The usual Rorate caeli has a translation of an excellent article from Ernesto Galli della Loggia on the indifference with which the West faces the persecution of Christians not only in the Middle East. As always, I invite you to follow the link and read the article in its entirety there.
I would, for myself, only add one or three observations which, I think, should be made.
1. I do not think fear of the Muslim world plays the role that the author of the article ascribes to it. It is a component, certainly; but I have never experienced that whenever the West has seen Islamist fundamentalism as a threat to our own security, it has failed to react. The crackdown on Muslim hotheads after the bombs of 2005 here in England was so strong that nothing of the sort (I mean nothing even remotely comparable; it is difficult to prevent two madmen from butchering a soldier in the middle of the road, in broad daylight) has happened again in the intervening nine years, and the invasion of Iraq notwithstanding the whining liberal cry of what horrible things would happen to us if Bush had provoked a “worldwide jihad” have been listened to only by the irredeemable professional wussies. No, I would say that whilst many in the West find it un-PC to attack Islamist fanaticism, when they see that the public opinion demand that they act they crack down on the menace all right.
2. Which leads us elegantly to the second point. The Western politicians do not act on the Christian persecution in the Middle east because they see that their electors care much more about who is the last prick literally introducing himself into some third-class “celebrity”. It’s not a case of raison d’etat which leads our leaders not to do what the people will. It is a case, rather, of now two generations raised in abysmal ignorance, without moral compass, without a spine, and without the ability to care anything that does not titillate their worst instincts.
3. Interestingly, the internet site of the newspaper that published the article, the Corriere della Sera, is a prime example of this involution. The internet site looks like a gossip site and a purveyor of soft porn for housewives and acceptable office use (Italians are far more tolerant in these things than many in Britain). It is shameless crap comparable to the internet presence of the “Daily Mail”. Again: housewife porn.
Nor is the “serious” part of the newspaper (and its print version) much better: you may not have the topless or almost-topless photos and the continuous sexual innuendos and gossip, but you have a completely rotten mentality, which fully espouses the heathenish thinking of our times and therefore creates the very same indifference Galli della Loggia laments in the column of the very newspaper. They can’t ever write “homosexual” anymore, “gay” is the only word. “Gay” is only seen in terms of “gay rights”, and every “novelty” in the matter is clearly presented as an “advancement”. They are, in a word, completely sold to faggotry, and one shudders at thinking how many of them are faggots themselves.
In a word, the Corriere is a very powerful vehicle of the same indifference to Christian values it decries from its own columns.
This used to be, a long time ago, at least a reputable newspaper. The advent of the Internet and the desire to create an established, mass Internet present obviously led them to an involution of their online content, adapted to the taste of the proles they wanted to attract. From there, I think, the utter ruin of the printed content has followed, as the stupidity now prevalent among the masses is reflected in the content of a newspaper that does not have, as it was for decades, the ambition to educate the people to right thinking, but rather feels itself compelled to follow it in every vice.
Yes, every now and then you get the brilliant article, written for the minority of well-educated readers out there. But the main thinking of the newspaper, the editorial line, the collective mind preparing the newspaper, is 100% the crap that is causing the problems. We have forgotten who we are. Our newspaper follow us in our madness. Our politician are happy to go with whatever we think, or rather do not think.
Democracy at work. Which should lead every thinking person to a more sober judgment about this deity of our times.
The clergy must wake up. When the clergy wakes up, slowly the masses will start demanding a different content from the media they buy. The medial will duly follow, and start to adequate their content to the mood of the masses out there. Before long, the politics will react. Give it some more time, and persecution in the Middle East on this scale will not be unpunished anymore, because the democracies of the West will not accept it.
Of course, in times in which the Pope sends slimy and slavishly praising greetings to Muslims for the start of Ramadan we are very far from even the first step.
The new interview to the Corriere della Sera is far less stupid than the old one to Repubblica. But this does not mean that it is deprived of disquieting statements; both in what it says and in what it chooses not to say. Statements, mind, which would have been less disquieting if said from a different Pope, but appear in a different light as they have been pronounced by this one.
