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O'Shaughnessy writes: "To the judicious and fair-minded outsider it has been clear for years that the upper reaches of the Argentine church contained many 'lost sheep in the wilderness'."

CNewly elected Pope Francis, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, appears on the balcony of St. Peter's Basilica, 03/13/13. (photo: Max Rossi/Reuters)
Newly elected Pope Francis, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, appears on the balcony of St. Peter's Basilica, 03/13/13. (photo: Max Rossi/Reuters)

Was Bergoglio Complicit in Argentina's Dirty War?

By Hugh O'Shaughnessy, Guardian UK

13 March13


enedict XVI gave us words of great comfort and encouragement in the message he delivered on Christmas Eve.

"God anticipates us again and again in unexpected ways," the pope said. "He does not cease to search for us, to raise us up as often as we might need. He does not abandon the lost sheep in the wilderness into which it had strayed. God does not allow himself to be confounded by our sin. Again and again he begins afresh with us".

If these words comforted and encouraged me they will surely have done the same for leaders of the church in Argentina, among many others. To the judicious and fair-minded outsider it has been clear for years that the upper reaches of the Argentine church contained many "lost sheep in the wilderness", men who had communed and supported the unspeakably brutal Western-supported military dictatorship which seized power in that country in 1976 and battened on it for years. Not only did the generals slaughter thousands unjustly, often dropping them out of aeroplanes over the River Plate and selling off their orphan children to the highest bidder, they also murdered at least two bishops and many priests. Yet even the execution of other men of the cloth did nothing to shake the support of senior clerics, including representatives of the Holy See, for the criminality of their leader General Jorge Rafael Videla and his minions.

As it happens, in the week before Christmas in the city of Córdoba Videla and some of his military and police cohorts were convicted by their country's courts of the murder of 31 people between April and October 1976, a small fraction of the killings they were responsible for. The convictions brought life sentences for some of the military. These were not to be served, as has often been the case in Argentina and neighbouring Chile, in comfy armed forces retirement homes but in common prisons. Unsurprisingly there was dancing in the city's streets when the judge announced the sentences.

What one did not hear from any senior member of the Argentine hierarchy was any expression of regret for the church's collaboration and in these crimes. The extent of the church's complicity in the dark deeds was excellently set out by Horacio Verbitsky, one of Argentina's most notable journalists, in his book El Silencio (Silence). He recounts how the Argentine navy with the connivance of Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, now the Jesuit archbishop of Buenos Aires, hid from a visiting delegation of the Inter-American Human Rights Commission the dictatorship's political prisoners. Bergoglio was hiding them in nothing less than his holiday home in an island called El Silencio in the River Plate. The most shaming thing for the church is that in such circumstances Bergoglio's name was allowed to go forward in the ballot to chose the successor of John Paul II. What scandal would not have ensued if the first pope ever to be elected from the continent of America had been revealed as an accessory to murder and false imprisonment

One would have thought that the Argentine bishops would have seized the opportunity to call for pardon for themselves and put on sackcloth and ashes as the sentences were announced in Córdoba but that has not so far happened.

But happily Their Eminences have just been given another chance to express contrition. Next month the convicted murderer Videla will be arraigned for his part in the killing of Enrique Angelelli, bishop of the Andean diocese of La Rioja and a supporter of the cause of poorer Argentines. He was run off the highway by a hit squad of the Videla régime and killed on 4th August 1976 shortly after Videla's putsch.

Cardinal Bergoglio has plenty of time to be measured for a suit of sackcloth – perhaps tailored in a suitable clerical grey - to be worn when the church authorities are called into the witness box by the investigating judge in the Angelelli case. Ashes will be readily available if the records of the Argentine bishops' many disingenuous and outrightly mendacious statements about Videla and Angelelli are burned. your social media marketing partner


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+80 # DaveM 2013-03-13 16:20
Another day, another Vatican scandal.
-56 # Mannstein 2013-03-13 19:16
Let him who is without sin cast the first stone.
-37 # GrumpyGranny 2013-03-13 20:18
As my non Catholic husband of 40+ years watched the programming from the Vatican today, he wondered out loud, as I wondered silently how long it would take for the flinging to begin. Answered here in the comments to follow that become increasingly vitriolic from the minds of the uninformed by other than the mainstream media.

You're right,though, Let him who is without sin cast the first stone, though I'm afraid that wisdom will fall on deaf ears.
+38 # Even 2013-03-14 03:47
Flinging? Because, of course, it is impossible for Bergoglio to have done wrong? That anyone who suggests such is lying and uninformed?
+16 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 11:10
Uninformed about what? The treatment of women as second class citizens? The enabling of pedophiles?.... etc.
+7 # Anarchist 23 2013-03-15 18:48
Sin? Like murder? Torture? Pushing young students out of airplanes and helicopters? Stealing babies? I know I have not done those things or condoned them-I'm not all sure Francis can answer as I have. But then I guess 'god' will forgive. I guess gay marriage is a worse sin than murder so....
+53 # Even 2013-03-14 03:46
So we should not expose the sins of Bergoglio because we ourselves may have also sinned? Balderdash!!! We are not being elevated to Pontiff. He is.
+12 # Texas Aggie 2013-03-14 19:14
And we weren't complicit with the torture and murder of thousands of people. He was.
+44 # kyzipster 2013-03-14 05:08
I've 'sinned' enough but I've learned to admit to my mistakes and to make amends to people I've hurt. This is some very basic stuff, I would think that a Pope could handle it.

