"Horrific": church attacked, desecrated in Rome violence

It happened near the Lateran basilica during the “day of rage” planned for many cities around the world yesterday.  Details:

The Vatican has condemned Saturday’s violent clashes in central Rome including an attack by protesters on a church in which a crucifix and a statue of the Virgin Mary were destroyed.

Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi said he “condemned the violence and the fact that a church was desecrated by some protesters who broke in and destroyed some images.” He referred to the clashes in Rome as “horrific.”

The 18th-century church of Santi Marcellino and Pietro is near St John Lateran square where much of Saturday’s violence occurred.

“When I came down, I saw the entrance door had been smashed in,” the church’s parish priest, Father Giuseppe Ciucci, was quoted by Italian media as saying.

“The Virgin Mary’s statue, which was at the entrance, had been taken away and I saw it had been thrown into the street and smashed,” he said.

“I went into the sacristy and I saw the door there was also destroyed. The large crucifix at the entrance had been vandalized,” he added.

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67 responses to “"Horrific": church attacked, desecrated in Rome violence”

  1. satan and his minions are on the loose!!! Pray, Pray to our Blessed Mother who will help to destroy him!!! The Rosary is a very powerful prayer second only to the Holy Sacrafice of the Mass!! Pray!!

  2. I think the second cause of it may be a desire for vengeance of what said the Italian Conference about politics, but the first one is the same that motivate the French, October, and Spanish civil war: devil’s hate against the only true enemy, the personification of the Holy Spirit, the Catholic Church, namely, the Immaculate. Lord, help us, alleluia!

  3. Strange, but this is exactly how churches and sacred items were treated by the American bishops and priests pushing for the modernization of the church in the 1970s. Sacred objects were destroyed and thrown in the trash. Different reasons, different circumstances, but exactly the same fruit. Makes you wonder…

  4. Oh please. A little besides the problem. The Church should be on the first row demanding justice for all, renounce its tax-exempt status and chip in. You know, the Christian thing to do. Italians are, not unlike others in the world, stuck with a government that is steadily screwing its population out of public ownership and constitutional rights, while the upper class grows in wealth and shrinks in accountability. As soon as all of this is addressed, I’ll be glad to hear what everybody has to say about “horrific” desecration.

  5. Seems to me like agitated folks getting a bit carried away with expressing their frustration. A statue of Mary and a crucifix… I guess it could be worse. It doesn’t sound like they tried to desecrate the Eucharist. Still, not good.

    @Bart: I’m not sure renouncing it’s tax exempt status would be a good move, but I agree that there needs to be a much stronger voice from all corners of the Church regarding wealth inequality. This is especially true in America, where the wealthiest 1% own 23% of all wealth in the nation, and the top 20% own 85% of all the wealth.

    As St. Ambrose said “The world belongs to all, not to the rich.”

    Or as Jesus said “Woe to you who are rich”.

    It’s certainly OK to get upset about the desecration of a church, but there are bigger fish to fry.

  6. @ Yabachia:

    Even acknowledging that the motivations were very different, I am still of the opinion that it would go to far to say that the two events are equivalent.

    I am not aware of anyone taking a statue of Mary out into the street and smashing it in front a crowd by bishops or priests. I believe most of the statues were put in storage if they weren’t kept in place.

    Examples to the contrary?

  7. @ George:

    “The left” would include a rather broad category of people, and could be defined in such a way that it would include me. As I do not hate the Church, I think perhaps there might be value in adding some nuance to your statement.

    I might suggest looking to the life and example of a Catholic anarchist, such as Dorothy Day, for an interesting counter-point.

  8. I would also hesitate to assign this all to Satan. True or not, I think there are additional ways of trying to understand the event that might better prepare us for dealing with similar occurrences in the future. Perhaps some sort of request could be made to protesters clarifying the Church’s stand on wealth, its history of helping the poor, and its support towards all those who struggle for a world that is truly more just.

  9. yeah we need to pray for these people ask our Mother Mary and in the name of Jesus Christ. LEts all pray for them

  10. In a world where NO ONE is listening to the people, and everything humanity has worked to build is being stolen out from under them, I am not surprised that even Jesus, Mary and the Church are targets. The ONLY time Jesus ever got violent was against the greedy money changers, yet all ‘authorities’ let them steal it all without even a peep of protest. If the globalists will do this to the people when there is still wealth to steal, what will they do to the people when its all gone? Even the Vatican’s wealth is in the hands of these globalists, just like everything else. Its horrible that these beautiful and ancient churches are now at risk, but I fear that soon this will look like minor damage.

  11. @Peregrinus, It would probably go too far off the topic of this post, but I recall watching a movie about the Nazis invading Poland. In the film, a solider went into a Polish University classroom and grabbed a crucifix that was mounted on the wall and threw it down on the floor.

    Upon watching that scene, I said to myself, “in the 70s and 80s, many “officials” in the church did the same things to these religious articles freely. Just think of altar rails, altar stones, candle holders, statues, crucifixes, vestments, etc… all thrown into a dumpster – or placed in the boiler room of a church, only to have them crushed by some worker, or later discarded by a new pastor who said, “we don’t need these things,” etc.

    Either way, religion is attacked.

  12. “This is especially true in America, where the wealthiest 1% own 23% of all wealth in the nation, and the top 20% own 85% of all the wealth.”

    So if I work hard, make a lot of money I have no right to keep it? I think people like Steve Jobs are examples of what hard work can accomplish. I am sure he and Gates give tons of money to charity. I would rather give it to charity than the government for more entitlement programs for the likes of the OW crowd.
    “give to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s”

  13. And His Church will never perish no matter what they do to our symbols of faith and earthly possessions. How short sighted if they think this will weaken our faith. It only strengthens it and unites us. I pray that the Holy Spirit leads them to conversion.

  14. Bart #7

    The Church does demand justice for all. Anybody doesn’t know this hasn’t been paying attention since “Rerum Novarum.”

    The existence of injustice does not justify rampages of destruction, since these do not remedy the injustice.

  15. It was sad to see such a beautiful statue thrown to the ground all smashed. We are not living in normal times – this is the chastisement that saints have warned us about. But just wait, it’s going to get a lot worse.

  16. I fear this is only the beginning. Deacon had several posts on the rosary and I think we all need to pray that this does not grow into anything like the mobs have done in the past. Anyone who cares about civil rights should be a little concerned about backing mobs because it has never led to more rights, but less.

    We have a right to vote in this country and about half bother to vote. There are some very big differences between the parties and what they represent just as there are similarities in that both parties have their hand out. The sad truth is that many Americans who do vote do not have a clue as to what is going on, do not understand our history or the US Constitution, or bother to try to get informed on the issues before voting. Rights come with obligations and responsibilities. We thus have the government we deserve and to now whine about that government without bothering to change our own behavior is a bit of a joke. It is kind of like being Catholic, without bothering to learn what the Church actually teaches or like expecting big government to be able to keep providing ever more benefits when the cupboard is bare. Try to take all the wealth from the wealthy and you will see it disappear like a puff of smoke in a giant windstorm. Many screamed the same things during the great depression. Lets face it, wealth is all relative and unless it is backed by someting like Gold, it really means nothing. Care to examine what has happened to property values, 401K and IRA’s?

    The government has tried to solve poverty with big government solutions which have had massive funding since 1965. How has that worked? Care to guess who funded most of that experiment? If one looks at who pays most of the taxes in this country over time, it is usually the top 10%. I don’t think we have done the poor any favors with this war on poverty. Its the old question, are the poor better off today than in 1965? Are the poor families as strong as back then? You have to find a way back to a return to faith and personal responsibility and not sure that is possible after years of vicimization and nanny state thinking.

  17. Before I join an anti-Catholic bias interpretation (spin?) about the protest in Rome, I would like to know the identity and motivation of the hooded people that Mayor of Rome, Gianni Alemanno, said were “a few thousand thugs from all over Italy, and possibly from all over Europe, who infiltrated the demonstration.”

  18. @Romcath #15:

    “Not to share our own wealth with the poor is theft from the poor”- St. John Crysostom

    No, I would say you don’t have a right to that wealth, beyond what you need to have your needs met. There is simply to much need in the world for vast inequalities of wealth to be respected.

    If Steve Jobs and Bill Gates give lots of money away, good for them. They are doing what is required.

