Oh, the irony of it all
February 1, 2017 10:26 AM   Subscribe

 
Funny how conservative Catholics' claims to the authority of the papacy seem to have dried up in recent years.

Folks, he's the Pope. If you claim to be a loyal traditional Catholic, shouldn't you be following the Vicar of Christ?

I mean, he's preaching love and forgiveness, the protection of the weak and suffering. Have you not heard of the Beatitudes? The Good Samaritan? Have you *read* the Gospels? What exactly do you think Catholicism is?
posted by leotrotsky at 10:49 AM on February 1, 2017 [100 favorites]


phony war over the Maltese condoms

What a world we live in.
posted by lmfsilva at 10:49 AM on February 1, 2017 [4 favorites]


I really do love this Pope. Also in terms of being the literal embodiment of hate I am genuinely convinced that Trump is the anti-Christ. It's not just his hair that is unholy.
posted by billiebee at 10:49 AM on February 1, 2017 [17 favorites]


Hell, compared to his predecessors, he's the anti-Pope, too.
posted by Thorzdad at 10:51 AM on February 1, 2017 [8 favorites]


listen i like pope francis fine

but if he's the anti-trump, can we somehow arrange for him to collide with the president
posted by murphy slaw at 10:53 AM on February 1, 2017 [86 favorites]


I like these windows into the internal politics of the Church - and love these phrases:
Grand Master Festing was Burke’s cat’s paw. That Francis forced Festing’s resignation without deigning to pick up Burke’s gauntlet was further vindication of the Pope, who will soon appoint his own legate to run the Order. Burke remains its toothless patron. Who’s sovereign now?
posted by LobsterMitten at 10:53 AM on February 1, 2017 [19 favorites]


but if he's the anti-trump, can we somehow arrange for him to collide with the president

The way things are going, I think Francis will be around a bit longer than Trump, so I'd rather not.
posted by leotrotsky at 10:55 AM on February 1, 2017 [6 favorites]


Also, FWIW, even though I wasn't the biggest fan of Pope Benedict, I do have to admire his willingness to recognize that he wasn't the proper person for The Church at this time. I can't imagine how difficult it must have been for him.
posted by leotrotsky at 10:55 AM on February 1, 2017 [40 favorites]


If you claim to be a loyal traditional Catholic, shouldn't you be following the Vicar of Christ?

I'm an American Catholic, and so probably tarred as a "cafeteria Catholic" -- but yeah, I love this guy Francis, thanks. He airing out a lot of places that need it, and I hope he is around for decades more so that he can do a lot of genuine good.
posted by wenestvedt at 10:57 AM on February 1, 2017 [10 favorites]


But hang on, isn't Trump being ordered around by a pair of fringe Catholic extremists in Bannon and Pence?

That's the irony - all this time his far-right followers were worried about The Jews, and they've ended up duped by the original Mob, who, not for the first time, seem to have exploited anti-Semitism for their own gain.
posted by Buck Alec at 11:02 AM on February 1, 2017 [5 favorites]


... the Maltese condoms...

For the stiffies that dreams are made of.
posted by Capt. Renault at 11:02 AM on February 1, 2017 [10 favorites]


That's the irony - all this time his far-right followers were worried about The Jews, and they've ended up duped by the original Mob, who, not for the first time, seem to have exploited anti-Semitism for their own gain.

Eh. Ever since Passion of the Christ, right-wingers have been in-love with Catholicism. All that blood and violence, y'know. Who knew Catholics were so hard-core?
posted by Thorzdad at 11:06 AM on February 1, 2017 [6 favorites]


Pope Francis washed the feet of Muslim migrants in March 2016, and said, "We are different, we are different, we have different cultures and religions, but we are brothers and we want to live in peace."
posted by quiet coyote at 11:07 AM on February 1, 2017 [45 favorites]


I'm not clear on how exactly Pope Francis is the anti-Trump. Pope Francis has openly opposed marriage equality and our right to adopt, he has not been very positive toward trans people, and while he's claimed to be making progress on pedophilia inside the church, it's not really a change of stance and there's no cooperation on investigations. I get that Pope Francis is a step up in some ways, but for my community and for people who are victimized by priests, nothing is different.
posted by bile and syntax at 11:10 AM on February 1, 2017 [47 favorites]


Pope Francis isn't perfect, and inevitably, at some point in this thread, someone will glumly recall some of his various and many failings. (On preview: okay, there it is.) And they're right. Of course they are.

