Pope Francis is urging the bishops in his own country of Argentina to enforce barring pro-death politicians from receiving the Eucharist.

T’will be interesting to see if he expands that to the rest of the Church or is only focused on the pastoral situation he know best.

The guy is full of surprises.  He even talks about such crudities as hell and the devil and plans to ask Our Lady of Fatima for her intercession.  What’s not to love?

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  • Fabio Paolo Barbieri

    For a long time now, the ultimate defence against heresy has been, not necessarily the activity, but the personal life and behaviour, of the Popes. Not every Pope may have done everything he could to keep “the smoke of Satan” out of the Church – and how could they, when they are dealing with an organization so enormous? – but each of them has been a living example of orthodox faith, dignity, personal courage and uprightness. One day the odious slanders against Pius XII will finally be forgotten, and the line will shine in the light of history.

  • Andy

    I think that it is important to not only focus on politicians and others who support abortion but to recognize that he speaks about those who support any crime against families, Is he possibly including the rapacious capitalists in his warning?

    • Imp the Vladaler

      Would you be so kind as to identify one of these rapacious capitalists?

      • Andy

        Any one of a number of respondents on this blog who praise the culture of the need to defend capitalism at all costs – “recently: capitalism is the normal state of man; earlier during the recent election those who said people misunderstood Romney’s takers and makers commentary or Ryan’s understanding of catholic social teaching – that capitalism is the preferred economic system. M

        • Imp the Vladaler

          Capitalism *is* “normal,” in the sense that it is the typical or usual state of human economic affairs when constraints and incentives are removed. Whether behaving as homo economus is *natural* is another question entirely.

          • Andy

            I am also thinking of Pope Francis and his comments about a living wage and exploitation of workers – it is those of whom I was also thinking. I realize of course that many people will say that the Pope should not speak to economic concerns, yet it is economic concerns that impacts daily life most often and in today’s mammon worship society the impact is at best destructive.

            • Imp the Vladaler

              Oh, I definitely believe that the Pope should speak to economic concerns. The difficulty, I think, is that the Church is less qualified to say that any particular economic policy is permissible than it is to say that abortion and capital punishment need to be abolished.

              The idea of a social safety net is great. But we also saw how a poorly designed one can destroy families. So it’s great to say “the government must help the poor.” But that’s not the same thing as saying “the government must enact this particular type of assistance program.”

              • Andy

                I wasn’t extolling the virtues of the current system – I am more afraid that if we dismantle it we are left with a problem that the local areas cannot deal with. I have no trouble examining the current safety net – I fear that examination means abandonment of those in need to satisfy a political advantage. I also find it difficult to hear of makers and takers – to those who are given much, much is asked and so on. We are all takers to one degree or another – we do not exist in a vacuum. I fear that the worship of mammon that seems to run rampant in our culture as Americans had infiltrated the Catholic thought process to a great degree. I also fear that we forget that there but for the grace of God go we.
                i do not think that the church should dictate an economic system or program type, I agree with you wholeheartedly. It is that so many catholics think that all the church should talk about is sexual issues, and abortion, contraception, gay marriage and the like. Life is so much more than just those issues.

                • One way Oregon is experimenting with right now- certifying Community Supported Agriculture businesses to take food stamps- seems quite in keeping with what I’ve seen from past Popes on economics. When it comes to economics- centralization and economy of scale are the enemies of the individual worker, and thus anything that makes economics *less* efficient is going to provide more dignity to the individual.

          • Capitalism *is* “normal,” in the sense that it is the typical or usual state of human economic affairs when constraints and incentives are removed.

            That’s not what “natural” properly means in the context of ethics and economics.

            • Imp the Vladaler

              Then it’s a good thing I didn’t say “natural” in what you quoted, isn’t it?

              • Oh yeah. Oops. Gotta get that damn knee checked out again.

  • capaxdei

    Does the Aparecida Document call for “barring pro-death politicians from receiving the Eucharist”?

  • Michael Matthew

    In his letter to the bishops of Argentina, the pope wrote that if Catholics do not proclaim Jesus with their lives, then the Church becomes “not the mother, but the babysitter.”

    Wow! I love the metaphor. Catholics in dirty diapers!!!

  • Mark, unfortunately: this story isn’t entirely accurate. As my friend points out: the Holy Father cites a document that in one paragraph out of 554, point out this particular issue. The Holy Father’s letter itself (in the original spanish) makes no mention of this issue. Please see the analysis here: