?’  I know he teaches about poverty in spirit.  I know he exemplified a life of poverty – that great saints show us the ‘discipline’ of poverty, that they take vows of poverty.

Even if the Church did teach ‘poverty’ per say, as if it were a good, what does that have to do with Pope Francis here?  He’s telling us, I think, to love and honor poor people, people with little means for survival, people with few things.  He’s not telling us to be poor so much, as if it were some doctrine.  He wants us to focus effort on ‘the poor.’

I have been fairly poor at times; never without shelter, but broke.  I suppose the Pope would have wanted Catholics to focus on me back then?

Stressing that the poor are not a burden but a resource, he said he wished that both the city of Rome and the local Church community could be more attentive, caring and considerate towards those in need and that Christians could kneel before a poor person. The Pope’s words came during a video message which was broadcast at a charity theatre performance organised by Caritas Roma. 

St. Mary Magdalene knelt before our Lord.  St. Francis knelt before a wayward priest telling him, “These hands bring me Jesus.”  Kings have knelt before popes and knights have knelt before kings.  A man kneels before a woman to ask for her hand.

Poverty, he said, is the great teaching that Jesus gave us and he assured the performers that they are never a burden for us. Instead they represent a resource without which our attempts to discover the face of Jesus would be in vain.

If the poor are never a burden then what is Pope Francis asking us to do, use them?  I think he wants us to share their burdens, yes?

I bristle at calling people resources.  Every company has a ‘Human Resources’ department.  It’s an ugly arrogant term.  But for the Pope poor people are a resource without which we’d never be able to discover the ‘face of Jesus.’

Do you make many attempts to discover the face of Jesus?  I don’t.  I just hope I can see it in the end.  Is the Pope telling me I require ‘the poor’ somehow as a resource to get to Heaven?  Is he saying my Faith is no help without them?  He seems pretty clear.  No wonder he wants me to kneel down and worship homeless people who come into a Church.  They are my saviors!

He concluded his address by saying how much he wished that the city of Rome could shine with the light of its compassion and its welcome for those who are suffering, who are fleeing from war and death,  and respond with a smile to all those who have lost hope. Pope Francis said he wished for the same on the part of the Church community in Rome so that it may be more attentive, caring and considerate towards the poor and vulnerable and recognize in them the face of our Lord. How I wish, he said, that Christians could kneel in veneration when a poor person enters the church.

Do you, does anyone seriously think that Rome would shine if it was completely filled with Libyan boat people instead of the Catholics who have been there for thousands of years?  Wouldn’t it look more like a Libyan barge?  Is it the ‘light of compassion’ to wreck the heart of civilization, to kneel down before ‘poverty’ instead of our Lord at Mass?

Can you imagine what type of Mass Pope Francis would foist on us if he could equal Pope Paul’s ambitions?  What ‘venerations’ would be required of us then?

I know we’ll never rest in Abraham’s bosom if we are careless to poor Lazarus, but Lazarus is Lazarus and Jesus is Jesus.  Please Pope Francis stop mixing them up!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Another World Leader Wins Coveted Embrace

At the Washington Post:

Pope Francis will visit Washington, D.C. Sept. 22 to Sept. 25, the Archdiocese of Washington confirmed on Tuesday. President Obama hinted at what he expects to speak with Pope Francis when they meet in September at the White House, including poverty, climate change and conflict in the Middle East.

Conflict in the Middle East? Maybe Pope Francis will ask the President to stop creating it.

Obama said they will likely talk about reducing conflict and reducing war in the Middle East “where Christians have been viciously attacked.” Pope Francis has become a force in foreign policy, regularly speaking out against the persecution of Christians.

Yes, but what has this accomplished?  He runs on a lot about dialogue and pacifism, coddles dictators, UN Tyrants, and terrorists, and blasts free markets too.

The leaders will also likely talk about climate change, Obama said in a new interview with the Wall Street Journal. Pope Francis is poised to weigh in on climate change with an encyclical this summer.

