Facebook is being glitchy today. Here’s why:

Facebook is being glitchy today. Here’s why: September 24, 2015

Facebook is very upset because the pope didn’t use the word “abortion” when he was talking about protecting human life at every stage of development. Now nobody knows what the Church teaches about abortion anymore.

FB is also mad because the pope said “peace and justice” which are dirty words that only liberals use.

FB says the pope was a huge disappointment in calling for the abolition of the death penalty as his predecessors have done, because what on earth does being “prolife” have to do with not wanting to slaughter as many prisoners in vengeance as possible? Being prolife only means wanting to protect innocent human life, not having mercy on the guilty. Next he’ll be saying that Jesus underwent capital punishment on behalf of his murderers. That makes FB very upset. Jesus died for good Christians, not riff raff.

Also, FB is ticked that Francis did not call for an attack on Iran, or urge America to build walls on our borders, and he doesn’t genuflect to the satisfaction of FB either, because sciatica is no excuse for not measuring up to FB’s rigorous demands for sufficient demonstrations of personal piety.

In addition, FB says, “Speak English and cut the crap about Laudato Si and the theology of creation. Let’s hear more about the sufferings of job creators in the One Percent. Theirs is the true Via Crucis. Enough with the living wage garbage. The poor are lazy.”

FB is unhappy that the Pope only mentioned one Republican hero in American history, but that he mentioned three libs, one of whom, Dorothy Day, was practically a Commie.

FB doesn’t like the implicit attack on our sacred second amendment that always goes with the mention of Martin Luther King, Jr. And FB says racism is so *over*. Who needs to hear about Selma again?

Furthermore, FB is furious that in exalting the family, the pope did not take time to attack homosexuals for destroying the family, nor to exalt such champions of the family as the wide variety of conservative pro-family figures with their multiplicity of spouses.

FB is extremely displeased that in closing, he said “God Bless America” instead of making the Sign of the Cross. Now nobody knows if Catholics are Trinitarians anymore. Likewise, FB is upset with the pope for only mentioning Moses, citing the teaching of Jesus’ Golden Rule, and valorizing Christian models, but failing to mention the Name of Jesus in an address to Congress that is basically a summary of natural law teaching on the common good and the obligations of the state in maintaining it.  His failure to turn his address into a homily means that the author of Evangelii Gaudium obviously had no interest in evangelization and now nobody knows if the Catholic Church believes in Jesus anymore.

On the whole, FB is very very displeased with the Pope for not living up to FB’s extremely rigorous standards. Its towering humility is mightily offended and FB needs to go lay down and wonder if the Pope is truly worthy of such an awesome saint as itself. FB is reluctantly concluding that, since Jesus no longer seems up to the job of saving the Church (or he would not have given us such a pope), FB is going to have do it.

And that’s why FB is glitchy today.

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Ken

    Amazing how many people are experts at being the Pope.

    • UAWildcatx2

      And how sad that adults now need things to be explicitly laid out to them like in Kindergarten (no offense to kindergartners)

      • Ken

        I can’t believe the Pope didn’t say exactly what I wanted him to say the exact way I wanted to hear it! On behalf of myself and the other billons of people who didn’t hear exactly what they wanted to hear we are all outraged!

      • Ken

        He should have had hand outs and diagrams. An enemies list would also have been appropriate. I’m looking at you Pelosi! You’re first on the list.

  • UAWildcatx2

    How DARE Pope Francis demonstrate the fullness of Catholicism. I’m outraged!1!1!

    • Ken

      You posted this on the other posting. I putting it here in case anyone misses it on the other page.

      http://www.patheos.com/blogs/standingonmyhead/2015/09/nitpicking-the-pope.html

      • UAWildcatx2

        Thanks! Fr. Longenecker is dead on with that article.

        • No Fr. Longenecker is wrong here. His defense was that this was a diplomatic event and “leaders find common ground and tiptoe around the tension points.”

          Except that he didn’t. He raised issues that are very devisive in American politics, e.g. Climate Change. It doesn’t matter that Francis is correct, Fr. L is wrong to suggest that abortion was avoided because the rest of the speech was diplomatic niceties.

          That might make sense if he was just addressing Obama, but he was addressing all of Congress. In fact the person who invited him to speak (Boehner) would have been less offended by abortion talk than CChange, so don’t blame it on pleasantries. Congress is very divided over a lot of stuff Francis said, but he didn’t refrain from bringing those things up, which makes Fr. L’s point moot and incorrect. The fact is that Pope Francis’s message signaled to the country that Climate change is a bigger political concern than Abortion.

          Doesn’t matter whether Francis believes that or not, the fair criticism is not of Francis, rather the Speech and the political message it gave. The speech ostracized many on the right, doesn’t mean Francis was wrong to give it. But don’t use the same reasoning (not offending) to defend him not bringing up issues that would ostracize the left.

          • Andy

            The job of the Pope is to point out moral issues and moral shortcomings as seen in the eyes of the church, not worry about our “petty squabbles”. The fact that Congrescriters have the capacity of gnats and can’t see beyond their own partisan talking points in not the pope’s fault. It is ours for electing and then re-electing them.
            I guess the idea that we ned to care for all from “womb to tomb” means he ignored abortion. Just because he didn’t say the word doesn’t mean he didn’t address it.
            I guess the pope thought that in the US we were able to think and recognize nuance – damn was he wrong.

            • [ job of the Pope is to point out moral issues and moral shortcomings as seen in the eyes of the church, not worry about our “petty squabbles”. ]

              Andy I agree 100%. I’m not arguing about what the pope did say. I am suggesting that Fr. L’s assessment is incorrect for the very reason you point out.

              Fr. L suggests the pope didn’t emphasize abortion out of concern getting involved with the “petty squabbles” you mention. I simply am asserting that if that was true, he wouldn’t have talked about Climate Change either. If he had no problem bringing up one divisive issue, then you can’t say diplomacy is why he didn’t bring up another.

              The pope has every right to say what he wants. I just disagree with Fr. L’s assessment. It doesn’t quite add up.

              • Andy

                I believe that Pope Francis see climate change as not as political, but more as a human concern – a concern that transcends petty squabbles – he may have misinterpreted that as he does not adhere to American political parties. It is my guess that he is making the connection between lack of water, lack of food for many and the way governments us resources such as food and water – arable land as a weapon.

                • [climate change as not as political, but more as a human concern – a concern that transcends petty squabbles -]

                  As opposed to abortion?

                  • Andy

                    He spoke of protecting life at all stages – that he didn’t say abortion is the problem? Wow!

                    • chezami

                      He didn’t specifcally mention 57 year olds. Now I’m confused about whether the pope supports my right to life! It’s all so baffling when I am bound and determined to cast everything he says into the most malicious interpretation possible! Why does the pope favor my death?

                    • Artevelde

                      Because you wear glasses and can write. The Pope *clearly* wants to turn your country into Pol Pot’s Cambodia. Very dangerous man.

                    • It’s not a problem *I* specifically have. The problem is comparing those who do with those who are dissenting with Church teaching in general. Matt Walsh for example. He made reasonable comments about reasonably disappointed. If you disagree find. If you go off on ramts about how unCathplic he is, that’s different

                    • Andy

                      I have absolutely no idea who Matt Walsh is – so I cannot comment about what he says as reasonable or not. Dissenting from church teaching. The problem with that is none of us follow all of what the church teaches – we all fall short in one area or the other – because we are all sinners. So many focus only on aortic – the five “non-negotiables” which the church doesn’t teach in that fashion. The church teaches that the dignity of all is paramount, the right to life for all is paramount, the right to have a life where basic needs are met is paramount. It teaches that we are ll responsible for the above. Far to many dissent from these core teachings.
                      I try not to compare those who disagree with those who dissent – if I came across that way it was not my intent. My intent is that we have to accept that the Pope is not bound by our politics, our culture wars – he is presenting the whole of Catholic Teaching and as a teacher I know that when I give the overview – which is what he did – I do not focus on specifics for the most part.

                    • Matt Walsh was just an example of a prominent Catholic personality who expressed public disappointment. I’m not trying to criticize what the pope did or didn’t say. And I’m not trying to defend his dissenters. I’m just saying that some very honest people are (perhaps wrongly) perplexed or even upset about the Pope’s focus.

                      1. that perplexion is understandable. I can see why people might *feel* the focus of the address was a missed opportunity. They may be wrong, but they aren’t all outragist whiners.

                      2. Treating them all like outragist winers and using a prominent apologetics blog to mock and dissmiss them is not helpful. It is mean and it pushes people who are honestly struggling with the Pope’s methods in the wrong direction.

                    • Athelstane

                      The problem with that is none of us follow all of what the church teaches

                      It’s one thing to try and fall short of Church teaching (this happens to all of us). But it’s another to openly reject it and refuse to even be bound by it. That is dissent.

                    • Andy

                      WE are in agreement – but there are those on the right who openly dissent and those on the left. Those on the right hide behind prudential judgement and those on the left speak of the primacy of the conscience. Indeed we all fall short – but all too often we turn those who fall short into dissenters – we see them as non-Catholic if you will.

            • UAWildcatx2

              “The fact that Congrescriters have the capacity of gnats”

              This.

            • Ken

              I thought the job of the Pope was to reaffirm by political beliefs that are actually in opposition to the church. Now I’m totally confused. See how this Pope creates confusion. He’s at it again!

          • Joseph

            You speak as if Boehner actually gives a shit about abortion.

            • Ken

              You made me laugh out loud at work. Are you trying to get me fired?

