Pope Francis just issued a jaw-dropping declaration about climate change

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Pope Francis is again making waves in the Catholic Church.

His brief time as pontiff has been filled with many controversial decisions.

And now Pope Francis issued a jaw-dropping declaration about climate change.

The mainstream media have a love-hate relationship with Pope Francis.

The overwhelmingly Left corporate press have a strong aversion to Christianity, but they have a soft spot for Pope Francis because of his liberal positions on many issues.

That shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone because Pope Francis is a Jesuit, a liberal order within the church, and a devotee of liberal theology, a philosophy of combining Christianity with Marxist principles.

And Pope Francis showed just how liberal he was when he recently announced that he’s considering adding sins against the environment as a component of the church’s teachings.

The Wall Street Journal reports:

Pope Francis, who has made the environment a signature cause of his pontificate, said he was strongly considering adding the category of “ecological sin” to the Catholic Church’s official compendium of teachings.

Pope Francis has stressed the importance of environmental protection since his election in 2013. He dedicated an entire encyclical, “Laudato Si,’” published in 2015, to the topic.

In that document, he called global warming a major threat to life on the planet and called for a reduction in the use of fossil fuels. He also blamed the global market economy for plundering the earth at the expense of the poor and future generations.

This is precisely the type of language that socialist environmentalists use.

Capitalism and fossil fuels are somehow sins against the planet.

This is a peculiar stance because it’s free markets and property rights that have created unimaginable prosperity and lifted billions out of grinding poverty.

We could perhaps reduce our carbon footprint by going back to an agrarian society that gets by on subsistence farming, but hundreds of millions around the globe would very likely die.

The truth is, the climate is always changing, and nobody can say with any certainty the extent to which human beings have an effect.

But the Left wields the fear of global warming as a cudgel against free markets, and unfortunately Pope Francis is playing directly into that fear-mongering.

How do you think the idea of an “ecological sin” will be received by the faithful?

Leave a comment below.

126 COMMENTS

  1. I firmly believe that this man has sold his soul to the dark side as he is advocating to change everything that has been taught in the catholic church and has been the foundation for many civilized nations 180 degrees to undermine the moral and civic structure of the world.

    • I feel the same. Pope Franky ascension to the Vatican throne is a great setback for the Catholic Church and for Christianity in general. He has no beliefs other than those that will set him and his Liberal Theology into a political power position. Catholic Church membership has been on a long decline in large part for its leadership clinging to fundamental beliefs taught by Jesus. Along comes Franky and those fundamentals are for sale, compromise or whatever floats your boat in the modern era.

      Let’s see if membership increases. If it does after Franky’s selling out Jesus then we know that we have entered the End Times and this little Venezuelan runt is heralding it.

      • Being Pope gives him no special insight into what causes global warming or how it can be stopped. We all do know that making the rich countries poor is not going to help the poor countries and will in fact makes their lives worse. The poorer countries are trying to make their people more productive so they can claw their way out of poverty and absent oil and gas they will not make it using wind and solar or donkeys. The Pope should stick to religion and to find ways to help get Catholics back to church and provide incentives for the development of additional religious service so that priests and nuns can help grow the church.

        • Our Church will survive Francis. However, I don’t believe I’ll see it in my lifetime. He is right up there with Leo-X, Alexander-VI, Urban-VI, just to name a few. Bergoglio is towing the political left line to seek favor from the liberal media, and, It’ll work for him in the short run. Emily and I will NEVER leave the Faith, because it is OUR Church not Francis’ Church. God Bless. We are Jim and Emily…..