But I still love the guy, and not simply for far, far exceeding any expectations I might have had of him, and not just because he found time to make what is arguably a respectable contemporary prog rock record, but because he's right on many of the things that most other public figures of his scale and import (particularly religious ones) get wrong: aid and kindness for the poor, chief among them. He's a Christian leader who seems to have actually read the frigging Bible and paid some attention to the stated concerns of Christ. I'm not religious, but I admire much of what Jesus said in the Bible very much. It is a continuing source of frustration to me to be regularly exposed to that noisy subset of Christians who talk constantly of Jesus and don't seem to have read or absorbed a single word he said. Pope Francis is the opposite of that and I'm glad we have him.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 11:11 AM on February 1, 2017 [72 favorites]


Francis:
“You cannot be a Christian without living like a Christian,” he said. “You cannot be a Christian without practicing the Beatitudes. You cannot be a Christian without doing what Jesus teaches us in Matthew 25.” This is a reference to Christ’s injunction to help the needy by such works of mercy as feeding the hungry, clothing the naked and welcoming the stranger.

“It’s hypocrisy to call yourself a Christian and chase away a refugee or someone seeking help, someone who is hungry or thirsty, toss out someone who is in need of my help,” he said. “If I say I am Christian, but do these things, I’m a hypocrite.”
posted by gwint at 11:13 AM on February 1, 2017 [45 favorites]


Also in terms of being the literal embodiment of hate I am genuinely convinced that Trump is the anti-Christ

Not that there is one actual literal Antichrist, but if there were Trump would be so obviously it that it's ridiculous. Who else but the Antichrist could convince the majority of evangelicals to trade in all their values for a chance at lower taxes and Justice Gorsuch?

One of the big problems (of many, many problems) with fundamentalist eschatology is they keep depicting the Antichrist as someone who is going to fool all those secular liberals in Europe, rather than a someone who will offer conservative Christians all the political power they want as long as they turn a blind eye when he stomps on the poor, turns away the refugee, and cuts deals to enrich himself beyond belief. If there is an Antichrist, he was always going to come at just the right time to complete the corruption of the church.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 11:15 AM on February 1, 2017 [106 favorites]


Not much time to watch TV, so until just now I thought "the Young Pope" was about the life story of Pope Francis. It made Twitter really confusing.
posted by My Dad at 11:28 AM on February 1, 2017 [4 favorites]


but if he's the anti-trump, can we somehow arrange for him to collide with the president

Real life needs to stop borrowing from webcomics. (Name omitted to avoid spoilers.)
posted by mushhushshu at 11:29 AM on February 1, 2017 [3 favorites]


he's the anti-Pope, too.

If you put him on a closed box without an observer hoe's both simultaneously.
posted by GuyZero at 11:30 AM on February 1, 2017 [5 favorites]


Super-pope-sition
posted by dr_dank at 11:35 AM on February 1, 2017 [14 favorites]


Kind of weird that this is an article about Trump and the Pope and it doesn't mention Trump's response to the Pope's remarks a year ago about building walls -- which was, and I quote, “For a religious leader to question a person’s faith is disgraceful. No leader, especially a religious leader, has the right to question another man’s religion or faith. Now it’s probably going to be all over the world. Who the hell cares? OK? I don’t care.”
posted by blucevalo at 11:36 AM on February 1, 2017 [2 favorites]


Funny how conservative Catholics' claims to the authority of the papacy seem to have dried up in recent years.

One of my few remaining bitter pleasures on Facebook is watching my ultra-conservative, hard-pro-life relatives twist themselves in knots to reconcile their fear and animosity towards Muslim refugees with Francis' very clear guidance.

Oh, and also known shitlord Bill Donohue's emotional distress and cognitive dissonance as he tries to justify Trump's actions in a way the Pope might possibly think is OK.
posted by xthlc at 11:40 AM on February 1, 2017 [8 favorites]


If you put him on a closed box without an observer hoe's both simultaneously.

Schrödinger's Tabernacle
posted by Thorzdad at 11:40 AM on February 1, 2017 [4 favorites]


Also in terms of being the literal embodiment of hate I am genuinely convinced that Trump is the anti-Christ

Not that there is one actual literal Antichrist, but if there were Trump would be so obviously it that it's ridiculous.


You may recall that there was a fair amount of talk that Pope John Paul II actually did consider whether George W. Bush was the Anti-Christ (though there aren't many reports that were reputable and no official verification).
posted by briank at 11:49 AM on February 1, 2017


but if he's the anti-trump, can we somehow arrange for him to collide with the president

Worked for Dr. McNinja to kill King Radical...
posted by notsnot at 11:51 AM on February 1, 2017 [2 favorites]


Also in terms of being the literal embodiment of hate I am genuinely convinced that Trump is the anti-Christ.

He's like a raging Megazord created from the Zords of everybody's angry in-laws.
posted by lagomorphius at 12:06 PM on February 1, 2017 [4 favorites]


A friend of mine is a Domican Friar. He is very pro-life (his term) but actually does do the things that people complain pro-lifers don't. His Facebook has been full of stuff about refugees and helping people hurt by Trump since the election. (And the occasional shit-talk between friars and the kids they play basketball with, which is hilarious.) I try to take him as a representation of the way Pope Francis is trying to steer the church. (He's economically conservative personally, but still works on some anti-poverty stuff in addition to his anti-abortion work.)

The church is not about to change it's views on abortion or euthanasia. I think it has slightly liberalized on LGBT issues, but that will take decades at least (if not centuries) to finally come around on. It's only now starting to lighten up on divorces, something that caused one of the original Protestant splits.

However, Pope Francis has shifted the discussion. He has not changed the views of the church so much as the importance that they rank in. People forget that despite the right wingers champing at the bit after the Jesus Christ Chainsaw Massacre, ideologically, the church tends to be economically liberal. And I'm glad to see that in focus.
posted by Hactar at 12:09 PM on February 1, 2017 [14 favorites]


I don't have a lot of trust or love left for the Pope or anyone else in the Church, but this one seems to be doing his damndest to rekindle a little bit from the sullen embers that remain. And I for one do appreciate being able to explicitly snarl "I believe in clothing the naked and feeding the hungry. Do you?" at relatives who have always claimed to be a whole hell of a lot more Catholic than I have. I really appreciate the ability to throw the religious texts and pronouncements they claim to hold so high and so holy back in their faces when I lose my temper.

We have so few leaders who are willing to publicly prioritize caring for the needy right now. I--oh, fuck, I don't trust this Pope any more than any other Catholic leader, but I am at least glad he is directing the powerful momentum of the Church in the direction of charity and refuge for people who need it. And I am humbled and so, so grateful that he is extending his power and influence to advocate for people who are not even Christian, let alone Catholic. I was talking a while back about how despite Catholicism's many and varied flaws, there's conflicting traditions there too? That focus, that advocation for refugees, that's an example of what I was talking about. I am so desperately grateful that that tradition has the papacy now. There are so few leaders willing to stand up and call for it.

And above all else, he is at least not a motherfucking Nazi like the last one.
posted by sciatrix at 12:10 PM on February 1, 2017 [21 favorites]


the Maltese condoms

The Spade films really went downhill fast once they ran out of original source material to adapt, and Bogart quit the role.
posted by Naberius at 12:24 PM on February 1, 2017 [5 favorites]


Been hearing from catholic family members that their pastor is pro-trump. He goes so far as postsing articles from the Pope that he's taken the liberty of editing and is a fan of Breitbart. From Indianapolis in case anybody's curious.