              • Joseph

                Lol. I try my best to be amusing.

  • Dave Armstrong

    One correction: Dr. King was a Republican, and no wonder, since most of the opposition he encountered (e.g., Bull Connor) were Democrats.

    • Kurt 20008

      You’re thinking of Rev. Martin Luther King, Sr, not his son. Rev. King, Sr. while initially opposed to Kennedy’s election fearing a Catholic in the White House, had a change of heart after Kennedy’s statements on civil rights whereby he switched parties and voted for JFK.

      • Dave Armstrong

        Well, I looked up another article, and his conservative niece says he was independent (thus I retract my earlier claim), and the author wrote: “Martin Luther King Did Not Publicly Endorse Either Party”

        and quotes MLK:

        “Actually, the Negro has been betrayed by both the Republican and the Democratic party. The Democrats have betrayed him by capitulating to the whims and caprices of the Southern Dixiecrats. The Republicans have betrayed him by capitulating to the blatant hypocrisy of reactionary right wing northern Republicans. And this coalition of southern Dixiecrats and right wing reactionary northern Republicans defeats every bill and every move towards liberal legislation in the area of civil rights.” [The Papers of Martin Luther King, Jr: Symbol of the Movement, January 1957 – December 1958. University of California Press. p. 84]

  • Orwellian_Dilemma

    So basically, the pope came out as a purely political individual, giving a partisan political speech, with complete disregard for the teachings of Christ–but it’s bad for people to be upset with that.

    Got it.

    • UAWildcatx2

      Hey! You made your way over here! Welcome.

      From your comments you’ve either not listened to the speech, or did and choose to ignore the Catholicness of it.

      To you, partisan political speech that ignores Christ’s teaching: supporting religious liberty and marriage and fighting against abortion. Calling on all to care for God’s creation as stewards and not as owners. Calling for the humane and decent treatment of all people as God’s own children.

      Got it.

      • Orwellian_Dilemma

        I’m struggling to find the place in the Bible it says to impoverish the populace to enrich Tom Steyer. Can you help me with that?

        Similarly, where does the Bible instruct us to “mock the widow, and set the murderer of her children’s father on a high place.” I’ll wait for that passage.

        And no person has ever talked about wealth redistribution with any goal other than to steal from those who work to buy the support of those who won’t for the purpose of accruing political power. Unless, of course, you can find where in the Bible the pope came up with this as a new dogma of the Church. Again, I’ll wait.

        It would have been interesting if the pope had stood up for Christians being slaughtered by Castro and muslims, rather than attacking Americans for working hard and being prosperous.

        • UAWildcatx2

          “attacking Americans for working hard and being prosperous.”

          Since he did no such thing by any stretch, I’m going to attribute your making things up to the heat.

          • Orwellian_Dilemma

            I guess you missed the speech, then, and just read the summary on Mother Jones.

            • UAWildcatx2

              hahahaha…I needed a good laugh. Straight from the Pope’s mouth to my ears, I heard no such thing. What I heard was an attack on greed, where it exists. An argument to put the human person *above* the almighty dollar. If you don’t believe that’s Christian, then you’re reading too much Joel Osteen.

              • Orwellian_Dilemma

                I’m just saying that Stalinism (which is clearly what the pope is demanding) has never been consistent with Christianity.

                • UAWildcatx2

                  I agree that Stalinism has never been consistent with Christianity. So does Ven. Fulton Sheen. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TZAc1A3bYiY)

                  However, we need to stop having such a Pavlovian reaction to words or phrases. Simply because Pope Francis referenced the “common good” does not mean he’s a Stalinist. Has the Holy Father called for purges? Has he erased people from official pictures from the Holy See?

                  The common good was what was referenced throughout the Acts of the Apostles – in fact, the communal life was the basis for many religious orders! Stalinism, no. Working together to advance the Kingdom, yes.

                  • Orwellian_Dilemma

                    Let’s see, he gave a strong show of support to Fidel Castro while ignoring Christians languishing in Cuban prisons for their faith.

                    I think he made his true sympathies very clear.

                    By the way–the communal life of the apostles gave way to the Pauline instruction that “We were not idle when we were with you, nor did we eat anyone’s food without paying for it. On the contrary, we worked night and day, laboring and toiling so that we would not be a burden to any of you. We did this, not because we do not have the right to such help, but in order to offer ourselves as a model for you to imitate. For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: ‘The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.'”

                    It’s unfortunate that this pope seems more intent on stirring up envy and strife among people rather than helping them.

                    • Joseph

                      He was also very kind to thw US government, despite the fact that the current refugee crisis and the genocide of Middle Eastern Christians is entirely of the making of American foreign policy. Your point?

                      He’s speaking cordially to neo-pagans who invited him to speak.

                • Artevelde

                  As a dedicated Stalinist I must say I’m very disappointed the Pope failed to explicitly mention our beloved Georgian scoundrel.

                  • Andy

                    I really thought you were a Marxist – sorry.

                    • Artevelde

                      That was last week. Read some more blogs since. Marx smacks of centrism. Milquetoast. Stealth Papist. No more Comintern of nice. I intend to be as grandiose as John ”Coriolanus” Zmirak. I am Attila the Hun and I’m coming for you.

                • chezami

                  Today’s most ridiculous and crazy combox remark from the Reactionary Hysterics.

                • Cas

                  “[Stalinism] is clearly what the pope is demanding.”

                  I hit “like” not because I agree, but there are times when someone says something that’s so utterly batshit insane, that a response that is equally detached from reality seems like the only possible response.

                • Joe

                  You need to get away for awhile, stop listening to Fox’s Biggest Moon-calf Brian Kilmeade, watching InfoWars.com, and reading (while moving your lips) Ann Coulter. Maybe go on a vacation, walk in the woods. In short, take chill pill.

            • Andy

              And you read the version presented by Sean Hannity, Ann Coulter and the like.

              • Orwellian_Dilemma

                No, I listened live and read the transcript.

        • Andy

          Specifically – which teaching did he ignore – I listened to and then read his speech and found it very much in line with the teaching of the church and Jesus.

          • Orwellian_Dilemma

            I just challenged someone to point out where in the Bible these teachings supposedly reside.

            I’m particularly interested in the part about stealing from those who work to buy the support of those who won’t–especially in light of 2 Thessalonians 3:10.

            Of course, destroying the world economy to join Tom Steyer’s cult seems to be odd as a Christian principle as well.

            But please, find where in the Bible Christ taught anything like that.

            • UAWildcatx2

              “I’m particularly interested in the part about stealing from those who work to buy the support of those who won’t”

              I am too. Especially since it wasn’t in the speech.

            • Andy

              Where did he say destroy an economy? Where did he say steal from others? Ah the Calvinist interpretation of 3:10 – everyone who doesn’t work is a busybody and undisciplined. Got it – of course the alternative interpretation is that those who stopped working were awaiting the parousia.

            • Hezekiah Garrett

              Dude, if you’re looking for the He-Man Tom Steyer Haters Club, you’re in the wrong room.

              BTW, does he owe you money, or did he reject your advances, because you are fixated on him in a ‘drunk chick who can’t shut up about her ex’ kinda way.

        • KL

          “Wealth redistribution” qualifies as “theft” if you accept the premise that those in possession of excess have more of a claim to that excess than those whose basic needs are not met. Many disagree with you. In fact, the Christian tradition largely disagrees with you.

          • Orwellian_Dilemma

            So, if I work hard, and my neighbor lays around and drinks all day, what I have earned should be taken so that the drunk will vote Democrat because the Bible tells you so?

            Where? I’ll wait.

            • KL

              I seem to recall Jesus saying something about this…

              For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire labourers for his vineyard. After agreeing with the labourers for the usual daily wage, he sent them into his vineyard. When he went out about nine o’clock, he saw others standing idle in the market-place; and he said to them, “You also go into the vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.” So they went. When he went out again about noon and about three o’clock, he did the same. And about five o’clock he went out and found others standing around; and he said to them, “Why are you standing here idle all day?” They said to him, “Because no one has hired us.” He said to them, “You also go into the vineyard.” When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his manager, “Call the labourers and give them their pay, beginning with the last and then going to the first.” When those hired about five o’clock came, each of them received the usual daily wage. Now when the first came, they thought they would receive more; but each of them also received the usual daily wage. And when they received it, they grumbled against the landowner, saying, “These last worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the day and the scorching heat.” But he replied to one of them, “Friend, I am doing you no wrong; did you not agree with me for the usual daily wage? Take what belongs to you and go; I choose to give to this last the same as I give to you. Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or are you envious because I am generous?” – Mt 20:1-15

              • Orwellian_Dilemma

                Interesting, but I don’t see the part where the owner of the vineyard was laying in wait and ambushed the honest worker on the road, stole his wages, and gave them to a drunkard to earn his support in the next election.

                Where in this parable is that part? Because that’s what you and the pope are advocating.

                • UAWildcatx2

                  ” Because that’s what you and the pope are advocating.”
                  That’s the second time you’ve used this specific phrase, yet can’t seem to prove it.

                  My advice: buy a fainting couch. Otherwise when you pass out, you might hit the floor.

                • KL

                  Your brief comments raise so many questions it’s difficult to even enumerate them. 1. Why do you assume the worker is a) honest and b) not paid more than his labor was worth in the first place? 2. Why do you assume the poor person is a “lazy drunkard” and not a single mother working two full-time minimum wage jobs but still cannot earn enough income to house, clothe, and feed her children because wages have not kept pace with the cost of goods and services (nor, let’s recall, actual gains in productivity)? 3. Why do you assume there is “theft” involved when theft is, by definition, the taking by force of someone’s rightfully owned property, and the rightful ownership of that property is in fact the issue at hand? 4. Why do you assume that social services are offered solely for political reasons rather than desire to support the common good? What evidence do you have? 5. If both parties supported social services then there would be no political capital to be gained from doing so; why not suggest that as a solution rather than denouncing the very concept as politically motivated?

                  • Cas

                    Horse hockey! Why did that slut get knocked up in the first place? She must be punished and made to suffer the consequences for her choices! As for her children who had no hand in creating the circumstances they were born into, well, uh… too bad, so sad.

              • Marthe Lépine

                Eh, thank you. I never thought about that parable when I had been trying, in other times and places, to argue about some kind of redistribution.

            • UAWildcatx2

              Nope. It doesn’t. That was quick and easy.

              • Orwellian_Dilemma

                Yet that’s what you and the pope are advocating. Why?

                • UAWildcatx2

                  Where does he say that? I’ll wait.

                • lazybum

                  >>So, if I work hard, and my neighbor lays around and drinks all day, what
                  I have earned should be taken so that the drunk will vote Democrat
                  because the Bible tells you so

                  You have such an innocent outlook on life. Your entire premise is based on agrarian economies, where the land produced based on your work.

                  In modern economies, with division of labor, what you “earn” is determined of your power to “extract” in the production chain. It has no relation to your labor or work.

                  You tell me how an iphone that costs $100 to make, sells for $600, and why almost nothing of that $500 profit goes to the workers who make it. Show me the connection between labor and rewards in that.

            • Marthe Lépine

              On the other hand, that “drunk” (who may be drinking to dull the pain and hopelessness of being unable to find a job with a living wage, for example) may have children who need food to eat and a roof over their heads… Just the fact that you do have the opportunity to work hard at something that pays you well (which you have to recognize is a blessing from God) does not mean that you do not have to share with, maybe not that man, but his children. And… Jesus did not say anything about the poor having to be deserving, in your or our eyes any more than in God the Father’s eyes.

        • Bemused

          Matthew: 34“Then
          the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of
          My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of
          the world.
          35‘For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in;
          36naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’
          37“Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink?
          38‘And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You?
          39‘When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’
          40“The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’

          • Joseph

            Protestants only understand the punitive parts of the Gospel, you should have posted the verses where He talks of those who do *not* do those things.

            • Bemused

              I don’t understand the Protestant obsession with punishment. If you consistently take positive action to be a good person, you don’t really need to spend much time obsessing over how you will be punished for acting wrong.

    • chezami

      “Complete disregard for the teachings of Christ”. Illiteracy and malice are a terrible combination. You should rethink your life.

    • Joe

      I’m sorry. We’re Catholic, we don’t necessarily believe the way you do. What denomination are you part of?

  • Ah I see, so if many diiferent groups of people have different reactions to the Pope’s address and different ideas about where there might have been improvement, then the charitable thing to do is to lump them all in together, compile each complaint into one list and mock everyone altogether.

    Mark, you are really not being charitable as of late, and I for one am very turned off by it. To act like someone like Mark Walsh’s (outspokenly against the war mindset) evenhanded disappointment in the pope not emphasizing abortion is in the same category as someone mad that he didn’t declare war on Iran is not just disingenuous, it’s wrong.

    You constantly lumping in fair disappointment in the emphasis of actual Catholic teaching with people who misunderstand the Church’s position is getting really old. You know exactly what you are doing. Get off your pedestal Mr. Shea.

    • Sigroli

      Get off yours.

      • Do you really think it’s fair for Mark to lump people who are sad that Pope Francis didn’t address abortion in with people who are war hawks?

        Mark does that constantly

        • chezami

          He addressed abortion, appealing to the Golden Rule to protect human life in all stages of development. What he failed to do was use unborn as human shields for downplaying the whole of Catholic social teaching, which is why conservatives are so pissed at him. Indeed, he went after the root causes of abortion, such as the impoverishment of the family and implicitly challenged the anti-abortion-but-not-prolife notion that women get abortions for only one reason: because they are sluts who just enjoy killing their children. He did this by demanding living wage for families so that they are no pressured to abort by fears of poverty. But that sounds liberal, so conservatives tune it out.

          • Ken

            Wait a second are you saying the Pope thinks we’re smart enough to understand nuance?

            • Stu

              I’m not so convinced we do.

              I understand what Papa said. I understand his tact. I support it. It’s his call.

              But I do believe nuance is often used to mask clear teaching. Not always. At the least the dissenters on the Right are open in their dissent. I thnk the Left simply ignores what they don’t like as if it never happened.

              • Athelstane

                But I do believe nuance is often used to mask clear teaching.

                But we know that bishops never do that.

            • Joe

              A total outrage, if true.

            • Marthe Lépine

              Well, in the present post, it seems to me that we were discussing an address to elected representatives in one of the highest chamber of your country. It would seem reasonable for him to think that he was addressing people who were smart enough to understand nuance. Otherwise, why would those people have been elected?

          • Athelstane

            he went after the root causes of abortion, such as the impoverishment of the family

            I just…really. “The root causes of abortion” have a lot less to do with poverty than they do the Sexual Revolution and its aggressive proselytization of all socioeconomic classes. The vast majority of Americans in, say, the 1930’s would qualify as well below the poverty line today and yet the abortion rate was vestigial. Only 18% of women obtaining abortions *today* are teen mothers, and 58% are over the poverty line. “Poverty” is not why Gawker media, Amanda Marcotte, and Lena Dunham are such enthusiasts for abortion. Poverty matters, and we should do more about it; culture matters a great deal more.

            In any event, Mark, the Pope made no effort today to draw any such connections between abortion (or euthanasia) and poverty.

            • chezami

              Yes. Women typically have abortions because they are just sluts who love killing children for fun. Why didn’t he just say that?

              • Athelstane

                Great job, Mark, in caricaturing my comments.

                • Mike Peterik

                  Bad habits are hard to break.

              • Athelstane

                P.S. Few things could better underline my point in a more timely fashion about motivations and attitudes about abortion among some who use it or procure it than #shoutyourabortion, blossoming all over social media this week.

    • chezami

      Overlooking this festival of conservative bitchery at the Holy Father to whine about “charity” is an epic display of your capacity to strain at gnats and swallow camels. Did you have to actually sever your corpus collossum to achieve this or is it some kind of years of zen training?

      • See here’s my problem. Everything is one amorphous group of “conservative” to you. You don’t distinguish the real problematic dissenters from the people who are fairly dissapointed by the focus of some things the Vatican has said.

        • Tom G

          Don’t worry so much about the focus. Why not simply trust Papa Francis’s prudential judgment? Understanding is a gift of faith. Have faith that Christ is at the helm here and now, through this Pope, and understanding will eventually follow. If you don’t trust reliable ol’ anonymous me, trust St. Augustine.

          • ” Why not simply trust Papa Francis’s prudential judgment?”

            I have not expressed that I don’t. I haven’t complained about the Pope’s speech. My complaint is about automatically labeling those who do complain as anti-papists. It’s not charitable and it’s not helpful.

            Some people have honest, measured disagreements and uncertainty with the pope’s methods, others are full of hate and outrage. But to constantly lump the former with the latter, becomes a self fulfilling prophesy because you are just pushing people away. Too many posts are mocking or dismissing them when they are just trying to make sense of very honest (even if wrong) concerns in the context of their very real faith. This blog has become increasingly more mocking and dismissing and I wish Mark would realize that for the sake of those edge cases.

            • Tom G

              If you wish he would realize that, then pray for him to realize that. Who can be converted by a syllogism?

              • Are you suggesting that nobody can change their mind based on a line of reasoning? However the point about praying is well taken. I will refrain from commenting further about the unkindest in Mark’s posts because it is quite obvious that nobody wants to hear it.

            • Tom G

              I understand where you’re coming from, and do think it generally unjustifiable. I think, however, that the bitter taste is provoked by the demonstrable vitriol from those who disagree. That’s not an excuse; merely an explanation. And that explanation is a guess too. I don’t know Mr. Shea personally, and truly cannot presume to speak for him. I can merely speak from experience, really.
              .
              As a lawyer by trade, I’ve learned (through my own mistakes) that responding to vitriol or arrogance with gentleness and extreme humility goes a long way with a jury. Even with all the evidence and law on one’s side, a cross word, slight mockery, or even just an ounce of sarcasm has proved fatal to a case. There was a time when I thought that meant juries are not to be trusted. However, it seems to me now that, because we are not merely floating intellects but are truly that mysterious combination of body and soul, it is simply and undeniably the case that human beings generally NEED truth seasoned with honey. There are, of course, times for harsh words (as Jesus Himself showed us in His treatment of the Pharisees, and even of Peter when he rebuked The Lord for going to Jerusalem knowing He was to be crucified), but gentleness is generally the better path.
              .
              I acknowledge my own absolute hypocrisy on this front. I hope doing so might diminish any impression of self-righteousness I have given in this comment.

          • Athelstane

            Why not simply trust Papa Francis’s prudential judgment?

            One would like to, of course, as a Catholic. Yet it must be remembered that prudence isn’t guaranteed by the Holy Spirit to the Pope – only infallibility. And…anyone tolerably familiar with papal history knows that prudence is a virtue that has not always been on display. Catholics must have a love and proper obedience for the pope, but they are not required to be polyannas.

