Pope Francis’ Eminence Grise ?

[UPDATE:  I wrote this at the start of the current pope’s incumbency.  Today I see that his buddy Cardinal Maradiaga is all over the news in regard to what looks like misuse of funds. I am not surprised.] 


I have found that Maureen Mullarkey often says what many others are thinking. A blogger on the excellent First Things website, she has recently published a searing criticism of what appears to be Pope Francis’ strong predilection for left-wing politics expressed in religious garb.  Read it here: “Francis and Political Illusion”. It is appropriate to give a new voice of the church a chance to define himself before we react.   But so far Joseph has done little to reassure, and much to worry those who see the Church as the prime bulwark against a world losing all sense of order, morality and purpose. As I have said in the past (on my blog benfiniti.com), for me the first alarm was raised by his relationship with Cardinal Maradiaga of Honduras, a classic Latin American Marxist “liberation theologian” (and anti-Semite, but that’s a post for another day) as well as Pope Francis’ close confidant (appointed to head his Vatican Reform Commission).

Maradiaga’s thoughts are clear (and familiar): He rails against “the neoliberal dictatorships that rule democracies” and advises that “to change the system, it would be necessary to destroy the power of the new feudal lords.He denounces “a world dictatorship of finance capital” and “the small transcontinental oligarchies that hold the financial capital dominate the planet.” He thunders that “The lords of financial capital wield over billions of human beings a power of life and death.” This “Liberation Theology” is actually just a pious-sounding rehash of Marxist Leninism, treating persons only as classes and political revolution as the only remedy. It had its day in the 60’s and 70’s, before being delegitimized by John Paul II (who knew a few things about the proponents of class war).  The “LT’s” hold up the banner of justice to conceal their belief that they must, as Maradiaga put it, “change the System…to destroy the power of the new feudal lords”. This is the Marxist, not the Christian gospel .

If Francis disagrees with Maradiaga, it behooves him to say so.   On the contrary, Francis’s recent pronouncements on very political issues raise even more suspicion, suggesting that he is a true Maradiagan. So with Marxist Liberation Theology establishing itself in the Vatican for the first time, and with such a man showing clear sign of being the new Pope’s eminence grise (even though he wears red), shouldn’t we all be concerned? I am worried. Not as a Catholic, for I am not one, but as one who recognizes the invaluable role the Church is playing in the defense of so much of value that is now under attack. So, thank you, Miss Mullarkey.

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