I wonder how widespread the disconnect is between the US catholic church and the Pope. I also wonder if these hard line conservative views extend to the catholic church in other countries.
posted by SteveInMaine at 12:27 PM on February 1, 2017 [1 favorite]


You don't have to believe in a literal Antichrist to conclude that everything about Trump—from his crooked business practices and money worship to his inhumane politics and deification of power right down to the grim, sordid details of his personal affairs—is antithetical to the teachings of Jesus.

He might not be the Antichrist, but he is the very embodiment of what it means to be anti-Christ.
posted by Atom Eyes at 12:29 PM on February 1, 2017 [11 favorites]


I don't care much for any Pope, but holy shit, that church must be such a roiling, reeking, soap-operatic hell of egos and aspirations. (Pope-)Hats off to anyone who can keep all those motherfuckers in check, especially as skillfully as Francis seems to have done, according to TFA.
posted by klanawa at 12:30 PM on February 1, 2017 [2 favorites]


For a religious leader to question a person’s faith is disgraceful.

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you cross sea and land to make a single convert, and you make the new convert twice as much a child of hell as yourselves.

- one of those disgraceful religious leaders, matthew 23:15
posted by pyramid termite at 12:41 PM on February 1, 2017 [7 favorites]


In the same city I've gone to mass (Catholic) at two different churches.

One-- my regular parish -- has had sermons about protecting immigrants and the poor, how being president should be about choosing to be a public servant.

Another I attended recently for a single mass had a sermon about how pro-life supporters and those of faith are persecuted and some general language about sacrificing for the greater good (language I tend to associate more with evangelical Christian and that felt very jarring from my usual experience).

I'm not active enough in the community to comment on nationwide trends or even trends within my own city. I don't honestly know. The Pope is a small sliver of hope in the right direction.
posted by typecloud at 12:46 PM on February 1, 2017 [2 favorites]


Who else but the Antichrist could convince the majority of evangelicals to trade in all their values for a chance at lower taxes and Justice Gorsuch?

All of their leaders since the late 60s or so who have been steadily leading them into becoming an arm of the Republican Party? Trump may be the most egregious yet but he's far, far from the first to lead Evangelicals around for their own gain.

And after decades of this it's hard to take seriously that the Evangelicals have been led into anything, rather than happily and whole-heartedly racing along of their own volition.
posted by Sangermaine at 12:51 PM on February 1, 2017 [5 favorites]


While this Pope has done a lot to redeem his office, from the article it sounds like he's just a figurehead that the majority of the organization is paying lip service to in the hope that he goes away soon. I suspect that as soon as he's gone, or does something that allows him to be sidelined, it'll be back to normal: money laundering, cozying up to the right and infamous, indulgences, hardline conservatism and misogamy. I'd like to be pleasantly surprised, though.
posted by Blackanvil at 12:51 PM on February 1, 2017 [2 favorites]


Five years ago I couldn't have imagined having more respect for and confidence in the Pope, as a political leader, than in the President of the United States.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 1:07 PM on February 1, 2017 [13 favorites]


I'd like to be pleasantly surprised, though.

So would I. It would be nice if Francis were a bit younger, in that regard. Someone with a JPII-style long reign would be able to have a much stronger influence on the Church. Which, obviously, the cardinals knew when they picked someone in his late 70s.
posted by tobascodagama at 1:12 PM on February 1, 2017 [1 favorite]


Quite honestly as someone whose community the pope is not cool with, having a lot of otherwise-lefty types go on about how great Pope Francis is is very disturbing to me.

"Oh he's totally cool"
yeah uh... no, he's not.
"Oh but he is!"
No, he's really really not.
"Oh but you can't expect the Catholic Church to turn around on this and he's so great on other issues!"
YES I FUCKING CAN AND I DO. Stop telling me how progressive the same old hate is. Just stop, or stop pretending to be an ally.
posted by bile and syntax at 1:15 PM on February 1, 2017 [15 favorites]


♪♫♬ I am the anti-Trump, I'll run against the grain till the day I slump ♪♫♬
posted by L.P. Hatecraft at 1:25 PM on February 1, 2017 [1 favorite]


He's not cool with my community either, for what it's worth. I can still be glad he's not worse, and I can be glad that he is choosing to focus his power on helping other people he could so easily be attacking and targeting.