Isn't that what Jesus would expect from Bergoglio for hiding political prisoners from a human rights commission on church property?
+8 # Texas Aggie 2013-03-14 19:13
I have a very difficult time with someone who considers complicity with a murderous regime like that to be on the level with cheating on your wife. Anyone who excuses that kind of behavior is beyond help and needs to be excluded from any contact with decent society.
+79 # cordleycoit 2013-03-13 16:35
The Dirty War inseminated intellectual class in Argentina. To this day there is a hole in their culture.We must distrust those in Church who came close to these American sponsored atrocity against the people. A Pope who knew of what happened should retire to a monk's cell.
+4 # GrumpyGranny 2013-03-13 20:19
I'm not sure I understand your point. Did you proofread before hitting send?
+24 # Dean 2013-03-13 16:59
Is this the last we shall hear of this?
+60 # Salus Populi 2013-03-13 17:58
Very likely. The alleged murder of Pope John Paul I, the "smiling Pope," was neatly covered up; read "In God's Name" by David Yallop for the details. When Roberto Calvi ws hanged from Blackfriar Bridge as the Michel Sindona/Vatican Banks scandal erupted, it was ruled a suicide, although his hands were tied behind his back. The Vatican has almost two thousand years' experience in hiding its transgressions.
+11 # Muzzi 2013-03-13 20:24
Is that the Pope that only lived 30 days?
I always wondered what happened to him.
+21 # Okieangels 2013-03-13 21:32
Yes. It's rumored that he planned on "cleaning house" at the Vatican.
-3 # Mannstein 2013-03-13 18:09
+14 # charsjcca 2013-03-13 17:12
I would think that Pope Francis I had ample time to review his environment. He is going to face some challenges. I think that he will be welcome in many venues so his journey might be rocky, but interesting. It should not bother him.
+10 # Douglas Jack 2013-03-13 20:12
Charsjcca, Are you saying Pope Francis has no conscience to be bothered?
+9 # GrumpyGranny 2013-03-13 20:21
Interesting. That's not how I read the comment.
+1 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 11:13
"I'm not sure I understand your point. Did you proofread before hitting send?"

Interesting, I'm not sure you know how to read.
+8 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 11:12
Pope Francis has the conscience of a politician. All that bs about asking God for help in picking out the next Pope. It's all about politics and money.
+15 # wwway 2013-03-13 17:32
The church's role in the execution of Jews...
+1 # Mannstein 2013-03-13 19:11
How about the Jews role in execution of the Ukranians in the Terror.
+3 # forthepeople 2013-03-13 20:01
What role?
+12 # Rick Levy 2013-03-13 20:10
What in the f**k are you talking about? If you're referring to the Holodomor, that was the work of Stalin.
+17 # GrumpyGranny 2013-03-13 20:22
The Church's role and the role of non-Catholics as well in sheltering, hiding and/or spiriting away of Jews is well documented.
+59 # carlos 2013-03-13 17:44
Dean, I hope this is NOT the last we hear of this but just the beginning. It's amazing that the last 2 popes were involved in protecting pedophiles, including the totally corrupt head of the Legionaries of Christ and now we learn that the current one supported the brutal, murderous dictatorship in his home country of Argentina. It's amazing that there are still so many Catholics on this planet and that they blindly follow these criminals and their minions.
+10 # Muzzi 2013-03-13 20:26
Yes, blindly. What is the matter with these people?
+16 # in deo veritas 2013-03-13 22:04
What is the matter with the American people? Easy answer-they have lost their souls or sold them to the highest bidder-namely the oligarchs.
+25 # GrumpyGranny 2013-03-13 20:45
History lesson:

I am old enough to remember when there were only whispers about improprieties. Priests disappeared or were transferred or went away on extended retreats, alcohol rehab, etc. The wisdom and general knowledge of the day said such people chose to act badly and could still make good choices. Another chance was often given. Later, young people came forward to tell the truth about their experience and its aftermath. The damage was done. The Church funded counseling for the damaged victims and to make a new start somewhere else.

I spoke with my brother, an ordained priest in good standing, and expressed my concern as the bad press began. I told him I was sure the numbers were out of context and did not indicate a widespread problem. He said much more would come out and that it would include some officials who had covered up atrocities back in the day.
+11 # Texas Aggie 2013-03-14 19:22
Now I think we understand why you had no problems with Pope Francis' conduct during the Argentine atrocities. Your brother is a priest and the RCC must be defended at all times from all things.

And contrary to your statement, the CC did NOT "fund counseling for the damaged victims." The CC did everything it could to deny that anything had ever happened and humiliated the victims in court when they tried to bring the CC to justice. Bernard Law was only one of many who deliberately attacked the victims and protected the perpetrators.
-8 # in deo veritas 2013-03-13 22:03
Just like so very many in this country, regardless of denomination (if any) have followed blindly the totally corrupt and evil who have been leading this country to its doom over decades and murdering untold numbers in illegal wars? The same ones determined to use economic power to destroy the environment and the population through depriving the people of health care and using austerity and starvation to kill off those already weak and powerless. Those of you so eager to attack the church and the new Pope had better set your own house in order-time is running out!
+10 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 11:14
Except, the church and the new Pope are part of the problem.
-2 # Joeconserve 2013-03-13 17:54
And, so it begins. It wouldn't have made any difference if St. Francis of Assisi himself had become Pope.
-23 # Joeconserve 2013-03-13 20:26
Let me clarify. I was referring to the attacks on the Pope and the Church that I knew was coming; and have arrived.
+22 # Okieangels 2013-03-13 21:29
It might well have made a big difference if St. Francis had been elected. St. Francis was a radical liberal hippy by today's standards. At any rate if the church insists on maintaining its medieval standards, it will fade into oblivion and be of interest only to historians.
+9 # in deo veritas 2013-03-13 22:08
What a shame that the same attention is not given to prosecuting all the pedophiles and other degenerates who are turned loose every day because of incompetents in the so-called judicial system.
+10 # GrumpyGranny 2013-03-13 20:45

And so it came to pass. It also came to pass that reports came out that teachers, scout leaders, faith leaders of all denominations, counselors, etc., had similar problem patterns. Psychological research supported the view that pedophilia, etc., were intractable major psychological disfunctions with high recidivism, no matter what was tried to remediate the problem.

Many good priests were tarred with a broad brush and tainted because of others' abuse, casting a pale over their relations with their congregations and the youngest parishioners.

The Church in America responded appropriately with continued extensive training of all who work with youth on watching for, reporting concerns, and properly teaching youth. Much as schools have mandated reporters, every teacher/volunte er/staff member who is in a position to observe a problem is required to report.
+4 # NAVYVET 2013-03-13 22:31
NOT of all denominations, Granny. This is a problem chiefly of religions that enforce celibacy.
+15 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 11:18
Pedophelia has nothing to do with celibacy. Jerry Sandusky (Penn State coach) was married.
0 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 11:15
And justly deserved.
+10 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 11:16
And many good priests knew what was going on but kept their mouths shut. Because to go against the hierarchy would be a sin.
+7 # Texas Aggie 2013-03-14 19:30
Some Church in America may have done something like that, but the Roman Catholic Church in America continued on its merry way blithely covering up its sins and denying its victims any sort of recompense, fighting at every turn being brought to account. As you must be aware, even Timothy Dolan has been shown to have made payouts to implicated priests to leave the ministry to avoid the RCC having to deal with the fallout later.
+2 # Texas Aggie 2013-03-14 19:25
Oh, really? St. Francis of Assisi condoned the murder of thousands? I didn't know that.
0 # Manacha 2013-03-15 11:39
Quoting Texas Aggie:
Oh, really? St. Francis of Assisi condoned the murder of thousands? I didn't know that.

No, St. Francis was perhaps the purer saint ever. He didn't even want to form an order. But Pope Francis probably took his name from Francis Xavier, co-founder of the Jesuit order, who was a missionary in India. If that is the case, Pope Francis will want to seek converts in more places in the world and go against the evangelicals in Latin American who are making great inroads.
+30 # dick 2013-03-13 18:04
Money, Power, Control, Status, Sex motivates, dominates, all too many of the clergy, not just Roman Catholic. Unspeakable evil they have committed for self aggrandizement. Why people still look up to these psychos is a bit of a mystery, but as long as they keep bloviating about getting you excused of all your sins, people will cling to them. Way past time to re-purge the latest Inquisitors. Church hierarchy should face severe term limits.
-25 # GrumpyGranny 2013-03-13 20:47
The same applies to members of Congress, Wall Street, realtors who pushed inflated housing to people who clearly couldn't afford it. Abuse abounds. Don't get me started on our dictator president.
-15 # in deo veritas 2013-03-13 22:09
+6 # Texas Aggie 2013-03-14 19:33
The basic problem of any hierarchy is when the top echelons are not answerable to those underneath them. In hierarchies where the managers are held accountable and those underneath can get rid of them when their turpitude comes to light, this type of behavior is a lot less frequent.
+62 # Mac 2013-03-13 18:16
What could possibly be more irrelevant to modern world society than the resignation of one Pope and the ascention of another? The Church itself is, if anything, a blight on humanity, inhibiting knowledge, lacking compassion, insisting on the ridiculous claim of infallibility to justify its promulgation of 16th Century beliefs and values. Enough! Time to leave the Church and its ignorance and corruption behind in the dust.
-34 # Mannstein 2013-03-13 19:14
Want to leave be my guest. No one is asking you to stay.
+20 # Okieangels 2013-03-13 19:42
No, they're not. Even seems like they're trying to do all they can to drive people out.
-22 # GrumpyGranny 2013-03-13 20:51
I'm not sure why my plus 1 turned into a -9??
+17 # Okieangels 2013-03-13 21:34
10 other people gave the comment a thumbs-down.
-19 # GrumpyGranny 2013-03-13 20:50
I beg to differ. The Church teaches compassion, forgiveness, personal responsibility, social conscience, doing one's best, living the examined life.

Please do some studying before you pontificate.

The Church is built of human beings trying to be better than they are. Can you say the same for yourself or are you just focusing on other people's failings???
-7 # in deo veritas 2013-03-13 22:13
Darn right! All we are getting from the government and the oligarchs who own it is how to kill people, destroy countries, and steal everything in sight.
+15 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 11:20
Well, then why does the "church" and the male people that run it treat women as second class citizens and feel it is their right to sexually molest children?
+9 # Texas Aggie 2013-03-14 19:39
One of the basic verities of teaching is that what you do is what is taught, not what you say. Your actions speak a lot louder than any words. So if you define teaching by looking at what is learned, the example is what counts, not the verbiage.