The following section is from the Journal’s interview released today.

Seib: What are you going to tell him? What do you expect he’s going to want to tell you?

Obama: Well, I’ve had the honor of meeting him already once, an extraordinary individual, I think, a transformative leader, not just within the Catholic Church but globally.

Why are liberals always being transformative?  Aren’t they happy with the nasty ways they already are?  And why is everything always global?  Isn’t ruining their own families and neighborhoods and running their own cities into the ground enough?  When will leftist world leaders stop celebrating how Pope Francis is turning Christianity into their vehicle to ride the globe into Hell?  Don’t they see how they give themselves away?

And excluding the pervasive hype, what is so extraordinary about Pope Francis, other than the fact that he can awkwardly blend bits of vague sentiment into something wishful thinkers can pretend is Catholic teaching?  (He does have a unique way with words.)  What is extraordinary though, is that an anti-Christian like Obama, who is never loose with his praise, can gush over the Vicar of Christ today.

That’s rare in the extreme.

 

 

 

 

Down for the Unholy Cause

Down for the Unholy Cause

At Breitbart James Delingpole reports:

Papal heavies shut down an awkward question at a Vatican press conference today when a journalist asked UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon his views on climate sceptics.

Marc Morano, covering the Vatican climate conference for Climate Depot, asked Ban Ki-Moon whether he had a message for the Heartland Institute delegation of scientists who have flown to Rome to urge the Pope to reconsider his ill-advised position climate change.

But before he could finish the conference hosts interrupted to ask which organisation he worked for, then directed the microphone to a more tame questioner, while a security guard came over to mutter in Morano’s ear “You have to control yourself or you will be escorted out of here.”

Not a peep of a smidgen of a question about science permitted during this ‘catholic’ event, only about what to do about the climate Armageddon.

Morano, together with Christopher Monckton (one of the Heartland delegation) and your correspondent, only narrowly made it into the carefully stage-managed conference where – as known climate sceptics – they were apparently not welcome.

“Ah. So you made it in here?” said a somewhat surprised looking member of the Vatican press team to Morano, when he realised that he had bypassed the Vatican’s security and infiltrated the press pack who had come to cover the conference.

As luck would have it, a heaven-sent shower of torrential rain had created such chaos that security wasn’t as tight as it might have been.

God intervened to thwart the Catholic Church leaders’ infamous plans?  I thought they were on His side?

However, the three sceptics (Morano, Monckton, Delingpole) were watched very carefully throughout the proceedings lest they attempt to ruffle the feathers of key speakers Ban Ki-Moon, left-wing economist Jeffrey Sachs and Cardinal Turkson, the Ghanaian priest who has been co-ordinating the Vatican’s position on “climate change.”

In the end, Secretary-General Ban did answer a similar question, albeit one expressed more delicately by a journalist from the Catholic media, when he was asked what his views were on those members of the Catholic community who had reservations about the Pope’s position on climate change.

Perhaps this was a response to Ban’s rather bold and very moot declaration that “Religion and science are united on the need for action on climate.”

Isn’t the outrageously-treated Heartland Institute comprised mainly of scientists, and acting on their behalf?

“I don’t think faith leaders should be scientists,” said Ban, in reply to the question. “I’m not a scientist. What I want is their moral authority. Business leaders and all civil society is on board [with the mission to combat climate change]. Now we want faith leaders. Then we can make it happen.”

I’m not a scientist.  ‘Faith leaders aren’t scientists.  Only scientists are scientists and they ALREADY KNOW THERE IS GLOBAL WARMING!

Now it is up to us to ACT.  WE MUST HAVE FAITH LEADERS. THEN WE CAN MAKE IT HAPPEN. THE POPE FOLLOWS US. NOW YOU MUST FOLLOW HIM!

Why is it that these Hitlerian expressions must be as insane as they are brutal?  Why do modern societies always seem to crash in the wake of these pitiful assertions and dogmas?  We are the master race, destined to rule the earth!