Like.... this is the Pope. My standards are low. I don't trust the man, either. But this shit is complicated for a lot of people, and he has a lot of power, and--oh, hell, bile, we have so few positive things to think about right now; can you not let anyone dwell on anything remotely positive in a FPP specifically about that man?
posted by sciatrix at 1:32 PM on February 1, 2017 [11 favorites]


Like, I literally just wailed this morning that people were talking about the LDS as a source of potential charity for the poor and grieved because that means more ammunition against you and me, since that succor won't come to either of us and it will give the people who hate us both more leverage for foot soldiers. I know the devil I have and the devil I don't.

But this is about as good and maybe better than I could possibly hope for coming from any large mainstream religious leader, and I would like to be cautiously pleased about it for one goddamn moment. Please.
posted by sciatrix at 1:34 PM on February 1, 2017 [7 favorites]


He's the worst. He's cool in the same way people get nostalgic about Coca Cola's Santa Cans commercial. I've never even seen one of the Santa Claus painted trucks in real life. You haven't seen a progressive Pope, either. The Catholic Church seems really cool because back in the 1970s there was this gigantic thing called Call To Action where progressive American and German Catholics joined up with liberation theology and attempted to bring about a married priesthood and democratic acceptance in the church. The bishops agreed the document and never spoke of it again. Now we're at this point where the core Catholic heartlands in Europe and the USA have essentially written off the church in the wake of sexual abuse. This could not be confused with anti-clericalism like that in South America and Mexico in the 19th and 20th centuries which was more about closing ecclesiastic centres of political control. The situation in Ireland is extremely telling, the church ran the country like a medieval fiefdom, according to the government report. I want either complete conviction of those responsible for hiding evidence or providing false statements, or I want the Catholic Church to finally act with one voice and force into prison those who have perpetrated abuse rather than hiding them in Rome or in monastic communities under vows of enclosure and silence.

The reason that people don't leave the church but clamour for reform is obvious: It is really expensive to try to recreate the scale of elegance inside and out.
posted by parmanparman at 1:38 PM on February 1, 2017 [4 favorites]


One of my few remaining bitter pleasures on Facebook is watching my ultra-conservative, hard-pro-life relatives twist themselves in knots to reconcile their fear and animosity towards Muslim refugees with Francis' very clear guidance.

While Pope Francis is probably the highest profile religious figure who can make statements like this ripple throughout the Christian world, it's interesting to note that he's not alone.

Evangelical Christian leaders: travel ban violates religious beliefs on refugees
Evangelical Experts Oppose Trump’s Refugee Ban

Closer to my circle, the Mormons have been expressing concern and solidarity for a while now. Funny to watch ultraconservatives suddenly discovering their belief that the church can be wrong and their own ability to make fine distinctions that justify their diverging opinions. :/
posted by weston at 1:42 PM on February 1, 2017 [4 favorites]


The devil isn't leading anyone anywhere. The devil is sprinting frantically to catch up whilst taking copious notes.
posted by um at 1:53 PM on February 1, 2017 [4 favorites]


Folks, he's the Pope. If you claim to be a loyal traditional Catholic, shouldn't you be following the Vicar of Christ?

You should, but there are those who quiestion whether Francis is that Vicar. there's a faction of traditional Catholics who believe that there hasn't been a legit pope since 1958 or thereabouts.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 1:54 PM on February 1, 2017 [2 favorites]


But this is about as good and maybe better than I could possibly hope for coming from any large mainstream religious leader

Yeah, that's my point.

and I would like to be cautiously pleased about it for one goddamn moment. Please.

Okay, okay, I'll turn off the mind control lasers.
posted by bile and syntax at 1:58 PM on February 1, 2017 [1 favorite]


The New Yorker article isn't really about Trump, and this thread isn't really about the article.
posted by neroli at 2:21 PM on February 1, 2017 [7 favorites]




Quite honestly as someone whose community the pope is not cool with, having a lot of otherwise-lefty types go on about how great Pope Francis is is very disturbing to me.

