Archive for the ‘Catholic Church’ Category

Heading to the World Meeting of Families in a VW bus . . . all the way from Buenos Aires

Wednesday, August 26th, 2015

Imagine, if you will, the ultimate road trip: Driving the PanAmerican Highway from Buenos Aires, Argentina, to Monterrey, Mexico, and then steering northeast to Philadelphia, to arrive at the World Meeting of Families.

Read about a most incredible adventure, Heading to the World Meeting of Families in a VW bus . . . all the way from Buenos Aires.

And let’s get Da Tech Guy and the Walkers together!

The Falklands: Pope Francis, what fresh hell can this be? UPDATED

Friday, August 21st, 2015

After the pontiff took home the Communist crucifix, I borrow Dorothy Parker’s question to ask him, Pope Francis, what fresh hell can this be?

Pope Francis poses with ‘dialogue for Malvinas’ sign
Pope Francis poses with a propaganda sign calling for “dialogue” between Britain and Argentina

It is time for dialogue between Argentina and the United Kingdom about the Falkland Islands

Argentina’s rulers for decades have used the Falklands as a propaganda tool by which they can distract from the dictatorship, the economic situation, the poverty, the corruption, the “silence is health” mentality. The Falklanders have confirmed their right to self-determination by overwhelmingly voting to remain British in a March 2013 referendum.

Cristina Fernandez, whom the pope has hosted at least five times since his ascension to the papacy, is particularly fervid on the Falklands (a subject dear to Hugo Chavez, her 21st Century Socialism compadre) also because of new oil findings on Falklands territory. There’s even a Twitter hashtag,

Gustavo Hoyo, director of the “dialogue” movement, has been tweeting pictures of ordinary Argentines and well-known faces holding the placard.

By holding the sign, Francis has now joined in the propaganda, on the 50th anniversary of the UN’s Decolonization Committe resolution asking for dialogue, just as Cristina ramps up the rhetoric as the October 25 election looms.

Sure enough, Cristina tweeted it,

What a tool you are, Francis.

UPDATE:
Mercopress says the pope’s not a tool, but a clueless fool,

“The Holy Father did not even realise he had this object in his hands. He has discovered this just now after seeing the photograph,” Father Ciro Benedettini said in a phone interview on Wednesday.

Interesting how so many have to explain “what Francis really meant” after the fact.

“Nobody takes Francis by surprise”, tweets Cristina:

Today’s must-read: It’s Time for an Encyclical on Christian Persecution

Thursday, August 6th, 2015

It’s Time for an Encyclical on Christian Persecution

In his encyclical Laudato Si’, Pope Francis invoked a dark vision of a world on the brink of environmental catastrophe. In forthcoming decades, I suspect most of these prognostications will end up in the same category to which we now consign the Armageddon-like predictions made in the 1960s by population-bomb doomsdayers such as Paul R. Ehrlich. Apocalypse, however, is the word that captures exactly what’s happening to some of the world’s Christians. And if—as it surely is—a very basic responsibility of the Church’s shepherds is to protect their flock from the wolves, there’s no good reason why the Church’s chief shepherd shouldn’t speak firmly, coherently, and through the medium of one of the highest forms of magisterial teaching about the onslaught against Christians today.

Read the whole thing.



Francis kept his souvenir Communist cross UPDATED

Tuesday, July 14th, 2015

Pope Francis took the Communist crucifix home (h/t 1P5, emphasis added),

I understand this piece and I did not find it offensive. I carry it with me. I left the decorative honours which President Morales gave me behind… I have never accepted such decorations but Morales acted in good faith, to please me, so I thought of it as coming from the people. I prayed it over and I thought I would leave them with Our Lady of Copacabana, so they go to the shrine. The wooden Christ I took with me.”

I had mistakenly reported that he had left the blasphemous item behind, along with the medals Evo Morales awarded him.

The Rev. Robert Gahl, a moral theologian at Rome’s Pontifical Holy Cross University in Rome is even talking of a “potential for dialogue and even synergy,” with Communism.


Raul Castro blindfolds a man he’s about to execute, signaling a “potential for dialogue and even synergy.”

Which brings me to the next headline:
Pope Francis Downplays Human Rights in Cuba, Reveals Obama Misled

Here is Pope Francis’ reply to the issue of human rights in Cuba:

Human rights are for everyone. And human rights are not respected not only in one or two countries. I would say that in many countries of the world human rights are not respected. Many countries in the world .. and what will Cuba lose or the U.S. lose? Both will gain something and lose something, because this happens in negotiations. Both will gain, this is sure: peace, meetings, friendship, collaboration. These they will gain … but what will they lose, I cannot imagine. They may be concrete things. But in negotiations one always [both] wins and loses. But returning to human rights, and religious freedom. Just think of the world. There are some countries and also some European countries where you cannot make a sign of religion, for different reasons, and on other continents the same. Yes. Religious liberty is not present in all the world, there are many place [sic] that do not have it.

At the same time, Francis says the Cuba negotiations were God’s work, and he didn’t mediate,

There was no mediation. It was the goodwill of the two countries, and the merit is theirs for doing this. We hardly did anything, just a few small things.

It’s enough to make the guys at Babalu beg for mercy.

But wait! There’s more!
Francis now wants to help with the Colombian peace process.

As Peter Lynch said,

Sometimes it’s darkest before the dawn, but then again, other times it’s darkest before pitch black.

Related:
The new Perfect Latin American Idiot.

UPDATE
Dennis Prager:

When the pope keeps a hammer-and-sickle crucifix; when the pope declares free-market capitalism, the one economic system that has lifted masses of people out of poverty, to be largely evil (“the dung of the devil”); when Cuba’s Cardinal Jaime Ortega declares that there are no political prisoners in Cuba; and when the pope issues an encyclical on global warming while the oldest Christian communities in the world are exterminated, it is clear that while one can still turn to individual Catholic priests and lay leaders for moral guidance, one cannot turn to the Church and its pope for moral guidance. On the contrary.

The Communist crucifix Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, July 13th, 2015

During his visit in Bolivia, pope Francis stepped out of the popemobile to pray at the site where the late Jesuit Luis Espinal’s body had been dumped, after which Evo Morales (who wore a jacket embroidered with Che Guevara’s face to the Pope’s speech) presented Francis with the Communist crucifix designed by Espinal, and a matching medal, which Francis accepted:

Following the ensuing outrage, Francis left the medals and crucifix in Bolivia while the Vatican launched into spin mode.

Evo certainly milked the photo ops. It’ll be interesting to see what Raul Castro does when Francis goes to Cuba.

ARGENTINA
From her official website: Cristina Kirchner interview with The New Yorker – Up Close and Uncut (march 11, 2015) President Cristina Kirchner interviewed by Dexter Filkins from the US magazine The New Yorker, on March 11, 2015

Argentina’s New Intelligence Agency Targets Captains of IndustryPresident Kirchner Fears “Economic Warfare”

The Peronist pope
Francis’s balancing act in Latin America

From March 2013: Sobre el mensaje del arzobispo de Buenos Aires

Cristina travels to Paraguay to meet Francis

BAHAMAS
Bahamas Independence Day 2015: 10 Key, Quick Facts To Know About The Caribbean Paradise

BOLIVIA

Pope gives his backing to Morales’ social programs in BoliviaPontiff reported to have sipped coca-based tea before reaching high-altitude destinationPresident hopes Francis will offer to mediate in border conflict with Chile

Contrast Francis’s visit with Pope John II’s 1983 visit to Nicaragua and his attitude towards liberation theology.

BRAZIL
Brazil: Man’s Lynching Compared to Slave Flogging

Brazil oil giant faces $98bn shareholder lawsuit in US over corruption schemeNew York court to hear case brought by investors including pension funds of British academics and US state workers over ‘Carwash’ scam at Petrobras

The lawsuit claims that Petrobras executives accepted bribes for inflating the value of construction contracts and “used the money to bribe politicians through intermediaries to guarantee they would vote in line with the ruling party while enriching themselves”.

