St. Ignatius Loyola on Perfect Obedience

Saint Ignatius Loyola, Claudio Coello, 17th century

Saint Ignatius Loyola, Claudio Coello, 17th century

Perfect Obedience

The question of obedience is a timely one in the contemporary Church. On the progressive end of the spectrum, disobedience to the teachings of the Church have been ubiquitous since the breakdown of Catholic discipline in the second half of the 20th century. Catholic Traditionalists, also, have had many lively debates on the precise nature of obedience and how far one is bound in obedience when those in authority in the Church are themselves dissenters, heretics or leading lives of immorality.

Fortunately, this is not a question that Tradition is silent on. From the Rule of St. Benedict to the teaching of St. Francis of Assisi to the Imitation of Christ and many more spiritual works, the characteristics of obedience have been thoroughly examined.

In this post, we bring you excerpts from one of the great writings on this subject, the letter “On Perfect Obedience” from St. Ignatius Loyola. This letter was addressed to the Jesuits in Portugal around 1553 when the Society there had been rent by divisions due to certain brothers who withheld their obedience from their superiors. St. Ignatius fiercely condemns this cafeteria obedience and lays down what went on to become the classic Jesuit definition of obedience, which is nothing other than the traditional Catholic teaching. This epistle is Letter 25 in the Ignatius corpus.

The foundational principle of St. Ignatius’ teaching on obedience is that the superior is to be obeyed not by virtue of the excellence with which he wields the power of his office, but simply because he is the superior, and as such is the representative of God to the religious – this is regardless of whether he acts prudently or not:

The superior is to be obeyed not because he is prudent, or good, or qualified by any other gift of God, but because he holds the place and the authority of God, as Eternal Truth has said: He who hears you, hears me; and he who rejects you, rejects me [Luke 10:16]. Nor on the contrary, should he lack prudence, is he to be the less obeyed in that in which he is superior, since he represents Him who is infallible wisdom, and who will supply what is wanting in His minister, nor, should he lack goodness or other desirable qualities, since Christ our Lord, having said, the scribes and the Pharisees sit on the chair of Moses, adds, therefore, whatever they shall tell you, observe and do: but do not act according to their works [Matt. 23:2-3].
After laying this foundation, St. Ignatius explains there are three degrees of obedience. The first and lowest consists in simply doing what one is told; in other words, merely performing the command in a purely external manner. He says there is no true merit in this sort of ‘obedience of execution’:
…[T]he first degree of obedience is very low, which consists in the execution of what is commanded, and that it does not deserve the name of obedience, since it does not attain to the worth of this virtue unless it rises to the second degree…

Pope holds private meeting with transsexual man and his fiancée!

pre- conciliar days

Pope holds private meeting with transsexual man and his fiancée after the sex-swap Spaniard said his local priest had denounced him as ‘the devil’s daughter’

  • Pope Francis invited transsexual for private audience at the Vatican
  • Diego Neria Lejárraga, 48, was born a woman, but has had surgery
  • Mr Neria, from Spain, has suffered rejection from his home parish
  • Pope Francis invited Mr Neria and his fiancée after a phone call  

Pope Francis has received a transsexual man at the Vatican, in a landmark gesture of acceptance by a pope. Diego Neria Lejárraga, a 48-year-old Spanish man who underwent sex reassignment surgery, wrote to Francis last year to tell him that he felt like an outcast from the church. Mr Neria said that he was rejected by some his fellow parishioners at his church in the western Spanish city of Plasencia, where a priest denounced him as ‘the devil’s daughter.’

Francis, who has become known for surprising people with unexpected phone calls, rang him on Christmas Eve.

The Spaniard and his female fiancée then had a private audience with the pope at his private residence on Saturday morning. Francis has built a reputation for acceptance and even appeared on the cover of gay magazine The Advocate after responding to a question about gays saying ‘Who am I to judge’. Mr Neria told Spanish newspaper Hoy: ‘After hearing him speak on many occasions, I felt that he would listen to me.’

Francis’ tone on homosexuality is much more moderate than his predecessor Benedict XVI who described gay sex as ‘intrinsically disordered’. But gay rights activists were disheartened by recent comments in which he suggested that gay marriage threatens the institution of the family. A historic sex conference of Catholic bishops last October gave same-sex couples hope for greater acceptance but ultimately released a document that said gay unions are not “remotely analogous” to ‘God’s plan for marriage and the family.’ 

Link to article: Pope holds private meeting with transsexual man and his fiancée after the sex-swap Spaniard said his local priest had denounced him as ‘the devil’s daughter’

Vatican releases balloons instead of doves as symbol of peace after birds were savaged by crow…

Colored balloons released by children fly next to a statue, at the end of the noon Angelus prayer recited by Pope Francis in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican, Sunday, Jan. 25, 2015. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)

Colored balloons released by children fly next to a statue, at the end of the noon Angelus prayer recited by Pope Francis in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican, Sunday, Jan. 25, 2015. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)

Vatican not taking any chances… Peace Doves attacked two years in a row!

Vatican releases balloons instead of doves as symbol of peace after birds were savaged by crow

  • Doves are traditionally released in St Peter’s Square at the end of January
  • But last year the two birds were attacked by a crow and a seagull
  • At today’s ceremony children released balloons into the sky instead

Dozens of balloons were released at the Vatican as a sign of peace today – a year after two doves were viciously attacked by other birds at the same ceremony. The bloody conclusion to the peace service in 2014 appears to have forced the Pope’s officials to cancel the tradition, replacing the age-old symbols with a more modern alternative.

