Thursday, March 14, 2013

“And Pontiff, pretty Pontiff, can anyone shake your hand?” [updated]

[UPDATE:  Since writing this post, the Guardian newspaper, on which the post relied, has redacted its story by Hugh O'Shaughnessy saying “This article was amended on 14 March 2013. The original article, published in 2011, wrongly suggested that Argentinian journalist Horacio Verbitsky claimed that Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio connived with the Argentinian navy to hide political prisoners on an island called El Silencio during an inspection by human rights monitors. Although Verbitsky makes other allegations about Bergoglio’s complicity in human rights abuses, he does not make this claim. The original article also wrongly described El Silencio as Bergoglio’s ‘holiday home’. This has been corrected.” 
    Chris Trotter’s post Mea Culpa – The Pope Is Not A Fascist explains. And like Trotter, I too offer my Mea Culpa.]

“And Pontiff, pretty Pontiff
can anyone shake your hand ?
Or is it just that you like uniforms
and someone kissing your hand…”

- Lou Reed, “Good Evening, Mr. Waldheim

From one Pope with a seedy history behind him, to another.

The last, now retired, Pontiff was part of the team covering up his church’s flagrant child abuse, and he stepped down midst rumours that he could face arrest for it if he leaves the Holy See.

The new Pontiff, just appointed, was part of the Argentine clergy’s collaboration with the the Argentinian military regime—in which it “was complicit in dreadful crimes for which not one word of regret has been heard from any senior member of the Argentine clergy”—and it looks like Bergoglio himself, the new Pope Francis I, helped to hide the crimes.

It’s said that in taking the name Francis, “he is drawing connections to the 13th century St. Francis of Assisi, who saw his calling as trying to rebuild the church in a time of turmoil.” The turmoil is richly deserved.

Writing in the Guardian in January, Hugh O'Shaughnessy tells a story that after this new pope’s appointment looks even more grim for the church:

The extent of the church's [and the new pope’s] complicity in the dark deeds was excellently set out by Horacio Verbitsky, one of Argentina's most notable journalists, in his book El Silencio (Silence). He recounts how the Argentine navy with the connivance of Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, [then] the Jesuit archbishop of Buenos Aires [and now the pope], hid from a visiting delegation of the Inter-American Human Rights Commission the dictatorship's political prisoners. Bergoglio was hiding them in nothing less than his holiday home in an island called El Silencio in the River Plate. The most shaming thing for the church is that in such circumstances Bergoglio's name was allowed to go forward in the ballot to chose the successor of John Paul II. What scandal would not have ensued if the first pope ever to be elected from the continent of America had been revealed as an accessory to murder and false imprisonment…

What scandal will now?

Fact is, the more one sees of this church’s hierarchy, the more one realises they are barely human.

Bear in mind that this is a church that thinks itself fit to make judgement on what is and is not moral; to bestow upon others either shame or praise for acts it deems to be good; to hold itself up as a model—sorry, the model—of virtue and rectitude; to give moral guidance to you and I.

Moral guidance from moral pygmies. What could be more uplifting!

And every good catholic knows, or should know, that it doesn’t matter at all what you think on any moral issue: the whole point of the catholic church is to tell you what to think.  Perhaps it takes an atheist to point this out

[Hat tip History News Network]

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10 Comments:

Blogger Kiwiwit said...

Of course, Bergoglio is now infallible and poor old Ratzinger is fallible again. Go figure.

3/14/2013 12:20:00 pm  
Anonymous KiwiGreg said...

Quite interesting, but I really can't stomach Piers Morgan. He is a complete twat

3/14/2013 04:54:00 pm  
Blogger Blair said...

The doctrine is not that the Pope is infallible. The doctrine is that he is "infallible ex cathedra", ie. when he defines a doctrine concerning faith or morals to be held by the whole church. Even then, he cannot contradict scripture or the sacred traditions of the Church. The only time the Pope has ever spoken under this doctrine was in 1950, when Pius XII declared that Mary had ascended to heaven.

3/14/2013 05:04:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You should be ashamed of yourself for holding such bigotry against Catholics.

And please stop repeating such fragrant lies as Benedict "covered up abuse". This is just absurd.

3/14/2013 07:53:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

..and your proof of these allegations is?

Just askin

Amit

3/14/2013 09:12:00 pm  
Blogger Blair said...

Are you really upset with the pope for obeying the orders of a military junta instead of being chucked in prison himself? I put it to you that Bergoglio had no choice, and that had he not complied, the lives he did end up saving would have been lost.

There are plenty of stories of people who owe their lives to the man, including the two Jesuits he is (unfairly) accused of hanging out to dry. It's also pertinent to point out that the bulk of the regime's victims were communists, and therefore no better than the people imprisoning and killing them. If the church was a little tardy in helping these ratbags, can you blame them?

3/15/2013 03:13:00 am  
Blogger Blair said...

Turns out the story is innacurate anyway, according to The Guardian:

"In last night's live blog on the papal appointment we posted an extract from and a link to a 2011 comment piece by Hugh O'Shaughnessy about allegations that the the Catholic church was complicit in human rights abuses during Argentina's military dictatorship.

The original article suggested that Argentinian journalist Horacio Verbitsky claimed that Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio connived with the Argentinian Navy to hide political prisoners on an island called El Silencio during an inspection by human rights monitors. Although Verbitsky makes other allegations about Bergoglio’s complicity in human right abuses, he does not make this claim.

The original article also wrongly described El Silencio as Bergoglio’s “holiday home”. The article has now been amended and the extract removed from yesterday's live blog. Our report on the questions surrounding Bergoglio's alleged complicity in human rights abuses is here."

3/15/2013 03:36:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So just allegation and name calling huff and puff?

Amit Cim

3/15/2013 06:51:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't comment on this latest one.... but I was in Rome a couple of years ago and I went to St. Peter's square ad a tourist. Ratzinger was there doing one of his weekly theatricals and the whole square was completely chocabloc full of 'pilgrims'. Its a huge open area and there must have been 200,000 people there from all parts of the world and, I kid you not, they all looked spaced out to varying degrees and literally thousands of them were overcome with crying. Blubbering their eyes out.

Ratzinger was up on two gigantic TV screens and, seen in closeup detail, all I could think of was an immense overwhelming sense of utter evil. The man just looked devilish.

It was an experience that I'll never forget. Thank god I'm an atheist. I would never want to be involved in anything as sick as what I saw that day.

Dave Mann

3/16/2013 05:49:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

" I would never want to be involved in anything as sick as what I saw that day."

Did you vote in the national elections?

Amit

3/19/2013 12:19:00 am  

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