    “The money that you keep locked away is the money of the poor.”-St. Basil

  19. What I am hearing about the protesters here and abroad is that it started out peaceful, with legitimate grievances and then these crowds were infiltrated by Nazis, socialists, communists, union thugs, et al…this is going to spread and do more damage until those peaceful protesters standing amidst the throngs of thugs stand up, join together and say ‘enough’! So many, many criticisms from the left wing media about the ‘violence’ of the Tea Partiers but there was none…those who want to protest should be given a time and a location to do so…and they should not be permitted sleep ins nor should they be permitted to destroy property, or leave their filth around – those who do should be fined…in allowing these kinds of acts of violence and destruction we show ourselves to be cowards or worse …silent, behind the scenese conspirators. I lived in Italy for a long time and I am surprised that the violence that took place was not stopped before it escalated to the point that a Church was desecrated…while many Italians may not practice their faith, they do safeguard and cherish their faith tradition so I find it hard to believe Italians did this…they were infiltrated and those who carried out this desecration should be put in jail and fined a large sum of money to pay for the destruction. Enough is enough!!!

  20. I don’t understand all this urging to take from the rich and give to the poor…that’s what the Communists did and it didn’t work. Why? Because we cannot and should not ‘force’ charity. Jesus never ever forced anyone to do anything…He urged us to share what we have with each other while declaring that ‘the poor you will always have with you.’ He did not force that boy in the crowd to share his bread and fish with others – He inspired the boy to do that. There are those who work hard and long to support themselves and their families and some, a minority, get rich. They should not be ‘forced’ to turn over what is theirs – if people are forced to give away what they have earned, they will simply stop trying to work hard and long. I’m not talking about greedy corporations or CEOs who rip people off; I’m not talking about Companies who give their CEOs millions when the company goes bankrupt while not providing for their workers. I’m talking about individuals…we are all called to share with each other, rich and poor alike. But remember that St. Paul told us that those who do not work should not eat – should not partake of the food provided by those who worked hard for it. This does not include those who absolutely cannot work – but there are so many in the welfare system who can work but choose not to – I know because I worked in the system and it was very discouraging. If we let the government decide how much money a person can make, don’t think for a minute that they’ll stop at millionaires! The poor can be just as greedy and grasping as the rich…virtue is not in being poor, nor is vice attached to being rich…it’s what we do with what we have, whether little or much, that matters.

  21. @RomCath (first post) you said:
    “What has peoples’ frustration have to do with desecrating sacred images?”

    You should not be surprised. This rabble that has congregated with the intent of stealing people’s hard earned money is hard core left, and from its very beginings the hard core left has been anti religion. Not just in a philisophic mode, but in a violent mode. The orgins of the hard core left were the French Revolution and what that devolved to was a complete destruction of Catholic Churches, the attempt to elimnate religion, and the execution of many religioujs people, including innocent, pacifist nuns. Look it up. Next was the bolshevik revolution in Russia and the take over and destruction anbd killings of religious.

    The rabble slime in these occupy movements are no different. They are inherently communists and communists have no respect for religion and tradition.

    Let me draw a distinction between the left communists who want to take others money like these spoiled brats and the social conscience people of the left who have the poor at heart. Yes, society should provide the poor a safety net and opportunity. Anyone that advocates redistribution is advocating the worst of sins: greed. People who earned their money have a right to it. These slime want to take it because they don’t want to go work.

    It’s time for the cities police departments to get serious. These rabble are only going to escalate their violence. It’s time to break this up now and put them in jail. People have a right to protest, but no one has a right to occupy.

  22. Periginus #21 No, I would say you don’t have a right to that wealth, beyond what you need to have your needs met. There is simply to much need in the world for vast inequalities of wealth to be respected.

    If I have worked hard for that wealth and did well, yes I have a responsibility to help those who are poor through no fault of their own. I should not have to give it to the government to redistribute to those who sit back and do nothing and are poor because they don’t want to work to get out of poverty.

  23. Neither the St. Basil quote nor the St John C. quote endorsed government confiscation of wealth. Their point was that the wealthy had a duty to VOLUNTARILY share their wealth.
    The left wants to do what has already failed in communist countries around the world–put more and more wealth in the hands of government where it will be even more wasted and squandered than if left in private hands. It will also bloat government power helping to destroy freedom as it was destroyed in communist nations.
    What amazes me is the way the Democrats and their leaders: Obama, Pelosi, etc. have promoted class hatred, envy, and warfare and embraced radicals the radicals agenda . The violence now erupting in places is the fruit of their intemperate faulting of everyone but themselves for many of America’s problems.

  24. @Florin #24:

    RE: “I don’t understand all this urging to take from the rich and give to the poor”

    Well I think this urge comes from the Bible and the earliest days of the Christian community:

    “All who believed were together and had all things in common;they would sell their property and possessions and divide them among all according to each one’s need.”

    You can see this lived out in religious orders through their vow of poverty: everyone in the community owns everything together.

    So it’s really the ideal of the Xtian life, no?

    RE: “that’s what the Communists did and it didn’t work.”

    Well, I would look back to 1945 when it comes to assessing the success/failure of Communism in Eastern Europe. Russia lost something like 25-50 million people in WW2. The US lost 300,000 soldiers. So when you see the economy of the US take off after ww2 and the economy of Russia go down, perhaps its worth noting that they experienced a lot more trauma.

    Also, the Pew Global Attitudes Project conducted a poll of 14,000 people in Eastern European countries in 2009, which found that 1/2 of respondents claimed they were worse off at that point than under communism. So… yes communism didn’t work, but capitalism isn’t exactly the bee’s knees in terms of popularity.

    RE: “I’m talking about individuals”

    You’ll note that Church documents don’t really talk about individuals much, they talk about persons, thereby emphasizing our responsibilities to one another.

    RE: “But remember that St. Paul told us that those who do not work should not eat”

    This quote is from 2nd Thessalonians, one of the so-called “pseudo-Pauline” letters because scripture scholars mostly agree that it wasn’t actually taken by Paul.

    Also, I would note the context in which St. Paul writes his epistles (if we want to argue this really is St.Paul): to a very particular community, which he knows extremely well (these would have been very small, maybe 100 people? certainly not more than a couple thousand) and he is using rhetorical strategies to get them to take some action. He’s not trying to lay down eternal principles for the most part.

    Be that as it may, it may be helpful to understand how this has been worked out in the tradition:

    “The poor man has one plea, his want and his standing in need: do not require anything else from him; but even if he is the most wicked of all men and is at a loss for his necessary sustenance, let us free him from hunger.” [St. John Chrysostom]

    So I think that’s one of the passages in Scripture that has really been worked out over time to a fuller meaning. Yes we have a responsibility to work hard, but human dignity trumps the Protestant work ethic.

  25. Perhaps we should all remember that every confirmed Catholic is a SOLDIER of Christ. Fighting in defense of one’s religion IS a Christian thing to do.

  26. @ Deacon John Bresnahan #28:

    You are indeed correct in asserting that neither St. Basil nor St. John C. were endorsing government confiscation of wealth.

    I would make 3 points.

    1.) Governments have a positive moral function, and one such function is to meet the needs of the poor:

    According to the website for the Archdiocese of Milwaukee: “When basic human needs are not being met by private initiative, then people must work through their government, at appropriate levels, to meet those needs.”

    2.) The right to private property is not absolute:

    “By its very nature private property has a social quality which is based on the law of the common destination of earthly goods. If this social quality is overlooked, property often becomes an occasion of passionate desires for wealth and serious disturbances.”-Gaudium et Spes

    3.) The problem of poverty is so great that only a society wide organized response is able to meet it:

    “There are needs and common goods that cannot be satisfied by the market system. It is the task of the state and of all society to defend them. An idolatry of the market alone cannot do all that should be done.”-Centesimus Annus

  27. @ Hieronymous #30:

    I am assuming that by fighting you are speaking metaphorically? Rather than issuing a literal call to violence in the name of the Church?

  28. I don’t know what dream world some people are in but the majority of the OW crowd certainly doesn’t look like their pounding the pavement looking for work. They certainly don’t want what they call “menial jobs”.
    Redistribution of wealth is want the left wants and I will start when the occupant of the White House empties his account to cover some of the food stamps that are being doled out.

  29. I understand that so many in the States, and among this comment thread decry what they see as taking from the rich and giving to the poor – I don’t see that as what these global protests are about.

    Setting the desecration of the symbols of our faith aside (while denouncing as tragic that it happened) – the protests are about the obscene greed afoot in this country and across the world that lead to such inequities between rich and poor.

    Nobody is denying anyone’s right to work hard and enjoy success – however when there is such disparity in terms of the opportunities for people to strive towards that – then this should be addressed.

    And I agree with the previous poster – the Church should absolutely be front and center of those objections. Our priest this morning preached along those lines.

  30. One other thing that occurs to me when I see these debates – when we think of scriptures in the Acts of the Apostles which lay out for us how the very early Church operated – they had community property. They gave up all they had and shared it for the common good.

    How did we get from that to ‘what’s mine is mine and too bad if you didn’t have the opportunity to be as rich as me?’

  31. The description of the sharing of goods in Acts is a description of the Church of Jerusalem in its early days. Later St. Paul writes of the collection he is taking up for the impoverished Church of Jerusalem. Some people have suggested that when they liquidated all their assets, the diminution in their sources of income (notably productive land) was one reason for their poverty. Does anybody know of a serious historical study which would tell us why the Jerusalem Church became poor?

  32. These protests are about many things – I won’t repeat my comments that I made to an earlier post by the Deacon. However, one of the Occupiers’ grievances is that the wealthy “1%” – both individuals and corporations – are buying political influence and the people cannot compete with that money so the people are losing their voice and power. If the political and economic system has created such a wide income and power disparity then we have a right to question why and, as a matter of social justice, try to change the inequality.

  33. I am amazed at the number of Christians who support state-forced “charity”. It is bound to fail to lift up the poor because it is separated from all the graces that come from giving in the name of God. The biggest problem government giving is the lack of love. True love does more than provide for the physical needs, it also provides for spiritual needs. It is spiritual growth in Christ that puts an end to the self-destructive cycles that perpetuate poverty. Forced government “charity” also diminishes the urge to give because it leads people to believe the problems are already being taken care of. Lastly, it is terrifically inefficient in the use of resources. Go look up how much of the tax dollars that are collected to help the poor actually end up getting to them compared to Catholic Charities for example. It is loaded with corruption.

  34. #14 RomCath: “So if I work hard, make a lot of money I have no right to keep it?”

    Yes, you do. Now my question:

    If I work really hard for my employer and help them make a profit, do I have a right not to lose my job to a cheaper foreign worker just so the owners can make and keep even more money?

  35. Colleen #38 – these protests and support of them really have nothing to do with anyone advocating “state-forced “charity”.’

    When we take a look at where “state-forced “charity”‘ has been directed lately – we begin to see what ticks the ordinary person off to the point where they feel that in order to have their opinion heard that they have to protest.

    Recent government policies, in this administration and in that previous (both parties are culpable) led to bailouts of institutions that should have been allowed to fail. Those CEOs and senior management whose reckless decisions brought their institutions to the brink of collapse for the most part are still sitting pretty, collecting handsome salaries and bonuses while the ordinary families plod along, some keeping their heads above water and others miserably failing to do so despite their best efforts.

    I absolutely understand and support the sentiment that leads to these demonstrations. Again, to be clear – in no way am I condoning the destruction of property, religious or otherwise in the course of these protests. Sadly, I think that valid demonstrations are often ‘hijacked’ by those seeking a venue to cause trouble.

  36. Pope John Paul II spent a great deal of his life looking at and evaluating the socialist state and capitalism. In the end, I think he had trouble with both, but of the two, he strongly called out against the socialist state. I always had the understanding from study of his encylicals in this area that he felt capitalism needed to have some guiding principles attached to it, but that there was no real hope for the socialist state.

    I just read this encyclical and also went back to that of Pope Leo 100 years before.

    In view of what is going on today, I would urge everyone to read this in depth with an open mind. He clearly was against any form of encouragement of open class warfare, while at the same time teaching that employers have certain obligations to those who work for them. Interesting he was also very concerned about a state that is not closely tied to God or an atheist state. If we do no have a society that understands the role of God in our life, the concern of the employer for worker and the rights of private property can be lost in the bashing of one group against another.

    Socialism has never worked anywhere in the world and it never will based on what Pope John Paul II clearly lays out in this document. Having the state act as our decision maker on who is to have their private property taken and to whom it will be given is a recipe for disaster. The poor in this state will constantly want ever more provide and the rich will have ever more of their property taken.

    Now, we have a group of politicians who are pushing the worst nature of mankind to start internal hatred in our country which always leads to evil and mob violence in the end. When we need leadership, we have a person whose experience lies only in building up the mob and class envy as a means of organizing the mob. For those who support this, beware of what you wish for because once you turn the mob loose, it will never be possible to put it back in the box.

    Again, if you try to take away the wealth in this country and give it to others, it will disappear as it always has in history and the poor will not be richer, but far worse off.

  37. Everyone has been seeing how leftist government policies have NOT been bringing us out of recession–but, in fact, with each year of the Obama Admin. things have gotten worse. And polls show that confidence in this Admin’s. economics has gone below the cellar.
    So what to do to stave off the usual loss a president gets in attempted re-election when unemployment won’t budge–but gets worse–because of ignoring the employment problem for 3 years and because of unproductive policies.
    Ahh! find a scapegoat. Stir up hatred of some other group as the evil party. (Sort of like the group hate sessions in Orwell’s “1984.”)
    It’s the rich–go after them. It’s the banks–attack them. It’s the capitalists–tax them more heavily (even though there is absolutely no way taxing only millionaires –there aren’t enough of them– will solve the debt and deficit problems–it will just make income redistributors feel noble and satisfy a need for some sort of Freudian revenge).
    As far as fair–there will always, short of a communist economic dictatorship–be differences in wealth among people. As long as basic needs are usually met for most, it would be folly to radically change a successful economic system instead of using carefully formulated rational improvements to close gaps. (And clearly, rational action is not what most of the people in the streets, supported now by Obama and other Dems, are demanding– based on their signs (some anti-Semitic) and TV interviews.
    As for wealth’s influence in politics. I was involved in electoral politics in a large-sized city and it was the liberal and left who had all the money to drown politicians’ ethics in. Look at today. Obama is rolling in dough-3 or 4 times anyone else (70million bucks this Q alone) (as billions of our tax money goes out the back door to donor cronies in solar energy projects as payback). This Admin is going to make the Grant and Harding Admins look positively pure.
    But keep people looking elsewhere than the
    White House and the radicals operating from there and their leftist allies in Congress. Hate is a useful (immoral) political tool. Too bad even some Christians fall for it. All, of course, in the name of “Fairness.”

  38. Has anyone compared the demonstrators in NY City – with their cell phones and other toys – with really poor people such as the starving in areas in Africa and India? Some of the US govt policies – the mandate for ethanol in gasoline comes to mind – are raising the cost of grain to the poor in much of the world. Our govt. is increasing the number of starving by laws enacted by the US Congress.
    Would any of the OWS demonstrators even recognize that some US govt policies and laws increase the number of starving people in the world?

  39. “State forced charity?”

    How laughable. The word chairty has the etymological root fo caritas, which means love of fellow man. In order for the state to “force charity” it has to tax people and taxation is enforced by the point of a gun. If you don’t pay your taxes, the IRS comes to physically lock you away, and don’t try to resist. That is far from love. In fact I would say that generates hate and division and animosity.

    That is why Christ NEVER, EVER, EVER said that the state was responsible for poor people, or that some means of redistribution was required, or that people had a right to other people’s money. That would be the opposite of love. Christ would never advocate anything that generates hate.

    But true charity is the very heart of Christ’s message. People are to give from compassion and free will. If you add a forced means to that, what you get is the hated tax collector. And remember, the tax collector had to confess and change his life.

    And yes, the rich give an amazing amount of their money to charity, way more that those punks down town occupying other people’s property.

    And if the Apostles pooled their money together at some time, well what does that have to do with the state taking other people’s hard earned money? You leftist rabble, you are free to pool your money together anytime you wish. Go ahead, create your own commune. I couldn’t care less. But keep your greedy paws off of mine.

  40. @Deacon John
    “So what to do to stave off the usual loss a president gets in attempted re-election when unemployment won’t budge–but gets worse–because of ignoring the employment problem for 3 years and because of unproductive policies.
    Ahh! find a scapegoat. Stir up hatred of some other group as the evil party. (Sort of like the group hate sessions in Orwell’s “1984.”)”

    You are so right. This president started it all with his divisive rhetoric. I don’t know if he planned it (though it wouldn’t surprise me if he did) but he has generated hatred and division across the country.

  41. Charity required by law was clearly laid out for Israel in the Torah. Christ’s preaching of love conveyed the idea that mere obedience to the law was not enough to be saved. Those who rely on the government to take care of the poor have failed in that respect; nevertheless, it is a duty of us, through our government, to take care of the poor.

    It is strange how many are quick to understand why it is that the moral duty not to kill must be enforced by laws against abortion, as it is not enough to merely refrain from having an abortion oneself, but suddenly divorce moral duty from law when it comes to the obligation to care for the poor.

  42. @SJ
    Because abortion is murder, and there are penalities for murder. That is justice.

    You are confusing moral obligations with penal code.

  43. @SJ you said
    “Charity required by law was clearly laid out for Israel in the Torah.”

    Required by what law? Can you please quote where in the Torah you are basing that claim on?

  44. It would seem to me the same attitudes that lead to destroying sacred images during a protest are one in the same as the attitudes that led Italy into this financial position. When we leave God behind us our fellow people are the next to be abandoned. It isn’t a matter of the Church on the right or the protesters on the left so much as both greed and sacrilege opposed to God and His people. Thanks Deacon.

  45. For a better understanding of what is going on in the world today please go to thewarningsecondcoming.com.

  46. Wow, I shocked by the attack on the Blessed Mother as we all should be. And then I am shocked that by some of the posts here, trying to justify it with envy. I am not rich by any means, but poor people can be just as greedy as the rich, and everyone in between. As I heard a good priest who works with the poor say, “The real evil done to poor people is teaching them that they lack all the material things they and all of us really don’t need in the first place.”

  47. tad #52,

    a good point. Of course people will probably say, “Well then, why don’t the people who have all this unnecessary stuff give it up and share their wealth?” And I think it is a question that we should all think about, and at least ask ourselves if we are giving as much as we should. OTOH, I know of a very rich man who does give millions away. He also keeps a lot. When he spends it on himself and his family, it gives work to the people he employs and income to the people whose products he buys.

    manny #49,

    sj can respond, but meanwhile I’d point you to Leviticus 19:18 as the underlying principle. For some specifics, see Exodus 23:11; Leviticus 23:22; Deuteronomy 14:29; 15:11; 24:17-22; 26:12-13.

  48. Maybe everyone will stop trying to be cool with these pagan barbarians and start putting them in their place and we all wouldn’t have to be afraid of them destroying things that are sacred to us.

    In Camarillo “the Mongols”, a biker gang, would break into the church and pee on the altar, but our worthless uneducated cops were too busy securing their pension money writing tickets to law abiding citizens for driving through the crosswalk or something like that to handle the real criminals. Also most American cops are cowards so they were afraid of the bikers I think.

    These guys burn down buildings, sell drugs and run a prostitution ring across from the church but the cops are either bought off or too cowardly (probably a combination of both).

  49. @tad #52

    “The real evil done to poor people is teaching them that they lack all the material things they and all of us really don’t need in the first place.”

    That is brilliant. I grew up on welfare. My father was disabled to where he couldn’t work. We were definitely poor. But we had food on the table, medical care, free education, and a place to live. No one is talking about eliminating any safety net for the poor. To take other people’s money to redistribute is downright evil.

  50. Again I draw the distinction that these protests, to the best of my knowledge, are not, and have not ever been about pushing some socialist agenda of redistributing anyone’s wealth. Seems to me that so may people immediately jump to that conclusion.

    That mega corporations are bailed out with tax payers money isn’t considered a redistribution of wealth kind of strikes me a odd.

    Some of the responses here, and the tone in which they appear to be delivered make me so genuinely sad. I wish that grown adults, especially those participating in a discussion on a faith based blog could do so without attributing disparaging monikers to fellow participants.

  51. Annie–you should try to find
    media outlets that are not in the tank for Obama (who with the Dems and Pelosi support the protesters.) A local radio station just played some interviews with demonstrators.I haven’t heard so much anti-Semitic swill and garbage in years. The radio host was Jewish and very angry at the liberal media’s cover-up of the strong bigoted strain he found in this left-wing mob.
    Interesting how the media huffed and puffed to make the Tea Party look racist–but I never heard them able to produce any tapes of bigoted frothing at the mouth like from the current leftist crowd they seem to love.
    Odd that a supposedly racist group like the Tea Party would fall in love with a Black man and push him to the top of the polls. And over an honorable convergence of political and economic views between him and the Teaers–not some sort of reverse racism.
    But I suppose, as some of his policies now finally get strongly critiqued, and he goes down in the polls–the media will claim racism there while further ignoring the anti-Semitic sewer water squishing right between their toes.

  52. Deacon John, with respect – your assumption about where I source my news information is inaccurate. I find most US news outlets to be unacceptably biased – to one side or the other.

    On this thread and many others there seems to be the strong implication that if one does not toe the ultra-conservative line that we are therefore far left – and wrong. This is a little frustrating to see – my political views tend to be moderate and I like to think that most times I have enough humility to accept that I can be wrong.

    I have no doubt that there are extremists in this protest group – just as there were/are those who are extreme in the Tea Party group. The media can chose to characterize those in whichever way they feel will garner more readers/ratings. The intelligent news consumer can discern for him/herself that which is presented for sensationalism vs fair reporting. That the media presents extreme aspects of stories should not however discount as valid the topic.

  53. I have heard a lot of people extol social justice but I still do not know what it means (which I think is the point of using the term). I know what equal justice is but I do not think social justice = equal justice. I do not believe Jesus ever preached a gospel of social justice.

  54. If I have worked hard and have paid my dues I should be able to reap the rewards of my labor. I do not believe in hand outs to lazy leftists anarchists who expect everyone to pay for them. I blame the riots on Obama because he does not love America-
    And he follows the Saul alinsky rules for radicals 13 rules ( look it up). we need leaders of our countries who calm us who give us real hope and who bring people together. About the catholic church images being destroyed by the Italian mobs- it’s a sin. It’s disgraceful. How dare them go into a house of worship to destroy. No matter what you believe in – it’s wrong to destroy others property. It’s up to everyone to fi d the answers within and to leave this world a better place. Marching in the streets in NYC or Rome and destroying everything in it’s path is the lefts hatred. God help each and every person reading this and say a prayer to the Blessed Mother for world peace and peace within is how it stArts folks. Elect leaders that bring people together not what obummer is doing to the USA.

  55. Annie–Sorry, but I’ve got a real thing against anti-Semitism and the liberal media covering it up presumably to protect leading Dems and Obama who jumped to embrace this movement without a comment of critique about the hate garbage being belched out by it (but they were always trying to fabricate stuff against the Tea Party– virtually all of it turning out to be outright lies).
    If you do a little googling away from the mass media (although Fox has been reporting the truth) you might be amazed at some of the video clips and stories not shown on national news cable or network news. Some of the signs are right out of the Third Reich. Fortunately many Jewish blog sites are trying to get the word out—and they have no love for mainstream media spin protection of anti-Semites.

  56. Deacon John M. Bresnahan:

    To be “fair and balanced” I think it is important to make a distinction between true anti-Semitism (calling Jews Christ-killers, racially inferior) and criticism of the policies of the modern state of Israel, in particular their policies regarding the Palestinians, a not insignificant portion of whom are Christians but have left the area.

    I have been made aware of the issue for two reasons: I have taught the children of Palestinian immigrants and my nephew, who lives in the Middle East and is a journalist, has linked me with information about the situation, which is often missed in our media.

    I am coming to the conclusion that criticism of Israel’s policies is not being anti-Semitic but is a way of seeking justice for the Palestinian people.

  57. my gosh,
    the whole world is collapsing, the economy, countries, cultures, WWWIII is near, childeren are many centuries abused and raped, and what is the Roms Catholic church saying?
    oh cry cry cry, they destroy a sculpture….
    what a worldview…
    shame yourself church!!!!!

  58. rene van haughty

    They cry because Our Blessed Mother is praying to save our souls and the world. Jesus is the savior of the world and only through him entering men’s hearts will there be peace. Relax this is all a show to get Obama reelected. There will be no collapse, no apocalypse. The church has been speaking and teaching on these issues for years but people have hardened their hearts and do not listen.

  59. think the left has new issues in the occupy crowds. Well the clips below show a Milton Friedman decades ago battling those on the left in open debate. In a way, I wish we could see someone of this caliber in a debate with the likes of Phil Donahue today. I think it would be good for our country to have the issues clearly laid out. I find it interesting to see Donahue ask questions and then listen to the answers rather than yelling at each other. Agree or not, they are fun to watch.


    Friedman taking on a young Michael Moore.


    soaking the rich with Phil Donahue


    A friend sent these to me in an email.