Global Warming is false from every angle.  It doesn’t exist, and even if it did it would still have nothing to do with all the things they blame upon it, and nothing they propose doing will ever impact it.  It’s a perfect nothing, except for the fact that every living mouth on the planet may only speak of it as true.

Even Christians.

 

    The poor understand the revolution was for them, and they're really benefiting.

The poor understand the revolution was for them, and they’re really benefiting.

The push is on to re-make the image of Castro-land into a tropical tourist Mecca with an unfortunate poverty problem.

Solution: More Communist Revolution!

On the Pope’s upcoming trip to paradise he’ll get time to really listen and dialogue with the poor; then hop over here to the United States and blame the rest of us.

When the United States has it’s own army of Sandinista priests, what will they say about faithful Catholic conservatives?

 

 

 

 

Four Liberals in a Profound Moment

Four Liberals in a Profound Moment

The Winona Daily News reports Minnesota St. Mary’s University Trustees have presented Pope Francis with an award.

An Argentinian pope has joined a Guatemalan bishop as the second recipient of the Signum Fidei Award from Saint Mary’s University — created in memory of an SMU alumni martyred in Central America.

Was this alumnus martyred for the Faith or because he ‘loved the poor?’  Oh, right! Same thing.

SMU President William Mann, along with SMU trustees Mary Burrichter and Sandra Simon, presented Pope Francis — personally — with the award following the pope’s weekly general audience in St. Peter’s Square April 15.

The Signum Fidei — Sign of the Faith — Award is bestowed in recognition of extraordinary service to the vulnerable and marginalized members of society and work that promotes human solidarity. The award presented to the pope is in the form of a bronze bust of Brother James Miller, a SMU alumni and member of the Christian Brothers who in 1982, while serving as a missionary in Huehuetenango, Guatemala, was gunned down by three unidentified gunmen while repairing a wall at the mission school.

They never know who did it, but they always know why.

Miller met his death serving the poor, the marginalized, the forgotten, Mann said. “This pope seems to be — in a major way — reaching out to those populations.”

What is a marginalized population anyway?  Doesn’t it just mean liberal?  And if some people are forgotten, why do they get remembered so much?

When is the pope going to reach out to a Catholic?

Mann said that as he explained to the pope who James Miller was and what he had done, Francis reached out to touch the bronze and blessed it — the Latin American pope very aware of the situation at the time.

“It was an incredible experience,” Burrichter said of her meeting with Pope Francis. “He came up to us,” she said, “ Brother William spoke to him in Spanish … He held my right hand. He gave us his blessing, then said to us in English, ‘Pray for me.’”

“He seemed to be a very gentle, a very kind man.”

Really?  What about this?

FrancisPriest and his friend, Raul

FrancisChurch priest and his friend, Raul: advocates for ‘the poor’

At National Review, Ion Mihai Pacepa brings back a too-quickly forgotten reality of the Latin American Church.

History often repeats itself, and if you have lived two lives, as I have done, you have a good chance of seeing the reenactment with your own eyes.

Liberation theology, of which not much has been heard for two decades, is back in the news. But what is not being mentioned is its origins. It was not invented by Latin American Catholics. It was developed by the KGB. The man who is now the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Kirill, secretly worked for the KGB under the code name “Mikhailov” and spent four decades promoting liberation theology, which we at the top of the Eastern European intelligence community nicknamed Christianized Marxism.

Imagine how brilliant this idea!  In the rubble of the Vatican II earthquake, move Communist activists into the Catholic  orders and mix their ‘ideologies’ into one worldly focus.  Who would denounce the ‘holy’ goals of the Church itself?  Who could silence Marxist priests without also provoking the faithful?

Liberation theology has been generally understood to be a marriage of Marxism and Christianity. What has not been understood is that it was not the product of Christians who pursued Communism, but of Communists who pursued Christians. I described the birth of liberation theology in my book Disinformation, co-authored with Professor Ronald Rychlak. Its genesis was part of a highly classified Party/State Disinformation Program, formally approved in 1960 by KGB chairman Aleksandr Shelepin and Politburo member Aleksei Kirichenko, then the second in the party hierarchy after Nikita Khrushchev.

In 1971, the KGB sent Kirill — who had just been elevated to the rank of archimandrite — to Geneva as emissary of the Russian Orthodox Church to the World Council of Churches. The WCC was, and still is, the largest international religious organization after the Vatican, representing some 550 million Christians of various denominations in 120 countries. Kirill/Mikhailov’s main task was to involve the WCC in spreading the new liberation theology throughout Latin America. In 1975, the KGB was able to infiltrate Kirill into the Central Committee of the WCC — a position he held until he was “elected” patriarch of Russia, in 2009. Not long after he joined the Central Committee, Kirill reported to the KGB: “Now the agenda of the WCC is also our agenda.”

There is perhaps a reason why pliant, morbid mainline protestant groups almost always echo the policy positions of the world’s bishops?

During Kirill’s years at the helm of the WCC, liberation theology put down deep roots in Latin America — where the map now has significant patches of red. Russian military ships and bombers are back in Cuba for the first time since the 1962 Cuban missile crisis, and Russia has also newly sent ships and bombers to Venezuela.

It can be argued whether today’s Russia is aggressive or defensive, but they are clearly engaged.  And despite evidence that both Kirill and Putin may have unfairly enriched themselves, today they project Christian leadership and defend Christian values while the West just capitulates.

Pope John Paul II, who knew the Communist playbook well, was not taken in by the Soviets’ liberation theology. In 1983, his friend and trusted colleague Cardinal Ratzinger (later Pope Benedict XVI), who at that time was head of the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith, discarded as Marxist the liberation-theology idea that class struggle is fundamental to history. The cardinal called liberation theology a “singular heresy” and blasted it as a “fundamental threat” to the Church.

This has in no way changed, only become more true.

Of course, it was and remains a threat — one deliberately designed to undermine the Church and destabilize the West by subordinating religion to an atheist political ideology for its geopolitical gain.

Listen for this coming from Rome today!

Now names — like Oscar Romero and Miguel d’Escoto Brockmann – not heard since the 1980s, when the Soviet Union was still en vogue, are again making international news. And here we are. The promoters of a KGB-inspired religious ideology, which once embraced violent Marxist revolution, are now denying its link to Marxism and to the KGB.

Whom is it that has rehabilitated Romero; naming him ‘martyr’ and eager to make him saint?  Who resurrected the notorious d’Escota?

Is it perhaps the one who rails constantly against the evil economic system, framing Christianity as the enemy of power and wealth? Is it the one who sees those who cling to the doctrines of Faith and the rubrics of the Mass as control-obsessed Pharisees and Lawgivers jealous of Christ, the one who thinks Communism stole the flag of Christendom?

 

Unitarian Universalist?

Unitarian Universalist?

Nigerian Bishop Oliver Dashe Doeme has just announced the most devastating strategy to thwart the Islamist world takeover that’s been heard in years.

Other than that, nobody seems to be doing anything besides crying and ‘pontificating.’

Vatican Radio writes:

Drawing inspiration from the First Reading of the Act of the Apostles which tells of the stoning and martyrdom of Stephen, the first Christian martyr, the Pope remembered “our brothers whose throats have been slit on the beaches of Libya”, he spoke of “the young boy who was burnt alive by his companions because he was Christian”, he recalled “the migrants who were thrown from their boat into open sea” because, they too, were Christians.

The Pope is very vocal about the now widespread slaughter of Christians, praising their courage and their faith, and comparing them to past martyrs and saints like Stephen.

“God’s Word is always rejected by some. God’s Word is inconvenient when you have a stone heart, when you have a pagan heart, because God’s Word asks you to go ahead trying to satisfy your hunger with the bread which Jesus spoke of.  In the history of the Revelation many martyrs have been killed for their faith and loyalty towards God’s Word, God’s Truth”.