Animal welfare groups were outraged by last year’s disaster – claiming the Vatican did not do enough to protect the doves used during the ceremony.

Ceremony: The Pope was taking part in a service devoted to peace alongside young childrenCeremony: The Pope was taking part in a service devoted to peace alongside young children

After today’s weekly service, children joined the Pope at the window of his studio overlooking St Peter’s Square and released a large bunch of balloons.

Francis said, ‘Here’s the balloons that mean peace,’ as the youngsters let go of the colorful toys. One of the balloons was filled with hot air and contained messages promoting global peace, while a child read out a speech on the same theme. The Vatican announced last week that balloons would replace doves for this year’s ceremony, but did not explain the reasons behind the switch.

Contrast: Last year the Pope released two doves in St Peter's Square during the equivalent ceremony

Attack: One of the doves was set upon by a crow as thousands of worshippers looked on in January 2014

Pope John Paul II started the tradition of releasing doves on the last Sunday of January every year, as the first month is traditionally dedicated to the Catholic Church’s message of peace. But the ceremony became controversial last year, after the pair of doves were set upon by a crow and a seagull to the shock of thousands of onlookers. The two birds apparently escaped – but still aroused the fury of animal rights activists, who claimed that the Vatican should have anticipated the likelihood of the doves getting in trouble. St Peter’s Square has a large population of gulls living on its colonnade – one group said that taking a smaller bird into the square was equivalent to issuing a death sentence.

Brutal: The other bird was attacked by a seagull, leading to an animal rights controversy

Brutal: The other bird was attacked by a seagull, leading to an animal rights controversy

They appealed directly to the Pope, pointing out that he chose the name Francis after the patron saint of animals, Francis of Assisi.

Earlier this week, the pontiff courted controversy when he appeared to criticize the murdered journalists of Charlie Hebdo, saying that freedom of speech should not extend to the mockery of religion.

He insisted that people ‘cannot insult the faith of others’, adding that he would punch someone if they offended his mother. 

Source: Daily Mail

Related: The Vatican was not taking any chances for strike three. The old saying bad luck comes in three’s… 

Pope Francis’ peace doves attacked at Vatican…  Again? This happened last year too! Exactly one year ago with Pope Benedict XVI. A Sign of the Times!!

The Terrible Price of Communion in the Hand!

communion in the hand

Faithlessness: The Terrible Price of Communion in the Hand!!

Another sacrilegious scandal at a big Papal Pep Rally, this time in Manila. Why is the Vicar treated like God, while God is treated like a bag of Doritos? What part does the institutionalized abuse of Communion in the hand play in this ongoing outrage?

Russian artists in ‘Holy Water’ attack on Lenin mausoleum!

The two men are awaiting a court hearing and were kept in police detention overnight on Monday.

The two men are awaiting a court hearing and were kept in police detention overnight on Monday.

Holy water attack on Lenin mausoleum

Two Russian artists have been arrested after throwing holy water and shouting “rise up and leave” at the mausoleum containing Vladimir Lenin’s tomb.

Scroll down for video

A video of Monday’s incident shows the men breaching a barrier to access the building in Moscow’s Red Square before dowsing one of its walls with water.

Seconds later, police officers intervene and lead the two men to a nearby police vehicle.

They could be held for up to 15 days for disorderly conduct, reports say.

The men, identified as Oleg Basov and Yevgeny Avilov, are members of an art group called Blue Rider.

The group dubbed the performance as: “The Exorcist. Desecration of the mausoleum.”

The men told the news website (in Russian) that the act was an attempt to rid Russia of its Soviet past, which they said was beginning to assert itself in the present.

Irina Dumitskaya, of the Blue Rider group, was quoted by the AFP news agency as saying that the aim of the performance was “to demolish the myth that Lenin lives forever by attempting to resurrect him on the Epiphany holiday just as Lazarus was raised from the dead”.

Orthodox Christians in Russia celebrated Epiphany on Monday, marking the baptism of Jesus in the Orthodox Church.

The group is known for performing social stunts, including a performance in St Petersburg last year of a man in military dress kneeling on a Ukrainian flag and washing his face with blood.

Moscow’s Red Square was also the location of a Pussy Riot protest song against President Vladimir Putin in 2012. Two members of the all-female feminist punk group were imprisoned for a performance attacking the president at Moscow’s Cathedral of Christ the Saviour later that year.

In November 2013, naked performance artist Pyotr Pavlensky also nailed his scrotum to the square outside Lenin’s mausoleum in political protest.

Vladimir Lenin’s embalmed body has been been on display in Red Square for more than 90 years, following his death in 1924.

Source: BBC


Russia frees jailed Pussy Riot pair

Artist nails himself to Red Square

Lenin’s tomb reopens to publicWatch

Why are some leaders’ corpses preserved?

How do you embalm a leader?

Philippines’ divorce ban: Nearly unique in the world, shows church’s power in country

 Every one that putteth away his wife, and marrieth another, committeth adultery: and he that marrieth her that is put away from her husband, committeth adultery.  Luke 16:18 -  DRV

Every one that putteth away his wife, and marrieth another, committeth adultery: and he that marrieth her that is put away from her husband, committeth adultery.
Luke 16:18 – DRV

Philippines’ divorce ban nearly unique in the world shows church’s power in country…

The courts did not grant Chatto Realuyo a divorce when it allowed her to end her marriage, 10 years after her husband moved out. They can’t. They best they can do is say the marriage never happened.