    • Pope Francis has been promised by those in control of the New World Communist order being forced on free people’s around the world that the Catholic church would be permitted to exist after the global collapse. Francis has sold out to the dark side and agreed to be submissive to the Islamic or Muslim belief system which is 65% political control and 35% religious belief system. Francis is submitting to the lies being fed from the United Nations with Climate change being one of the primary lies that began in 1968. Over the past 51 years plus, there have been 41 predictions of catastrophic events since the beginning with the time frame of all 41 passing without a single one being proven correct. In 1968 the threat was said to be that we were entering into a mini ice age. This changed to global warming in the 1980’s where the climate warmed by less that a degree, just enough to prove the first claim false. When the earth began to cool again in the early 2000’s these so called scientists basically anyone willing to sign their name to documents that make the false claims sound real. In reality Carbon Dioxide CO2 is at the lowest level ever. This truly is a concern. Carbon is the building block of life on earth. Carbon is required by plants for them to exist as it is required for the chemical functions needed to sustain photosynthesis the process that feeds the plant. Plants are required to clean the air we breathe. Plants cannot exist without animals and we cannot exist without plants. Continue on this path and this planet will lose it ability to sustain life becoming like other planets within our solar system. I have heard it estimated that if we fail to maintain our current lifestyle and add to the level of CO2 we will face extinction within the next century. The United Nations under agenda 21 has called for our current global population of 7.5 billion to be brought down to a more manageable level of 300 million. That is calling for the death of 7.2 billion people within the next few decades. Who will they allow to survive.

    • As a practicing Catholic, and scientist, I unfortunately have to agree. Francis is no Pope Benedict and absolutely no Saint John Paul II.

    • Great the pope just made the catholic church into a pagan religion. I guess he did not not want to be criticized for being christian anymore.

    • He certainly isn’t the mild, meek mannered pope that he had so many believing he was!! Regardless, he isn’t God, maybe a false prophet!!

    • I cannot understand this condemnation. For generations tha Catholic Church ha contributed to the problem of galloping overpopulation by preaching against sensible, medically safe birth control. Time to face reality with nine billion people, and their wastes pushing to ten billion on a planet of finite resources, limited space and already nearly half of these people struggling in grinding poverty. With giant islands of garbage floating in the seas, honeybees dying from pesticide contamination, pollution of water and air, any world leader who defends the environment should be forgiven his other heresies. If he declares it a sin to hunt and kill animals for trophy antlers, isn’t this a help to stop the slaughter?

  2. The Fact about the environment is we have too many people on the earth today. No amount of climate change money will stop that. All climate change money does is take money from the poor and give it to the government. China has half the people in the world today and China isn’t interested in the environment.

    • If Americans are ever stupid enough to adopt any part of the Green New Deal I reckon the Chinese will be laughing their ass’s off.

    • There are only “too many people on earth” in the context of how nearly all those people expect to live off/with devices powered by “fossil fuels” or which generate heat at all regardless of power source type. In general, humanity’s tools and amenities generate a lot of heat, regardless of carbon dioxide output. So many supercomputers, foundries, factories, furnaces, fireplaces, reactors, mills, engines, airplanes, ships, trains, automobiles, stoves, ovens and refrigerators! Things that may scale with population.

      • In Canada there are many forest fires every year, (one can believe this as Canada has approximately 1.8 million square miles of forest) I once read a scientific article that stated that just three forest fires per year in the province of British Colombia exceeds all of the carbon dioxide emitted by all of the cars in the country in the same period. Incidentally we would all starve without there being lots of CO2 for the plants to consume particularly the food crops.

        • That’s not a problem if the frequencies, volumes, intensities and quantities of the fires do not scale with the population of humanity. Scale is at the center of all this. If people and their machinations expand into those areas, then undoubtedly they will try to control the fires at some cost that they will not have previously adequately calculated.

    • your comment is laughable, the fact is; you have been brainwashed by the globalists, there arent too many people, the governments of the world mismanage everything to satisfy their local oligarchy.
      China only has about 22% of the people on earth, way fewer than half. I guess you flunked math? I agree that China has no interest in the environment or people, just in making money for their anti-capitalist Communist government.

      • Right, well, there are no established guidelines as to what constitutes “too many” or “too few” in a general context. Remarks about “overpopulation” or “underpopulation” tend to involve some kind of value judgment of the population in question, as to whether the hypothetical average somebody’s presence does “more harm than good” or “more good than harm”.

    • And why would you say that? The Catholic Church is the Church that Jesus himself established. It is the Church that gave us the inspired Words of God, the Bible. It is the Church in which the gates of Hell will not prevail. The Catholic Church was established by God himself, any other church has been started by a man. Are you saying that God made a mistake? Nope, not gonna happen! Now, have there been men who have not been good leaders in the Catholic Church? Yes, unfortunately, however, this does not make the Holy Catholic Church “FAKE Christianity”. When you attack the Catholic Church, you attack Jesus himself as he left the Pope in charge of the Church as his direct ambassador or prime minister. The Papacy has roots all the way back to Peter and he was duly authorized by Jesus himself. Why would Jesus establish His Church on earth and not have leadership to provide guidance down through the ages? He wouldn’t. Jesus was brilliant as to his establishment of the Sacraments and his Church.