As I write, I have side by side the Italian text of the Corriere and an English translation from Zenit. I have noticed no particular blunders, but I am not always satisfied with the translation (my bad, no doubt), so I have tweaked it very slightly here and there.
Below, the points on which I would like to comment. Underlined words are mine.
La tenerezza e la misericordia sono l’essenza del suo messaggio pastorale…
«E del Vangelo. È il centro del Vangelo. Altrimenti non si capisce Gesù Cristo, la tenerezza del Padre che lo manda ad ascoltarci, a guarirci, a salvarci».
Tenderness and mercy are the essence of your pastoral message…
“And of the Gospel. They are the heart of the Gospel. Otherwise, one doesn’t understand Jesus Christ, or the tenderness of the Father who sends Him to listen to us, to cure us, to save us”.
I wonder what one understands of Jesus Christ if one does not know that he will well be damned if he refuses to accept Him and His Church. You read Francis and you think he is reminding you that “Jesus saves” as he would remind you that dinner will be served at 8 pm.
Ma è stato compreso questo messaggio? Lei ha detto che la francescomania non durerà a lungo. C’è qualcosa nella sua immagine pubblica che non le piace?
«Mi piace stare tra la gente, insieme a chi soffre, andare nelle parrocchie. Non mi piacciono le interpretazioni ideologiche, una certa mitologia di papa Francesco. Quando si dice per esempio che esce di notte dal Vaticano per andare a dar da mangiare ai barboni in via Ottaviano. Non mi è mai venuto in mente. Sigmund Freud diceva, se non sbaglio, che in ogni idealizzazione c’è un’aggressione. Dipingere il Papa come una sorta di superman, una specie di star, mi pare offensivo. Il Papa è un uomo che ride, piange, dorme tranquillo e ha amici come tutti. Una persona normale».
But was this message understood? You said that the “Francis mania” wouldn’t last long. Is there something of your public image that you don’t like?
“I like to be among the people, with those who suffer, and to go to the parishes. I don’t like ideological interpretations, a certain mythology of Pope Francis. When it is said, for instance, that I go out from the Vatican at night to feed beggars on Via Ottaviano – I never even thought of it. Sigmund Freud said, if I’m not mistaken, that in all idealization there is an aggression. To paint the Pope as if he is a sort of Superman, a sort of star, I find offensive. The Pope is a man who laughs, cries, sleeps peacefully and has friends like everyone else. He is a normal person”.
Not many messages of indignation when he received the journalist of Rolling Stone who then gave him the cover; or when a fag magazine did the same; or when Time made him “man/woman/transgender being of the year”. Or when an abortionist organisation thanked him in public.
No. he only has a problem when people think he goes out at night among the beggars. Thank God he doesn’t. At least that.
Le sono dispiaciute quelle accuse di marxismo, soprattutto americane, dopo la pubblicazione dell’Evangelii Gaudium?
«Per nulla. Non ho mai condiviso l’ideologia marxista, perché non è vera, ma ho conosciuto tante brave persone che professavano il marxismo».
Were you annoyed that they accused you of being Marxist, especially in the United States, after the publication of “Evangelii Gaudium”?
Were you annoyed that they accused you of being Marxist, especially in the United States, after the publication of “Evangelii Gaudium”?
“Not at all. I never shared the Marxist ideology because it’s false, but I knew many good persons who professed Marxism.”
Substitute “marxist” for Nazist, and see how it looks: “Not at all. I never shared the Nazist ideology because it’s false, but I knew many good persons who professed Nazism”.
If it sounds creepy and stupid, it’s because the original answer is.
Gli scandali che hanno turbato la vita della Chiesa sono fortunatamente alle spalle. Le è stato rivolto, sul delicato tema degli abusi sui minori, un appello pubblicato dal Foglio e firmato tra gli altri dai filosofi Besançon e Scruton perché lei faccia sentire alta la sua voce contro i fanatismi e la cattiva coscienza del mondo secolarizzato che rispetta poco l’infanzia.