Therefore to say that the RCC "teaches compassion, forgiveness, personal responsibility, social conscience, doing one's best, living the examined life" is an error. The RCC doesn't even begin to act like that. Have they paid anything to the survivors of the Magdalene Sisters in Ireland? No, they haven't and are arguing vociferously that they shouldn't have to.
+5 # Quickmatch 2013-03-14 20:54
Oh, please, Granny! I've been scrolling through the comments and yours are possibly the least vitriolic of the batch, but also the most impossibly forgiving about the culpability of the management in mis-managing those priests who so poorly treated the youths under their auspices. Of course they had a sickness; of course a lot of lay people have that sickness. And perhaps the people responsible, lay and church, are responding at last. But the question is not the primary offenders but how the management responded at first and for years. They reacted as would be expected for managers whose first responsibility is to protect their positions and, of necessity, to protect the corporation. This started round about 1800 years ago and has become rather well set in concrete. Any hope thet the current CEO will change anything is wishful thinking. SO go on and shill for Holy Mother the Church; she needs all the help she can get.
+7 # X Dane 2013-03-15 00:57
Grumpy Granny.

It would have been great if the men of the church REALLY lived THE EXAMINED LIFE.
Instead they abused the weak and lied about it. The higher ups swept it all under the rug, by moving the pedophiles
around the country and sent some of them to Rome, where they lived in the lap of luxury.
+5 # Manacha 2013-03-15 11:41
Too bad the upper echelons of the Church do not follow their own advice.
+1 # Pickwicky 2013-03-15 16:13
We won't.
+8 # Pickwicky 2013-03-15 16:23
GrumpyGranny--I submit you are the one who needs to study what the Catholic Church is doing to women, especially poor women. Where is the compassion in demanding that poor women produce more children--or they must live celibate lives if they wish to practice their religion? Has it occurred to you that living a celibate life as a WIFE in order to avoid being overburdened by more children they cannot afford could result in an agony of another kind? Remember, the ban against contraceptives is a rule of the Church. As for "personal responsibility" --how does that comport with endless childbearing? Or "social conscience" for that matter. We're hitting the 7 billion population mark soon. Moreover, any institution which elevates itself to universal moral judgment of others invites intense inspection of itself. Amen.
+81 # Muzzi 2013-03-13 18:22
Another old man who knows nothing about raising a family is going to be telling women it is a sin not to keep having babies they cannot afford, mentally, physically, or financially. Another one who has covered up the sins of the Catholic Church. Why do people believe in this church? They have closed schools in my area in order to pay for the lawsuits of the sins of the priests. So, it is the children who are paying for the suffering of the abused children of many priests years ago??
+2 # in deo veritas 2013-03-13 22:17
Why do people believe in this or any other church? Because there is nothing else worth believing in! Certainly not the corrupt degenerates running the country into the ground. The antichrist is not a person but the vermin collectively exemplified by the oligarchs and their minions in Washington.
+7 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 11:55
Maybe if you'd start believing in YOURSELF, you wouldn't be turning all that vitriol out into the world. Remember, the only one you can change is yourself. No amount of ranting and raving is going to change other people.
+2 # Texas Aggie 2013-03-14 19:40
Excellent point!
-5 # Douglas Jack 2013-03-13 19:18
All 'religion' (Latin 'religio' ='to-relate') is perverted by resource appropriation to 'abstract' artificial institutional structures rather than directly to relations of 'community' (L 'com' = 'together' + 'munus' = 'gift or service') engagement. Religions serve colonial institutions & empire fed by misinformed dogma. Religions are well-intentione d but the processes used, destroy caring relations.

Humanity's worldwide universal 'indigenous' (L 'self-generatin g') peoples understand the importance of building connected multihome dwellings (mound-cities, longhouse or pueblo multihome structures) similar to today's apartment & townhouse structures where women & men, young & old collaborate across generations, each with complementary talents & goods. Churches, Mosques, Synagogues & Temples tax popular mind & resources away from complementary relations.

Time-based human resource accounting in specialized Production Societies using string-shells for capital (ownership), currency (money), condolence (social-securit y), collegial education (mentored apprenticeship) , communications etc enabled inclusive welcoming relational economy for all. Women recognized within Production Society accounting for their specific gifts to family & community brings female intelligence to economy & politics.
-52 # GrumpyGranny 2013-03-13 20:56
Does a cardiologist need to have heart problems to do surgery or counsel course of action? Does a pediatrician need children of his/her own to treat them/counsel parents?

You misunderstand Church teaching. It's not all about doing what feels good. It's about doing what's right. Waiting til a committed relationship can lead to monogamous marriage where time and attention can result in greater understanding, bonding, conscientious child raising. In the meantime, abstinence is a good plan. Natural family planning is a way to cooperate with God in the creation of children.

