Friday, June 10, 2016

On defense for Papal offense


I'm being knocked for being too critical of Francis. This, after doing quite a lot of defense for the Pope early into his papacy. I don't complain about this criticism - my earlier benefit of the doubt is no talisman against my being wrong now.

But I do intend to fight for my view. So, here's one chunk of evidence.


Via Yahoo:

ABOARD THE PAPAL PLANE (AP) — Pope Francis says he wasn't offended by the "Communist crucifix" given to him by Bolivian President Evo Morales during his South American pilgrimage.
Morales surprised the pontiff with the unusual gift, a crucifix attached to a hammer and sickle, when Francis arrived in La Paz on Wednesday.
The crucifix was a replica of one designed by a Jesuit priest, the Rev. Luis Espinal, who was tortured and killed by Bolivian paramilitary squads in 1980. Francis prayed at the site of Espinal's assassination upon his arrival in Bolivia.
The modified crucifix immediately raised eyebrows, with some questioning whether Morales, whose socialist and anti-church rhetoric is well-known, was trying to score a questionable political point with a questionable, and possibly sacrilegious, melding of faith and ideology.
Francis, an Argentine Jesuit, said Espinal was well-known among his fellow Jesuits as a proponent of the Marxist strain of liberation theology. The Vatican opposed it, fearing that Marxists were using liberation theology's "preferential option for the poor" as a call for armed revolution against oppressive right-wing regimes that were in power in much of Latin America in the 1970s and 1980s.
During a news conference en route home to Rome on Sunday, Francis said he interpreted Morales' gift through the prism of Espinal's Marxist bent and viewed it as protest art.
After taking into consideration the time in which he lived, Francis said: "I understand this work. For me it wasn't an offense."
Francis added that he brought the crucifix home with him.
Now that's Yahoo news, complete with its own slant.
But there you go. For the Pope, this is all quite fine. For more perspective, here's the wikipedia entry quoting Morales on his belief in God:
Morales has commented that he is only a Roman Catholic in order "to go to weddings", and when asked if he believed in God, responded that "I believe in the land. In my father and my mother. And in Cuchi-Cuchi.
Quite the guy to be presenting Catholic art.

So, I put it to the resident Papal defenders. Nothing to criticize here? Totally reasonable response from the Pope?

Let's up the ante: let's say Morales presented the Pope with an immaculately carved crucifix, except Christ was painted to look like a clown, and also Morales took a big shit on it before handing it over. The Pope responds by praising Morales' creativity and passion, and mentions how he views it as a commentary on how 'so many of us nowadays preach Christ, but it is this mockery of Christ who we are really preaching, like those of us who treat abortion as a grave sin which could separate someone from God, who loves all'.

Would you nod your head and say, 'Nothing to see here. Everything is fine.' then?

17 comments:

The Deuce said...

So the Pope is okay with this "gift" from a Christ-bashing God-hater, almost surely intended to be a slap in the face and secularist commentary on the Church, on the grounds that it looked like one made "in protest" by a heretical, Marxist priest who himself worked to secularization and corrupted Christianity?

Crude said...

Here's the thing.

I can accept a justification of that cross. I can.

Tell me that the Pope was meeting with a head of state and a shitty gift like that wasn't worth making a big deal out of. Okay.

Tell me that the Pope was trying to see the good in a gift that he thought, wrongly or rightly, was well meaning. Sure.

But when someone turns around and tells me that there is NOTHING to even be concerned about here, that anyone with any complaints is a rube or a radical? That's when I have a problem.

And that's why the people who play Francis defense so consistently, get to me. The game isn't 'Look, I understand why you'd be upset. But here's something to consider.' Instead it's 'You have NO reason whatsoever to be upset. If you're bothered, it's because you're a weird person with problems and you're crazy, end of story. Let me explain why you're crazy and deluded.'

It's not right. I can even understand that reaction to a point, if someone truly just has it in for the Pope and there's no way he can do anything right. Go to Triablogue - no pope in the 20th century did anything praiseworthy, anything right. But that's not me, and that's not most Catholics who have a problem with this.

Telling us that sinful pride is the only reason we have any problem with this papacy is like telling us that the only reason we disliked Obama was because we were racists. The game isn't 'listen, explain and defend' it's 'silence'.

The Deuce said...

As a side note, I like the insinuation that the Church only opposed liberation theology to prevent uprisings against "right-wing" governments. Not because, you know, it completely subverts and displaces the Gospel by insidiously hijacking Christian terminology in service of a thoroughly atheistic ideology. Definitely just to prop up them evil borgeoise gubments.