            This is not to say that Francis is Stephen VI, John XII or Alexander VI. But (to take an example) even the blog owner here has expressed frustration over the appointment by Pope Francis of Cardinal Godfried Daneels, who has been connected with numerous sexual abuse coverups, as a personal papal delegate to the Synod on the Family.

            • chezami

              I would have more regard for the superior prudential judgment of the conservative Francis-haters if they demonstrated one teeny tiny ounce of prudence. But since they have tended to be massively wrong about so much so many times for so long, that’s hard to do.

              • Athelstane

                Well, and here’s the problem some of us keeping trying to point out to you: you make no differentiations: it’s all just one amorphous group of “Francis-haters.” They’re never named or defined.

                Whether some lay folks have superior prudential judgment is neither here nor there, ultimately, in making an imprudent act or statement by a reigning pope any less imprudent (or for that matter, harmful) – like, say, making Cardinal Daneels one of the most prominent papal delegates to the Synod, or, say, tossing out the entire terna presented to him to fill the archdiocese of Chicago in order to personally intervene to appoint as its archbishop the man who banned you and Al Kresta from speaking in his diocese, and effectively banned 40 Days For Life (a USCCB approved pro-life organization) from any contact with parishes in his entire diocese.

                Some Catholics respond to such things with uncharitable and intemperate remarks. Some almost certainly need to go to confession, I’m guessing. But some of us (Carl Olson and Robert Royal leap to mind), however, have tried to reasonably convey that actions like these are cause for legitimate concern without jumping off a schismatic cliff. Yet you don’t bother making any distinctions. It’s just a festival of burning men, many of them made of straw.

        • orual’s kindred

          Everything is one amorphous group of “conservative” to you.

          From what I’ve read, this is quite untrue.

          • This post literally lumped all those people together.

            • orual’s kindred

              My apologies, Disqus has been weird and I’ve been quite preoccupied.

              The post has discussed conservatives who treat Pope Francis rather like the dissenters they claim to oppose. Why other, well-meaning conservatives should take it to mean it applies to them, I do not know.

      • Tom G

        Even a “conservative” observer MUST admit that the conservative media (in this comment defined solely as “breitbart” and “drudge”) is entirely out of line in their reaction.
        .
        Perhaps some think the Pope should have addressed abortion more strongly or left the death penalty alone (wrong). Perhaps some think he should have addressed climate change more strongly or left abortion alone (wrong). Whatever side of that (totally unnecessary) debate one considers oneself to be, one MUST admit it is a prudential decision. And, once one admits it is a prudential decision, one MUST also admit that the Pope’s prudential judgment on what to say in his OWN speech in front of Congress is to be trusted.
        .
        Am I really watching what deep down I had dreaded when I started taking a slight interest in politics in college? Namely, that the “right” would become so consumed with “defeating” the left that they would become the very thing they detested?
        .
        “To what shall I compare this generation? It is like children who sit in marketplaces and call to one another, ‘We played the flute for you, but you did not dance, we sang a dirge but you did not mourn.’ For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they said, ‘He is possessed by a demon.’ The Son of Man came eating and drinking and they said, ‘Look, he is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.’ But wisdom is vindicated by her works.”
        .
        I am sick at heart.

        • Ken

          As if the Pope’s job isn’t hard enough we now have social media which makes anyone with an internet connection an expert on being the Pope. It’s impossible.

          • Joe

            Oh puh-lease! It all started with Geocities and you know it!

      • dave1964

        Bitchery? Really? Was there some creative writing contest I wasn’t made aware of? Could it just be disappointment? Be charitable. I think some of the stated concern stems from the perception that the Holy Father seems to be hammering away at things which can properly be viewed as matters of prudential judgment over which good Catholics of all political stripes may disagree in good faith, and otherwise remain Catholics in good standing, e.g., how much of climate change is truly manmade, and what is the proper response to same; how best to stimulate economic growth to help provide a living wage to all working Americans, and how best to regulate immigration while balancing the economic and security interests of the nation with the needs of true refugees from oppression. There are many different and defensible positions on these questions.
        However, the Pope seems to gloss over other issues like abortion (by referring to it only obliquely), and other moral issues which are more or less unambiguous.Abortion is an issue which does not lend itself to valid viewpoints all around. It needs to be condemned directly and strongly as the most heinous human rights violation in the world today. Even if it is controversial. And to say, well, most people already know the Church’s stance on this, is beside the point. This was not an informational seminar.

        • Joe

          If “witchery” is a word, why not “bitchery.” It seems to follow all the morphological rules of English grammar.

      • Julian Barkin

        +1 for the clever puns. Your getting just as sharp tongued as Fr. Z!!!

  • Joseph

    FB can’t read between the lines. FB doesn’t understand who is included in human life *at all stages of development*. FB doesn’t understand what the Pope could possibly mean by protecting the family (cause unless the family is under attack by something, what in the world does it need to be protected from). FB, in an act of blasphemy, doesn’t associate Jesus with God. Basically, either FB is very, very stupid, is filled with people who think one can be a Christian without believing that Jesus is God, or is simply anti-Catholic. I’d say it’s the third option.

  • Jim the Scott

    Forget Facebook what about Breitbart?

    In on swoop they can print articles attacking the Pope and accusing him of downplaying abortion yet praise him and say he is sticking it to Obama for visiting the Little Sisters of the Poor.

    I agree with John Wright. I am so tired of the Lazy right wing media just as I am tired of the lazy leftwing media.

    But I agree with my wife. Foxnews is nice.

  • mitchd

    Some of these are fair questions to ask. Take abortion as one example. If the word abortion is equal to a disrespect of life at all stages of development then the Pope could have used the word abortion. But words matter and he didn’t say abortion, did not condemn the vote to continue late-term abortions, didn’t mention PPact precisely because it would have offended his audience and made some people uncomfortable. By using the more vague term of respect for human life at all stages of development the Pope gives those who support abortion an out in that they get to decide when you start counting stages of life. Its left up to the individual. They can feel good about themselves because they too can say they support life at all stages of development – as they see it.

    Next take support of families. Well who doesn’t like families? By not saying specifically what he means by “family” the Pope leaves all types of families as something which are all of equal worth. Single-parent familes – yay who needs marriage? Same-sex parented families – yay gay marriage. Divorce and re-marriage – hey its all good! After all they are all families and the Pope made no distinction.

    I don’t understand why the Pope should ever have to act as a politician or a diplomat as Father Longnecker suggest. He is the Vicar of Christ. He is not a diplomat and not a politician. By not offending anybody he manages to offend everybody. Full disclosure, I love the Pope. I don’t understand the whys, but I trust he knows what he is doing.

    • Bemused

      One of the things the Pope has said in the past is that the Catholic church has been very clear on it’s position on abortion and SSM and that everyone knows what those positions are, but that there are a number of less publicized positions that are just as important that he would like to see emphasized as well. It looks like maybe he was putting that into practice.

      • mitchd

        That could be. I’m just saying if ever there was a more perfect time or place to be explicit on abortion it was there in that chamber before that body who two days earlier voted on late-term abortions and PPact funding is still in dispute.

        • Bemused

          Given the amount of airtime that abortion already gets, the only real reason to put it in the speech would have been to score political points. That doesn’t seem to have been his goal.

          • mitchd

            Income inequality, immigration, care of refugees, and climate change are all political issues getting plenty of airtime and I’m happy he brought all those things up.

            • Marthe Lépine

              Maybe, but unfortunately many of the anti-abortion but not pro-life people, who often are also Catholics, just have not heard that part of the Church teaching yet. Of course, they are politically raised issues, but it seems to me that those who raise them are too easily dismissed as being on the left, or, worse, Democrats. Maybe at this point in time it is more important to first re-convert the Catholics.

        • Marthe Lépine

          As I see it, the Pope
          does not need to just repeat what large numbers of anti-abortion people have been
          saying over and over again, since by now those who did not hear the message
          must be very rare (although “hearing the message” and really
          listening are 2 very different things). Actually, I assume it might be what
          Pope Francis meant when he said that it was not necessary to talk about that,
          and other pelvic, issues all the time.

      • Athelstane

        How does the death penalty – which, by the way, remains a licit punishment (albeit one whose requisite conditions are seen as rarely to be found in developed societies) under the Catechism, which reaffirms the constant and unchanged teaching of the Church from the beginning – get viewed as “just as important” as abortion and euthanasia, both intrinsic evils? Especially given that more than twice as many babies were aborted today alone than sentencees have been executed in the U.S. since the restoration of the death penalty in 1976?

        From his passion on the subject, today and previously, one might almost think Francis really does think it’s as important, or even more so. But would he actually say that if asked? Would Benedict, John Paul, or any previous pope?

        • Bemused

          It becomes just as important to talk about because the Church has already applied the maximum amount of available force (right up to and sometimes crossing over into violence) to the abortion issue, so any possible further advancement (with the current strategy) on the issue would be minutely incremental at best, while there is much more room for movement on other concerns.

          • Athelstane

            1. I have difficulty seeing how claiming that it is just as important to talk about isn’t a just distinction without a difference. When an evil is as vast and great as this one, difficulty in changing minds doesn’t make the task any less urgent or necessary. Had Pius XI gone to speak to the Mexican legislature during the Calles regime and decided to devote his address to eliminating the death penalty since banging on and on about massacring Catholics had clearly not changed PRI officials’ minds about killing Catholics, most Catholics would be reasonably left to wonder if it was really that important now to the Pope (and Mexican Cristeros would reasonably feel deeply betrayed). Unlike the Cristeros, alas, the unborn cannot speak for themselves.