As far as children suffering, my children and grands will pay for what's happened under Obama and our mostly complicitous Congress!
+3 # Douglas Jack 2013-03-13 22:46
GG, Its not about what is taught, but the process of how we get there. The dynamic of appropriating land, resources, energy, building, operating, hiring, getting to the church, synagogue, mosque or temple removes us from who, why, how & where we live.
Our indigenous Celtic ancestors before the violent Roman Christian invasion & oppression, lived together in Multihome communities where recognition for all contributions & intergeneration al mutual-aid gave us 100 times better results than abstract institutional teachings.
Obama is only a distraction from the joy of meeting our essential services together. We are the ones we have been waiting for.
+7 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 12:07
My dear GrumpyGranny, the reason that the Catholic church practices celibacy is all due to money. The rich, the thoughtful ones who understood that their earthly goods were barriers to heaven, were delighted to hand over chunks of wealth to the priests and bishops as a down payment on easier transmission from one place to the next.
Not only were priests and bishops becoming wealthier, they were becoming worldier. Many were married, others just had “open marriages” -- concubines. Worse than that -- in the church’s eyes -- the priests and bishops begetting sons regarded the endowments being made to the church as personal property. So the same rollicking clerics were setting themselves up as landed gentry and passing the fortunes along to their primogenitor sons and heirs....And not the church. The church was losing lots and lots of money.
As usual, the women were blamed. Concubines were ordered scourged. Effectively though, the idea of priestly celibacy was in -- though not universally welcomed among the clerics themselves. And handing over church money to sons of priests and bishops was out.
+13 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 12:09
"As far as children suffering, my children and grands will pay for what's happened under Obama and our mostly complicitous Congress!"

Yes because being able to get medical coverage even though you have a previous condition is so very much like being raped.
+5 # Quickmatch 2013-03-14 21:00
It's all about a group of self-interested men defining "what's right" and making a living of preaching that definition to a gullible lay public. It's all about glib-talking men fooling people into providing an easy living under threat of eternal punishment or eternal rewards offered as a pig-in-a-poke deal.
+7 # Pickwicky 2013-03-15 16:29
Grumpy--if you must have a god, find a kinder one.
+6 # Anarchist 23 2013-03-15 19:00
GG: Did you go to sleep in 1950 and never wake up? More children are born from 'abstinence' and 'rhythm method' Those are methods that plainly do not work. And if abstinence is impossible for 'men of god' what happens to horny teen-agers? Yes, a spiritual relationship with good marriage would be very nice but it does not happen for everyone and you cannot make it happen either. So let's be practical and widen the viewpoint.
+4 # Douglas Jack 2013-03-13 20:58
In indigenous multihome dwellings, shared common areas have multiple purposes including: child play, food dining, food drying, processing, intergeneration al interactions, building, creating, crafting & repairing articles or meetings. Everything we want from religion is right here amongst us in multihome dwellings in recognizing / animating each other's gifts & sharing in common areas & services.
+50 # Above God 2013-03-13 19:21
Why do believers need the middleman of priests, cardinals or even a pope to communicate with God or to follow the teachings of Christ?
+18 # phrixus 2013-03-13 20:29
"Why do believers need the middleman of priests, cardinals or even a pope to communicate with God..."

Maybe they're low on minutes? Those charges for going over your limit are a bitch.
+19 # Muzzi 2013-03-13 20:29
Good question. I never understood that people were not allowed to believe that they could ask God directly for help. My
father always said the priest was there for an extra 20 or 50 in his hand.
-26 # GrumpyGranny 2013-03-13 20:59
They are not properly characterized as middlemen, but those who have spent their lives studying the extremely complex issues of man's relationship to his God.

Just as an experiment, try doing some spiritual reading and see whether you feel the same way.
+5 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 12:12
Ah dear GrumpyGranny lets get real on the difference between religion and spirituality.

SPIRITUALITY - The search for enlightenment/knowledge.

RELIGION - The search for reward.

My God is so close to me that IT knows my relationship to ITSELF. No unmarried man can ever understand that relationship.
+4 # Pickwicky 2013-03-15 16:36
Man's relationship to Myth.
+47 # phrixus 2013-03-13 19:23
The Catholic Church is nothing more than a well-financed, politically-con nected criminal conspiracy. It supported (at a minimum passively) Nazi activities during WWII, assisted Nazi fugitives in escaping justice, continues to aid and abet child rape and provide material support to brutal dictatorships. How any thinking person can continue to buy into the rubbish the Catholic Church still vomits from the Vatican dungeons is beyond comprehension.
-31 # GrumpyGranny 2013-03-13 21:04
Your definition strains credulity. See remarks above. Think missionaries taking in those victims and helping them to recover from the trauma.

This thinking person has a BA, MA and certifications and stands firmly in support of the Church with hope for more growth under the leadership of our new Pope whose first words were of healing and collegiality with members of the Church.
+14 # Okieangels 2013-03-13 21:17
Unless he turns out to be the next John XXIII, I probably won't be that impressed.
+9 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 12:12
Learned with degrees does not mean intelligent.
-11 # Joeconserve 2013-03-14 13:09
Obviously you have not been reading with understanding in mind what GrumpyGranny has written. She has a better grasp of the "what is" than any of the other comments before or after her's. She recognizes a higher order of intellegence whereas the rest are relying on a human level that equates to the lower forms of life.
+4 # Pickwicky 2013-03-15 16:36
bmiluski--as I've said before, I know many people with degrees, but no education. For example: Tea Baggers! Must put GrumpyGranny in that group.
+9 # phrixus 2013-03-14 18:40
@GrumpyGranny. Whom do you think CREATES those victims? The Catholic Church just settled 4 sex abuse cases in LA for ten million dollars. The church's history of child molestation is long, tawdry and extremely well documented. The new pope wouldn't need to offer words of healing if the church didn't inflict such grievous injury on it's (usually helpless) victims to begin with. Frankly, adopting the cloak of apologist for an organized group of pedophiles places you on very shaky ground - both morally AND intellectually.
+1 # phrixus 2013-03-16 19:30
Only TWO degrees? Then why should anyone pay attention to you at all?
Seriously, you're trying to compensate for poor argumentation skills by deflecting. The number of degrees or amount of education you have is irrelevant to the accuracy or strength of the points you are attempting to make.
BTW: Albert Einstein had a fairly good education and intellect. He also made his share of errors e.g. cosmological constant and was also quite a humble fellow (a trait you might find worth emulating).
-2 # in deo veritas 2013-03-13 22:27
You evidently skipped school a lot to believe this crap. What you are describing is the present system of misgovernment in the USA. It was the OSS, later the CIA that aided war criminals to get into this country so they could be used against the Communists that nitwits like McCarthy and Hoover had us thinking were lurking around every corner. That blind stupidity on the part of the public has never been sufficiently exposed.
+9 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 12:14
Oh for the love of .... anything. Please stick to the topic of this article. Your rantings about this government is viewed with a blind eye by most of the readers.
+3 # Texas Aggie 2013-03-14 19:44
Hear!! Hear!!
+2 # Pickwicky 2013-03-15 16:33
In deo--Perhaps true, but irrelevant.
+33 # spenel334 2013-03-13 20:11
spenel334 Hmmm, interesting. I heard a bit of this on NPR today; a journalist, I believe from Argentina but at least one who works in South America, was being interviewed and said not all Argentinians were happy about the appointment. He mentioned the reason as being Bergoglio's silence in face of Argentinian terror. That part of the discussion was brief, but it did catch my attention. Apparently many Argentinians, including, of course, the younger ones, are not even aware of what went on so many years ago.
+4 # GrumpyGranny 2013-03-13 21:05
Uneducated youth is a worldwide problem. Let's remember that, when we speak of the problems American students face in becoming educated enough to contribute to their society.
+3 # Douglas Jack 2013-03-14 10:53
'Education' (Latin 'to-lead-forth- from-within') has nothing to do with the forceful institutional system of indoctrination, which the church, mosques, synagogues & temples of the world have imposed. Do you recognize the patterns of empire, control & submission upon which our colonial life is built? Institutional false 'education' forcefully segregates youth from their family & community contexts, then distracts them from understanding their inner gifts in order to memorize the dogma of empire. As indoctrinated proles buy into the behaviour modification 'degrading' system each forgets his & her own gifts. Religions are fragmented expressions of left social leanings, in reaction to monetary-'capit alism' (L 'cap' = 'head' = 'wisdom') production but unfortunately not integrating human gifts in complementation to create a whole.

During humanity's indigenous period youth were facilitated to go on 'Vision-quests' finding their gifts for 'community' (L 'com' = 'together' + 'munus' = 'gift or service'). Youth would align with specialized Production Societies or Guilds and while contributing to economic life, be mentored to develop their gifts. Time-based human resource capital (share) accounting within Production Societies gave recognition to the knowledge cycle each person's contributions, experience, expertise & decision-making accumen.
+18 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 12:14
With no help from the religious right who insisted that Creationalism be taught in place of science.
+19 # roger paul 2013-03-13 20:22
Talk about "mass" hysteria .... when will the masses give up their superstitious mumbo jumbo and enter the 21 century. If this pope is so humble, maybe he should sell all the riches of this church and give it to the poor or at least to all those individuals that were molested and abused by priest....looks like the cover up will continue.
-1 # in deo veritas 2013-03-13 22:31
Why don't you suggest that the thieves in this country like the Koches, Adelson, etc. etc. do this instead of stealing more from us? Maybe you too should practice what you preach!
+11 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 12:17
I truly wonder about people like you. If you'd only read a third of the postings in this venue you'd see just how many people are screaming for the likes of the Koches Adelson, Cheneys and Bushes be prosecuted for their crimes.
Now its time one of the richest religions be held accountable for their sins.
+4 # Texas Aggie 2013-03-14 19:46
Or at least a tithe of their riches. Their real estate in the section of London that corresponds to our Wall St. would go a long ways toward cleaning up a lot of the mess they've created.
+20 # ganymede 2013-03-13 20:51
Big mistake. Like the continuing downfall of rightwing politicians in our country and the world over, we're seeing first hand how how these proto-fascist delusions and moral 'errors' are doing them in. How could the Vatican appoint someone who is so tainted by his complicity in evil during the fascist period in Argentina. It's even worse than the passive complicity of Pope Pius during the Second World War, and it will only hasten the implosion of the Catholic Church. They really don't have a clue and it's why, even with fits and starts, we are entering a more enlightened and progressive era.
+6 # in deo veritas 2013-03-13 22:35
How about the passive complicity of the American public in what it supported for the 8 years under the chimp and what is continuing through drone attacks and the destruction of our Bill of Rights? You can't believe that we in this country are entering a more enlightened and progressive era!
-2 # Douglas Jack 2013-03-14 14:14
in deo veritas, Exactly! The institutional processes used by those governments, corporations & organizations which you mention are exactly the same processes used by the churches, mosques, synagogues & temples of the world. What humanity needs is 'cultural' holistic, complementary multidisciplina ry economic organization, which responds to the needs of the whole person & the whole community. Such organization builds critical-mass strengths among persons, always 'fractal' in 'memes' or 'genes' in its design to strengthen individual, family & community as well as being repeated upon all subsequent iterations through regional, national & international levels.
-2 # Pickwicky 2013-03-16 15:41
Douglas Jack--What is a whole person? It hit me while reading your post that I may be 1/32nd of a person. This is something I've secretly feared for a long time. Could we rephrase: ". . .which responds to the needs of the whole person & (sic) the whole community." to which responds to the all the needs of individuals and communities? Or does that destroy the mood?
+1 # in deo veritas 2013-03-13 22:37
Here we go again. I tried to put up a -1 and this stupid thing put up a plus. To hell with it. I will do something useful and read a book.
-1 # roger paul 2013-03-14 14:32
If you are going to read a book, and I love to read also, I suggest you read the Pulitzer prize book by Stephen Greenblatt, The Swerve:How the world became modern.
+5 # phrixus 2013-03-14 19:30
I recommend:
The God Delusion - Richard Dawkins
The Moral Landscape - Sam Harris
The Greatest Show On Earth - Dawkins
God Is Not Great - Christopher Hitchens
The Blind Watchmaker - Dawkins
The End Of Faith - Harris
God And The Folly of Faith - Victor Stenger
Caveman Logic - Hank Davis
Demon-Haunted World - Carl Sagan
A Universe From Nothing - Lawrence Krauss
+6 # roger paul 2013-03-14 23:12
I concur with Phrixus all the above books are great reading. For all of you who still cling to your bible,I suggest pondering 1 Cor 13:11..When I was a child I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
+2 # FDRva 2013-03-13 23:25
You could be right.

But, since the new Pope, the former Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio--was an outspoken opponent of International Monetary Fund austerity looting of the Third World--that places him well to the left of President Obama on economic issues.

The Vatican did not bailout Wall Street's thieves. Presidents Bush and Obama wrote those blank checks.

This suggests that Obama--is a fascist--just with more military power--and less moral power than the new Pope.

The Pope, after all, has no drones at his command.
+5 # Texas Aggie 2013-03-14 19:48
So who were they going to appoint who was any better? The whole College of Cardinals was made up of people like him who were appointed for their rigid conservatism by two very rigid conservatives.
+7 # charsjcca 2013-03-13 21:43
Do not make too much of the past. Just do not forget it.
+14 # charsjcca 2013-03-13 21:56
It could be that the short list only included Cardinals. What we see is a process wherein the individual with the least dirty hands is chosen. They could not consider a female leader so it began with less than 50% of the potential leaders on the list. The Conclave does not know what ERA stands for.-
0 # Texas Aggie 2013-03-14 19:52
And on the Daily Currant there is an excellent rant by Jennifer Rubin concerning the discrimination against Jews in the selection process.

P.S. Turn on snarkmeter before reading.
-6 # FDRva 2013-03-13 22:46
Pope John Paul II made a point of denouncing economic 'structures of sin, both East and West' when the Berlin Wall fell. He was no simpleton Polish anti-Communist.

The social doctrine of the Church from Leo XIII to Paul VI to John Paul II is a helluva lot more economically progressive than the Obama-era Democratic Party.

John Paul's newly elected successor, the former Cardinal Bergoglio of Argentina-- unlike our "progressive" President Obama--has at least had the decency to denounce International Monetary Fund looting economics--that enriches London & Wall Street--while impoverishing millions of others.

And speaking of glass houses, Sens. Paul (R) and Wyden (D) among others, in the recent filibuster made a pretty good case that Pres. Obama --like his cousin Cheney--is not above a 'dirty war' against US citizens, should it suit his short-term ends.
0 # FDRva 2013-05-03 14:21
It pains me greatly to say this--but many of my fellow Democrats likely would have seriously considered voting for Hitler--if the Fuhrer had but told them what they wanted to hear--about 'marriage equality.'

But much of the GOP is willing to give Wall Street more bailout dollars than even the compliant Wall Street creation Obama has funneled their way.

And many GOPers would have voted for Stalin if he had told them what they wanted to hear about abortion.

I like the Clintons, but despise Gore as a Green phony from Wall Street.

Messrs Cuccinelli and MacAuliffe are well known to me.