Son of Ya'Kov said...

Crude

Pope St John Paul accepted a Koran as a gift presented to him by a group of Muslims in front of the Chaldean Catholic Patriarch I believe. He kissed it. I also know he met with and shook hands with Yasser Arafat a Muslim Terrorist. Also I remember reading he met a Muslim Prince once who was a descendant of Muhammed and complimented him saying "Oh you are of the blood of The Prophet". Note that he the Saint referred to the False messaged Muhammed as "The Prophet".

The world did not end and the political and radical religious usual suspects had a bitch fit (including that Pro-Israel Italian Muslim Imam I mentioned last time).

By comparison Francis is small potatoes here.

Well I am not upset at what John Paul II did so why should I be bothered by what Francis did here?

BTW the Pride is in complaining about the Pope's general spiritual advice. To immediately conclude said advice is a dis aimed at serious Catholics is to come from a dark place. I think that is wrong. I have already explained why. As to bashing the Pope. The Scripture says "Rebuke not a Priest". "Do not speak evil of the leader of thy people". I roll with that. If you want criticism of Francis wait for him to die or retire. Till then I thin Voris has the right idea.





Crude said...

The world did not end

Also, the world did not end after gay marriage. Clearly the critics were wrong, because that is completely what they were saying, and therefore they had to be wrong about everything.

BTW the Pride is in complaining about the Pope's general spiritual advice. To immediately conclude said advice is a dis aimed at serious Catholics is to come from a dark place

I didn't immediately conclude it. I came to the understanding after giving him chance after chance and watching him praise atheists, condemn Christians, and more.

And if you're thinking 1 Timothy 5:19, you better read it again.

Son of Ya'Kov said...


>I didn't immediately conclude it. I came to the understanding after giving him chance after chance and watching him praise atheists, condemn Christians, and more.

He hasn't condemned Christians. He has admonished them & gave them advice like good Father. This is like your kid complaining "Daddy why yell at me for cursing? You don't yell at Tommy?" Answer:Tommy is not my son. So I can compliment him on what he does good and leave the rest to his Father.

>And if you're thinking 1 Timothy 5:19, you better read it again.

Rather I will need a counter exegesis.

Son of Ya'Kov said...

BTW here is a traditional commentary on 1 tim 5:19

https://www.biblegateway.com/resources/commentaries/IVP-NT/1Tim/Discipline-Elders

"When a leader errs, the rest of the leadership must discipline the offender."

If Burke or Benedict or Bishop Tobin criticize the Pope I have nothing to say against them and God forbid I even think it.

Crude said...

This is like your kid complaining "Daddy why yell at me for cursing? You don't yell at Tommy?"

Ben, let me ask you a serious question.

Imagine the Pope said 'Niggers in the church need to learn to look after their children and get an education that doesn't involve counting the days to the next welfare check'.

Then imagine Catholic blacks were outraged, furious that they would ever be talked to in that way.

And then I replied to them by saying, "WAHHHHH! WAHHHHHH! BABIES WANT THEIR BOTTLES! WAHHHHHHH!"

Would you be here, to cheer me on?

Son of Ya'Kov said...


>Imagine the Pope said 'Niggers in the church need to learn to look after their children and get an education that doesn't involve counting the days to the next welfare check'.

My serious answer.

The N-word is easily one of the top 5 most offensive words in the English language. What has Pope Francis said that is in anyway unequivocally comparable to saying that?

I have no problem calling Milo a gorgeous bitch to be edgy. But obviously I wouldn't want Francis or anyone Ranked above a monsignor to say what I say if only because it violates decorum.

Crude said...

The N-word is easily one of the top 5 most offensive words in the English language. What has Pope Francis said that is in anyway unequivocally comparable to saying that?

That's not an answer. That's a change of subject.

Where's the answer? Would you lecture them when they got upset? Would you make fun of them being upset? He's the Pope, the Pope isn't bound by 'N-Word decorum'. You'll struggle in vain to find clear teaching that that's a sin.

Do you call them a bunch of babies? Do you tell them the right thing to do would be to shut up and accept it?

You're pausing, and here's why: because THERE you feel some sympathy. That word grates on your ears, and 'you should not rebuke a priest' doesn't seem to do the trick once that starts flying.

Catholics who are faithful to Church teaching are fucked, Ben. Schools are against them, including Catholic schools. They can't turn on TV shows without being ridiculed. If they turn on the radio or watch a movie they're so used to being insulted at least once, directly, during it all that they're numb to it. The last place they had was their own Church, which was always partly stacked with Weaklands who were selling them out.