The scandals that perturbed the life of the Church fortunately are now in the past. On the delicate topic of the abuse of minors, philosophers Besancon and Scruton among others, asked you to raise your voice against fanaticism and the bad faith of the secularized world that doesn’t respect childhood much.
Damn journalists. The petition of Il Foglio was in order for Francis to make his voice heard against the attacks on the Church from the UN and other secular organisations. The Corriere conveniently ignores this. Congratulations.
Francis’ answer is the usual fluff, not worthy of a comment.
Lei ha indicato nella globalizzazione, soprattutto finanziaria, alcuni dei mali che aggrediscono l’umanità. Ma la globalizzazione ha strappato dall’indigenza milioni di persone. Ha dato speranza, un sentimento raro da non confondere con l’ottimismo.
«È vero, la globalizzazione ha salvato dalla povertà molte persone, ma ne ha condannate tante altre a morire di fame, perché con questo sistema economico diventa selettiva. La globalizzazione a cui pensa la Chiesa assomiglia non a una sfera, nella quale ogni punto è equidistante dal centro e in cui quindi si perde la peculiarità dei popoli, ma a un poliedro, con le sue diverse facce, per cui ogni popolo conserva la propria cultura, lingua, religione, identità. L’attuale globalizzazione “sferica” economica , e soprattutto finanziaria, produce un pensiero unico, un pensiero debole. Al centro non vi è più la persona umana, solo il denaro».
You identify in globalization, especially financial, some of the evils that humanity suffers. However, globalization brought millions of people out of poverty. It brought hope, a rare sentiment that must not be confused with optimism.
Holy Father: It’s true, globalization saved many people from misery, but it condemned many others to die of hunger, because with this economic system it becomes selective. The globalization that the Church thinks of does not look like a sphere in which every point is equidistant from the center and in which, therefore, the particularity of peoples is lost. It is, rather, a polyhedron, with its different facets, in which each nation keeps its own culture, language, religion, identity. The present “spherical” economic globalization, especially the financial, produces one thought, a weak thought. And the human person is no longer at its center but only money.
I am trying very hard to remember when I have read something as stupid as “globalisation condemned many people to die of hunger”. No idea. Must have been something concerning global warming, though. The rest of the statement exposes the appalling ignorance of this man in terms of economics, a discipline he must have learnt from trannies in the favela. And I am no friend of globalisation, either.
A mezzo secolo dall’Humanae Vitae di Paolo VI, la Chiesa può riprendere il tema del controllo delle nascite? Il cardinale Martini, suo confratello, riteneva che fosse ormai venuto il momento.
«Tutto dipende da come viene interpretata l’Humanae Vitae. Lo stesso Paolo VI, alla fine, raccomandava ai confessori molta misericordia, attenzione alle situazioni concrete. Ma la sua genialità fu profetica, ebbe il coraggio di schierarsi contro la maggioranza, di difendere la disciplina morale, di esercitare un freno culturale, di opporsi al neo-malthusianesimo presente e futuro. La questione non è quella di cambiare la dottrina, ma di andare in profondità e far sì che la pastorale tenga conto delle situazioni e di ciò che per le persone è possibile fare. Anche di questo si parlerà nel cammino del Sinodo».
Half a century after Paul VI’s encyclical “Humanae Vitae,” can the Church take up again the topic of birth control? Your confrere, Cardinal [Carlo Maria] Martini [the late Archbishop of Milan] believed it was now time.
“It all depends on how the text of “Humanae Vitae”is interpreted. Paul VI himself, towards the end, recommended to confessors much mercy and attention to concrete situations. But his genius was prophetic, as he had the courage to go against the majority, to defend moral discipline, to apply a cultural brake, to oppose present and future neo-Malthusianism. The object is not to change the doctrine, but it is a matter of going into the issue in depth and to ensure that the pastoral ministry takes into account the situations of each person and what that person can do. This will also be discussed on the path to the Synod”.