I do not think Virginia will disintegrate if either is the next Governor,

I consider them both friends. I may be the last undecided voter in VA--if recent polls are to be trusted.
+9 # rradiof 2013-03-13 23:18
The 95 Theses posted by Martin Luther are as relevant today as when posted 596 years ago. The Romans have finally deputized their religion's "First Legion": the Society of Jesus, a/k/a Jesuits to jackboot the flock. Over and out.
+14 # rogelio l. ordonez 2013-03-14 00:30
In one chapter of "Holy Horrors," an illustrated history of religious murder and madness, by James A. Haught, he emphasized that "corruption in the medieval Catholic hierarchy was infamous. Pope John XII openly had love affairs, gave church treasure to a mistress, castrated one opponent, blinded another, and an armor to lead an army. Benedict IX sold the papacy to a successor for 1,500 pounds of gold. Urban VI tortured and murdered his cardinals. Innocent VIII proudly acknowledged his illegitimate children and loaded them with church riches. Pope Boniface VII, whose name was omitted from official church listings, murdered two rival popes in the 10th century. Sergius III likewise killed two rivals for the papal throne. Benedict V dishonored a young girl and fled with the Vatican treasury. Clement VI sported with mistresses on ermine bed-linens. Boniface VIII sent troops to kill every resident of Palestrina and raze the city xxxx"
Haught averred that "cardinals, archibishops, abbots, bishops, priests and monks kept concubines, pocketed church wealth, waged armed vendettas, and grew rich through simony, the selling of church offices and acts." And according to Pope Innocent III, "all of them, from the highest to the lowest, do as it is said in the prophets: They are enthralled to avarice, love presents, and seek rewards; for the sake of bribes, they pronounce the godless righteous..."
My brothers and sisters... is there anything new?
+2 # Anarchist 23 2013-03-15 19:08
rogelio: You forgot the Medici and the Borgias! there are good Catholics but generally they are the humbler followers.I am thinking of Dorothy Day for example or the Berrigans.
0 # rogelio l. ordonez 2013-03-21 21:26
yes, anarchist 23. Pope Alexander VI (a Borgia) bribed some cardinals to be elected pope. He had two illegitimate children, Cesare and Lucrezia; they held a banquet inside the Vatican; they invited 50 courtesans and male guests. That party was recorded in the annals of pornography as "The Ballet of the Chestnuts" as discussed by Barbara Tuchman in her book "March of Folly."
-2 # cafetomo 2013-03-14 01:50
Holy cow. You guys make my brain hurt. Caring is sharing, but this is ridiculous.
+14 # Hacienda View 2013-03-14 02:53
Quoting from the above (and from the bible) "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone" Perhaps if this were amended to "Let he who is without sin cast the first vote" it may have taken a long time to find a new pope. There may have never been any smoke, black or white.
0 # phrixus 2013-03-14 18:45
Excellent point. Bravo.
+14 # Don Thomann 2013-03-14 05:50
"Imagine there's no heaven, and no religion too."
+4 # hydroweb 2013-03-14 09:00
St Francis never would have accepted becoming a cardinal, much less pope. What a hypocrite.
-5 # georgia 2013-03-14 11:41
I don't understand the hatred on this site.
Is everyone here so righteous and pharisaical as to condemn others?

I signed onto this site because of this level of hatred and to balance it out with some truth. I searched online for some backup to what is being said here. What I could find was that silence was the greatest sin. But, I was not there. I don't know the whole picture.

What I do know is that we in this country are greedy, selfish, with a 'winner-take-al l' mindset. We do not care for the hungry, the poor, the sick.

My gramma had a saying:
'the sin of all you sinners doesn't definately damn; for your wasness doesn't matter if your isness really am'.

Please, people, go pick on another Church. How about Judism? Mormanism? Islam? Are they all perfect?????
+10 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 12:20
Please, people, go pick on another Church. How about Judism? Mormanism? Islam? Are they all perfect?????
No they are not perfect. But this article is NOT about them, its about Catholicism. And so that's what we are discussing.
+5 # roger paul 2013-03-14 14:38
Dear bmiluski

What do you mean all religions aren't perfect....they are perfectly ridiculous.
+4 # bmiluski 2013-03-15 10:15
Quoting roger paul:
Dear bmiluski

What do you mean all religions aren't perfect....they are perfectly ridiculous.

I stand corrected.
+9 # bmiluski 2013-03-14 12:22
OK, so another white old guy is elected as the leader of the Catholic Church. Same-old-same-o ld. Women as second class citizens and the wealth of the upper echelon.
+5 # Texas Aggie 2013-03-14 19:57
Very few of us have done anything even remotely equivalent to what the good Pope Francis did in Argentina back then.

He upbraided the present Argentine government for its treatment of the poor, but then he was running no personal risk when he did it. It is understandable that he was unwilling to speak out against the behavior of the Argentine military dictatorship because they had a record of disappearing people who didn't toe the line.
+4 # phrixus 2013-03-15 08:07
I'm not hearing my "Hatred Detector" going off. I AM reading constructive criticism, plain old disagreement and folks trying to tease out a bit of truth. Picking on another church does not and will not absolve the Catholic Church of it's crimes and attempts to conceal them. The Catholic Church is an evil, perverse organization and needs to be taken to task for it's multitude of sins.
+6 # roger paul 2013-03-14 17:43
Dear FDRva
What do you mean the Pope has no drones? What do you call the Cardinals, Archbishops, Bishops, priest and the 1.2 billion laity that don't acknowledge the horrors perpetuated on nonbelievers of your religion? Don't question, just follow the rules and believe...sound s like drones to me.
-2 # Pickwicky 2013-03-15 16:39
Roger--accordin g to Huxley, the drones are nuns.
0 # erpiu 2013-03-19 12:37
doc online shows conclusively (unless forged) now-pope snitched big time and viciously proactively

here are the links to

doc translated:

the original:

interview in english of award-winning journalist who found the doc in the argentinian gov's archives:

more in english:

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