Pope Francis continued comparing the martyrdom of Stephen to that of Jesus: he too “died with that Christian magnanimity of forgiveness, praying for his enemies’.

And those who persecuted the prophets – the Pope pointed out – believed they were giving glory to God; they thought they were being true to God’s doctrine.

“Today – the  Pope said – I would like to remember that the true history of the Church is that of the Saints and the martyrs,” of so many who were persecuted and killed by those who thought they possessed the ‘truth’- whose heart was corrupted by ‘truth’:

Now, what does Pope Francis mean by that?  Did the truth have some corrupting effect on the hearts of those persecutors?  I thought they became corrupted by lies, or worldliness or other temptations.

“In these days how many Stephens there are in the world! Let us think of our brothers whose throats were slit on the beach in Libya; let’s think of the young boy who was burnt alive by his companions because he was a Christian; let us think of those migrants thrown from their boat into the open sea by other migrants because they were Christians; let us think – just the day before yesterday – of those Ethiopians assassinated because they were Christians… and of many others. Many others of whom we do not even know and who are suffering in jails because they are Christians… The Church today is a Church of martyrs: they suffer, they give their lives and we receive the blessing of God for their witness”.

Around the world in places like Nigeria, Christians slaughtered by Muslims are Catholics, but in most of the Middle East they are schismatic separated Christians.  They are more faithful and virtuous than many Roman Catholics, but they are still not united to the Church to which St. Stephen belonged.  Where we may be removed through sin and false catechesis, they are separated in a different way.

Their churches vary in teaching from the Truth in matters like marriage and authority.  This is heresy, and heresy like any other sin committed in ignorance or not, is never right.  The Pope makes it seem like it’s all one Truth and one Church; as if it didn’t matter.

Will all non-Catholic men and woman who choose to confess Christ in the face of death go to Heaven?  They may be ahead of the rest of us, but what if they’ve lived distorted misguided lives?  What if, like most Protestants, they’ve rejected the Sacraments?  At what point are they dying for something that is not really the Truth, but they nevertheless consider Christian?  Pope Francis seems to believe they still die for the Truth anyway.

Islam itself was born of the Arian Heresy.  They can’t technically be called Christians but that misused word can be a pretty low bar.  The Qur’an is full of references to Jesus and Mary.  Are Muslims martyrs when they kill each other?

Can Mormons be martyrs?

Were the Yazidi’s martyrs?  They died for being Yazidis, another form of NOT Muslim.  Not enough, right?  But Protestantism is.

Unitarianism?  Quakers?

Either way, isn’t Pope Francis muddying already black waters here by constantly holding up Protestants killed by Muslims as examples of Catholic martyrs?  These brave Christians are dead now.  The rest of us have to live on with true examples of men and women who were actually Catholic and died for the Christ’s Church.  Must we underestimate the necessity of true unity with the Church Militant at every turn, dropping important truths and picking up heresies here and there as we go along in one big ‘ecumenism of blood’ (whatever that means)?

The Pope plays so loose with hard Catholic concepts in an effort to distort!  Oscar Romero is made martyr because undefined right-wingers shot him at Mass ending his nationwide alignment with Communist guerillas, i mean, ‘the poor.’

And now we have special ‘hidden martyrs.’

The Pope also pointed out that there are also many “hidden martyrs: those men and women who are faithful to the voice of the Spirit and who are searching for new ways and paths to help their brothers better love God”.

He said they are often viewed with suspicion, vilified and persecuted by so many modern ‘Sanhedrins’ who think they are the possessors of truth.

This sounds familiar.  I think we’ve found something that’s definitely NOT a martyr in FrancisChurch.  It’s an actual Catholic!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Big deals and a bright Cuban Francisfuture

Big deals and a bright Cuban Francisfuture

Local New York CBS reports:

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is expected to return to New York from Cuba on Tuesday with two major business deals in hand.

As CBS2 Political Reporter Marcia Kramer reported, although the trade mission was supposed to be about developing future business, the group actually came back to the states with two deals made, including one where an upstate medical facility is going to be able to run clinical trials of a lung cancer vaccine developed by Cubans.