The Philippines is the only country in the world — aside from the Vatican — where divorce is forbidden, a testament to the enduring power of Roman Catholicism that has flourished since Spanish colonizers imposed it nearly 500 years ago.

Visiting Pope Francis, the church and many of its followers in this Southeast Asian Catholic stronghold of 100 million believe strongly in the indissolubility of marriage. But a growing number of Catholics would support a change.

The independent pollster, Social Weather Stations, found in March 2011 showed 50 percent of Filipinos surveyed favored divorce for couples already separated so that they can remarry, while 33 percent who opposed it. In 2005, the two sides were about even. Catholics account for about 80 percent of the country’s population.

Realuyo, a 58-year-old insurance broker, said she would have gotten a divorce if it had been available back in 1989 when she filed for an annulment. She said her husband didn’t provide for their family, used drugs and was uncooperative in counseling sessions.

She was jubilant and celebrated with an “Independence Day” party when the civil annulment was approved in 1991, 12 years after her church wedding and 10 years after her husband left their home.

The annulment will allow Realuyo to remarry in civil ceremonies, but not in Catholic rites because her marriage has not been annulled by the church. If she remarries outside the church or has a live-in relationship, that would be considered immoral by the church and she would be denied communion, a form of excommunication.

Realuyo paid her lawyer about 7,000 pesos, less than $1,000 at the time, to take care of her annulment petition 25 years ago. It has gotten substantially more expensive, too costly for many in this impoverished nation to afford.

For 23-year-old Kate Briola, who wants to formalize her separation from her husband who allegedly was a verbally abusive alcoholic, getting a civil annulment would be very expensive.

Kate Briola, a 23-year-old who works for a non-government organization, would like an annulment from her husband, who she said is verbally abusive and an alcoholic. But when she inquired about attorney’s fees, she was first quoted a high of 200,000-250,000 pesos ($4,450-5,570) and a “special price” of 100,000 pesos ($2,230), which she still can’t afford.

“Of course, I want an annulment, but now that I have a child, it’s no longer my priority,” she said.

Under the country’s Family Code, marriages can be ended through legal separation, which does not allow remarrying, or an annulment, also known as a “declaration of nullity of marriage.”

An annulment cuts the marital bond because it was void from the beginning for reasons such as fraud, or the couple were too young to marry, or were married by someone with no authority.

To get an annulment on the grounds that a spouse is not fulfilling their marital obligations, one must show that this arose from a “psychological incapacity” that existed even before the marriage but manifested only later. Such a case could be particularly expensive because it could require expert testimony.

Despite the rising cost, there has been a 40 percent increase in annulment petitions in recent years — from 4,250 in 2001 to 10,528 in 2012 — according to the Office of the Solicitor General, which represents the government in such cases.

Lawyer Evalyn Ursua, a women’s rights advocate, said the large annulment expenses deprive the poor of a way out of an oppressive or violent relationship. She said annulment also requires “intellectual dishonesty” in declaring there was no marriage at all, even for couples who were married for years and had children.

“If the Catholics don’t want to have divorce, fine. But don’t deprive the others. Don’t impose the Catholic dogma,” Urusua said.

Professor Sylvia Claudio, a medical doctor and clinical psychologist who headed the Center for Women’s Studies at the University of the Philippines, said she has counseled numerous battered women who want divorce to get away from their violent husbands.

Claudio said that while some Catholics take pride in the Philippines being virtually the last holdout against divorce, the near-universal recognition of divorce suggests that “there must some rationale that (it) is good for all, across cultures and nations.”

The church recently lost a significant fight in the Philippines when President Benigno Aquino III pushed through a reproductive health law that goes against Catholic doctrine by allowing the government to provide artificial birth control to the poor.

Aquino, however, has said divorce is not a priority for his administration. The Gabriela Women’s Party, which holds two seats in the House of Representatives, has introduced divorce bills three times over the past decade, most recently in 2013, but they’ve gotten just one congressional hearing, said Rep. Emi de Jesus.

“What we are stressing here is the right to enter into and get out of a contract . if the marriage is irreparable,” she said.

Max de Mesa, a former Roman Catholic priest who is now chairman of the Philippine Alliance of Human Rights Advocates, cites the Universal Declaration of Human Rights provision that says that men and women “are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution.” He said divorce does not solve all marital problems, but “it gives at least the chance to make the decision to liberate oneself.”

“If within a relationship you are being oppressed, divorce becomes an expression of standing for dignity,” he said. For the Rev. Ruben Tanseco, the 83-year-old founder of the Center for Family Ministries, divorce is a closed issue.

“I am holding to the very covenant that the husband and the wife made when they got married: until death do us part,” the Jesuit priest said.

He said that even if divorce is legalized, Catholics will not resort to it if they want to remain Catholic, and those who do should be ready to face the consequences. Getting a divorce is “a conscience decision that the Catholic church does not agree with but the Catholic church cannot stop,” he said. “A conscience decision is something that you can live with, die for and face God with.”

Link to Article: Philippines Divorce Ban

Pope urges Filipino Church to combat inequality and injustice

sermon i hate

(Vatican Radio) Celebrating Mass in Manila’s Cathedral on Friday, Pope Francis urged Catholics in the Philippines to be ambassadors for Christ and ministers of reconciliation, proclaiming the Good News of God’s infinite love, mercy and compassion. Speaking to bishops, priests, religious and seminarians gathered in the Cathedral, the Pope said the Church in the Philippines is called to acknowledge and combat the causes of the deeply rooted inequality and injustice which mar the face of Filipino society, plainly contradicting the teaching of Christ.

As Filipinos prepare to mark the fifth century of the arrival of the Church in the Asian nation, the Pope said Catholics must build on that legacy of the past by building a society inspired by the Gospel message of charity, forgiveness and solidarity in the service of the common good.

 Below the full text of Pope Francis’ homily for the Mass in Manila’s Cathedral

Mass with Bishops, Priests and Religious in Manila’s Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception

16 January 2015

“Do you love me?…  Tend my sheep” (Jn 21:15-17).  Jesus’ words to Peter in today’s Gospel are the first words I speak to you, dear brother bishops and priests, men and women religious, and young seminarians.  These words remind us of something essential.  All pastoral ministry is born of love.  All consecrated life is a sign of Christ’s reconciling love.  Like Saint Therese, in the variety of our vocations, each of us is called, in some way, to be love in the heart of the Church.

I greet all of you with great affection.  And I ask you to bring my affection to all your elderly and infirm brothers and sisters, and to all those who cannot join us today.  As the Church in the Philippines looks to the fifth centenary of its evangelization, we feel gratitude for the legacy left by so many bishops, priests and religious of past generations.  They labored not only to preach the Gospel and build up the Church in this country, but also to forge a society inspired by the Gospel message of charity, forgiveness and solidarity in the service of the common good.  Today you carry on that work of love.  Like them, you are called to build bridges, to pasture Christ’s flock, and to prepare fresh paths for the Gospel in Asia at the dawn of a new age.

“The love of Christ impels us” (2 Cor 5:14).  In today’s first reading Saint Paul tells us that the love we are called to proclaim is a reconciling love, flowing from the heart of the crucified Savior.  We are called to be “ambassadors for Christ” (2 Cor 5:20).  Ours is a ministry of reconciliation.  We proclaim the Good News of God’s infinite love, mercy and compassion.  We proclaim the joy of the Gospel.  For the Gospel is the promise of God’s grace, which alone can bring wholeness and healing to our broken world.  It can inspire the building of a truly just and redeemed social order.

To be an ambassador for Christ means above all to invite everyone to a renewed personal encounter with the Lord Jesus (Evangelii Gaudium, 3).  This invitation must be at the core of your commemoration of the evangelization of the Philippines.  But the Gospel is also a summons to conversion, to an examination of our consciences, as individuals and as a people.

  As the Bishops of the Philippines have rightly taught, the Church in the Philippines is called to acknowledge and combat the causes of the deeply rooted inequality and injustice which mar the face of Filipino society, plainly contradicting the teaching of Christ.  The Gospel calls individual Christians to live lives of honesty, integrity and concern for the common good.  But it also calls Christian communities to create “circles of integrity”, networks of solidarity which can expand to embrace and transform society by their prophetic witness.

As ambassadors for Christ, we, bishops, priests and religious, ought to be the first to welcome his reconciling grace into our hearts.  Saint Paul makes clear what this means.  It means rejecting worldly perspectives and seeing all things anew in the light of Christ.  It means being the first to examine our consciences, to acknowledge our failings and sins, and to embrace the path of constant conversion.  How can we proclaim the newness and liberating power of the Cross to others, if we ourselves refuse to allow the word of God to shake our complacency, our fear of change, our petty compromises with the ways of this world, our “spiritual worldliness” (cf. Evangelii Gaudium, 93)?

For us priests and consecrated persons, conversion to the newness of the Gospel entails a daily encounter with the Lord in prayer.  The saints teach us that this is the source of all apostolic zeal!  For religious, living the newness of the Gospel also means finding ever anew in community life and community apostolates the incentive for an ever closer union with the Lord in perfect charity.  For all of us, it means living lives that reflect the poverty of Christ, whose entire life was focused on doing the will of the Father and serving others.  The great danger to this, of course, is a certain materialism which can creep into our lives and compromise the witness we offer.  Only by becoming poor ourselves, by stripping away our complacency, will we be able to identify with the least of our brothers and sisters.  We will see things in a new light and thus respond with honesty and integrity to the challenge of proclaiming the radicalism of the Gospel in a society which has grown comfortable with social exclusion, polarization and scandalous inequality.

Here I would like to address a special word to the young priests, religious and seminarians among us.  I ask you to share the joy and enthusiasm of your love for Christ and the Church with everyone, but especially with your peers.  Be present to young people who may be confused and despondent, yet continue to see the Church as their friend on the journey and a source of hope.  Be present to those who, living in the midst of a society burdened by poverty and corruption, are broken in spirit, tempted to give up, to leave school and to live on the streets.  Proclaim the beauty and truth of the Christian message to a society which is tempted by confusing presentations of sexuality, marriage and the family.  As you know, these realities are increasingly under attack from powerful forces which threaten to disfigure God’s plan for creation and betray the very values which have inspired and shaped all that is best in your culture.