      • Catholicism is a perversion of Christianity. It is based on works, not grace.
        Christ followers are not called to pray to saints, or worship Mary, or adorn the house of God with statues. The concept of popes and fathers and purgatory are not scriptural.
        Jesus established no church. The Catholic church was established and sanctioned by the Roman government, not God. Sorry!

        • I’m sorry but you will need to reread Scriptures. Jesus did establish His Church. It is very plain in the Gospels. Also, if you believe the Bible is the inspired words of God and speaks the truth then you can’t pick and choose what you want to believe from it. Scriptures do ask for us to pray to saints for help and to pray for the deceased. There is reference to Purgatory. When you were a kid did you have posters of movie stars or athletes in your room? Did you pray to them? Well guess what, we don’t pray to statues either. However, they do help us reflect on the sacrifices and life of the saint that is depicted. Thus we pray to them to help us in our daily lives to live like they did so that we can eventually attain Heaven. They are there as reminders of what we strive to be also. As to Mary, we don’t worship her either. Sorry to bust your bubble. We do venerate her as she is the Mother of God. She has a special place in Jesus’ heart. She is the mother of Jesus, Jesus is God so Mary is the Mother of God. She has a VERY special relationship to God. She is the Daughter of the Father, the Mother of the Son and the Spouse of the Holy Spirit. Because of this she has a VERY special place in our hearts. You also have to accept the teaching of the Bible in which it states that the Bible is not the only teaching source. You subscribe to “Sola Scriptura” or “Bible Alone”. This is not acceptable according to the Bible. The Bible also states that we are to follow Sacred Tradition. In that case, we have to accept the Papacy as the leader of Christ’s Church, the Catholic Church, and the existence of Purgatory. Also, again, if you believe that the Bible is the inspired words of God and that it is the truth in which you follow then you have to accept the Catholic Church as the Teaching Authority in which the Bible was given. It was in the late 4th century, the early 5th century that the Pope of the Catholic Church, (there were no other “Christian” churches at that time), convened the Council to put together the Bible. It has been accepted since then as the Word of God. You cannot deny the Teaching Authority of the Church and without denying the Bible as the inspired words of God. If you do then you cannot claim the Bible as being the Truth. It would be just another book. Without the leadership of the Pope then the Church did not exist and neither does the Bible. Guess what? The Catholic Church does exist as a result of Jesus’ bidding and the Pope is the head of the Church and the Bible is the inspired Words of God.

          • From the clear inaccuracies in your remarks, you obviously are not a student of the Bible, or know how the 66 books it contains were chosen. (The NT books were selected by the Council of Carthage in 397AD, and all 66 books conformed by the Council of Trent in 1545. The OT books were formally confirmed by Jewish authorities between 200 BC and 100 AD.)
            Jesus made it clear in his teaching, as recorded in the NT, that His Church consists of ALL who accept Him as their Savior and commit to follow His teaching. And it is they who are the “Saints” (You need to read and UNDERSTAND the Gospels) The concept of Denominations and buildings as “churches” is a human invention. And nowhere in Jesus teaching does He even suggest that Christians should “PRAY FOR THE DEAD”. This notion is a self-made Roman Catholic fallacy. According to Jesus, we must make our own choice to accept Him as our Lord and Savior, and accept God’s forgiveness and receive His grace for eternal life with Him. If we fail to do that while we are alive, no one can do it for us when we are dead.

          • Bible verses please.
            What bible verses do you have that discuss purgatory and praying to saints?
            Your post means nothing if you can’t back it up with scripture.

