Skip to comments.What the Pope's Really Saying
Posted on 12/07/2013 7:33:12 AM PST by Kaslin
"The Pope loves everyone, rich and poor alike."
It's safe to say that the above is not the most quoted line from the pope's most recent and most talked about essay, Evangelii Gaudium, which includes some pointed criticism of late capitalism.
"If we don't love the poor, and do all we can to improve their lot, we're going to go to Hell," Philadelphia's Archbishop Chaput said in a 2011 interview. In an e-book, New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan repeated the line, seeing it as a point of continuity between Pope Benedict XVI and his successor.
According to most church observers, Chaput's one of the most "conservative" bishops in the country. Generally that means he talks about "The Gospel of Life," and the necessity of following Catholic teaching in all facets of our lives, including politics. He also offers pastoral guidance on the death penalty and immigration and, yes, poverty.
Meanwhile, the leftist talking heads at MSNBC have fallen all over themselves to proclaim Francis as one of their own. And Fox News has even joined the fray, comparing the pope to Obama in an op-ed posted on the channel's website.
All this begs the question: Who is Pope Francis? Are our efforts to neatly label him doing both the man and his message a disservice?
Resist the temptation, cautions Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the retired archbishop of Washington, "to fit (Pope Francis) into ideological and ecclesial categories."
The cardinal, probably considered leftward of some of the earlier bishops named, was speaking at the start of a recent event at Georgetown University, "The Pope and the Poor." The forum, presented as a dialogue sponsored by the new Initiative on Catholic Social Thought and Public Life, was held in the shadow of "The Gospel of Joy," a long papal intrachurch document that echoed many themes we've heard in the early papacy of Pope Francis.
It's about "loving attentiveness," and talks of our obligations to life and marriage and even religious freedom. But you wouldn't know that from the headlines, which are all about Obamacare, lawsuits and partisan jockeying.
This evasion of the pope's true message is a reminder of how important communication is and how challenging it can be in the age of Twitter and our limited attention spans. But the effort to get beyond all that is one we need to make.
Francis is reminding us of our Christian obligation to physically perform works of mercy. "To take care of the poor, to visit the imprisoned, to feed the hungry, to clothe the naked, to welcome the stranger, to tend to the sick," Dolan reflects. This is what pastors do, and what every parishioner should do, as well.
There's a book by a bevy of Dominican priests, one now an archbishop in the upper realms of the Vatican. It's called "The Love That Never Ends," and it contends that "to share in the unending love of the triune God is the destiny of every human person in Christ." This is the pope's message.
It's not a political agenda -- it's an evangelical one. If you have actual hope -- that there is endless mercy and justice for those who seek it, that there is a redeeming love available for all, that your neighbor truly is your brother -- there's got to be a joy about you, one you're going to want to share in service, fellowship and charity. That's not condemning you to hell for having strong opinions about the priorities of the federal budget, but reminding us all of the meaning of words and lives. And if you believe it -- that the human person is a beloved treasure of the Creator -- it is the perfect gift to bring joy to the world.
I have skills and abilities and a career that brings me into contact with the poor and give me the opportunity to help them. I need to look for those opportunities and act on them. This is what the Pope’s message brings to me. Oh, and IBT BEAT UP ON FRANCIS PING.
Love The Lord Thy God
Love Thy Neighbor as Thyself
All the Laws and the Covenants are based upon these
Forgetting, or worse, refusing to love others is a great evil
Within the context of what Gifts are Within Us and
What Situations we are Presented With
But the Poor will always be with us
How we Love our Neighbor can be an intensely personal choice
Which does not excuse economic illiteracy .
very well said
Frankly, what concerns me with this document is the emphasis on "inequality" rather than on justice. For example: "Inequality is the root of social ills." (§202)
This seems to be in contradiction to much of the Papal Magesterium.
