Pope’s ‘rainbow’ cross considered by many as a major PR disaster

Pope’s ‘rainbow’ cross considered by many as a major PR disaster October 21, 2018

The Pope and a bunch bishops have been blasted for wearing a ‘rainbow’ crosses at World Youth Day 2019.

Among those who expressed outrage was “Archbishop Cranmer”, a conservative Anglican blog authored by Adrian Hilton, who posted a picture of the cross on Twitter, along with the words:

Is @Pontifex affirming ‘Rainbow Church’? How will the world read this symbolism?

And he left a link to a post he wrote entitled “Rainbow Church, LGBT Eucharist and intolerable utterances.”

But the cross, according to LifeSiteNews, was not intended to suggest Francis’s support of LGBT+ communities – although many, like Cranmer, are seeing it that way.

LifeSiteNews said:

There exists an explanation for a non-LGBT origin of the rainbow cross, and its colors don’t precisely resemble those of the gay ‘pride’ rainbows used by the LGBT movement.

Young people from Panama and some Latin American Synod fathers presented the multi-colored cross for World Youth Day 2019 to Francis, according to a tweet in Italian from the Holy See’s Vatican News service. Other bishops in the photos with Francis are wearing the rainbow cross as well.

“The Holy Father greeted them with joy and blessed them,” the tweet stated.

However, the bloggers at Creative Minority Report (CMR) weren’t having any of it, and said it doesn’t matter whether the Pope wearing the rainbow cross was an intentional pro-gay message, because it would be taken as such either way. They tweeted:

If they meant it as a gay symbol, they are unfit for office and should resign. If they didn’t mean it, they are too stupid for words, unfit for office and should resign.

Heretics, blasphemers, idolaters and unbelievers.

In a separate rant, “Archbishop Cranmer” expressed outrage over the fact that a Muslim – Monawar Hussain, who was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s birthday honours last year for services to interfaith relations and the community – had been invited to deliver a sermon today (Sunday) at Oxford’s University Church of St Mary the Virgin.

He acknowledged Hussain’s:

Manifestly sterling work in the promotion of religious and racial harmony, and good relations between persons of different faiths and racial groups.


Imam Monawar Hussain, being a Muslim of orthodox belief, does not believe in the divinity of Jesus: Isa, as the Lord is called in the Qur’an, is not the Son of God, nor was he crucified at Calvary. But Isa is not the Lord, for the Jesus of the Qur’an did not die on a cross, and neither was he resurrected …

Preaching the University Sermon on Sunday, Imam Monawar Hussain will deny by his presence in the pulpit the very body and blood of Christ commemorated by the Eucharist; he will refute by his mere being: “God from God, Light from Light, of one very substance with the Father …

He suggested the C of E was now:

Open to people of all faiths and none, and that we can look forward to a series of heretics, blasphemers, idolaters and unbelievers.

Hat tip: AgentCormac (Monawar Hussain report)


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  • mordred

    I’m pretty sure it was not meant as a “gay symbol”.

    But I have to wonder, considering the cross is a brutal torture instrument and as a symbol is used to remind the faithful of the suffering and death of their saviour- isn’t a rainbow coloured cross a rather strange idea?

  • Erp

    I suspect, if it has any special significance, they are connecting the rainbow as a sign of the covenant with Noah and the cross as a sign of the covenant through Jesus.

  • Paul

    Funny how “Archbishop Cranmer” is worried about a schism over a church accepting LGBT folks. I mean, after the hundreds of schisms Christianity has had already, what’s one more?

  • TinnyWhistler

    The colors aren’t the same as the ones on the gay flag. They match the colors of a South American logo for youth ministry:

    Whiiiich makes sense considering “Young people from Panama and some Latin American Synod fathers presented the multi-colored cross for World Youth Day”

    Seriously. This isn’t complicated and really REALLY doesn’t warrant the drama. Francis consistently doesn’t care about gay people beyond some very very basic “I suppose they’re human”

  • Raging Bee

    It’s just as I guessed when I first heard of this dustup: some cute kids want to give the Pope a cute little gift, and the Pope accepts the gift with sincerity and graciousness, just like any proud grandpa wearing whatever necktie his grandkids give him; and now everyone’s having a meltdown, and the poor kids are probably going back to their fathers or priests and saying “Are we all gonna go to Hell for starting World War 3?” Now hopefully the adults will give the CORRECT answer to this, which would be “No, no one’s going to Hell for this, let’s see if we can find a less loony church to take you to from now on…”

  • barriejohn

    The Rainbow is a symbol of God’s love for us; I know because I was told in Sunday School. Brian Cox doesn’t know what he is talking about.


