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What the Pope's Really Saying
Townhall.com ^ | December 7, 2013 | Kathryn Lopez

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.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial
KEYWORDS: capitalism; media; popefrancis

1 posted on 12/07/2013 7:33:12 AM PST by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin

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.


2 posted on 12/07/2013 7:40:51 AM PST by Mercat
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To: Kaslin

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


3 posted on 12/07/2013 7:43:56 AM PST by HangnJudge
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To: Mercat

Which does not excuse economic illiteracy…….


4 posted on 12/07/2013 7:44:05 AM PST by C. Edmund Wright (Tokyo Rove is more than a name, it's a GREAT WEBSITE)
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To: HangnJudge

very well said


5 posted on 12/07/2013 7:46:48 AM PST by Kaslin (He needed the ignorant to reelect him, and he got them. Now we all have to pay the consequenses)
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To: Kaslin
There is a lot of talk about helping the poor in this most recent Apostolic Exhortation, but I don't really see that as anything new. Of course, we are supposed to help the poor. Christian pastors should always remind us of that duty. Regardless of the comments of Rush, Andrew Napolitano, or whatever, that doesn't bother me so much.

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:

That divergence from what has historically been Magisterial teachings of the popes disturbs me.

6 posted on 12/07/2013 7:47:31 AM PST by markomalley (Nothing emboldens the wicked so greatly as the lack of courage on the part of the good -- Leo XIII)
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To: Kaslin
"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

Charles seems to preaching some other gospel;
other than the one Yah'shua taught.

Paul taught in Galatians 1

8) But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel
contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed!

9) As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching
to you a gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be accursed!

10) For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God?
Or am I striving to please men? If I were still trying to please men,
I would not be a bond-servant of Christ.

Charles seems to be teaching the gospel of Karl Marx

Shabbat Shalom

shalom b'SHEM Yah'shua HaMashiach
7 posted on 12/07/2013 8:04:25 AM PST by Uri’el-2012 (Psalm 119:174 I long for Your salvation, YHvH, Your teaching is my delight.)
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To: HangnJudge

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.


8 posted on 12/07/2013 8:30:22 AM PST by ModelBreaker
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To: Kaslin
I am not theologian, but if I read St Paul correctly, entry into heaven is conditioned upon acceptance of Jesus as Messiah. Rewards in heaven are bestowed for acts. Those who accept Jesus as Messiah and the Lamb of God but have performed no good deeds (say, a violent criminal who lives a life of crime but accepts Christ on his death bed) will enter heaven but with a sense of loss.
Thus, it would be possible for a person to enter heaven after a life of oppressing the poor.
9 posted on 12/07/2013 8:41:55 AM PST by quadrant (1o)
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To: Kaslin
Helping the poor sounds very nobel and people do bring up the number of verses in which God wants us to help those in need. But we are also to be wise.

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.

10 posted on 12/07/2013 8:45:31 AM PST by HarleyD (...one of his disciples, whom Jesus loved.)
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To: Kaslin
Cardinal: "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,"

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.

11 posted on 12/07/2013 9:08:47 AM PST by bunkerhill7 ("The Second Amendment has no limits on firepower"-NY State Senator Kathleen A. Marchione.")
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To: Kaslin
If we don't love the poor, and do all we can to improve their lot, we're going to go to Hell,"

"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."

Leviticus 19:15

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.

12 posted on 12/07/2013 9:30:43 AM PST by mjp ((pro-{God, reality, reason, egoism, individualism, natural rights, limited government, capitalism}))
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To: Irenic

*bkmk


13 posted on 12/07/2013 9:50:58 AM PST by Irenic (The pencil sharpener and Elmer's glue is put away-- we've lost the red wheel barrow)
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To: Kaslin

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.


14 posted on 12/07/2013 9:52:02 AM PST by Mamzelle
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To: Kaslin

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.


15 posted on 12/07/2013 10:06:58 AM PST by Irenic (The pencil sharpener and Elmer's glue is put away-- we've lost the red wheel barrow)
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To: Kaslin
There are good and bad in all rungs of society.

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.

16 posted on 12/07/2013 10:36:23 AM PST by what's up
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To: ModelBreaker

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.


17 posted on 12/07/2013 12:54:33 PM PST by Impy (RED=COMMUNIST, NOT REPUBLICAN)
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To: Kaslin

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.


18 posted on 12/07/2013 12:56:20 PM PST by Moltke (Sapere aude!)
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To: Kaslin
"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.

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.

19 posted on 12/07/2013 1:02:23 PM PST by Colonel_Flagg (Some people meet their heroes. I raised mine. Go Army.)
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To: Colonel_Flagg
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.

20 posted on 12/07/2013 2:02:43 PM PST by markomalley (Nothing emboldens the wicked so greatly as the lack of courage on the part of the good -- Leo XIII)
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To: markomalley

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.


21 posted on 12/07/2013 2:13:15 PM PST by Colonel_Flagg (Some people meet their heroes. I raised mine. Go Army.)
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To: Colonel_Flagg
…absent other context…

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

22 posted on 12/07/2013 3:58:21 PM PST by markomalley (Nothing emboldens the wicked so greatly as the lack of courage on the part of the good -- Leo XIII)
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To: markomalley

Thanks for the context. I think this is a case where the interviewee is not done justice by the article written.

Bless your evening.


23 posted on 12/07/2013 4:09:39 PM PST by Colonel_Flagg (Some people meet their heroes. I raised mine. Go Army.)
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