Yes, that's what my gay cousin says while he argues that banning muslims is great and the pope has no moral high ground and refugees could easily be terrorists and helping them isn't worth the risk. I suppose everyone has their own uncrossable lines.
posted by the agents of KAOS at 3:48 PM on February 1, 2017 [4 favorites]


if he's the anti-trump, can we somehow arrange for him to collide with the president

So, Trump is 110kg in mass, the pope about 90, so if they collide, that's 200kg converted to energy, which is 1.8 × 10^19 J, which is equivalent to 4300 MT of TNT, which is about 2/3 of the global nuclear arsenal. So this would be a bad thing if it were to happen midway between Rome and DC, only a few hundred miles south west of the Irish coast. It'd be catastrophic if it happened at either of their official residences.
posted by ambrosen at 4:50 PM on February 1, 2017 [5 favorites]


What if they just shake hands though
posted by Huffy Puffy at 5:24 PM on February 1, 2017 [2 favorites]


Anyway all those Antipopes in Renaissance times didn't blow up the world so I guess we're safe.
posted by Huffy Puffy at 5:26 PM on February 1, 2017 [4 favorites]


I'm really glad Trump isn't Catholic, because if he was, he'd try to run for Pope.
posted by jonmc at 5:37 PM on February 1, 2017 [3 favorites]


If the Pope is the anti-Trump, how come Bannon teleconferences into the Vatican?
posted by Noisy Pink Bubbles at 5:39 PM on February 1, 2017


My Dad: "Not much time to watch TV, so until just now I thought "the Young Pope" was about the life story of Pope Francis. It made Twitter really confusing."

FWIW, Francis was the ninth oldest pope (since 1295) at his accession. 76 is definitely on the old side for popes starting out.
posted by Chrysostom at 5:57 PM on February 1, 2017


If the Pope is the anti-Trump, how come Bannon teleconferences into the Vatican?

Because Burke (Francis' dire enemy) invited him.
posted by Iridic at 6:17 PM on February 1, 2017 [1 favorite]


I'm not too religious at all, and not Catholic, but I had to proofread some Pope Francis once (insert some kind of joke here, for sure) and was really impressed for the most part. He sounds genuinely committed to taking care of the environment for future generations, for one thing! Seems pretty anti-Trump to me.
posted by ferret branca at 7:37 PM on February 1, 2017 [1 favorite]


"It's only now starting to lighten up on divorces, something that caused one of the original Protestant splits. "

TECHNICALLY (technically correct is the best kind of correct!) the Anglican Church split off over whether the King had the power to appoint his own bishops, who would then grant him the PERFECTLY ORDINARY RUN OF THE MILL annulment he needed (and had relatively decent theological support for) in order to produce a male heir which the Pope primarily refused to do because Henry's wife's nephew Charles V was then in position to march on Rome with a vast army, and told him not to. So Henry declared himself Supreme Head of the Church of England, appointed his own bishops, and was excommunicated for that.

The problem was not the divorce (especially since the CoE didn't ditch the spare five sacraments for the Protestant two-sacrament model until considerably later); the problem was the direct challenge to Roman authority by appointing his own bishops.

"I wonder how widespread the disconnect is between the US catholic church "

We contain multitudes. There's around 70 million of us and we fall fairly evenly into conservative, liberal, and whaaaaaa? camps w/r/t our Catholicism.

(I am a liberal Catholic with a conservative bishop and let me tell you it is balllllllls. Otoh I took some theology classes with the dude back in the day so while I am somewhat subject to his whims I at least have the comfort of knowing my theology is considerably better than his. But I've had liberal bishops in the past and that was great. Also this is a relatively liberal diocese on most points so my neighbors just mostly ignore the bishop. Which, frankly, is what 99% of Catholics do, worldwide, and have done for much of history. It's so American of you all to think rules are for following, and this is fundamentally an Italian church. Rules are for agreeing they embody great ideas and ignoring when convenient.)
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 9:03 PM on February 1, 2017 [22 favorites]


For some reason it did not register in my brain the first time that we're talking about RAYMOND Burke which, haha, yeah, that guy's a dick.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 10:00 PM on February 1, 2017


TECHNICALLY (technically correct is the best kind of correct!) the Anglican Church split off over whether the King had the power to appoint his own bishops, who would then grant him the PERFECTLY ORDINARY RUN OF THE MILL annulment he needed (and had relatively decent theological support for) in order to produce a male heir which the Pope primarily refused to do because Henry's wife's nephew Charles V was then in position to march on Rome with a vast army, and told him not to.