          • First off there were 73 books authorized by the Catholic Church. 46 books in the OT and 27 in the NT. It was not until Martin Luther that 7 books were removed from his bible. Jesus did not subscribe to the Hebrew Bible but the to Greek version as was the custom of that time period, which had the 46 books. The Dead Sea Scrolls also confirmed the existence of the 7 books that the Hebrew version did not have but the Greek version did. With that said, again if you believe in the Bible as the true inspired Words of God then in Matthew 5:48 – Jesus simply states: “Be perfect just as your heavenly Father is perfect.” So unless you lead a perfect life you will not be admitted to heaven without a purification time or process. Just because a person “accepts Jesus Christ as their personal savior” does not mean that they will be readily admitted to heaven upon their death. I don’t know about you but I don’t know of too many people that would be perfect upon their death. So heaven would be unattainable except through Jesus’ purification and that is not done in Heaven. If it can’t be done in Heaven then where else would it be done? Those condemned to Hell have no hope, they are lost souls for all eternity. Thus a purification would not be done in Hell. That leads to the conclusion of Purgatory. In 1 Col. 3: 11-15 it also speaks of cleansing fire and the fire testing the quality of one’s work. In Revelation 21:27 it speaks of nothing entering into the City of God will be unclean, no one who does abominable things or tells lies. So if you are unclean and yet “salvageable” you must be cleansed with the fire in a place away from Heaven yet not condemned to Hell. Then to address praying to the saints you have to look at Romans 6: 3-4 in which it states we were baptized in Jesus Christ and into his death. So that when Christ was raised from the dead, so shall we one day. Also Col. 2:12 it talks of those that were raised from the dead, thus our saints in heaven. You believe we pray to the saints and to Mary as if we were giving to them what is due to God alone. However, earliest Christianity defined prayer as conversation. As with any conversation it must be directed at someone, one talks to someone, one communicates with someone or you pray to someone. So, praying to God, to Mary, to the saints simply indicates the direction of prayer communication. The earliest Catholic Church (the Council of Rome in 993; defined by the Council of Trent) made a distinction between worship, which is due to God alone and honor, which we honor those saints who have gone before us in the sign of faith and victory in living the Christian life. Then referring to Sacred Tradition, you can find that in 2 Thess 2:15 – “Therefore brothers, stand firm and hold fast to the traditions (paradoseis) that you were taught, either by oral statement or by letter of ours.” Then you can read John 20:30 – “Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples that are not written in this book.” Then in John 21: 25 it speaks of how if everything that Jesus did were written the whole world could not contain the books that would be written. In 2 Tim 2:2 – “And what you heard from me through many witnesses entrust to faithful people who will have the ability to teach others as well.” St. Paul defines “faithful people” as bishops (1 Tim 3:1-2), presbyters or priests (1 Tim 5: 17) or deacons (1 Tim 4:6, 13, 16). So, even the Bible states that tradition must be a teaching source also. From that the Catholic Church derives it sacred duty to teach and guide its people, not only through the Bible but from the Sacred Traditions handed down.

          • DJ, you are reading a lot into the bible verses you listed which simply is not there.
            Matthew 6:7 condemns repetitive prayer, with or with out beads.
            Luke 11:27-28 deals with praying to Mary or glorifying her.
            Timothy 2:5 states there is only one mediator between God and man and that is Christ Jesus, not Mary or any saints.
            There is no bible verse mentioning purgatory anywhere in the New Testament. That is Roman Catholic doctrine.

          • I am afraid that you are the one that is reading a lot into the Bible verses that you list. First, Mt 6:7 does state that repetitive prayer is useless, however, Jesus was addressing those that were trying to make a spectacle of their prayer. Praying the Rosary is a reflection of the life and times of Jesus. It is a helpful aid in reflecting on how we should live our lives. It is a request of help from our Lord and from his mother, Mary. This is not a condemnation of repetitive prayer but of seeking to put yourself above others by praying repetitively without cause so that others will think you are holy. In the second verse that you quote it says nothing of not praying to Mary for her intersession or to seek her help. The woman was trying to express her joy at the Messiah finally arriving and Jesus was asking the woman to listen to His message and to live it. It says nothing about not holding Mary in honor of her position as His mother. Again, you are the one reading something into the Scripture that is not there. The third passage you quote concerns that Jesus is God and the only Way to the gates of Heaven. However, again, it does not say we cannot ask for help from those that have gone before and will pray for us in Heaven and ask for help from our Lord on our behalf. Even the Saint that you quote, Paul, is available for your prayers to hear and will ask our Lord to bestow his blessing on you for your well being if asked. Finally you are correct that “Purgatory” is not specifically stated in the Bible. However, again, I provided the Scripture passages that do address this and the one that states the tradition is to be used, just as much as the Bible, for teaching and yet you decline to accept that, even though it is in the Bible. You know, Jesus was trying to teach the Pharisees to see beyond their understanding and their beliefs to understand what He was trying to teach. I hope and pray that you will eventually come to that same realization of what Jesus was trying to teach. Remember, the Catholic Church has been around for about 2,000 years. I believe that they kind of know what they are talking about. You have been only around for an eye blink compared to that. So please open your heart and let Jesus’ teachings enter it. Don’t let a narrow view keep you from his Truths. Accept the Teachings and the Traditions of the Catholic Church to unlock other teachings that Jesus taught. It will make things a lot more understandable. I’ll pray for you.