    Read the comments. You’ll piss yourself laughing!

  • barriejohn

    How do I post the link without that enormous image?

  • mordred

    Makes sense, one says: “I killed all life on earth on a whim, but I promise I won’t do it again.” The other one says: “I just had my son (who might be me) brutally tortured to death and because of this I promise I won’t throw you guys into hell anymore as punishment for something you did not actually do”

    And I still find the idea of a brightly coloured torture instrument creepy!

    Edit: called -> killed! Typos are getting weirder.

  • Raging Bee

    They’re trying REAL HARD to repair all those schisms, so they can unite against all their common enemies, including (but not limited to) LGBT people. And atheists…

  • LeekSoup

    “Archbishop Cranmer” is a substitute teacher from England with a blog and a very conservative Christian faith. He’s not employed by the Church of England. He’s not even a curate. He apparently goes to an Anglican church.

    It’s not clear who he represents apart from himself. And like many mouthy gobshites he dresses himself up as some sort of authority, in this case calling himself an Archbishop.

  • Raging Bee

    Wow, that makes him totally different from all the REAL archbishops…oh wait, maybe it doesn’t…

  • Raging Bee

    Or maybe they just want to have symbols and logos with bright and cheerful colors…?

  • Raging Bee

    The Rainbow is a symbol of God’s love for us…

    …the ones he didn’t drown in a flood just before…

    Sort of like a husband buying his wife lots of pretty colorful flowers after beating her to a pulp.

  • Jim Jones

    I call myself a Cardinal. And Trump calls himself a Christian, and lies about a lot more.

  • Jim Jones

    Tell that to the Asian Tsunami victims.

  • Jim Jones

    Disqus will fix the size later.


  • Nomad

    It’s not the pride flag colors, if nothing else the order is all wrong. The only thing I can really take from this is a certain subversive joy that so many people have become this scared about any old bunch of colors grouped together. That’s not exactly what the flag was supposed to be for. But honestly I still giggle that people with that much power to hurt other people are cowering in fear over a rainbow used as a symbol of identification by a still vulnerable minority. It’s a pretty small thing, what with the Trump administration apparently looking to legally define trans people entirely out of existence, the vulnerability is a bit more obvious right now than I’d prefer. But sometimes you gotta take your joy where you can find it.

    And yes, conservative Christians cowering in fear from a collection of colors because it makes them think of buttsex does give me some joy.

  • Too late, rainbows are gay.
    (strokes gay hands across rainbows to infect them with gay cooties)

  • Too late: rainbows made you gay.

  • Studentenviro

    Dude, you are a stupid weird bαstαrd.

  • Raging Bee

    I hope this does turn out to be a PR disaster — for the idiots who are making such a huge stink about “gay” colors. Anything that shows how silly those doddering old reactionaries can be is a good thing.

  • Raging Bee

    I’m an eagle! Neener!

  • mordred

    Then how about a less horrible logo for a start?

  • DingoJack

    He suggested the C of E was now:

    Open to people of all faiths and none, and that we can look forward to a series of heretics, blasphemers, idolaters and unbelievers.

    Well at least they’ll be getting a few people using their enormous tax-exempt edifices to the great imaginary friend in the sky.
    [Also – it’s interesting that a internet saddo calling him/herself ‘Archbishop Cranmer’ is worried about heretics. Tone deaf or unintentionally ironic?
    Also, also – Uh numbnuts – when the Queen wears a rainbow broach, then you can worry about the composition of hapless gaggle of OAPs sitting in your local Anglican church. Let Catholics freak out about this sideshow from their real troubles].

  • barriejohn

    Nothing’s happened yet!

  • HematitePersuasion

    I doubt anyone will mis-identify the RCC as an LGBT-affirming institution. Deeply.

  • steve

    Not one of the many thousands of deities that have ever been claimed as existing gives a single fuck about these people’s beliefs, faiths, bigotry, or anything else.

  • I can’t hear you over the sound of my gaaaaaay.

  • pandoradog
  • Ana Castro

    Ah, yes, priorities. When your Church is best known for its long history of employing and protecting pedophiles by the thousands, what you should really focus on is colors on a cross. Because that’s what REALLY matters.