And now the Pope is making sure to treat them like shit too.

These are people who have gone through a lot of misery to try and uphold the least popular Church teachings. I repeat: the least popular ones, the ones most people hate, but which are central and dogma and non-negotiable, and they feel like they are being -shit on-. And all you can do is, what, play fucking cell guard and try to ridicule them, attack them, tell them they're crazy or stupid or hypocrites and how DARE they be upset?

It's one thing to not agree with them. But you're trying to make them feel like shit, and honest to God, that pisses me off.

But the word 'nigger', THAT is the red line? Demoralizing people, telling them they're pharisees, mocking them, slighting them, showing them no understanding but God Forbid you drop an n-bomb?

What Bible are you getting this from?

Son of Ya'Kov said...

Crude I concede you asked me in your mind a serious question. But I note it was not a coherent question.

There is no change of subject there is the issue of some slight Francis has made against orthodox Catholics. I get no specific words attributed to the Pope slighting orthodox Catholics. Just an absurd fictional scenario of the Pope using low born racist vulgarities.

Your question is no analogous to anything going on in the church. Pick something concrete. I help you how about the Rabbits crack? (Which BTW was not morally equivalent to saying the n word).

Crude said...

Ben, I'm tired of this. To you, this is all a fight, and there's one goal: you have to deny that there is any reason for the slightest bit of consternation, any modicum of reasonable grievance, to have with this Pope. Not only that, but any complaint must not only be attacked, it must be done so in utter totality - people who feel upset are irrational, mean-spirited fuckwits, shithead babies who are stupid beyond belief and also crazy and wicked and wrong, and deserve mockery and hatred and ridicule. Your fig leaf is that if they admit they're human scum, rotten beyond belief who never, ever had any reason, even apparent reason, to feel upset, well. You will graciously forgive them.

But a hypothetical question about insults and the word 'nigger' is so terrifyingly shocking that you can't even answer it. Because gosh, that word makes people feel bad, and it's insulting, which is a whole other thing.

I'm trying very hard not to fight, to explain why people feel disheartened and upset and more, to come up with any example that can give you pause enough to at least understand, but you see that and don't see 'something to consider'. It's regarded as a weakness to be exploited, denied, attacked, ridiculed, shamed, and more. Because maybe, if you do that, I don't know - you can draw an imaginary chalk mark in the air and say 'I won!' and maybe then you go to Supreme Heaven Plus One? Something like that.

Wonderful. You have established, beyond all doubt, that there is no conversation to be had here. I am tired of this Pope heaping scorn on me and people like me, and I'm tired of being treated like shit for being tired, and I'm tired of it all happening while a woman on her sixth abortion or a gay atheist billionaire on his twentieth cock of the night is treated as a gentle wayward lamb who needs only love and encouragement. The lesson is that if I don't want to be hounded to death under this papacy, I need to be a shameless heretic. Only the openly disdainful will have peace and forgiveness.

That is the lesson you have imparted. Supreme Heaven Plus One awaits you for your efforts, I am sure.

Crude said...

No, Ben. No more replies. We are done.

I have given chance upon chance here. The Pope can treat me like shit in his homilies, those like you can treat me like shit on public sites. Here, I choose when I deal with it and when I do not. And I am quite done with it right now.

malcolmthecynic said...

Ben,

Well I am not upset at what John Paul II did so why should I be bothered by what Francis did here?

Perhaps that's the problem: I'm upset at what Pope John Paul II did. And I think you should be, too.

Son of Ya'Kov said...

Malcom

I've seen people leave the Church after getting themselves worked up over whatever St John Paul II should or should not have done.
He was and is a Saint and they are now outside the Church the Ark of Salvation. It's not worth it.

I don't give a shit about feelings or emotions. Nor will I ever presume the bad faith of the Pope unless he does something gravely evil. Nor do I believe laymen have any business attacking or publicly criticizing the Vicar of Christ. Nor do I find even a majority of what is layed at the Pope feet credible criticism.

If you want to continue this discussion over at your blog i would be happy too accommodate you. But I won't talk here for Crude has the last word since it is his blog & I am not some fucking liberal that demands rights to someone else's forum to pontificate.

Peace.

malcolmthecynic said...

I think that's a good attitude, Ben. One day I'll have a post up on there on a similar topic, and you're always invited to come down.

Son of Ya'Kov said...

Malcolm,

Thanks man.