A review of previous papal issuances shows the following:
5. For, indeed, although the socialists, stealing the very Gospel itself with a view to deceive more easily the unwary, have been accustomed to distort it so as to suit their own purposes, nevertheless so great is the difference between their depraved teachings and the most pure doctrine of Christ that none greater could exist: "for what participation hath justice with injustice or what fellowship hath light with darkness?" Their habit, as we have intimated, is always to maintain that nature has made all men equal, and that, therefore, neither honor nor respect is due to majesty, nor obedience to laws, unless, perhaps, to those sanctioned by their own good pleasure. But, on the contrary, in accordance with the teachings of the Gospel, the equality of men consists in this: that all, having inherited the same nature, are called to the same most high dignity of the sons of God, and that, as one and the same end is set before all, each one is to be judged by the same law and will receive punishment or reward according to his deserts. The inequality of rights and of power proceeds from the very Author of nature, "from whom all paternity in heaven and earth is named." But the minds of princes and their subjects are, according to Catholic doctrine and precepts, bound up one with the other in such a manner, by mutual duties and rights, that the thirst for power is restrained and the rational ground of obedience made easy, firm, and noble.
9. But Catholic wisdom, sustained by the precepts of natural and divine law, provides with especial care for public and private tranquillity in its doctrines and teachings regarding the duty of government and the distribution of the goods which are necessary for life and use. For, while the socialists would destroy the "right" of property, alleging it to be a human invention altogether opposed to the inborn equality of man, and, claiming a community of goods, argue that poverty should not be peaceably endured, and that the property and privileges of the rich may be rightly invaded, the Church, with much greater wisdom and good sense, recognizes the inequality among men, who are born with different powers of body and mind, inequality in actual possession, also, and holds that the right of property and of ownership, which springs from nature itself, must not be touched and stands inviolate. For she knows that stealing and robbery were forbidden in so special a manner by God, the Author and Defender of right, that He would not allow man even to desire what belonged to another, and that thieves and despoilers, no less than adulterers and idolaters, are shut out from the Kingdom of Heaven. But not the less on this account does our holy Mother not neglect the care of the poor or omit to provide for their necessities; but, rather, drawing them to her with a mother's embrace, and knowing that they bear the person of Christ Himself, who regards the smallest gift to the poor as a benefit conferred on Himself, holds them in great honor. She does all she can to help them; she provides homes and hospitals where they may be received, nourished, and cared for all the world over and watches over these. She is constantly pressing on the rich that most grave precept to give what remains to the poor; and she holds over their heads the divine sentence that unless they succor the needy they will be repaid by eternal torments. In fine, she does all she can to relieve and comfort the poor, either by holding up to them the example of Christ, "who being rich became poor for our sake, or by reminding them of his own words, wherein he pronounced the poor blessed and bade them hope for the reward of eternal bliss. But who does not see that this is the best method of arranging the old struggle between the rich and poor? For, as the very evidence of facts and events shows, if this method is rejected or disregarded, one of two things must occur: either the greater portion of the human race will fall back into the vile condition of slavery which so long prevailed among the pagan nations, or human society must continue to be disturbed by constant eruptions, to be disgraced by rapine and strife, as we have had sad witness even in recent times.
17. It must be first of all recognized that the condition of things inherent in human affairs must be borne with, for it is impossible to reduce civil society to one dead level. Socialists may in that intent do their utmost, but all striving against nature is in vain. There naturally exist among mankind manifold differences of the most important kind; people differ in capacity, skill, health, strength; and unequal fortune is a necessary result of unequal condition. Such inequality is far from being disadvantageous either to individuals or to the community. Social and public life can only be maintained by means of various kinds of capacity for business and the playing of many parts; and each man, as a rule, chooses the part which suits his own peculiar domestic condition. As regards bodily labor, even had man never fallen from the state of innocence, he would not have remained wholly idle; but that which would then have been his free choice and his delight became afterwards compulsory, and the painful expiation for his disobedience. "Cursed be the earth in thy work; in thy labor thou shalt eat of it all the days of thy life."