          • Well I didn’t expect to win a religious argument with you anyway DJ.
            Those kind of things are never won through debate.
            If you want to believe Catholicism was created by Jesus despite it being nowhere in scripture that’s your problem.
            I made my point and some other people piped in about it too.

          • Just to note, “catholic” (with a lowercase “c”) means “universal” and “all-encompassing”. Inasmuch, etymology suggests that any Catholic ecclesiastical body was at least intended to be part of the apparatus of all-encompassing spirituality.

        • Sorry Debbi, Catholics who know their religion do not pray directly to Saints, except to ask the Saints to pray with them for whatever they are asking.

          • If you folks want to say I’m wrong about Catholicism can you please offer some bible verses to backup what you’re claiming?
            Where in the bible does it discuss asking saints to pray for you or purgatory or honoring Mary, or popes or any of that stuff.
            Even if you take them out of the 7 extra books.
            Verses please.

          • When Paul told those in Thessalonica to hold the traditions they had been taught, he was speaking of what they had received “by word or our epistle” (what we told you either directly or in a letter). That didn’t give any right to anybody to add traditions later. When traditions are referenced in the Bible, they are almost always criticized because they are almost always simply the ignorant invention of man.
            Purgatory is one of those inventions of man. Jesus himself purged us from our sins (Hebrews 1:3, 2 Corinthians 5:17, etc.). Therefore we need no time or place to be purged from sin. That is done by the miracle of Christ through the blood of Christ.
            The idea that the Roman Catholic Church is the only true church that goes back to what Jesus founded is a bazaar interpretation of history. Today’s Catholic Church is altogether unlike the early church. Tradition after tradition has been added over the centuries that have taken it further and further from what was originally begun. With each new tradition one has to ask, Was the church right before the new tradition or after the new tradition? In either case the clear understanding has to be that the church at some point has just been wrong. What must happen is a return to what the Bible actually teaches. Jesus was repeatedly critical of the traditions of those who were worshipers of the true God. Those traditions were so often in conflict with the scripture. That is why there are churches other than the Catholic church. When a church won’t forsake its traditions that obscure the revelation of scripture, God raises up other groups to clarify the teaching.

          • Lilian……………..you are correct…..Catholics who know their religion do not pray to saints ;however…………..I know so many women who pray more to Mary than Jesus or the Father ?????????????? Also many pray to the saints……………………no one prays to statues that I know.but so many interpret Catholicism differently ?????

          • Wait. Who prays to Mary the mother of Jesus? How do you know that these women are not praying to an embryonic form of Jesus? Regardless, their adoration of Mary may be a sign of how they hope for some modern woman to bless this world with a new being like Jesus, instead of hoping for this being to materialize out of whatever as a fully-formed adult, which the being should, no doubt, be able to do at any place and any time, yet by all accounts has not ever publicly done so since for ages ago.

        • You took the words right out of my mouth Lillian, so very true. This Pope should stay out of this and get his church on the right track by getting those priests who sexually attacked young boys accountable for their sinful actions.

        • “Thou art Peter and upon this rock I will build my Church and the gates of hell will bot prevail against it.” Thus was the Catholic church established……by Jesus.

          • No the Catholic church was established by the Roman government and sanctioned as the state religion. Someone has been lying to you all your life about Catholicism. If you bother to read through the New Testament you’ll notice a lot of Catholic religious practices are condemned.