We'd certainly have had a very different Reformation if Henry's elder brother Arthur hadn't died young.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:07 PM on February 1, 2017 [1 favorite]


Francis can release the secret nazi-era files about the catholic church's involvement with fascism if he's really the anti-trump
posted by thug unicorn at 10:30 PM on February 1, 2017 [1 favorite]


“For a religious leader to question a person’s faith is disgraceful. No leader, especially a religious leader, has the right to question another man’s religion or faith."

I was about to ask if Trump was really that ignorant about the role of a religious leader, but of course he is.

Religious leaders from time immemorial have made a living off of convincing the masses that they are the one and only judge of their faith. If you're unhappy with their decision, and manage not to be put to death by them, you get to make a new sect.
posted by greermahoney at 12:51 AM on February 2, 2017 [2 favorites]


offer conservative Christians all the political power they want as long as they turn a blind eye when he stomps on the poor, turns away the refugee, and cuts deals to enrich himself beyond belief

Wasn't this one of the diabolical temptations Jesus refused?

Maltese condoms

Malteasers, surely.

I'll show myself out
posted by Fish, fish, are you doing your duty? at 1:19 AM on February 2, 2017 [5 favorites]


How do the Assassins and the Templars fit into all this?
posted by zakur at 5:21 AM on February 2, 2017


The second part of the article has a lot of discussion pertinent to current events that have been looked over in discussion of the article...

Quote from Cardinal Burke (who is described as the nemesis of Pope Francis):
“Our ancestors gave their lives to save Christianity, because they saw that Islam was attacking sacred truth. Capitulating to Islam would be the death of Christianity.”

Quotes from Pope Francis:
“A person who thinks only of building walls … is not Christian.”

Article statement about Pope Francis:
Pope Francis is, at this point, the world’s staunchest defender of migrants, and of Muslim migrants.

Quote from Pope Francis appointed Cardinal Cupich:
Cupich described the President’s executive order banning travel from seven Muslim-majority nations as “a dark moment in U.S. history.”
posted by typecloud at 5:57 AM on February 2, 2017 [4 favorites]


Yes, that's what my gay cousin says while he argues that banning muslims is great and the pope has no moral high ground and refugees could easily be terrorists and helping them isn't worth the risk. I suppose everyone has their own uncrossable lines.

I get that you don't know me, so let me give you a tiny bit of my history: I know people who have tried to kill themselves because growing up Catholic taught them that being queer meant they were worthless and an abomination in the eyes of their god for existing. Pope Francis isn't different on this.

You're essentially setting this up so that either I have to be like "Yay Pope! I'll just excuse that homophobia and transphobia that has an actual serious impact on the lives of people I know and love because other people like him!" or else I'm somehow against refugees. This is a false choice, and it's not okay to say that I'm in the same boat as your cousin because he also doesn't like the pope.

PS: your cousin needs help in a big way.
posted by bile and syntax at 8:21 AM on February 2, 2017 [3 favorites]


Catholics are all over the spectrum, I've found. I grew up in a really progressive church, and it only occurred to me how much diversity was a factor in it. We had Samoan, Filipino, and Korean masses every week, and it seemed to reflect in our priests' homilies: about helping the poor, about being a part of the greater community, of doing things for God, not because of blind obedience, on respecting your neighbors.