That’s what’s been going on in Cuba all these years.  They developed a vaccine for lung cancer!  Thank you Pope Francis for this new arrangement.  Obama couldn’t have done it without you.  Can I be in the clinical trial?

Cuomo, who became the first U.S. governor to visit Cuba in decades, said he also laid the groundwork for more New York-based businesses to get a foot in the door on the island nation.

Oh, no news yet on any U.S. businesses starting up in Cuba though.

“We believe this is going to be a dramatic change that is going to be to the benefit of the people of Cuba and also to the people of the United States,” Cuomo said.

While the embargo would have to be lifted by Congress, President Barack Obama can grant licenses to businesses to trade with Cuba.

So the embargo is still in effect except when Obama says it isn’t.  There are so many laws like that now!

The governor was accompanied by other New York lawmakers and executives from JetBlue, MasterCard, Pfizer, Chobani and other companies.

Cuomo took a tour of a new nearly $10 million deep water Port of Mariel, which could be just the ticket for New York businesses to get their goods to Cuba and the rest of Latin America.

Cuomo is no stranger to big construction projects, but still, he was suitably impressed with the Cuban government’s efforts to build a massive commercial port and duty free zone west of Havana that could revolutionize the way Cuba does business, Kramer reported.

“We have had a friendship that went on for decades. It is about rekindling that friendship,” Cuomo said.

What is it with New York Italians, politicians, unions, ports, big construction projects, places like Cuba, and Catholic bishops?

Cuomo also met with Cuban Roman Catholic Cardinal Jaime Lucas Ortega y Alamino while in Havana.

The governor expressed admiration for the cardinal’s efforts in expanding the church’s reach in the Communist-ruled country.

“We’re very proud of what his eminence has done,” Cuomo said. “We’re very proud of what the Catholic church has done.”

Isn’t that nice?  Andrew Cuomo is very proud of our Church.  I guess we can all be proud of that then.

When asked if his decision to move so quickly to help end the embargo had anything to do with his late father Mario, Cuomo said “My father said isolation is not going to work. Isolation is just going to cause bitterness and it’s going to accomplish nothing.”

Back in New York, Republicans called the governor’s trade mission a political stunt.

One lawmaker said it was offensive to Cuban-Americans whose families have been victims of the Castros’ rule.

Who was that one lawmaker?  What a silly thing to say.  Castro is nice now.  It was all America’s bitter isolation as they sinned against dialogue, encounter, accompaniment, heartfelt closeness, and that Catholicism whose flag Communism stole.

 

 

 

 

Problem Solved!

Problem Solved!

If Francis truly were the ‘peoples’ pope’ he would actually care about Catholic people – you know those Pharisees who need ‘religious observances’ out of pride and mental illness, but won’t ever get to Heaven.

Real Catholic faithful and clergy loved Kansas City Bishop Finn.  The National Catholic Reporter didn’t.  True Catholics in Chile are furious Pope Francis would give them a Bishop like Juan Barros, but Francis doesn’t care what people like that think, does he?

The more outraged real Catholics become, the more he seems to like it.

Parishioners in a southern Chile diocese are gathering wherever their new bishop appears, but their presence is not the sort of assembly the Catholic Church would expect.

In the month since Bishop Juan Barros was installed in Osorno, the priest has had to sneak out of back exits, call on riot police to shepherd him from the city’s cathedral and coordinate movements with bodyguards and police canine units.

Such is the public routine of the bishop who is denounced by his opponents as having shielded Chile’s most notorious pedophile priest. For his part, Barros says relations are improving.

Meaning: the crowd is giving up and getting accustomed to my infernal presence.

The appointment of Barros by Pope Francis has unleashed an unprecedented protest, with more than 1,300 church members, 30 diocesan priests and nearly half of Chile’s Parliament sending letters urging the pope to reconsider.