CHILE
Duff idea? Fox hopes Chile’s beer lovers give Simpsons brew a warm receptionCompany to sell beer – which an executive calls fruity with a caramel aromatic – after decades of pirated versions ruling the market

COLOMBIA
Colombian president replaces military chiefs days after scathing report into extra-judicial killingsPresident Juan Manuel Santos overhauls his high command despite rejecting Human Rights Watch claims about role of military commanders in murders of civilians who were then framed as left-wing rebels

Colombian President Welcomes FARC Cease-Fire

The Mixed-Up Brothers of BogotáAfter a hospital error, two pairs of Colombian identical twins were raised as two pairs of fraternal twins. This is the story of how they found one another — and of what happened next.

CUBA
Marco Rubio: Obama’s Faustian Bargain With Cuba

Here’s “What Change Looks Like” Through a Business-First Policy

Twice as Many Cuban Rafters Flee While They Can
2015 Arrivals Exhibit Fear of End to Wet-Foot, Dry-Foot Policy

ECUADOR
Ana’s Story: The Face of Colombia’s Refugee Crisis in Ecuador

EL SALVADOR
This is how bad El Salvador’s murder rate is

El Salvador is on pace to pass its neighbor, Honduras, as the deadliest country on the planet.

MEXICO
Mexican Police Deliver Wrong Corpses to Get Murder Case Closed
Victim Families Allege Cover-Up, Demand Prosecutor’s Resignation

Mexican Ex-Governor Arrested on Tax-Fraud Charges

Some Ford lines may be heading to Mexico

Mexican helicopter trades fire with gunmen on ground near border, kills 6

GUATEMALA
Guatemala: Ex-ruler Rios Montt found unfit for trial
A former Guatemalan general, Efrain Rios Montt, who ruled the country briefly in the 1980s, has been found mentally incapable of standing trial.

MEXICO
A matter of when, not if? Mexican Drug Lord ‘El Chapo’ Guzmán Escapes From PrisonMexican drug lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán has escaped from a maximum-security prison in central Mexico, almost a year and a half after being captured, prompting a major search operation.

NICARAGUA
Panama and Nicaragua – Two Canals, One Shared Dream, but with the Chinese financial market in flux, what will happen to the Nicaraguan project?

PANAMA
Venezuelans heading to Panama

PARAGUAY
Pope Praises Paraguayan Women
Pope Francis celebrated Paraguayan women as the “most glorious women of America” in a sermon at the shrine of the country’s patron Madonna Saturday, the second-to-last day of his weeklong visit to South America.

Argentina Sees Exodus as Pope Visits Paraguay
Roughly one million people will cross the border into Paraguay from Argentina to see Pope Francis in the capital, Asunción, immigration officials estimate.

PERU
Better keep Greenpeace away: New Nazca geoglyphs in Peru could be older than famous Unesco siteJapanese team believes new images are older than the famous monkey, spider and hummingbird at the Unesco World Heritage site

Ubinas Erupts in Peru Dispersing Ash Up to Radius of 9.3 Miles

PUERTO RICO
America’s Greece: Fixing Puerto Rico Could Provide Answers for Europe

VENEZUELA
Now it’s serious! Venezuela is almost out of beer

The week’s posts and podcast:
The new perfect Latin American idiot

“Economy class cabin hexagon”? No. Just no.

What current Mexican immigration law is like

Cuba: Policy paper shows correlation between US engagement and rising repression in Cuba

Two books that don’t exist for the NYT

Argentina: Cristina drops the mask on anti-semitism

Bolivia: Evo gives Francis hammer and sickle crucifix UPDATED

Business at the BBC: Firing Clarkson will cost them BIG

NYSE down

Ecuador: Pope calls for “new economic and ecological world order”

Meanwhile, over in Cuba,

Argentina: Cristina cheers for Greece

Today’s immigration headlines

Monday night “It takes 1 to tango”

Ecuador: Pope’s visiting, crowd clamors “Out, Correa, out”



The new perfect Latin American idiot UPDATED

Sunday, July 12th, 2015

Fourteen years ago, the Guide to the Perfect Latin American Idiot burst into the scene defining what made so many countries failures, namely,

The “Idiot” species, we suggested, bore responsibility for Latin America’s underdevelopment. Its beliefs — revolution, economic nationalism, hatred of the United States, faith in the government as an agent of social justice, a passion for strongman rule over the rule of law — derived, in our opinion, from an inferiority complex.