34. But although all citizens, without exception, can and ought to contribute to that common good in which individuals share so advantageously to themselves, yet it should not be supposed that all can contribute in the like way and to the same extent. No matter what changes may occur in forms of government, there will ever be differences and inequalities of condition in the State. Society cannot exist or be conceived of without them. Some there must be who devote themselves to the work of the commonwealth, who make the laws or administer justice, or whose advice and authority govern the nation in times of peace, and defend it in war. Such men clearly occupy the foremost place in the State, and should be held in highest estimation, for their work concerns most nearly and effectively the general interests of the community. Those who labor at a trade or calling do not promote the general welfare in such measure as this, but they benefit the nation, if less directly, in a most important manner. We have insisted, it is true, that, since the end of society is to make men better, the chief good that society can possess is virtue. Nevertheless, it is the business of a well constituted body politic to see to the provision of those material and external helps "the use of which is necessary to virtuous action." Now, for the provision of such commodities, the labor of the working class -- the exercise of their skill, and the employment of their strength, in the cultivation of the land, and in the workshops of trade -- is especially responsible and quite indispensable. Indeed, their co-operation is in this respect so important that it may be truly said that it is only by the labor of working men that States grow rich. Justice, therefore, demands that the interests of the working classes should be carefully watched over by the administration, so that they who contribute so largely to the advantage of the community may themselves share in the benefits which they create -- that being housed, clothed, and bodily fit, they may find their life less hard and more endurable. It follows that whatever shall appear to prove conducive to the well-being of those who work should obtain favorable consideration. There is no fear that solicitude of this kind will be harmful to any interest; on the contrary, it will be to the advantage of all, for it cannot but be good for the commonwealth to shield from misery those on whom it so largely depends for the things that it needs.
Teaching such doctrines, and applying them to its internal organization, the Sillon, therefore, sows erroneous and fatal notions on authority, liberty and obedience, among your Catholic youth. The same is true of justice and equality; the Sillon says that it is striving to establish an era of equality which, by that very fact, would be also an era of greater justice. Thus, to the Sillon, every inequality of condition is an injustice, or at least, a diminution of justice? Here we have a principle that conflicts sharply with the nature of things, a principle conducive to jealously, injustice, and subversive to any social order. Thus, Democracy alone will bring about the reign of perfect justice! Is this not an insult to other forms of government which are thereby debased to the level of sterile makeshifts? Besides, the Sillonists once again clash on this point with the teaching of Leo XIII. In the Encyclical on political government which We have already quoted, they could have read this: Justice being preserved, it is not forbidden to the people to choose for themselves the form of government which best corresponds with their character or with the institutions and customs handed down by their forefathers.
The Sillonist doctrines are not kept within the domain of abstract philosophy; they are taught to Catholic youth and, even worse, efforts are made to apply them in everyday life. The Sillon is regarded as the nucleus of the Future City and, accordingly, it is being made to its image as much as possible. Indeed, the Sillon has no hierarchy. The governing elite has emerged from the rank and file by selection, that is, by imposing itself through its moral authority and its virtues. People join it freely, and freely they may leave it. Studies are carried out without a master, at the very most, with an adviser. The study groups are really intellectual pools in which each member is at once both master and student. The most complete fellowship prevails amongst its members, and draws their souls into close communion: hence the common soul of the Sillon. It has been called a "friendship". Even the priest, on entering, lowers the eminent dignity of his priesthood and, by a strange reversal of roles, becomes a student, placing himself on a level with his young friends, and is no more than a comrade.
In these democratic practices and in the theories of the Ideal City from which they flow, you will recognize, Venerable Brethren, the hidden cause of the lack of discipline with which you have so often had to reproach the Sillon. It is not surprising that you do not find among the leaders and their comrades trained on these lines, whether seminarists or priests, the respect, the docility, and the obedience which are due to your authority and to yourselves; not is it surprising that you should be conscious of an underlying opposition on their part, and that, to your sorrow, you should see them withdraw altogether from works which are not those of the Sillon or, if compelled under obedience, that they should comply with distaste. You are the past; they are the pioneers of the civilization of the future. You represent the hierarchy, social inequalities, authority, and obedience - worn out institutions to which their hearts, captured by another ideal, can no longer submit to. Occurrences so sad as to bring tears to Our eyes bear witness to this frame of mind. And we cannot, with all Our patience, overcome a just feeling of indignation. Now then! Distrust of the Church, their Mother, is being instilled into the minds of Catholic youth; they are being taught that after nineteen centuries She has not yet been able to build up in this world a society on true foundations; She has not understood the social notions of authority, liberty, equality, fraternity and human dignity; they are told that the great Bishops and Kings, who have made France what it is and governed it so gloriously, have not been able to give their people true justice and true happiness because they did not possess the Sillonist Ideal!