  • No, the rainbow is how I get to and from Asgard when I want to visit Pabbi Oðinn and the rest of the gang. 😀

  • Raging Bee

    Lovely tropical colors, totally meaningless shape. A perfect symbol for “youth ministry” within a church run by old authoritarians who never had any intention of listening to a bunch of kids anyway.

  • Mark Dowd

    It’s like watching shippers argue over their favorite pairings, but much less amusing because their imagination causes real world suffering.

  • barriejohn

    It tells us that God loves us so much that he won’t destroy the world in a flood again – he’ll just send send everyone to the Lake of Fire next time!

  • We definitely have to get Biblegod a new dictionary with the proper definition of the word “love.”

  • dmscotland

    The Catholic Church, in and of itself, isn’t even “biblical” to begin with! Therefore, it always somewhat confounds me when Christians or right-wingers try to go after the “one” thing that they find unbiblical about the Catholic Church when there’s actually SEVERAL unbiblical things about it! Ok, where should I start? Church buildings (in and of themselves), church bells, the 1st day Sabbath, bowing down to idols and graven images, stealing feasts from the Pagans (Christmas, Easter, etc.) and then trying to stamp a “Christian name” on them, the burning of incense, praying to Mary (which is actually more like praying unto a “goddess”, quite frankly), sun worship (hint: they’re not supposed to represent “halos” around Catholic figurines so much as “suns”), transubstantiation, praying the rosary, forbidding priests to get married, belief in “purgatory”, the belief that the Pope is “Vicar of God” (God’s “Mouthpiece” on Earth), the sale of indulgences, the middle ages “torchure” of all those who wouldn’t comply with its “precepts”, the love of money and gold, calling religious leaders “father”, praying to “dead people” (i.e. “dead saints”), the belief that ONLY the priests can “read and understand the scriptures”, the belief that Mary HERSELF was “born of a virgin” and REMAINED a virgin EVEN AFTER the birth of Jesus (that’s a HUGE one, since the bible CLEARLY contradicts that), etc. etc. And so basically what I’m trying to say in a nutshell is THIS: When Christians get all bent out of shape over the ONE unbiblical thing the Catholic Church does, they’re failing to see the BIGGER PICTURE – that practically almost NONE of the stuff the Catholic Church does is “biblical”. In fact, in my quest for spiritual truth, I’ve only been able to find about 5 things the RCC does that IS biblical: 1). The belief in traditional marriage, 2). The belief that homosexuality is “un-natural” – i.e. can’t produce children, 3). That Jesus was the son of God/God in the flesh, 4). The belief of Pro-Life, 5). The belief in the existence of “spiritual warfare” and that Jesus Christ is the ONLY name the demons will obey! If there’s any other I missed…..?

  • Patti

    QUESTION: What is the meaning of a rainbow in the Bible? What do colors such as red, blue, and purple mean?
    ANSWER: Interestingly, we only need to look in three places in the Bible to discover the meaning of a rainbow and what certain colors mean. These places to study are found in the books of Genesis, Ezekiel and Revelation.

    In the Genesis account, a rainbow appears right after the great worldwide flood brought in order to remove sinful and evil-minded man from the earth. It symbolized God’s mercy and the covenant He made with Noah (representing mankind) not to destroy the world in such a way again.

    12. And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant which I make between Me and you and every living creature with you, for everlasting generations: 13. I set My rainbow in the cloud, and it shall be the sign of the covenant between Me and the earth . . . and the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh. (Genesis 9:12, 15, HBFV)

    In a way, a cloud which has the bow in it pictures God, as Exodus 13 states, “And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of CLOUD to lead the way . . .” (Exodus 13:21).

  • Richard B

    Get over yourselves Abp Cranmer. So silly.

  • dmscotland, if it wasn’t for the RCC you wouldn’t even have a Bible.

    As for the various things you think are biblical, you seem to be drawing those selectively from part of the New Testament and ignoring the rest of the book.

    * “Traditional marriage” could just as easily be a king, a spouse, and a varying number of concubines.

    * Jesus says nothing at all about homosexuality in the Gospels.

    * The Old Testament doesn’t even mention Jesus, although I know that Christians like to retcon things like Isaiah to “prove” that Jesus is in there.

    * There are an alarming number of extremely anti-life tales in the Bible, including abortion-by-noxious-magical-potion given to a woman accused of adultery, plus commands to kill entire tribes, women, children and all, plus the bloodbath in Revelation.

    * “Spiritual warfare” seems to be something that Paul the Antichrist made up.

    * And if demons actually existed and obeyed the name “Jesus Christ,” why would you need spiritual warfare?