Things evolve, and by 2009, the idiots were

back in force in the form of populist heads of state who are reenacting the failed policies of the past, opinion leaders from around the world who are lending new credence to them, and supporters who are giving new life to ideas that seemed extinct.

Now we have a clerical version, in the form of that air conditioning-hater, the The Peronist Pope who is fond of straw men, as we read that In Fiery Speeches, Francis Excoriates Global Capitalism

His speeches can blend biblical fury with apocalyptic doom. Pope Francis does not just criticize the excesses of global capitalism. He compares them to the “dung of the devil.” He does not simply argue that systemic “greed for money” is a bad thing. He calls it a “subtle dictatorship” that “condemns and enslaves men and women.”

Having returned to his native Latin America, Francis has renewed his left-leaning critiques on the inequalities of capitalism, describing it as an underlying cause of global injustice, and a prime cause of climate change. Francis escalated that line last week when he made a historic apology for the crimes of the Roman Catholic Church during the period of Spanish colonialism — even as he called for a global movement against a “new colonialism” rooted in an inequitable economic order.

The fact remains that capitalism works,

Cato economist Michael Tanner estimates that in the last 20 years, capitalism has lifted more than a billion people out of poverty and halved the number of those living in developing countries on less than $1.25 a day.

With such results, failing to see capitalism in its unfettered form as a viable solution to poverty borders on the immoral.

Over at the Vatican, The return of Benedict XVI
The Pope Emeritus has not vanished into monastic silence. He’s still offering comfort for those who prefer his vision to that of Pope Francis
, while

Related:
Why I’m Disregarding Laudato Si and You Should Too (lengthy but worth the read).

[In case you wonder, here’s the original speech in Spanish,
TEXTO: Discurso del Papa el encuentro con los movimientos populares en Bolivia]

UPDATE
On The Incompatibility Of Christianity With Socialism And Communism

Christian charity and free market entrepreneurship are not only compatible, but necessary to truly aid the poor.

Christian charity strives for the moral betterment of man, and the advancement of our neighbor out of love. For believers, these are works of religion, which many men and women of good will willingly and freely undertake. Forcing people “to do good” is the death of the virtue of charity, as charity must always be freely exercised.

But a second factor is equally needed to alleviate poverty: entrepreneurs and the free-market system. These offer the possibility of a greater and more lasting solution to the problem of poverty. Creating jobs and industry is a great good, and to diminish the possibilities for entrepreneurs and the private sector and claim the façade of virtue in doing so, is pure folly. Entrepreneurs and the business class do more in the United States for the Church and for vital issues to society, than anywhere else in the world.

I don’t expect Fr. Marcel to be invited to the Vatican any time soon.

And,
As if things weren’t bad enough, Pope Francis invited California Governor Jerry Brown to lend his expertise on global warming and climate change to a summit at the Vatican later in the month. But he banned Philippe de Larminat, an actual scientist, from the April 28 summit.

Linked to by Babalu. Thank you!

Bolivia: Evo gives Francis hammer and sickle crucifix UPDATED

Thursday, July 9th, 2015

For the pope who has everything:

Francis accepted graciously.

Words fail.

UPDATE:
El Comercio:

Morales le entregó la máxima condecoración de Bolivia, el Cóndor de los Andes, y la distinción Luis Espinal, que fue creada para reconocer a quien profese una fe religiosa y se destaque por defender a los pobres, los marginados y los enfermos.

Además, le entregó el tallado de una cruz formada con la hoz y el martillo, que es una reproducción de una que hizo el sacerdote jesuita español Espinal, asesinado en 1980 por paramilitares por su compromiso con las luchas sociales en Bolivia, y a quien Francisco dedicó el miércoles un homenaje cerca del lugar donde hallaron su cadáver.