These are extremely disquieting words. Francis is saying that you don’t need to do what Martini advocated through a new encyclical, you merely need to read the existing one in a “pastoral” way! “Going into the issue in depth” seems to be the way this disgraceful man will try to sabotage every aspect of Catholicism that stays in the way of his V II on steroids.
Molti Paesi regolano le unioni civili. È una strada che la Chiesa può comprendere? Ma fino a che punto?
«Il matrimonio è fra un uomo e una donna. Gli Stati laici vogliono giustificare le unioni civili per regolare diverse situazioni di convivenza, spinti dall’esigenza di regolare aspetti economici fra le persone, come ad esempio assicurare l’assistenza sanitaria. Si tratta di patti di convivenza di varia natura, di cui non saprei elencare le diverse forme. Bisogna vedere i diversi casi e valutarli nella loro varietà».
Many countries have regulated civil unions. Is it a path that the Church can understand? But up to what point?
“Marriage is between one man and one woman. The secular States want to justify civil unions to regulate different situations of coexistence, spurred by the need to regulate economic aspects between persons as, for instance, to ensure healthcare. Each case must be looked at and evaluated in its diversity”.
Loaded question. “But” implies that the Church “can understand”, which is poppycock. But this is not the worst.
The worst is that we have a Pope that does not know jack about Christian morality. Faced with people who give scandal and live in mortal sin, he says we must look at the economic aspects of their living in sin instead of saying they must not live in sin. To him, it’s important that people go to hell with adequate medical insurance cover. He wants to look at this case by case, you know. It should not be said the Pope agrees with concubines not getting the economic aspects of their lives properly regulated. Has he no idea why these rules are there in the first place?
Come verrà promosso il ruolo della donna nella Chiesa?
«Anche qui la casistica non aiuta. È vero che la donna può e deve essere più presente nei luoghi di decisione della Chiesa. Ma questa io la chiamerei una promozione di tipo funzionale. Solo così non si fa tanta strada. Bisogna piuttosto pensare che la Chiesa ha l’articolo femminile “la”: è femminile dalle origini. Il grande teologo Urs von Balthasar lavorò molto su questo tema: il principio mariano guida la Chiesa accanto a quello petrino. La Vergine Maria è più importante di qualsiasi vescovo e di qualsiasi apostolo. L’approfondimento teologale è in corso. Il cardinale Rylko, con il Consiglio dei Laici, sta lavorando in questa direzione con molte donne esperte di varie materie».
How will the role of women be promoted within the Church?
“Casuistry doesn’t help in this case either. It’s true that women can and must be more present in decision-making posts of the Church. But I would call this a promotion of a functional type. And with that alone, one doesn’t advance much. Rather, we must think that the Church has the feminine article, “la”: it is feminine by origin. Theologian Urs von Balthasar worked a lot on this topic: the Marian principle guides the Church by the hand of the Petrine principle. The Virgin is more important than any Bishop and any of the Apostles. The theological reflection is already underway. Cardinal [Stanislaw] Rylko [president of the Pontifical Council for the Laity], together with the Council of the Laity, is working in this direction with many expert women”.
Another loaded question. Why would the “role of women” need to be promoted? Was the Blessed Virgin “underpromoted”? Did St Theresa of Avila ask that women be “more present in decision making-posts of the Church”? Francis says some smart things in the answer (cue the reference to the Blessed Virgin), but for the rest takes refuge in the usual fluffy rhetoric.
In cauda venenum: the very worst of this interview is possibly not in what the Not-So-Holy Father said, but in what he did not say. I read some days ago he purposely chose to avoid the issue of so-called same-sex relationships.
Heavens! One is Pope, decides to give an interview and says “but please let us not talk about the issues that will make me unpopular!”.
This man is fully bent on destroying as much as he can of traditional Catholicism, whilst avoiding everything that can damage his own reputation in what he will not be able to destroy.
“If it can be demolished, let’s do it in a “pastoral” way. If it can’t, please let’s avoid the issue”. This is Francis’ platform in one line.
Lord, have mercy.