Filipino culture has, in fact, been shaped by the imagination of faith.  Filipinos everywhere are known for their love of God, their fervent piety and their warm devotion to Our Lady and her rosary.  This great heritage contains a powerful missionary potential.  It is the way in which your people has inculturated the Gospel and continues to embrace its message (cf. Evangelii Gaudium, 122).  In your efforts to prepare for the fifth centenary, build on this solid foundation.

Christ died for all so that, having died in him, we might live no longer for ourselves but for him (cf. 2 Cor 5:15).  Dear brother bishops, priests and religious: I ask Mary, Mother of the Church, to obtain for all of you an outpouring of zeal, so that you may spend yourselves in selfless service to our brothers and sisters.  In this way, may the reconciling love of Christ penetrate ever more fully into the fabric of Filipino society and, through you, to the farthest reaches of the world.

Link to article: Pope urges Filipino Church to combat inequality and injustice


Pope tells PH leaders to end corruption,hear cries of the poor

Pope: We need to become poor ourselves

Pope Challenges Filipino Politicians to end ‘Scandalous Social Inequalities

Since when did turning the other cheek turn into punching someone in the face, Pope Francis???

Bergoglio the bouncer


Since when did turning the other cheek turn into punching someone in the face, Pope Francis? And does that mean it’s OK to shoot them too?

Who am I to judge, new world order Bergoglio should take his own advice and stop insulting! Insulting his own faith! Faithful Traditional Catholics (Pre-Conciliar) are insulted by this Not a Man of God, on a regular basis! As you can see in the short video clip. Bergoglio is our Chastisement!

What has this little altar boy learned from the Supreme “Pastor”? That he should be ashamed to fold his hands in prayer? That one of the most basic expressions of Catholic piety is fodder for jest? And in a public ceremony? In front of the world’s press and video cameras? Is this really a manifestation of the Gift of Piety? And won’t that little Altar Boy be a bit confused after this encounter? Are the altar boys there to be simply props for Francis’ attempts as the grand entertainer? Too many post-Conciliar prelates, including the man at the top, appear to be practically devoid of the true Catholic piety of the centuries. Some may dismiss this as a harmless light-heartedness, and I am all for creating a jovial atmosphere in the right circumstances. But to me, this little jest smacks of that mocking of Catholic tradition so prevalent in the 60s and 70s, and Bergoglio is very much a man of the 70s. It strikes me as neither pastoral nor admirable. Oremus! – John Vennari

Tomorrow, a Saudi blogger will be viciously flogged 50 times in the second of 20 such weekly punishment sessions he will receive this year. Raif Badawi’s crime? Suggesting reforms for Islam. A more compelling, sickening example of the suppression of free speech it would be hard to find.

Yet, just as I was about to pen an outraged column attacking the Saudi regime for such an inhuman, outrageous act, my attention was diverted to something equally troubling a little closer to my own spiritual home.

Today, the Pope, leader of the Catholic Church – of which I am a member – endorsed violence as a way to respond to insults.

Outrageous. While flying to the Philippines, Pope Francis told journalists that he defended freedom of speech as not only a fundamental human right but also as a duty to speak one’s mind for the sake of common good

Shocking: Then came the analogy: ‘If my good friend Dr Gasparri says a curse word against my mother, then a punch awaits him. It’s normal. One cannot provoke. One cannot insult the faith of others. One cannot make fun of faith.’ Gasparri is pictured at left

I could barely believe what I was reading. But he said it. It’s there, in plain language. Asked for his response to the Paris terrorist attacks, Pope Francis – flanked by his Papal trip organizer, Dr. Alberto Gasparri – told journalists on a plane to the Philippines that he defended freedom of speech as not only a fundamental human right but also as a duty to speak one’s mind for the sake of the common good.

But then he clarified this, by saying there were ‘limits’ to how far this freedom extends.‘There are so many people who speak badly about religions,’ he said, ‘who make fun of them, who make a game out of the religions of others. They are provocateurs.’ Then came the analogy which shocked me to the core:

‘If my good friend Dr Gasparri says a curse word against my mother, then a punch awaits him. It’s normal. One cannot provoke. One cannot insult the faith of others. One cannot make fun of faith.’ To illustrate his point, the Pope then threw a pretend punch towards Dr Gasparri. The imagery was startling. Here was my Holy Father, supposedly a man who espouses the philosophy of turning the other cheek, telling us all to whack someone in the face if they insult us.

Well, isn’t that exactly what Al Qaida did in Paris, metaphorically speaking?

They claimed the Charlie Hebdo cartoonists had insulted their religion, and reacted with physical aggression. Albeit aggression of a deadly, despicable varity. By the Pope’s yardstick, weren’t the Charlie Hebdo staff guilty of being the very ‘provocateurs’ that he says are unacceptable and thus worthy of violent response?And in similar vein, what’s the difference between punching someone for insulting you or lashing them 1000 times?

Violence is violence, it’s just a question of degree.

I like this Pope. He’s been the biggest breath of fresh air since John Paul II, and I find almost everything he does both invigorating and inspiring – whether he’s calling for gays not to be marginalized, kissing the feet of AIDS patients, or just declining the traditionally lavish trappings of Papal life at the Vatican.

Meanwhile in Saudi Arabia, blogger Raef Badawi is going to publicly flogged for suggesting reforms to Islam. In September, a Saudi court upheld a sentence of 10 years in prison and 1,000 lashes for Badawi, and he is expected to have 20 weekly whipping sessions until his punishment is complete

The pope has been a breath of fresh air, and he can be a true reforming leader with a common touch

He’s proven himself to be a true reforming leader with a very special common touch. And boy did we Catholics need someone like him to rescue the brand of our Church from decades of corruption and child abuse. Not to mention one of my own personal bug-bears: the shameful refusal of the Vatican to advocate condoms as a prevention to disease rather than just a form of contraception. Something that would save potentially hundreds of thousands of lives in places like Africa.But the Pope’s comments on freedom of speech today are ridiculous and dangerous. And if my critique qualifies as an insult in his book, then so be it.

The clear message from what he said is that nobody can mock, insult or poke fun at any religion. And further, that if someone insults you, even over non-religious things like your family, you have every right to use violence as a response.

Pope Francis was keen to stress that nobody should kill in the name of religion.

But what if the punch he advocates for exacting revenge on an insult kills someone, as many punches do? If I were a non-violent Muslim, who has had to put up with a week of people demanding I apologise for the actions of a bunch of cowardly terrorists, then I would feel perfectly entitled right now to ask what on earth the Pope is thinking by defending the use of violence to suppress free speech? All religions should be held up to scrutiny, mockery, and the occasional insult. When my own Church covered up the widespread abuse of young children by many of its pedophile priests, that was behavior thoroughly deserving of every insult thrown its way. And Charlie Hebdo did exactly that, incidentally.

(I won’t apologize for those priests, by the way, but I will loudly condemn them as evil monsters who have no place in a civilized society, let alone a pulpit. Which is the same response I’d expect from every decent Muslim to terror attacks by people hijacking their religion to commit atrocities.) So, Pope Francis is entirely wrong on this. And as someone who admires him hugely, I regret that very much. The Bible may cite an eye-for-an-eye and a tooth-for-a-tooth, but it also advocates stoning for adulterers. I don’t want my Pope, or any religious leader, to ever endorse any form of violence for anything. Their job is to promote peace, and they should stick to it.

Source: Daily Mail


Expect a punch when you insult others

Vatican defends pope after ‘Punch’ remark

Bergoglio: You cannot insult the faith of others

Pope: You cannot mock religion 



heretic 2

Heresy! The Pope had removed his shoes before entering the temple and had spent a few minutes of silence there!! 

Vicar of Christ Bergoglio dishonors God  and his Holy Commandments!! Non habebis deos alienos coram me. Kyrie Eleison.

Pope Francis made a surprise visit to the Mahabodhi Temple in Maradana late this evening and viewed the ‘sacred’ relics of the Buddha’s disciples?? Papal spokesman Fr. Federico Lombardi said today.

Pope Francis made a surprise visit to the Mahabodhi Temple in Maradana late this evening and viewed the sacred relics of the Buddha’s disciples, Papal spokesman Fr. Federico Lombardi said today. Fr. Lombardi said at a media briefing:

The Pope had removed his shoes before entering the temple and had spent a few minutes of silence there. He said the Holy Father had decided to visit the temple at short notice after he had been invited by the chairperson of the Mahabodhi Organization, the Venerable Banagala Uptissa Thera when the latter met him at Bandaranaike International Airport on Tuesday.


This was the first time a pope had visited a Buddhist Temple in Sri Lanka said Fr. Cyril Gamini, the spokesman for the Roman Catholic Church in Sri Lanka.

The Pope had also met Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa at the apostolate nuncio’s residence on Bauddhaloka Mawatha. The Pope had also made a surprise visit to the Archbishop’s House to meet the bishops but they had not yet retuned from Madhu and he had had to visit the Archbishop’s House again later. This time the bishops were praying when he got there and he had joined them in prayer. (Yohan Perera)

Source: Daily Mirror

Satanic Fruits of Bergoglio’s trip to the Phillippines: Children CAGED in the name of God!!


Prayer need: Children CAGED in the name of God. Police seize orphans and chain them in filth to clear streets for Pope’s visit to Philippines!!

The blessings of Bergoglio! By their fruits you shall know them… Wherever Bergoglio goes, disaster follows.  

  • Street children in Manila are being rounded up before the Pope’s arrival 

  • Officials claim it is to stop gangs of beggars targeting the Pope

  • But critics say it is a cynical move breaching the children’s human rights

  • MailOnline investigation finds horrendous conditions at the centres

  • Children forced to sleep on floors and kept with adults who beat them

  • Some children have been starved and chained to pillars in the centres

  • One child rounded up 59 times – yet he is still living on the streets

Street children as young as five are being caged in brutal detention centers alongside adult criminals in a cynical drive to smarten up the Philippines capital ahead of a visit by Pope Francis this week.

Hundreds of boys and girls have been rounded up from doorways and roadsides by police and officials and put behind bars in recent weeks to make the poverty-racked city more presentable when Pope Francis arrives on Thursday, a MailOnline investigation has found.

In a blatant abuse of the country’s own child protection laws, the terrified children are locked up in filthy detention centres where they sleep on concrete floors and where many of them are beaten or abused by older inmates and adult prisoners and, in some cases, starved and chained to pillars.

Six million people are expected to attend an open air mass conducted by Pope Francis in Manila’s Rizal Park on Sunday, which will watched by a global TV audience and officials appear determined to ensure that urchins are hidden from view.