(NB: The Sillon were/are a modernist group that sought to reconcile Catholic Doctrine with the ideals of the French revolution)
28. In a people worthy of the name, the citizen feels within him the consciousness of his personality, of his duties and rights, of his own freedom joined to respect for the freedom and dignity of others.
29. In a people worthy of the name all inequalities based not on whim but on the nature of things, inequalities of culture, possessions, social standing -- without, of course, prejudice to justice and mutual charity -- do not constitute any obstacle to the existence and the prevalence of a true spirit of union and brotherhood.
30. On the contrary, so far from impairing civil equality in any way, they give it its true meaning; namely, that, before the state everyone has the right to live honorably his own personal life in the place and under the conditions in which the designs and dispositions of Providence have placed him.
38. Anyone, therefore, who ventures to deny that there are differences among social classes contradicts the very laws of nature. Indeed, whoever opposes peaceful and necessary cooperation among the social classes is attempting, beyond doubt, to disrupt and divide human society; he menaces and does serious injury to private interests and the public welfare.
39. As Our predecessor, Pius XII, wisely said, "In a nation that is worthy of the name, inequalities among the social classes present few or no obstacles to their union in common brotherhood. We refer, of course, to those inequalities which result not from human caprice but from the nature of things -- inequalities having to do with intellectual and spiritual growth, with economic facts, with differences in individual circumstances, within, of course, the limits prescribed by justice and mutual charity.''
40. The various classes of society, as well as groups of individuals, may certainly protect their rights, provided this is done by legal means, not violence, and provided that they do no injustice to the inviolable rights of others. All men are brothers. Their differences, therefore, must be settled by friendly agreement, with brotherly love for one another.
It should be noted that in today's world, among other rights, the right of economic initiative is often suppressed. Yet it is a right which is important not only for the individual but also for the common good. Experience shows us that the denial of this right, or its limitation in the name of an alleged "equality" of everyone in society, diminishes, or in practice absolutely destroys the spirit of initiative, that is to say the creative subjectivity of the citizen. As a consequence, there arises, not so much a true equality as a "leveling down." In the place of creative initiative there appears passivity, dependence and submission to the bureaucratic apparatus which, as the only "ordering" and "decision-making" body - if not also the "owner"- of the entire totality of goods and the means of production, puts everyone in a position of almost absolute dependence, which is similar to the traditional dependence of the worker-proletarian in capitalism. This provokes a sense of frustration or desperation and predisposes people to opt out of national life, impelling many to emigrate and also favoring a form of "psychological" emigration.
That divergence from what has historically been Magisterial teachings of the popes disturbs me.
Paul taught in Galatians 1 9) As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching 10) For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? Shabbat Shalom
Charles seems to preaching some other gospel; shalom b'SHEM Yah'shua HaMashiach
other than the one Yah'shua taught.
8) But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel Charles seems to be teaching the gospel of Karl Marx
contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed!
to you a gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be accursed!
Or am I striving to please men? If I were still trying to please men,
I would not be a bond-servant of Christ.
Paul taught in Galatians 1
9) As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching
10) For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God?
Eventually, conservative catholics are going to have to stop making excuses and accept that they have a pope from the virulent left wing of Catholicism. And that his installation was pretty much a gay and left wing coup in the Vatican.
2Th 3:10 For even when we were with you, we would give you this command: If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat.
Unfortunately there are many parasites in today's society. There is a man on one of our street corner begging for money. Two days ago we happened to catch him pulling out a smartphone to check his email. Christians can be so stupid and it does not bring honor to God for us to demostrate our supidity.
We are not saved from Hell by giving to the poor. We are saved by what God has given us. We are saved from Hell by repenting of our sins and asking God to change our hearts.
