Pope Francis to Curia: Merry Christmas, you power-hungry hypocrites!
We like this guy!
We do, however, fear for his life having seen several previous Popes succumb to untimely "illnesses" and abrupt deaths after they sought to reform the Church.
We walked away from the Catholic Church a number of years ago [having been an altar boy and a candidate for the seminary] when we saw far too much hypocrisy and greed. The hypocrisy was evident with nuns who preached that segregation was God's way -- which they enforced by having segregated schools. The greed was evident when we noted the arrival of the Bishop in an expensive limousine, wearing flowing robes which obviously were worth a fortune; and of course, the ultimate humiliation of the altar boy having to kneel before the Bishop and kiss his ornate gold ring.
|If Christ had a savings account, he'd have banked here!|
There was a time when the Church was known for caring for the poor, operating hospitals, and sponsoring programs for the poor.
Some of that continues today, but we were appalled when we learned the volume of cash spent on settling lawsuits and criminal penalties as a result of sexual depravity by priests. We were even more appalled as the stories leaked out of missionary journals of priests abusing the children in their care in African villages.
Ultimately, we've never been able to come to terms with the royal stature and opulence of cardinals and bishops. We've also never been able to erase the image of the Spanish Inquisition during which Church representatives conducted extraordinarily brutal interrogations of those whom they felt were heretics [i.e., those who believed the Church was the instrument of Satan]. In reviewing those heinous acts, we have to believe that the Church had indeed come under Satan's control -- and sometimes, given today's issues, we have to wonder if perhaps Satan is the greater influence in the Church.
Reviewing the life and teachings of Christ, we don't recall any reference to creating His Church to mimic royalty, to create a huge bureaucracy, nor to create vast wealth. In fact, he abhorred greed to the extent that he took a whip to the greedy money-changers who set up shop in the Temple. As we recall, Christ advocated temperance, moderate living, doing good for others, living the Golden Rule, forgiving those who committed crimes, and disdaining wealth -- precisely the opposite of the Church's leadership.
We suspect that the Pope, whose life and priesthood has essentially mirrored that of Christ, can restructure the Church to distribute its wealth to assuage the pain of world poverty; this of course causes great concern to the Vatican bankers and financial planners who have invested tens of billions of dollars in a variety of international corporations and hold hundreds of billions of dollars in the form of priceless real estate.
The danger is that past Popes with reform on their minds met untimely deaths, or shall we say "Breitbart Moments" involving "heart stoppage" from unknown [or undisclosed] sources.
So, we wish Pope Francis the best of luck as he takes on centuries of greed, avarice, lust, pride, wrath -- Oh, what the Hell, let's just give credit to the Vatican and the Church at large for their embrace of the Seven Deadly Sins and leave it at that.
Here's the big question.