            2. I am at a loss to know what you are referring to by saying that the Church – the Church, mind you, not independent pro-life groups – has “applied force right up to and sometimes crossing over into violence.” I am not aware of any instances where Church officials have been complicit in organizing physical violence in trying to stop abortion. If you cannot cite instances of this, I fear you may be indulging in calumny.

            More broadly, I think a lot of us would not agree that the Church has done nearly as much as it can to stop abortion. For most of the post-1973 period, nearly all of the pro-life burden was carried by Catholic laity, not bishops or priests. George McKenna detailed this tepid response by U.S. bishops in his 2007 Human Life Review article, “Criss-Cross: Democrats, Republicans, and Abortion.” It is a sobering read.

            • Bemused

              1. Those other things that the Pope talks about? Economic fairness, recognition of work and family, strengthening supports and ties of the family? Those along with proper healthcare and less judgment and shaming are far more practical ways to reduce abortion than lecturing Congress yet again. Also, the Catholic church has repeatedly, and in an ongoing and vigorous fashion, already spent decades speaking out strongly against abortion.

              2. In the 90s, the diocese I was in explicitly invited Operation Rescue and the Lambs of Christ to recruit at the local Catholic high schools. We were required to attend their recruitment meeting, held during school hours. Their actions (including the violence in which they seem to revel) were endorsed in our religion classes where pictures of abortion doctors with targets on them or red Xs and the doctors addresses printed on them were passed out the class and stories of “discouragement” were told with pride, by our religion teachers. I had at least on classmate who was excused from school to join in several “actions” by the Lambs of Christ (there may have been more than one, but the girl who was excused and I had a conversation about it, so I knew about her). You may choose to believe or not believe, but the Church was at very least heavily complicit in those groups and their actions (including the violent ones). You may agree with the actions of those groups. However, for me, watching the Church endorse violence against any group of people, even a group they believed were wrong, created a huge spiritual crisis and I will never forget it.

              Fortunately, my pre-highschool and post highschool experience with the Church and my Catholic family culture helped me to remember that there were many more positive aspects of the Church, and that the endorsement of violence wasn’t the true message of the Church.

              • Athelstane

                1. Those along with proper healthcare and less judgment and shaming are far more practical ways to reduce abortion than lecturing Congress yet again. Or they would be if anyone had empirical evidence showing that were true. Shaming is, in fact, quite effective as a behavioral modification phenomenon. If it weren’t, we wouldn’t see the relentless campaigns against homophobia, tobacco smoking and other social ills on display like we do.

                Look, I’m something a good deal closer to the distributist than a capitalist. But I’ve seen too many abortion stories to have illusions on this score. Poverty plays a role for some, but for a great number, it reduces down to selfishness – on the part of the mother or the father, or even the grandparents. No amount of money will change the equation for them.

                2. I don’t know what to say about your anecdote; I am not questioning your veracity, but very few dioceses have even been willing to have a connection with Operation Rescue (I do not approve of all their methods, for the record). On its face it sounds at worst like remote material cooperation, unless diocesan officials have direct knowledge of these specific expressions and tactics – or would, if actual acts of violence (which are, in aggregate, extremely, almost vanishingly rare) resulted from them.

                But in dioceses I have lived in, it’s been mostly avoided or soft-pedaled. That is starting to change in recent years in a couple of them, but only gradually. Again, I’d direct you to the McKenna article.

                • Bemused

                  1. I think I wasn’t clear re the direction of the shaming. A reason some women have an abortion is due to the shame of being pregnant and unmarried. And the selfishness is there, sure, in some cases, but there are also a number of other issues including economic stability that play in. Statistically speaking, the best way to reduce abortion is readily available birth control and good sex-ed, but I don’t think the Church is likely to endorse those, at least not at this juncture 😛 .

                  2. The Mid-west/Plains dioceses (The Dakotas, Nebraska, Kansas, Iowa, Missouri, etc) around the Summer of Mercy era were pretty, um, enthusiastic regarding anti-abortion actions (regardless of what type of action it was) and it would have been impossible for them to be unaware of the tactics, since they taught us about them. Maybe the coasts have not been as involved, but my experience was more in the middle of the country.

            • Hezekiah Garrett

              OK, so you’re a clericalist.

              But that’s about all the information I could glean from your comment.

              • Athelstane

                Hello Hezekiah,

                I suppose we would need to define “clericalist.”

                I have been at the wrong end of clerical abuse of authority more than once myself, so I suspect we may be operating from different definitions of that term.

    • chezami

      Right. Nobody has any idea whether the Church opposes abortion anymore. No idea.

      How silly.

      • mitchd

        I never said that. I said the choice of words was made so as not to offend anybody. So all things being equal then, Mark, why not name the sin?

        • Joe

          Because it isn’t a sin to *not* offend people. In fact, most would say it’s the opposite.

          • mitchd

            Joe this doesn’t make any sense. Jesus did often did not mince words when it came to sin. The object is not to offend, it is to tell the truth. Offense taken is not the same as offense given.

            • Hezekiah Garrett

              “Joe this doesn’t make any sense. Jesus did often did not mince words when it came to sin.”

              I agree completely that doesn’t make much sense. Excellent deployment of the exceedingly rare ‘double positive’.

              • mitchd

                Thanks, I put a lot of work into it.

      • Athelstane

        Mark: Ask any of the pro-aborts who make up a large slice of Congress and were present whether they thought Francis even brought up the subject of abortion this morning. Then ask them what he thinks of the death penalty.

        They can certainly tell what Francis is really worked up about. It’s what he spent an entire paragraph denouncing fervently by name – a judicial punishment that the Vatican employed itself, often quite regularly, for all of its 13 centuries as a civil power until 1969.

        But perhaps it’s demonic of me to express some concern about that.

        • chezami

          NPR got the message loud and clear: http://www.npr.org/sections/itsallpolitics/2015/09/24/443081898/the-10-most-political-moments-in-pope-francis-address-to-congress It’s ironic that lefties got it instantly and only righties bound and determined to find wood for the auto de fe plugged their ears and ignored the obvious point of his words.

          • Athelstane

            Well, good for NPR. Of course, they burn three times as much word count on the death penalty, which is not quite as extreme as the disparity in Francis’s own speech. Meanwhile, the New York Times made a quick reference to abortion buried down at the bottom of the (quite long) story, but noted the same thing that Rusty Reno did at FT: “But the liberal references in his speech were explicit and extended while the conservative ones were more veiled and concise.” At ThinkProgress, Salon and Vox, abortion didn’t make the cut at all. The Washington Post story expressly denied it was even mentioned. Perhaps most tellingly, The Hill (which one expects to have a reasonable pulse on congressional reactions) also expressly denied that abortion ever came up. (I’m dropping out the links because I keep getting kicked out.)

            I will just add that I have friends who are staffers on the Hill, and the talk was mostly about the death penalty on both sides, and how hard it was to understand his accent. Whatever Francis’s intent, the indirect abortion reference (assuming it was that, which I tend to assume) was easy to miss.

            • Joseph

              Because they’re trolling idiots on the Right, that’s why. Geez, the GOPers are so easy to wind up.

  • johnnysc

    I thought it was a great speech. It was interesting how he saved the beginning for the end. He ended with the the need to protect the unborn and the acknowledgement of the attack on the family. He pretty much was saying go the beginning of Genesis with God blessing the family and to be fruitful and multiply and you will understand everything I talked of previously. Respecting and treasuring life from it’s conception.

    I also saw complaints about not mentioning Jesus. What he did was bring the Catholic Church and it’s doctrine to Congress. Jesus Christ and the Catholic Church are One and the Same so Jesus was very much there. You encounter people where they are. If you are talking to someone who does not believe in Jesus you speak to them in a way that prompts them to ask ‘where do you get this from?’ Then you tell them the Good News of Jesus Christ and His Church, the Catholic Church.

    __________________

  • Tom G

    The combox of this post is completely out of hand. Woah.

    • chezami

      Francis, like a good exorcist, tends to draw the demons out into the open.

      • Tom G

        Like a good exorcist, Pope Francis is there! (You know the jingle.)

        • Tom G

          That wasn’t meant to be insulting or blasphemous. If it was either, can you please delete? Thank you.

          • Joe

            It was neither. But it *was* horrible. Now I can’t stop thinking of the Jingle That Shall Not Be Named!

      • 09252015

        you’re a very ugly person. Ugly in the way you argue, and ugly in the way you dehumanize others. Your words are divisive, mean-spirited, and just ugly.

        • Marthe Lépine

          Like yours…

        • chezami

          Aw, did you get hurt in the feels because I don’t take seriously the endless bitching about everything Francis says and does?

          • 09252015

            nope, I just mean that the content of your words is uncharitable and ugly. The tone of your argumentation is mean-spirited. The way in which you reduce people and individuals is childish and immature. The way in which you treat dissenting views, even those that are respectfully offered as several others on here are, shows something about you and your character which is disordered and defective.

            You can have all the same opinions without the tone of a teenager. Why you choose to debase yourself by writing this way, talking this way, thinking this way, is very surprising.

            You knock down your own straw men, and then complain about the effort it takes to put them up, while writing in a style that’s purposefully immature. Maybe you should take a break from writing for a while, if the title of your blog is “Catholic and enjoying it” it really sounds like you’re lying in the second part of that statement.

            • orual’s kindred

              I can’t speak for Mark Shea, but plenty of what’s been said in this thread is good cause to get angry. And what he’s written is directed against what’s been said (as well as the attitude and framework informing what’s been said). Also, this is a particularly Catholic topic, and he is a Catholic blogger. And since this is an on-going topic, it’s not exactly a subject that he has to make an effort to dig up and write about. His enjoyment would be a secondary matter. In fact, him enjoying the irrationality of certain comments here would be good cause for concern.

              And what you’ve called “immaturity” is sarcasm. You may not like it, but it’s not “the tone of a teenager.” Interestingly, much of your criticisms are rather subjective.

        • Joseph

          Oh yeah, well you’re ugly in the ugly parts, ugly man! So there!

        • LFM

          Sigh. I have my objections to the direction this blog has taken. I also think Mr Shea’s tone has become too angry and polemical/political, compared to the jovial, if sometimes fierce, tone it once had. But this is a childish and silly way to raise the issue with him.

    • Ken

      Will this exceed the craziness of Father Barron going to hell debate? I doubt it but we’re on a roll.

  • Dan13

    In the 10 year or so history of Facebook, no one has ever won an argument. Perhaps people should stop arguing over religion and use Facebook as God intended it: for picture of your kids if you are a young mother, pictures of your vacations if you are a dual-income no kids person, or pictures of your intoxicated state last Friday night if you are young and single.

    • Marthe Lépine

      You forget another good use of Facebook: Some friends who have adult children living in other towns and cities, and many grandchildren, find it very useful to keep in touch. Long-distance phone calls can be to expensive for a senior on a fixed and limited budget. Although I agree, using it for argument is not very useful.

    • Pete the Greek

      “use Facebook as God intended it”
      – AHAHAHAHAH!!!! Yes! Believe that!!

      I’m just kidding. But, no, that’s not what Facebook is for. I will tell you what it is for:

      Facebook is designed so that you will go on and give as much personal info as you can. You will be tempted to like LOTS of things: pages, groups, popular figures. It’s all so you can get news and updates, right?

      WRONG!! BWAHAHAHA!!!!!

      You see, Facebook uses all that data to compile analytics on you. It then turns all of you into a searchable database for it’s real target: paying advertisers. THAT, ladies and gents, is the purpose of Facebook.

      Remember, if you aren’t paying for the product or service, then YOU are the product.

      • Marthe Lépine

        And don’t forget data for some agencies suspected of spying on the population…

        • Pete the Greek

          Meh, they don’t have to do anything special to do that.

          Interested to see just HOW much Facebook learns about people? Use the far right dropdown in facebook and go to either ‘Create Ads’ or ‘Manage Ads’. Then go to Tools dropdown and click on Audience Insights.

          You will be quite surprised.

    • Athelstane

      In truth, these days it probably is not safe to put up photos of your young children online – and you’re probably best off not letting the older ones setting social media accounts.

      But you’re largely right about arguments never being won on FB. It happens every once in a great while between people of good will, like a Phillies World Series victory, but otherwise…

  • ManyMoreSpices

    Well, I thought it was a splendid address. It’s not the one I would have given, but who gives a shit? It was orthodox and I don’t disagree with a word of it.

    The worst I can say about it, and about the Holy Father generally? I don’t think Francis has his priorities straight. But that’s a third-order (read: trivial) objection. I’m with Ross Douthat on this one: “The Holy Father’s politics, as w/his predecessors, defy easy right-left categorization. Not sure that’s true of his political *priorities.*”

  • Steve

    This is something FB doesn’t get… and I need to spend more time learning it and living it:

    “Pastoral ministry in a missionary style is not obsessed with the disjointed transmission of a multitude of doctrines to be insistently imposed. When we adopt a pastoral goal and a missionary style which would actually reach every one without exception or exclusion, the message has to concentrate on the essentials, on what is most beautiful, most grand, most appealing and at the same time most necessary. The message is simplified, while losing none
    of its depth and truth, and thus becomes all the more forceful and convincing.”
    (EG 35)

    “Before all else, the Gospel invites us to respond to the God of love who saves us, to see God in others and to go forth from ourselves to seek the good of others. Under no circumstance can this invitation be obscured! All of the virtues are at the service of this response of love. If this invitation does not radiate
    forcefully and attractively, the edifice of the Church’s moral teaching risks
    becoming a house of cards, and this is our greatest risk. It would mean that it is not the Gospel which is being preached, but certain doctrinal or moral points based on specific ideological options. The message will run the risk of losing its freshness and will cease to have ‘the fragrance of the Gospel.’” (EG 39)

    “All of this has great relevance for the preaching of the Gospel, if we are really concerned to make its beauty more clearly recognized and accepted by all. Of course, we will never be able to make the Church’s teachings easily understood by everyone. Faith always remains something of a cross; it retains a certain obscurity which does not detract from the firmness of its assent. Some things are understood and appreciated only from the standpoint of this assent, which is a sister to love, beyond the level of clear reasons and arguments. We need to remember that all religious teaching ultimately has to be reflected in the teacher’s way of life, which awakens the assent of the heart by its nearness, love and witness.” (EG 42)

  • Ken

    Here are the things that the Pope totally missed today:
    Should I bench Andrew Luck in my Fantasy Football league? He’s just not getting it done.
    Why are the receipts at CVS so long? Who needs a five foot receipt?
    What was the deal with the end of Birdman? That didn’t make any sense at all.
    You see, it’s all about me and what I wanted to hear. It has nothing to do with the office of the Pope and the Holy Spirit guiding him on his mission on earth.

    • Tom G

      Hahahaha oh this is just terrific.

    • Andy

      I would bench Andrew Luck this weekend – just checked the pope’s twitter account that is his plan.

      • Ken

        He’s finally getting to the important stuff.

    • Dan13

      It depends on if you are in a 10 or 12 team league. If you are in an 8 team league, well even the Pope would say that is sad.

  • tj.nelson

    Duck and cover because when the Pope addressed the Bishops he said: ‘Seamless garment”! OMGosh!

    “Consequently, the Church, “the seamless garment of the Lord” cannot allow herself to be rent, broken or fought over.” P. Francis

    I agree with Fr. Martin – this Pope is prophetic. What a blessing for our country.

    The Holy Father has surely pricked my conscience in his message.

    “If a good man rebukes me, it is kindness!’

    God bless you and your readers Mark!

  • sick of it

    One thing is for sure I never, ever want to hear Catholics whine about “media bias” EVER AGAIN. Your sect of Christianity has received more free advertising in the last two days than all other religions put together over the last five years and I’m tired of it. 24/7 365 the MSM gushing over the head of an anti-woman, anti-gay organization because he’s more telegenic and mouths nice things. he even gets away with (literally!) canonizing a practitioner of genocide in Junipero Serra.

    I miss Benedict he was the true face of your church.

    • freddy

      YAWN!
      Seriously, folks. When are we going to get some creative anti-Catholics around here? You know, somebody who actually knows what the Church teaches.
      Oh and, yeah, St. Junipero Serra was in fact literally canonized. He was not, of course a practitioner of genocide. Pick up a book someday. You might be surprised to find that the anti-Catholic vomit you so readily regurgitate is wrong.

    • Joe

      You need to get away for awhile, stop listening to Melissa Harris-Perry and watching MSNBC, and reading (or mouthing the words of) Antonio Gramsci. Maybe go on a vacation, walk in the woods. In short, take chill pill.

      • sick of it

        Are you serious? MSNBC is gushing over Francis and so is every other left media outlet even Alternet is printing positive coverage. Most absurd thing I’ve ever seen in my life.

        • Joe

          I highly doubt it, but you hardly seem lucid enough to realize it.

    • LFM

      Yes, he was the true face of our Church. A good man.

      You, meanwhile, are likely an atheist lapsed from an American evangelical background, with a chip on his shoulder about the Catholic Church as a world power.

  • Joe

    FB needs to get away for awhile, stop listening to Rush Limbaugh and watching Fox News, and reading (or mouthing the words of) Ann Coulter. Maybe go on a vacation, walk in the woods. In short, take chill pill.

    • Rebecca Fuentes

      FB needs a beach and a margarita. Or maybe it makes me need those.

  • Vince Blackshadow

    Jeez, you are a fat bore. Please never let me stumble across this place again.

    • Joe

      We’ll pray that you don’t.

    • chezami

      Reactionaries seem to unfailingly think that calling somebody fat is a devastating argument.

      • Joe

        It isn’t a devastating argument at all. Calling you “big-boned” would’ve been since that can’t be helped (except by abstaining from milk and other sources of calcium, but then where would you be?).

      • Pete the Greek

        He’s just jealous that your milkshake brings all the commenters to the yard.

        🙂

        • That’s not a lyric I ever expected to find in these comboxes!

      • Joseph

        But what if he called you Fatty Fat Fat, huh?

        • chezami

          That *would* leave me wriggling in the crushing grip of logic.

    • Dan13

      Blasphemy!

      (actually your post kinda is; what do you think you are abbreviating?)

    • LFM

      Nobody asked you, Sir, she said.

  • Caroline

    “Here, together with their representatives, I would like to take this opportunity to dialogue with the many thousands of men and women who strive each day to do an honest day’s work, to bring home their daily bread, to save money and — one step at a time — to build a better life for their families,” said Francis.

    I was struck by this, the save money part to build over time better lives for one’s family and to provide for one’s old age also, I assume. I’ve never heard the church teach anything like this–that it is good to be responsible, to save, and as far as possible take care of oneself and not burden other people. I think the Pope learned this from his Italian immigrant parents the way I learned this from my German immigrant parents. But does the Church teach this?

    • freddy

      Caroline, that’s a good point. I’m no expert, but it seems that yes, this is part of what the Church teaches. It’s sort of wrapped up in the body of teaching known as social justice, which is dense and tricky and not very well understood or taught. One of the ideas often discussed is the right role of government, which has as its core duty to provide the type of environment in which a family can thrive — the family as the basic unit of society and “domestic church.” I’m sure I’m explaining this very badly! But if we think of the gospels, often Our Lord performs miracles at the heart of which is the restoration or uplifting of a family. I’m remembering the wedding at Cana, or curing Jairus’ daughter, or restoring to life the son of the widow of Naim. Then, too, we have the examples of the domestic churches in Acts, as well as whole households being baptized, and I think these families then, as today, serve as both starting points as well as refuges in society. Families, then must have means for their hard work to be rewarded and respected, and be able to provide better lives for their children, to accomplish their mission of growing the kingdom of God.

    • Kurt 20008

      It goes back to Rerum Novarum. The Church teaches that a just wage not only should provide for a person’s immediate needs, but should be sufficient enough to save for illness, retirement, etc. Though these needs can also be addressed by social insurance or union benefits.

    • Marthe Lépine

      When a family has hardly enough income to both pay the rent and feed the children, for example when a family has to pay more than 1/3 of its income, or more, for the rent because of the unavailability of affordable housing as well as their low wages, it is not fair, or maybe even Christian, to fault them for not saving money in order to take care of themselves and not burden other people. Personal responsibility is a fine idea, but living wages would certainly help…

  • Athelstane

    On the whole, Mark Shea is very very displeased with angry FB Catholics for not living up to Mark Shea’s extremely rigorous standards of papal obedience.

    Some excommunications may be in order.

    • Andy

      And there are FB Catholics who are dismissing the pope for not living up to their demands that he speak how they want.

    • prairiebunny

      The Pope did mention the other day that Cocoa Puffs are his favorite cereal so Shea went ahead and made Cocoa Puffs part of the Magisterium.If you don’t like Cocoa Puffs don’t even bother going to church next sunday.

  • Pete the Greek

    Here are some random entries from Facebook comments on articles about the Holy Father’s address from my newsfeed. These were taken at random. I could have copied down many dozens more:

    *****

    This man is either completely out of his mind or he is the purest strain of evil.

    The visit by the pope is interesting in that he is head of the world’s largest demonic cult.

    He is (along with all popes before him) followers of Satan, trying to claim equality with God.

    He’s a damn communist devil.

    Haven’t ruled him out as the Antichrist.

    He is a huge proponent of the UNs Agenda 2030. One World government is just 15 years away

    That cat has been smok’n on Obot’s monkey dope pipe.

    He’s a fascist,socialist pig.As a reformed Catholic,I know the faith.What he preaches isn’t what the church believes.

    How could you stand that disgusting voice that long. I wanted to tape his mouth shut.

    *****

    To be clear, I don’t think this is anywhere near the majority of people, or even the majority of actual Conservatives. What you learn when you hunt about on the internet is that trolls like these, much like skinheads, aren’t really so numerous as they are loud and have the time to get on and troll.

    • Marthe Lépine

      “Reformed Catholic”? (2nd to last entry) That is frightening, since I recently have been talking, hopefully “tongue in cheek”, of a possible Reformed Catholic Church of America. I am very sad to see that I might have been correct…

      • Joseph

        Schisms have been happening since the Apostolic Age. Nothing new under the sun.

  • Pete the Greek

    Little things about certain comments grabbed me. For example:

    “…It goes without saying that part of this great effort is the creation and distribution of wealth.”
    – Note what the Holy Father DOESN’T say: He doesn’t spout some Bernie Sander-esque ‘eat the rich’ bullsh*t. He doesn’t even just say ‘DISTRIBUTION’ of wealth, as I’m sure he’s aware that that’s a meaningless gesture.

    He says ‘creation’ AND ‘distribution’. I don’t think I would be putting words in his mouth by saying he would consider such creation to be REAL wealth generation, use of capital, growth of jobs, and not what so many seem to think, such as just the accumulation of debt for consumption or debasing our future to buy here and now.

    Just some random thoughts.

    • Joseph

      Of course. He speaks of families earning just wages so they can build for the future generations… which implies capital (but in a human and sacrificial sense). So he’s clearly *not* saying what the media and FB are accusing him of saying.

  • David

    “By using the more vague term of respect for human life at all stages of development the Pope gives those who support abortion an out in that they get to decide when you start counting stages of life. Its left up to the individual. They can feel good about themselves because they too can say they support life at all stages of development – as they see it.”

    Let’s not be naive. People who defend abortion (or any other sin) routinely hijack language and change definitions so as to pretend their sin never took place. There’s no such thing as common sense with these people, *especially* leftists, and they’ll gladly play the word games with you if you engage them. Point out a dog right in front of their faces, and they’ll literally say “cat” instead.

    “Abortion? No, I had a ‘procedure’!”

    However, every sane human being with common sense knows what the Pope meant in his address. If you’re fretting over the people who don’t, understand that they’re willfully out of touch with reality and reason in the first place. Pray for them, and reason with the people who will still *use* their reason.

  • I fear the pope’s speech was a great opportunity (somewhat) lost. Explicitly supporting and explicitly challenging both sides of the aisle on major issues would have been an even more powerful message. For instance, the sanctity of human life means that (if possible) the guilty should be spared AND that the innocent unborn should (always) be protected. I support a seamless approach (the Catholic “both-and”) but today the protection of the unborn was presented like the garment’s small tag.

    • David

      Not at all, because even the enemies of the Church knows what our position is, no matter how much they feign ignorance. It’s a simple yet powerful reaffirmation of what is true and good (total defense and protection of the developing human being, which, among other things, *clearly* means thou shall not kill those in the womb with abortion), while also briging to light another issue that many didn’t think the Pope would address (the death penalty).

      Let’s not play stupid for the murderers. The gig is (and has been!) up for them.

      • Perhaps. Yet I had a non-Catholic friend who told me awhile back that Pope Francis supported gay marriage. Subtlety can be too subtle for many and miscommunicate the relative importance of today’s moral issues. If Pope Francis had simply used the word “unborn” somehow, that would have been enough for me.

        • David

          Except it isn’t enough *for them*. Leftists love playing word games with people; they have and continue to use euphemisms for abortion (“sexual rights”, “procedures”, “operations”, etc.) in order to pretend that their truly wicked crimes don’t exist. Literally.

          Instead of worrying about the word games with leftists, speak to those who use their reason. Those people know that the Pope condemns abortion.

  • orual’s kindred

    I came across this:

    https://instagram.com/p/8BNOdmgVf5/

    Now, I must commend the person, who has since retracted this particular comment, noting a failure to grasp the full context of the pope’s statement. I would have thought, however, that the statement was clearly about illegal arms trading/global armed conflict. This instance seems to illustrate how deeply the left-right divide in U.S. politics has influenced the way people weigh these matters. Outside of a specific liberal vs conservative reference, I don’t know how could it be taken as rhetoric for liberal-supported gun control.

    The image, likewise, got me thinking. I’m afraid I see no guns. I see men whose job requires them to protect individuals who, due to their position in society, are in immidiate danger of attack/assasination. Guns are only one of the means by which these men carry out that responsibility. These men have their talents, skills, training, and a host of other resources available to them. These men are not their weapons; these men are men.

    (Also, this got me thinking that, if it can be said that ‘guns don’t kill people, people kill people’, then perhaps it can also be said that ‘guns don’t protect people, people protect people.’)

    • Pete the Greek

      Yup.

  • LFM

    This is thoughtless, divisive ranting from someone who used to try to promote concord among Catholics.

    Obviously the reason people were not troubled by the fact that previous popes did not mention abortion or other controversial issues during major public addresses is that no one was in any sense confused about their views on these issues. Many people are confused by Pope Francis, and while much of that confusion may be media-generated, it is not necessarily illegitimate nor based on “right-wing Catholic paranoia”, a concept which is itself a media creation with only a vague connection to reality.

    • orual’s kindred

      Well, this is a funny joke 🙂 There are far too many who, to this day, are confused and ill-informed about the views of the previous popes. Even among right-leaning people, there are people who barely grasp what those great men have said about Church teaching. Catholic paranoia likewise is quite present in non-Catholic, right-wing media.

      • LFM

        I know what the other popes said. Tell me something: If there is really NO appreciable difference between JP II, Benedict, and Francis I, why do the media react to them so differently? Is it just their (i.e. the media’s) random stupidity, or is it possible that Francis is choosing to emphasize certain truths at the expense of others?

        If Francis emphasized Catholics truths equally, like John Paul and Benedict, who were as liable to criticize capitalism as abortion in their public statements, it is quite likely that he would have been rejected by the media. But Francis is very reticent, evasive and cagey to the point of ambiguity, about what are sometimes called “pelvic issues”, while he flaunts his “progressive” views.

        One of the reasons I am annoyed by Mark’s attacks on “conservative American Catholics” and their follies is that most of the criticisms of Francis I see do not come from conservative Catholics but from American Protestants and from sede-vacantists, who can hardly be called “conservative” and who certainly do not consider Francis to be worse in any significant way than his immediate predecessors. Conservative Catholics (and I use the word in its literal rather than political sense) are more bewildered than angered by Francis, but if they are repeatedly told that they are stupid, ignorant and ill-willed, it is possible that some of them will be alienated from the Church, and a few may move towards the more radical version of Catholicism offered by the rad trads and the sede-vacantists.

        • Joseph

          I think we have an idiot who hasn’t read the Pope’s speech to the UN!

          • LFM

            The present Pope has made many statements, some clear and others confusing. My intent in this thread is not to focus on what the Pope has or has not said, but on the fact that many people on both sides of the political divide have jumped to inaccurate conclusions about him (possibly because of his own verbal ambiguity but perhaps for quite different reasons), and that this does not justify calling some of them fools or evil or political zealots or any of the other accusations I have encountered here. I am disappointed by this blog’s increasing willingness (and that of its readers) to berate and abuse other readers who do not follow its line 100%.

        • orual’s kindred

          From what I’ve read, Mark Shea’s criticisms are directed at self-described conservatives who, by word and/or deed, specifically go against Catholic teaching. These people are not being criticized for identifying as conservatives. What’s being criticized is the disobedience to Christ’s Church. Now, because of their ideology, the way in which they do is within the framework of that particular ideology. That is to be expected. Self-described liberal dissenters (who Mark Shea likewise criticizes for) do the same. So that aspect will reflect in the criticism. Also, these words and/or actions are often committed stupidly, in ignorance; sometimes, with ill will. Those will be part of the criticism too.

          It follows logically that none of this is directed at conservatives who question Pope Francis or the Church with goodwill. Of course, people who unwittingly resort to comments or rhetoric that shortchanges the pope or the Church will have such comments criticized. That is not to criticize them for identifying as conservatives, either.

          Now, it is a human tendency to identify with certain ideologies. However, it is also our responsibility, as rational creatures, to discern what, in our speech and actions, is being questioned. It is likewise our responsibility to remember that we as persons are more than the cultural allegiances we may feel strongly about. Our identities do not depend on political parties or social groups. It may be questioned why some Catholics, liberal or conservative, apparently feel so burned when their affiliations are criticized. It may also be questioned why their obedience to the Church should hinge upon criticisms others make regarding their ideologies. It certainly does them no good to passive-aggressively consider leaving the Church over difficulties resulting from their socio-political leanings.

          As to the media — I suppose you are referring to the left-leaning media that tends to secure more viewership than others? In this context, the media has clearly adopted a more genial attitude towards Pope Francis than it has with Saint Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI. And so what? Are we as Catholics supposed to live our lives according to how the media reacts to the reigning pope? And neither has the comparatively affable attitude prevented the media from reporting stupendous errors regarding the teachings Pope Francis has spoken about. As a result, people are gravely misled, as people have been gravely misled by the media during the reign of Popes Benedict XVI and Saint John Paul II.

          Now, you said that “no one was in any sense confused about [Saint Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI’s] views on these issues.” It seemed to me like a joke. Are saying it isn’t? “No one”? “In any sense”? Each and every person around the world, before Pope Francis, knew exactly how the popes viewed abortion and other controversial issues? Every single person, Catholic or otherwise, was perfectly catechized in the Faith? Or are you saying that, so long as people describe a pope as someone who views abortion and gay marriage as bad things, they understand him clearly? “Of course the pope’s against abortion and gay marriage. He’s a hateful old bigot who wants a mass of uneducated breeders to secure power and privilege for the other hateful old bigots in that tyrannical church of his” — this is quite alright? This is acceptable? And if so, how perfect was this accurate, faithful knowledge that Cardinal Bergoglio’s elevation to the papacy overturned everything?

          Then, you said, “Is it just their (i.e. the media’s) random stupidity, or is it possible that Francis is choosing to emphasize certain truths at the expense of others?” Are you actually setting up a scenario entirely predicated on these two distinctions only? Random stupidity on one side, active misleading on the other? Is this how you assess other situations, other people? Or do you reserve this for those that may not have your best regards?

          You likewise seem to put great store on what the media says and does. You seem quite focused in particular on how it favors the recent popes. A media structure comprised of people who do not obey the Church will be an obstacle to evangelization. It will only differ in which matters they will mislead people on.

          And you said, “I know what the other popes said.” That is good. I did not, however, say otherwise in my previous comment. I was not referring to you at all. Respectfully, the problem doesn’t seem to be Mark Shea (and other)’s criticisms.

          • LFM

            I find this such an odd response to my previous comment/s that I am unable to respond to it in turn, beyond asking that you please read my answer to Joseph in order to see what it is that I find objectionable about the kind of discussion that has become too common on this blog.

            • orual’s kindred

              I notice you insist on making a blanket statement regarding “calling some of them fools or evil or political zealots.” Not only do you not address what the criticism is of those some. You are content to refer to those some as an indeterminate “some” who are confused about what Pope Francis said. You complain about will and intents being criticized, but you don’t bother about the matter at all. You don’t bother with saying that the confusion, or even some of the confusion, as honest. Nor do you suggest that the confusion is valid. It’s just “confusion,” and if any of those have been found invalid, it’s automatically unjust and cruel. I find this seeming ambiguity a little beyond the verbal.

              So it would seem that, for you, even “some” criticism of “some” confusion with Pope Francis’ words is cause for concern. I do notice, though, that in all your vagaries, you make one description clear: Pope Francis, according to you, is “verbally ambiguous.” I see no “some” in that assessment. For you, there is no admitting that Pope Francis could maybe speak clearly about something sometimes. For you, he is always and ever will be verbally ambiguous. And the only possible explanation you can come up with is that “Francis is choosing to emphasize certain truths at the expense of others.”

              Again, the criticisms don’t seem to be the problem here. Nor is it even that there people who find Pope Francis’s words consistently and always unclear. Apparently, the problem is that some suggestion to the contrary is a great enough affront to the intelligence, understanding, and intentions of some such people that abandoning the Church because of it is a real possibility for them. Now, if you consider that justifiable, then perhaps I should warn you that my response would be more than somewhat critical.

              • LFM

                There is something faintly hilarious about this, in that it is essentially a (vastly expanded) recapitulation of my criticisms of Mark and many of his readers’ attitudes towards anyone who expresses any bewilderment at the Pope’s intentions. In reverse, of course.

                Mark has never conceded (that I can recall; I’m no longer a daily reader) that anyone might have legitimate reasons for being confused by this Pope. Nor has he conceded that any conservative Catholic who is critical of the Pope’s non-ex-cathedra statements might have a legitimate reason for doing so. To him, it seems, such people are party hacks who put their conservatism above their Catholicism. Oppose mass illegal immigration? Question the wisdom of across-the-board raising of the minimum wage? You’re a party conservative for sure, not a true seamless-garment Catholic.

                I started reading CAEI in 2002. Although Mark was always a lover of Irish rant ‘n’ rhetoric (and I liked that about him!) he did not, in his earlier days, indulge in these us vs them rhetorical maneuvers to the same degree, especially when “they” were other Catholics. He is now resorting to debating tactics that I associate more with your Democratic party (I’m Canadian) than with Catholic moderates: political/religious “enemies” are not merely wrong, they’re evil. That’s a paraphrase of Charles Krauthammer’s remark about contemporary Democrats: “They think we’re evil. We just think they’re wrong.”

                That is not a healthy way to debate either political or religious issues – even if your “enemies” are doing it too.

                p.s. I should add, in fairness to Mr Shea, that when I offered not to comment any more because I feared I was upsetting some of his readers (one said after a day of debate on SSM that he had decided he could not after all remain a Catholic!) he told me I still had a contribution to make and to keep commenting.

                • orual’s kindred

                  First, I heartily apologize for the very delayed delay. I’ve had a lot to do and Disqus has been acting weird. Still, it’s been days and I’m very sorry.

                  I must also note, with regret, that I don’t think I can say much in response to your last comment. You mentioned hilarity; I find oddity. Your focus now seems to be on Mark Shea: specifically, you contend that Mark Shea has “never conceded” on certain matters. Interestingly, these seem to be matters about which you disagree with him. For instance, regarding criticisms of Pope Francis, Mark Shea has written about his own concerns with the man here, here and here. Perhaps, however, those may not be the “concessions” that you want him to make.

                  Mark Shea has written on the issues you’ve brought up extensively, and I daresay he has discussed them a little more comprehensively than your last comment would suggest. You do admit you haven’t been reading much of his posts, and I’ll take your word for it. And it seems clear that you disagree with what you have in fact read. I won’t contest that, either. I note, however, that this comment thread began when I disagreed with your claim that no one has been confused by what previous popes have said. You then responded by claiming that some criticism of those criticizing Pope Francis is unjust. And now you direct your focus on a perceived lack of concessions from Mark Shea. Respectfully, and with my best wishes and prayers, I’m not sure there’s much else I can contribute to this discussion.

                  • LFM

                    My dear OK, you make no sense. It’s not just me. I read a couple of your comments aloud to my husband and he couldn’t understand them either. (Neither of us is stupid, AFAIK.) I would suggest reading them aloud to yourself, to see if they really say what you intended them to say.

                    Part of the problem is that in your haste to type, you omit words and verb endings. Part of it is a diction issue; you choose words that don’t quite fit your meaning (I think, though it’s hard to be sure).

                    Part of the problem, however, is that you simply do not think through the meaning of the words you use. For example, I think this is the second comment in this thread in which you tell me – twice in one rather lengthy comment this time – that you cannot contribute to this discussion and have nothing to say to me. Might I respectfully suggest that when you have nothing to say, you should say nothing?

  • cf

    Didn’t get it. Pope Francis has lit up facebook in a good way. I’ve seen more conversation from all points of view. Pope Francis is the best