This is pure crap BS -
There have been 4 priest pastors in this town last 20 years-
not one of them visited my mother nor her family nor my grandmother even tho I called them numerous times-
But they still send them the envelopes asking for collection money. Even when my mom was in the hospital, I called the priest and he never came-
I even asked the priest in church and the Deacon but they are all lazy SOB`s.
It is pure propaganda crap. I have more Jehovah witnesses and Mormons knocking on my door and not one Catholic preist deacon nor nun.
It`s a bunch of crap. One of my catholic neighbors married a non-catholic and the wedding took place in the catholic church. When their first child was born she asked the priest when he could baptize the baby. He said that he couldn`t coz she was married to a non-catholic [even tho he performed the wedding!]-
so she left the church-
This the kind of crap that goes on all the time. True stories.
"You shall do no injustice in judgment; you shall not be partial to the poor nor defer to the great, but you are to judge your neighbor fairly."
God's justice is impartial and is not the same as social justice. God is not on the side of the poor despite protests to the contrary. Any law,therefore, that gives an advantage in the economic sphere to anyone, rich or poor, violates Biblical justice. Biblical justice requires equality before the law, not equality of incomes, or abilities, or results.
Much of the reason libtards insists upon the need for economic equality is in his mistaken Marxist exploitation theory assumption that the rich take their wealth from the poor. Thus, libtards believe justice requires returning to the poor what was wrong fully stolen from them. What they don't realize is that the way to increase prosperity is not egalitarianism, or redistributionism, or government interventionism, but economic progress, which requires the institutions of capitalism and a pro-business environment.
The welfare system is based on the unjust system of inequality before the law and perpetuates poverty rather than alleviating it.Welfare is not a compassionate system, It encourages the poor to abandon the lifeline of hard work and often undermines the family unit.
Why does this pope have such a hard time making himself clear? He seems to say one thing—then everyone claims he didn’t say what he seems to have said.
I have not been happy with many of the pope’s words but I am thrilled with how he has caused so much discussion.
People are discussing their beliefs and pointing out the truth as they understand them. I am learning so much. I am grateful! I love the discussions and arguments.
I am not Catholic, I guess I’m not anything other than a believer and lover of Christ.
Marx got us to judge people based only on their economic status.
It is a mistake for the Pope to harp on the poor; what he should be emphasizing is the importance for all individuals to live in Christ's righteousness...both rich and poor. If he and other leftists took the emphasis off income levels, he would see a lot more charity take place.
My very devout mom is not happy, told me Francis reminds her of liberal Priests his age that she knows.
And she liked him at first.
Question: How many articles/threads/posts does it take to explain what the pope REALLY SAID?
Answer: The number is inversely proportional to what the pope ACTUALLY SAID.
Absent other context in the interview, and of course it's possible that such context exists, it appears as though the Archbishop could stand to be reminded of Ephesians 2:8-9. These words smack of works-based salvation to me.
I think he's referring to Matthew 25:31-46, Luke 16:19-31, and so on.
As I said, absent other context. I’d need to see the entire interview.
John 21:17 makes it clear that Christ commands the Christian to help the less fortunate (”feed my sheep”). However, he neither commands government to do it, as ‘social justice’ advocates believe, nor makes it a requirement to get into Heaven. The Christian, filled with Christ’s love, will wish to do these things simply because they are the right thing to do.
OK, so here's the context:
As far as the social justice question goes, I don't think you can be an evangelist, or part of this evangelical movement in the church, without being as clearly committed to social justice as the church has been in the past. We can't preach the Gospel and not live it. If we don't love the poor, and do all we can to improve their lot, we're going to go to Hell. It's very clear from the gospels that we have the duty to do that. To be an evangelist means to preach that too, but it also means you don't just preach that. There's a clear difference between being a social worker and being a preacher of the Gospel. You can be a social worker without believing in God, but not a preacher. The Gospel calls all of us to be social workers, in a sense, but not all social workers are called to be evangelists.
BTW, please note the "official" "Catholic" definition of the term "social justice" -- The respect for the human person and the rights which flow from human dignity and guarantee it. Society must provide the conditions that allow people to obtain what is their due, according to their nature and vocation
Thanks for the context. I think this is a case where the interviewee is not done justice by the article written.
Bless your evening.