Angel, a 13 year old little girl,clad only in a flimsy dress, was chained toa post in the RAC detention centre late last year and left there crying while the other children were allegedl yencouraged to throw pebbles at her as she screamed in pain and fear 

Angel, a 13 year old little girl clad only in a flimsy dress, was chained to a post in the RAC detention centre and left there crying

Other children were allegedly encouraged to throw pebbles at her as she screamed in pain and fear in the detention late last year. Youngsters living in the city's doorways and roadsides are being rounded up despite many having committed no crime

A MailOnline investigation has uncovered the horrendous conditions the children are kept in, with many of them beaten, or tied to poles. This picture of a starving 11-year-old led to protests against the centres - but nothing has changed

The youngsters, who can be kept in the centres for months, are exposed to abuse and exploitation by older children and adults

Father Shay Cullen, who works to rescue the children, says the detention centres where the young street children are kept are 'a shame on the nation' 

MailOnline found dozens of street children locked up in appalling conditions alongside adult criminals in Manila, where a senior official admitted there had been an intensive round-up by police and government workers to make sure they are not seen by Pope Francis. We gained rare access to a detention centre by accompanying Nobel Peace Prize-nominated Irish missionary Father Shay Cullen, 71, as he freed a boy aged around seven and took him to his Preda Foundation shelter for children 100 miles away in Subic Bay.

Mak-Mak, whose legs and body were riddled with scabies, was picked up three weeks ago and spent Christmas and the New Year in a concrete pen at the centre hidden away in the slums of Manila’s Paranaque district which –with grotesque irony – is named House of Hope.

There, guiltless children are kept behind bars, made to go to the toilet in buckets and fed leftovers which they eat from the floor. There is no schooling or entertainment for the youngsters who are held sometimes for months before being freed. Adult convicts are kept in a pen next to separate compounds holding boys and girls and freely pass between the pens at certain times of the day, inmates and regular visitors to the centre told us, while officials either ignore or fail to spot abuse and attacks. In poignant scenes, Mak-Mak – an abandoned child with no ID – at first seen frightened but then beamed with delight as charity workers told him he was being taken from his caged pen to children’s home in the countryside. ‘Are there toys there?’ was his first question.

'Rescued' child Mak-Mak's legs and body were covered in scabies, caused by mites burrowing into the skin, when MailOnline first met him at a centre

Mak-Mak, who had no ID, was living on the streets after apparently being abandoned by his parents

The boy, who is thought to be around seven, was initially frightened when charity workers arrived at the centre, ironically called 'House of Hope'

But he beamed with joy after they said they were taking him away to a new home - asking: 'Will there be toys?' 

Father Shay, pictured, said the conditions Mak-Mak was being kept in were 'completely beneath human dignity'

Mak-Mak is one of hundreds of children being kept in these dreadful conditions - but he is lucky, as he has been rescued by charity workers

But, thanks to charity workers, he is now living in a children's home on the coast, 80 miles from the Philippine's capital Manila

An adult prisoner held with other convicts in a cell directly opposite the pen holding Mak-Mak and the other children, 42-year-old Paulo, said: ‘Lots of children have been brought here lately. We’re told they’re being picked up from under the road bridges where the Pope will travel.’ As a team of charity workers took Mak-Mak to his new home in Subic Bay, an exasperated Father Shay said: ‘This boy is only about seven years old and he is behind bars. This is completely beneath human dignity and the rights of all the children here are being violated. ‘They have no basic rights. There is no education. There is no entertainment. There is no proper human development. There is nowhere to eat and they sleep on a concrete floor. There is no proper judicial process. ‘These kids are totally without protection. They have no legal representation. They are just put in jail and left to fend for themselves.’

Pope Francis famously washed the feet of inmates in a youth detention centre in Rome in 2013 but Father Shay, who has run a mission to help children in the Philippines for 40 years, said: ‘Sadly, there is no way the Pope will be visiting these detention centres in Manila.

‘They are a shame on the nation. Officials here would be horrified at the prospect of the Pope seeing children treated in this way.’

The caging of street children ahead of the Pope’s visit comes despite anger in the Philippines late last year over another notorious detention centre – the Manila Reception and Action Centre (RAC) – where a skeletal 11-year-old was pictured lying on the ground, apparently near death.

The boy, who shares the Pope’s name Francisco, is now recovering at a children’s home run by a charity – but protests over his case failed to halt the current round-up or improve conditions at the 17 detention centres across the city, where an estimated 20,000 children a year are detained.

Rosalinda Orobia, head of Social Welfare Department in Manila's central Pasay district, claimed the round-ups had been conducted to protect the Pope from being targeted by gangs of begging street children 

Orobia told the Manila Standard newspaper the syndicates 'know the Pope cares about poor kids, and they will take advantage of that'

But the Manila Standard hit back at Orobia, saying the decision to clear the streets of the children only helped officials trying to pretend all was well in the city 

 The noticeable rise in 'rescues' has happened before other big international visits, one charity head revealed - including before President Obama's visit last year

Rosalinda Orobia, head of Social Welfare Department in Manila’s central Pasay district, confirmed her officials had for weeks been detaining street children in the areas the Pope will visit and had taken in children as young as five. Bizarrely, she claimed the operations were aimed at stopping begging syndicates targeting the Pope rather than tidying up the city. ‘They (the syndicates) know the Pope cares about poor kids, and they will take advantage of that,’ she told the Manila Standard newspaper. In an editorial, the newspaper slammed the official’s remarks, saying: ‘We should all be scandalized by the government’s artificial campaign to keep the streets free of poor children only for the duration of the papal visit. ‘There is no question that children should be kept off the streets, but a campaign to do so just for the duration of a dignitary’s visit helps nobody except the officials who want to put on a show and pretend all is well in our cities.’ Catherine Scerri, deputy director of street children charity Bahay Tuluyan, told MailOnline workers had remarked on a noticeable rise in the number of ‘rescues’ of street children by officials in recent weeks because of the Pope’s visit. ‘More children have been picked up in recent weeks and there has been a pattern of this happening before big international events in the past,’ said Ms Scerri, an Australian who has worked for 11 years to improve the lives of Manila’s legions of street children.

The children can be kept with adult offenders, which leaves them vulnerable during their time in the centres  

One inmate has revealed how he has noticed a rise in the number of street children being thrown behind bars in recent weeks

 A study found the children are taken in for sleeping on the street, for begging, or for stealing food to relieve their hunger, with no proper judicial process

‘It happened before President Obama’s visit to the Philippines in April last year. When we tried to have them released we were told they couldn’t come out until after Obama had gone and the children were very much given the impression that they were rescued because of this visit.’ A survey by Bahay Tuluyan found the so-called ‘rescue’ operations to round up street children are indiscriminate, targeting youngsters who have committed no offenses and do not want to go to detention centers. Children are taken in simply for sleeping on the street, for begging, or for stealing food to relieve their hunger, with no proper judicial process, and are exposed to abuse and exploitation by older children and adults, the study found.

‘There is no reason the shelters (centers) should be like this and what I find soul-destroying is the apathy of the people who work in and around places like RAC and allow this brutality,’ said Ms Scerri. ‘I can understand a lack of resources, but what I find so frustrating is the violence, torture and apathy and the fact that people are standing by and letting this happen. I think that is completely inexcusable.’

Detained children complained of violence, abuse, poor or inadequate food and lack of sanitation. They are given buckets for toilets and deprived of any education or contact with family members, something Ms Scerri said they found ‘incredibly distressing’. The practice of locking up street children ahead of major international events in Manila dates back to the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders’ Summit of 1996, Ms Scerri said. Children are held for periods ranging from days to months and repeatedly rearrested.

Children are repeatedly 'rescued' from the streets - with one child revealing they had been rounded up 59 times

However, being rescued had not helped the 13-year-old: the young teenager was still on the streets 

There have been protests against the centres, but as yet it has failed to stop the policy 

 Huge preparations are taking place ahead of Pope Francis' visit. Here, a Filipino soldier plays with children as security forces get ready

A child and customer ride a pedi-cab past police as they rehearse security procedures on a road outside the Tacloban airport ahead of the visit

‘The RAC and other institutions call these children recidivists even though they have committed no crimes,’ she said. ‘One child of 13 we interviewed had been ‘rescued’ 59 times and was back on the street.’ Most people in Manila know nothing about the way children are treated in the detention centres. ‘When they find out, they are outraged,’ she said. ‘People are horrified to find out what the government is doing in their name.’ Social workers and child psychologists help heal the psychological scars of the street children taken out of detention centres in the boys’ and girls’ homes run by Father Shay’s Preda Foundation.

In a harrowing interview conducted for MailOnline by a trained child psychologist at a Preda home, a boy called Ben described how – aged just six – he was abandoned by his mother and then picked up by police last year as he slept on the street. He woke up in a police station and then spent three months at the House of Hope detention centre where, in cold detail, he described how he was sexually abused by 10 different inmates. ‘I was very unhappy there,’ he said quietly. Ben is now seven.

Removing children from the streets is not the only measure being taken ahead of the visit - here a Filipino worker removes dirt next to a poster of Pope Francis in a street in Manila

Pope Francis is expected to ride in 'Jeepney', a popular and uniquely Filipino mode of mass transport (pictured), during the visit

Workers have been busy preparing for the Pope's arrival in the Philippines, the largest predominantly Catholic country in Asia

These workers were spotted grabbing a nap in between getting Manila reading for Pope Francis

Young boys dressed as Swiss Guards rehearse at the steps of the Manila Cathedral in preparation for the arrival of Pope Francis

Workers wrap a statue of Christ at Rizal Park during preparations

Mak-Mak – who had never before been outside the city and was wide-eyed with wonder at the sight of a cow in a field – leapt out of the charity’s van and sprinted across a lawn to a rusty set of swings and roundabouts as soon as he arrived at the children’s home. After playing happily with other boys for two hours, however, he quickly became tearful and withdrawn when questioned gently by the psychologist about his ordeal on the streets and then in the detention centre. Like other children lucky enough to be saved from the detention centres where more and more children are being locked up this week, the road to recovery for Make-Mak will be a painfully long one. ‘There’s an awful lot of trauma there,’ said Father Shay.

Father Shay is praying Pope Francis will speak out on children’s rights during his five-day visit to the Philippines which ends on Sunday, perhaps pricking the conscience of officials in the devout country into taking more care of their unfortunate young.

Meanwhile, however, the only prospect of an escape from the hellish conditions behind bars for countless children will come when the leader of the worldwide Catholic Church – shielded from their suffering – flies back to Rome next Monday. (JAN 19th)

More information about the missions to help street children in Manila by the Preda Foundation and Bahay Tuluyan are available at and   

An enterprising salesman sells Pope-themed t-shirts at Rizal Park in Manila this week