They may be emboldened after Francis on Tuesday accepted the resignation of a U.S. bishop, Robert Finn, who pleaded guilty to failing to report a suspected abuser, answering calls by victims to hold priests accountable and ensure children are protected.

At least three men say Barros was present when they were sexually molested in the 1980s and 1990s by the Rev. Fernando Karadima. Karadima was sanctioned by the Vatican in 2011 for sexually abusing minors, ordered to live out his life cloistered in a nun’s convent. Barros has said he knew nothing of Karadima’s abuses.

The controversy is being watched by victims, advocacy groups and lawmakers as a test of the pope’s promises to crack down on clerical sex abuse. On April 12, members on the pope’s sex abuse advisory committee traveled to Rome to voice their concerns.

Well, he’s cracked down now in Missouri!  Still, you can’t remove every bishop that inspires a peep of protest.  You must pick and choose. After all, what’s the point of this whole priest-pedophilia abuse dance anyway if you can’t use it to intimidate and banish honest clergy?

And what’s the point of approving a gay ambassador to the Vatican if he’s barely even gay and he’s faithful?

What’s even wrong with gay pedophilia?  They teach gayness to four years-olds now and all the GOP Presidential candidates are terrified into attending gay weddings.  When a man is your mother and a woman is a husband anything goes, except Catholicism.

 

ISIS making people one with the Church

ISIS making people one with the Church

At the Register Edward Pentin reports on the Pope’s response to the brutal new Mass execution of Christians on another Beach in Ethiopia.  To the Orthodox Patriarch Pope Francis offers his ‘heartfelt spiritual closeness.’

Pope Francis this evening sent a message of solidarity to Patriarch Matthias of the Ethiopian Tewahedo Orthodox Church following the release of a video showing the killing of 28 Ethiopian Christians by Islamic State (ISIS) terrorists in Libya.

“With great distress and sadness I learn of the further shocking violence perpetrated against innocent Christians in Libya,” the Pope wrote, adding that he was reaching out to Patriarch Matthias and his flock “in heartfelt spiritual solidarity to assure you of my closeness in prayer at the continuing martyrdom being so cruelly inflicted on Christians in Africa, the Middle East and some parts of Asia.”

I got railroaded into a sort of therapeutic session recently where the counselor-type kept asking me to speak from the heart.  I finally told him that I try and say everything from the heart.  If it didn’t sound like it to him, he’d just have to get used to it.

It’s like when people say, “Honestly, I must tell you…..”  It makes me wonder if the other things they say are dishonest.  And if you must tell me then don’t.  I only want to hear the things you choose to say.

So why the Pope must assure the Patriarch that he feels things in his heart, or that he is close in spirit (whatever that means), is anyone’s guess.

Finally, I hope no-one ever sends me a note assuring me of solidarity.  It’s an awful word that the Pope seems to think means Christian charity, but most people think means free stuff, and sensible people know means Socialism.

“It makes no difference whether the victims are Catholic, Copt, Orthodox or Protestant,” the Pope went on. “Their blood is one and the same in their confession of Christ! The blood of our Christian brothers and sisters is a testimony which cries out to be heard by everyone who can still distinguish between good and evil. All the more this cry must be heard by those who have the destiny of peoples in their hands.”

Pope Francis has often referred to an “ecumenism of blood”, saying that persecution is uniting Christians. “They are witnesses to Jesus Christ,” he said in January.”They are persecuted and killed because they are Christians. Those who persecute them make no distinction between the religious communities to which they belong. They are Christians and for that they are persecuted. This, brothers and sisters, is the ecumenism of blood.”

This Francis-ism, the ‘ecumenism of blood,’ is nasty.  It’s bad enough to send a useless sentimental letter to a bishop who’s flock is being slaughtered by Muslims, but to use the event to push the lie that all murdered Christians are united in Heaven despite vast deficiencies in faith is truly dark.  I would imagine most Orthodox bishops in these serious regions might find it a tad opportunistic.

And hey, if the Muslims make no distinctions in killing Christians then the dead MUST all be Catholics, Yes?  Or does that even matter?