Pope Francis the 1st: Habemus papam or hocus pocus?

Posted on March 13, 2013

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So, Argentinian Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio is the new Pope, Francis the First.

Wow! How bad does the Catholic church’s reputation have to be if the Vatican is now openly pandering to Latinos?

Pope Francis says he’s going to bring a “fresh new face to the Catholic church.”  At age 76?  Can’t you just see the all the other cardinals mumbling about “the new punk kid who thinks he’s the God’s special creature”?  I suppose when you’re used to popes in their 80s and 90s, age 76 seems kinda youthful. Just don’t let him mess with the TV remote.

Pope Francis has a lengthy history of being anti-gay marriage and anti-gay adoption. He has described same-sex marriage as the work of the devil and a “destructive attack on God’s plan.” He has also said that gay adoption is a form of discrimination against children.

Uhhh, pardon me, your “holiness,” but can you explain to us how the sodomy of little boys and then lying about it and orchestrating a global game of hide-the-pedophile-priest is *NOT* “a destructive attack on God’s plan.”

Pope Francis, back when he was just Argentinian Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, said that same-sex marriage is a “move by the Father of Lies who seeks to confuse and deceive the children of God” and asked for lawmakers to “not act in error.”

Sooooo … I guess all those priests and cardinals and bishops who actively participated in, publicly denounced and intentionally covered up – and by doing so, rendered a policy of collusion and approval for – decades of homosexual pedophilia … they’re what … the Uncles of Lies?

“Is Bergoglio a progressive – a liberation theologist even?” asks the new Pope’s official biographer, Sergio Rubin? “No. He’s no third-world priest. Does he criticize the International Monetary Fund, and neo-liberalism? Yes. Does he spend a great deal of time in the slums? Yes.”

Does he have any intention of restructuring and redistributing the disgustingly vast opulent wealth, treasures and monetary resources of the Vatican and the Church worldwide so there are no more Catholic parishes that can’t afford to keep the water heater running or provide for the sick and the homeless and the indigent (You know … those archaic, anti-American, Communist, Socialist policies that liberal wealth-redistributor Jesus Christ was always nattering on about)?

Pope Francis says he will change the way the church sends its message to the world, no longer relying on cloistering inside the physical architecture of churches. “Jesus teaches us another way,” the Pontiff said. “Go out. Go out and share your testimony, go out and interact with your brothers, go out and share, go out and ask. Become the Word in body as well as spirit.”

Great. So now I can look forward to Catholics ignoring the “NO SOLICITORS” sign hanging prominently on my front door early every Sunday morning, as well as the Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses and other “word-bringers” who always travel in pairs, always want to give me literature and come into my home and explain the many ways I live incorrectly, and always seem genuinely surprised by how resolute my “No, I’m not interested” is.

Bergoglio often rode the bus to work, cooked his own meals and regularly visited the slums that surround Argentina’s capital. Bergoglio has stood out for his austerity. Even after he became Argentina’s top church official in 2001, he never lived in the ornate church mansion where Pope John Paul II stayed when visiting the country, preferring a simple bed in a downtown building, heated by a small stove on frigid weekends. He considers social outreach, rather than doctrinal battles, to be the essential business of the church. He accused fellow church leaders of hypocrisy and forgetting that Jesus Christ bathed lepers and ate with prostitutes.

So we can expect to see staged photos of the Pontiff huddled over an electric hot plate eating store-brand pasta out of a can. That’ll convince us he’s still “a simple and humble man.” Just ignore the $50 Million Vasquez painting on the wall behind him and the solid gold, jewel-encrusted fork he’s eating with. But perhaps after he’s had a nice, simple meal of Spaghettinios, he’ll get around to resolving that pesky “no divorce” doctrinal battle that’s been buzzing around for the past couple of centuries. I’m guessing there probably won’t be any prostitutes in the photos.

Initially trained as a chemist, Bergoglio taught literature, psychology, philosophy and theology before taking over as Buenos Aires archbishop in 1998. He became cardinal in 2001, when the economy was collapsing, and won respect for blaming unrestrained capitalism for impoverishing millions of Argentines.

Gosh, that ought to go over really well with all the Catholics and others claiming to be “Christian” on Wall Street and in the U.S. Congress.

The new Pope has a lot of work to do, and a lot of obstacles to overcome. He comes to office in difficult times. I’m reminded of Robert F. Kennedy’s remark in 1966 in which he cited an ancient Chinese curse that reads, “May you live in interesting times.”

Call me a cynic, but I think the new Pope’s actions, not his words, will determine whether his times are a blessing or a curse. Do I dare wish him Godspeed?

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Posted in: Errata