I feel like the other Catholic churches, mostly white and affluent, have a much stronger focus on shame in their homilies, even one time an entire homily about how wrong abortion is. I might be cherrypicking from my memory, though.
posted by velouriaw at 11:55 PM on February 2, 2017 [3 favorites]


My family is Catholic, so I suspect your boat is a lot closer to my cousin's than you realise. Catholicism is homophobic (at least at the top levels, I do know individual groups that aren't). I still don't think that "but they're homophobic" is a valuable response to anything actually good that the church does.
posted by the agents of KAOS at 12:02 AM on February 3, 2017 [2 favorites]


I'm really glad Trump isn't Catholic, because if he was, he'd try to run for Pope.

Well, if he did become Pope, at least there's an existing precedent for scores of Catholics to ignore what he says anyway, so....
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 4:35 AM on February 3, 2017


I still don't think that "but they're homophobic" is a valuable response to anything actually good that the church does.

I'm sure you're aware that many catholic charities that deal with adoption have shut down rather than place children with same-sex parents. Would you be making the same argument if they refused to place children with interracial couples?

Why is homophobia okay?

Why is it offensive to you that I care about my community and how we're treated?
posted by bile and syntax at 7:51 AM on February 3, 2017 [1 favorite]


Because you're expressing that care in a way that comes across to me like the sentiment "All Lives Matter".
posted by the agents of KAOS at 11:37 AM on February 3, 2017


My family is Catholic, so I suspect your boat is a lot closer to my cousin's than you realise. Catholicism is homophobic (at least at the top levels, I do know individual groups that aren't). I still don't think that "but they're homophobic" is a valuable response to anything actually good that the church does.

Rather than type it all over again, I'll link to this comment of mine from the "Pope Releases Apostolic Exhortation on the Church and Modern Family Life" thread last year.

If you can't be bothered to click, I think Pope Francis is doing some good, but, while he's a tiny bit better on LGBTQ issues than some previous Popes, he's still leaving a huge target painted on a very vulnerable population, and expecting them to thank him for it is... well, self-absorbed and cruel.
posted by GenjiandProust at 12:19 PM on February 3, 2017 [1 favorite]


I don't think anyone here is arguing that homophobia or transphobia are okay, or that the Catholic Church is not a homophobic and transphobic institution. But the fact that certain actions and statements of Pope Francis are praiseworthy in spite of the Church's shitty record on certain human rights is indicative of just how fucked up our own government is right now. The current presidential administration is such an anti-humanity Christofascist clusterfuck that we have been reduced to looking to the head of a homophobic, transphobic, misogynistic, child-abuse-enabling organization for an example in honoring human rights. No, this pope's support of refugees doesn't redeem the shittier aspects of the catechism, but he's still doing better than the president, who is heading an administration that is also homophobic, transphobic, misogynistic, and pro-child-abuse, and anti-refugee to boot.
posted by Fish, fish, are you doing your duty? at 12:48 PM on February 3, 2017 [1 favorite]


[Couple comments removed, let's try and cool it a little and get this back away from the personal.]
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:54 PM on February 3, 2017


I don't think anyone here is arguing that homophobia or transphobia are okay,

I dunno. If you feel that the Pope calling out Trump on refugee issues is good enough to ignore that he compares trans people to nuclear weapons kind of leans that way. I mean, yeah, this is a horrible situation, and everyone needs to push back at Trump and his gang however they can, but expecting LGBTQ people to ignore how much the Catholic Church hates them when their lives are also in danger is a big ask.

So be proud of Pope Francis; he's a definite improvement. But don't pretend he's everyone's friend.
posted by GenjiandProust at 1:47 PM on February 3, 2017 [1 favorite]


Being better than Trump is an extremely low bar. All you have to do is basically not dig a ditch.
posted by bile and syntax at 2:49 PM on February 3, 2017 [1 favorite]


I dunno. If you feel that the Pope calling out Trump on refugee issues is good enough to ignore that he compares trans people to nuclear weapons

That's not what I said. I said that that one positive stance didn't redeem the Church's shitty medieval mindset, just that this pope is currently slightly less shitty and medieval than the president. That's the irony of the article.
posted by Fish, fish, are you doing your duty? at 2:51 PM on February 3, 2017 [2 favorites]


« Older The quiet death of College Music Journal and its...   |   "What am I supposed to do with all of these guys?" Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments