First casualty and first headlines ahead of the visit. Cardinal Kasper, a man well-known for not being very liked (ecumenism Taliban, no friend of the Ordinariates and in general: far too left) makes some very politically incorrect observations and as a result either gets gout, or “is advised” by the doctor not to travel (must be a capricious thing, gout) or is excluded from the visit to avoid worse trouble.
Let us see his affirmations to see what is there in them:
1) The UK is “marked by a new and aggressive atheism”.
Very true. Can’t see how anyone could deny this. I hope the Holy Father will say pretty much the same thing in the next days. Unfortunately, I ‘m afraid he’ll say that in a way that does not offend anyone, that is: that does not get at the heart of the matter. Kudos to the Cardinal for having said what must be said out loud.
2) “when you land at Heathrow you think at times you have landed in a Third World country”
I don’t know about that. This is one of the biggest and busiest airports of the planet. Logistics and security must be a nightmare. Still, on the many occasions I have been there I must say that I never felt in danger, nor has anything ever been stolen, nor have I had to endure any particular discomfort not due to the exaggerated security mania of our times. Yes, I have seen cleaner airports perhaps (and more beautiful, modern ones without the “perhaps”); but “third world” seems to me vastly exaggerated.
If he compares with Fiumicino in Rome, he knows Heathrow has nothing to be ashamed of and if he compares with Frankfurt in Germany, well you should never compare with Germany…
3) BA discriminates against you when you wear a cross.
Absolutely true. BA allow their Muslim employees to wear a head scarf, but suspend their Christian ones if they wear a visible cross. Anti-Christian fanatics, period.
I am not a friend of the man. It seems to me that he incarnates if not the worst, certainly much of the bad come out of Vatican II. But I must say, this time I can’t avoid siding with him. To 66% at least.