After the recent experiences, I will wait that I have the time to read, re-read and read again the papal interview to the Corriere. It will not be today, and possibly not tomorrow. Saturday at the latest.
This time the interview was recorded; it possibly seeming strange that Francis is ready to record his spontaneous post-lunch ecumaniacal rubbish on the first smartphone around, but does not want his interviews with professional journalists to be recorded.
Some preliminary considerations of a general nature can be done now.
Legal sanctions are not there because our forefathers were stupid. They are there because our forefathers had values, and ordered their legal system in accordance to them.
Illegitimate children used to have no legal rights to a part of the inheritance, because it was considered obvious that the defence of family values demanded that the legitimate children be afforded a protection that could not be automatically extended to illegitimate ones. Of course they could still inherit a large portion of the estate. But they had no right to an automatic entitlement, and no right to the part of the estate to which the wife and legitimate children were automatically entitled.
The same principles applied, and in part still apply in countries like Italy, to other aspects of everyday life. Of course the concubine has no rights to the estate. She is the concubine, not the wife. There's a huge difference, and this difference cannot be downplayed without downplaying marriage.
I trust a boy of twelve understands this after a moment of reflection. I trust everyone understands that you can't protect certain values, any values, without giving whenever appropriate a different legal treatment to those situations that are outside of the protected ones.
To say “I support marriage” and to advocate that the concubine have the same rights than the wife is, very obviously, undermining marriage. To say “I support the family” and to give illegitimate children the same inheritance rights of the legitimate ones is, very obviously, undermining the family, and so on.
Some people think as if the past generations had been stupid. They weren't stupid. Not only they were smart, but they were also coherent with the values they professed.
You can't have your cake and eat it. You can't say the family must be protected, and undermine it for the sake of inclusiveness; or say you are in favour of marriage, and demand that the concubine get the same privileges and legal status of the wife.
Again, I do not know to what extent this applies to what Francis said, but I have an inkling it might be relevant. This just as a heads up and general reflection. More of it when I have read about the latest utterances of our Not-So-Holy Father.
Browsing the net, I have found that this rather impressive news had already been published by the Corriere della Sera last November. The link is not accessible without logging in, therefore I will link to this for those of you blessed with a knowledge of the most useless, but most beautiful language on the planet.
The information is very clear and rather complete, and it is improbable that the Corriere della Sera would risk a blunder on such a matter. It would therefore appear that the prayer has been written by don Nicola Bux, an advisor of the CDF, and that it has already obtained the imprimatur from Cardinal Bagnasco, the head of the italian Bishop’s Conference.
It also transpires from the article ( I didn’t know it) that Rai Uno has broadcast a TV series about the life of Pius XII, obviously criticised by the professional holocaust-whinos among those of the Jewish persuasions. Being Rai Uno rather conservative, still clearly Catholic and with the best links with the Vatican, it seems clear to me that the work was meant to “prepare” the Italians to a beatification that it is now difficult not to consider probable in the next few years. In addition, it seems even more difficult to believe that all preparatory work would be made without at least a “safe” miracle, whose existence has been wildly rumoured but never confirmed.
I do hope that Pope Benedict will find the courage to proceed with the beatification of this great, great Pope, choosing – as he must in this case – to weather the storm caused by the liberal, the ignorant and some of the above-mentioned “older brothers and sisters”. A political decision, of course, by which the Holy Father will have to weight the positive and – if any 😉 – negative effects.
May I remind you on this occasion that, on the day of Pope Pacelli’s death, the great saint Padre Pio had a beatific vision of the Pope in paradise, surrounded by angels, which went on for hours. Padre Pio himself never made a mystery of such an occurrence and for the rest of his life showed the utmost certainty about the holy Pope being in Paradise. It goes without saying that the devout followers of Padre Pio – yours truly among them – will, due to the extraordinary power and duration of this vision, find it difficult not to be as persuaded about Pope Pius XII’s immediate access to Paradise as the great Saint himself was.
Let us hope and pray. It seemed clear to me, though, that it is now only a matter of “when”, not “if”.