My translation:

Morales awarded him the Andean Condor, Bolivia’s highest decoration, and the Luis Espinal medal, created to honor believers in a religious faith who distinguish themselves by defending the poor, alienated, and sick.

Additionally, he gave him a carving of a cross shaped as a hammer and sickle, a reproduction of the one made by Spanish Jesuit priest Espinal, murdered in 1980 by paramilitary for his commitment to the class struggle in Bolivia, and to whom Francis dedicated on Wednesday a memorial near the location where [Espinal’s] body was found.

Will this fly over the Vatican next?

cross and sickle

Trending at BadBlue. Thank you!

Linked to by Happy Acres. Thank you!

Ecuador: Pope calls for “new economic and ecological world order”

Wednesday, July 8th, 2015

At least half of the 12 million Christians in the Middle East will either be gone or killed by 2020, while pope Francis preaches socialism and frets about global warming:

Clear the decks, clear the tracks
You’ve got nothing to do but relax
Blow a kiss, take a bow
Honey, everything’s coming up roses

Pope wraps Ecuador leg of South America trip after calling for new ecological, economic order

Taking up the global warming issue in Quito on Tuesday, Francis pressed the arguments made in his headline-grabbing encyclical earlier this month that the planet must not be exploited by the wealthy few for short-term profit at the expense of the poor.

I recommend he read Sowell’s Basic Economics, while he enjoys the holy bathroom.

AND,
Pope Francis says effort requires rejecting individualism for a spirit of community, to which I say, Matthew 25:14-30.

UPDATE:
Do the Pope and I live on the same planet? No.

Argentina: Cristina cheers for Greece

Tuesday, July 7th, 2015

Greece has cheerleaders,

Latin America celebrates Greek austerity ‘No’ vote

Argentine President Cristina Kirchner, whose country defaulted on a mountain of debt more than a decade ago, called the vote a victory.

“Greece: decisive victory for democracy and dignity,” she wrote on Facebook Sunday, expressing Argentina’s “solidarity with the brave Greek people and their government.”

“We hope Europe and its leaders understand the message from the vote. You cannot require anyone to sign their own death certificate,” she said.

Evo Morales and Raul Castro joined in.

Pope Francis says let Greeks have dignity, while urging responsible decisions

China joins Greece, Puerto Rico on investors’ watchlists

Ecuador: Pope’s visiting, crowd clamors “Out, Correa, out”

Monday, July 6th, 2015

Pope Francis arrived in Ecuador yesterday, and local media broadcasted live the three-hour ride in the popemobile from the airport to the papal nuncio’s house. La República reports that the government-owned station actually showed the moment when a crowd of several hundred people started chanting “Out, Correa, out” – demanding that pres. Rafael Correa resign – as the pope entered the nuncio’s residence.

You can hear then in the video at this link (2:30 hours into the video, which I cannot embed).

The WSJ’s Mary O’Grady writes, Ecuador’s Correa Wants to Co-Opt Pope FrancisThe pontiff risks leaving the impression on his visit that the church condones repression.

As Archbishop Trávez indicated, the trip has been framed by the Vatican as part of its mission of evangelization. Most South Americans are nominally Roman Catholic but the number who practice is much lower than it once was. “The joy of the church is to go out to seek the sheep that are lost,” Pope Francis said in a homily in Rome in December.

But this pope is very political and his politics, if we take him at his word, favor statist solutions to poverty. In terms of appearances that puts him on the same side of many policy debates as the region’s socialist tyrants.

The populist Mr. Correa smells opportunity. In the lead up to the visit, he posted billboards in Guayaquil and Quito featuring his government’s logo encircling a photo of the pontiff next to what appears to be a Francis quote that reads “one must demand the redistribution of wealth.” State television and radio delivered a similar message.

As O’Grady says (emphasis added), “The Holy Father will have the opportunity to bring moral clarity to the matter if he wishes.”

I’m not optimistic at all.