As many of you may have seen by now, Pope Francis was named TIME Magazine’s “Person of the Year”. I think a lot of Catholics are either thinking or tweeting, “OMG, @pontifex is POY! #mypopeisboss”. First of all, Pope Francis deserves to be named “Person of the Year”, but, shrouded in this “honor” bestowed by TIME magazine there are many lies and a subtle agenda. Don’t hop on that bandwagon just yet. The mainstream media is a giant machine that carefully subverts Catholicism at every opportunity. It is remarkable though how the media, which is thoroughly secular and hostile to traditional Christianity, has latched onto Pope Francis and is totally taken with him. Is it genuine, or is it an attempt to hijack/co-opt him and the Church’s message? I’ll show you.
And behind his self-effacing facade, he is a very canny operator. He makes masterly use of 21st century tools to perform his 1st century office. He is photographed washing the feet of female convicts, posing for selfies with young visitors to the Vatican, embracing a man with a deformed face. He is quoted saying of women who consider abortion because of poverty or rape, “Who can remain unmoved before such painful situations?” Of gay people: “If a homosexual person is of good will and is in search of God, I am no one to judge.” To divorced and remarried Catholics who are, by rule, forbidden from taking Communion, he says that this crucial rite “is not a prize for the perfect but a powerful medicine and nourishment for the weak.”
Do you see how quick they are to take these quotes out of context in order to define Pope Francis? This is the same reconstruction that took place with the Second Vatican Council. Slowly, but ever so surely, the media reshapes our perceptions and reconstructs the narrative in its own image, to its own ends. It’s almost flattering; because the media can’t destroy us they use a tried and true tactic of the left, which is to redefine our identity and marginalize orthodoxy. This is especially poisonous for the “casual Catholic” who may not know the teachings of the Church. If you had read this article to me 5 years ago I would have thought, “oh, the church is reversing its position on some of these modern issues.” However, even a cursory look at our 2,000+ year history, the Catechism, encyclicals, etc. defeats these tactics – inform yourself. What is even more outrageous is that TIME magazine took quotes that clearly establish Pope Francis’ adherence to Church Dogma, and twisted it to seem as though Pope Francis only said it because he had to.
A Pope sets his own course only if he can conform it to paths already chosen.
And so Francis signals great change while giving the same answers to the uncomfortable questions. On the question of female priests: “We need to work harder to develop a profound theology of the woman.” Which means: no. No to abortion, because an individual life begins at conception. No to gay marriage, because the male-female bond is established by God. “The teaching of the church … is clear,” he has said, “and I am a son of the church, but”—and here he adds his prayer for himself—“it is not necessary to talk about those issues all the time.”
Note the sentences in bold in the quote above. This is a clear but awkward attempt to discredit Pope Francis’ statements that don’t align with their liberal agenda.
Politico picked up an early version of TIME’s article and noted:
Interestingly, on Nov. 20, when Time initially named Francis as a contender for the award, the website noted that he was nominated for his “rejection of church dogma.” It was a strange claim, given that Pope Francis has yet to jettison a single church teaching. It was only after some pushback from the theological twitterverse that Time changed the description to read “rejection of luxury.” The revised post now notes, “An earlier version of this post suggested that Pope Francis rejected some church dogma. He does not.”
If the media runs unchecked, they would lead you to believe Pope Francis is dismantling long standing, core teachings of the Catholic Church. Take homosexuality for example. Speaking about a think-tank of “like-minded” bishops, TIME notes:
In August, another member, Cardinal Oswald Gracias of India, issued one of the most expansive comments about gays that the church has ever made, stating that while the church does not allow gay marriage, homosexuality is not a sin. “To say that those with other sexual orientations are sinners is wrong,” he wrote to an LGBT group in Mumbai. “We must be sensitive in our homilies and how we speak in public and I will so advise our priests.”
Newsflash! This statement is not a deviation from the Church’s teaching on the matter. Being gay is not a sin. Practicing homosexuality is a sin. We are all tempted by sin; it is the indulgence in that evil that constitutes the sin. We must conclude: either the media is ignorant of the Church’s teachings, or they are intentionally cherry picking, distorting and deceiving. Do you think they don’t understand the position of an institution that hasn’t changed for millenia?
I am thankful that Pope Francis was firm on the matter of abortion and that the media did not make any feeble attempt to twist this.
But if there appears to be some wiggle room on homosexuality and the role of women, there is none for abortion. “This is not something subject to alleged reforms or ‘modernizations,’” Francis says. “It is not ‘progressive’ to try to resolve problems by eliminating a human life.”
The bottom line here is be careful to analyze what you are reading and look for the underlying message. Let’s not allow ourselves to go down the path of the Virtual Second Vatican Council again. Read the full article at TIME and let me know if you can find similar subversive messages.