          • But there is no evidence of continuity between what Jesus established and what came to be administered by ecclesiastical bodies based out of Rome and Constantinople. Granted the bodies in question did and still do preach the New Testament, they also have a long history of endorsing dubious things not found in the testament, and sometimes they, especially the Roman one, have outright contradicted the values for which Jesus stood. Martin Luther’s complaints about the Church were accurate and legit. The clergy tried to shut him down, not in the name of Jesus, but in the reflex of sinfulness.

        • Perhaps you mean to claim that the Catholic Church is a perversion of Catholicism, not that Catholicism itself is a perversion of Christianity. Is the Church really an authority on what constitutes Catholicism?

        • DJ, if you are confused with the scripture I’ll make it real simple for you.
          In order for Mary or any saint to hear your prayers they would have to be like God in that they can hear and answer the prayers of millions of people simultaneously. Mary and the saints cannot hear or answer any prayers let alone millions because they are not God or even like God. They are people passed onto heaven. Nothing more. Only God can hear the prayers of people.
          But going one step further, the bible condemns praying to anyone or anything except God. Its not just an exercise in futility but it’s also sin.

          • Ms. Downer, I don’t believe that I have any confusion over the Scriptures but I will say that first, the Catholic Church was the Church established by Christ Himself, Mt 16: 18-19. It wasn’t started by some Roman Emperor or anybody else. The Catholic Church was the only “Christian” Church for over 1500 years. That is a true and undisputed fact. It doesn’t matter if it is the same or not as the early Church, it is still the one, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. All other churches can be traced back to man, but the Catholic Church and it’s Papacy can be traced all the way back to Jesus and Peter. It wasn’t until Martin Luther and John Calvin decided they didn’t like what they had to teach so they started their own churches, Protestant churches, of which there are over 33,000 different sects. There is only one Catholic Church. Protestant is a derivative of “protest”, which is what Luther and Calvin were doing. They were making themselves gods in starting their own churches. The Catholic Church was started by God, not by man. Yes the Church has had its rough periods, scandals and such, but it still stands and it will always stand. The gates of Hell will not prevail against it. Mary and the Saints are allowed to hear the prayers of those that pray for their intersession to God by God. God allows them to help those of us on earth when we need help. God is all knowing. You are putting limitations on God. And, no where in the Bible does it say you cannot pray to the saints or for the repose of the souls of the dead, in fact St. Paul and St Peter encourage it. You pray for the dead for those in Purgatory because the cannot help themselves as they are going through their “purification” before entering into Heaven. We can help them shorten that time with our prayers to God to have mercy on them and to take them sooner. Again you are mistaken that these prayers are an act in futility. What God does condemn is the trying to communicate with the evil spirits that wander the world in search of souls to lead astray. Jesus purges our sins when we make a good confession and that Sacrament was established on Easter evening: Jn 20:22-23. One must go to a priest, a descendent of the original Apostles, who is a stand in for Our Lord, to ask for forgiveness of our sins. Do you think that Jesus would have given this power of absolution to just these 11 men without allowing it to be handed down for the salvation of His Church through the ages? If you believe the Bible to be true then how do you explain this or the lack of this in your church? God knows that we are sinners and that is the reason why he gave us this Sacrament of Reconciliation. You can’t claim to have found your personal Savior and then go out and slander your neighbor or commit some other sin without consequence. That is the reason we ask for intercessions from our Lord, His Mother, and the saints. God allows them to hear us and assist us. Look at it this way. We really don’t know how to pray very well or we are distracted when we pray, thus imperfect prayer, but when we pray for Mary’s or the saint’s help it like asking them to present a basket of fruit to Our Lord. It is not the best fruit, there are bruises, holes, brown spots, etc. Mary will take that basket of fruit, cut out the bruises and the bad spots and arrange it so that it is pleasing to God and make it a more acceptable gift. I wish all of you a very Happy Thanksgiving and my prayers will include you. Take care…

          • You said Debbie, “Only God can hear the prayers of people.” Then I must be God when I hear people praying in Church. You just say things without thinking.

        • Please Debbie, enlighten everyone by quoting the verse in the Bible that says “everything that Jesus said or did is contained in these Scriptures”. If you can’t justify what you say, then maybe you should stop saying it.

      • You are so wrong the church was established by Roman Lead who liked Jesus teachings but when Christ told him to take his wealth and give it to the poor. He would not do that so he formed the Catholic Church and changed the Bible to fit him and made himself pope. Take it anyway you want to but the church has always been like a pagan religion

  3. I’m all for taking care of the environment. God wants us to be good stewards of what He gave us. But it seems to me that Pope Francis may be headed to a place where the climate never changes and is stuck on just one temperature…extremely hot. Then he will wish it would change

  4. Pope Francis is correct. Vegetarianism is at the heart of Christianity. Jesus insisted upon the moral standards given by God in the beginning (Matthew 5:31-32, 19:3-9; Mark 10:2-12; Luke 16:18), and this did not go unnoticed by early church fathers such as St. Basil and St. Jerome.

    One of the greatest theologians in the early Christian church, Tertullian, or Quintus Septimius Florens Tertullianus, was born in Carthage about AD 155-160. Cyprian, the Bishop of Carthage, called him the “Master.”

    Tertullian was one of four early church fathers who wrote extensively on the subject of vegetarianism. According to Tertullian, flesh-eating is not conducive to the highest life, it violates moral law, and it debases man in intellect and emotion.

    Responding to the apparent permissiveness of Paul, Tertullian argued: “and even if he handed over to you the keys of the slaughter house… in permitting you to eat all things… at least he has not made the kingdom of Heaven to consist in butchery: for, says he, eating and drinking is not the Kingdom of God.”

    Tertullian similarly scorned those who would use the gospel to justify gratifying the cravings of the flesh:

    “How unworthily, too, do you press the example of Christ as having come ‘eating and drinking’ into the service of your lusts: He who pronounced not the full but the hungry and thirsty ‘blessed,’ who professed His work to be the completion of His Father’s will, was wont to abstain — instructing them to labor for that ‘meat’ which lasts to eternal life, and enjoining in their common prayers petition not for gross food but for bread only.”

    Tertullian made his case for moderate eating by referring to the history of the Israelites (Numbers 11:4-34): “And if there be ‘One’ who prefers the works of justice, not however, without sacrifice—that is to say, a spirit exercised by abstinence — it is surely that God to whom neither a gluttonous people nor priest was acceptable — monuments of whose concupiscence remain to this day, where lies buried a people greedy and clamorous for flesh-meats, gorging quails even to the point of inducing jaundice.

    “It was divinely proclaimed,” insisted Tertullian, “’Wine and strong liquor shall you not drink, you and your sons after you.’ Now this prohibition of drink is essentially connected with the vegetable diet. Thus, where abstinence from wine is required by the Deity, or is vowed by man, there, too, may be understood suppression of gross feeding, for as is the eating, so is the drinking.

    “It is not consistent with truth that a man should sacrifice half of his stomach only to God—that he should be sober in drinking, but intemperate in eating. Your belly is your God, your liver is your temple, your paunch is your altar, the cook is your priest, and the fat steam is your Holy Spirit; the seasonings and the sauces are your chrisms, and your belchings are your prophesizing…”

    Tertullian sarcastically compared gluttons to Esau, who sold his birthright in exchange for a meal. “I ever recognize Esau, the hunter, as a man of taste and as his were, so are your whole skill and interest given to hunting and trapping… It is in the cooking pots that your love is inflamed—it is in the kitchen that your faith grows fervid — it is in the flesh dishes that all your hopes lie hid… Consistently do you men of the flesh reject the things of the Spirit. But if your prophets are complacent towards such persons, they are not my prophets…Let us openly and boldly vindicate our teaching.

    “We are sure that they who are in the flesh cannot please God…a grossly-feeding Christian is akin to lions and wolves rather than God. Our Lord Jesus called Himself Truth and not habit.”

    In general, Tertullian railed against gluttony, and taught that spiritual life consists of simple living. He explained, “if man could not follow even a simple taboo against eating one fruit, how could he be expected to restrain himself from more demanding restrictions? Instead, after the Flood, man was given the regulation against blood; further details were length to his own strength of will.”

    According to Tertullian, the entire creation prays to God:

    “Cattle and wild beasts pray, and bend their knees, and in coming forth from their stalls and lairs look up to heaven. Moreover the birds taking flight lift themselves up to heaven and instead of hands, spread out the cross of their wings, while saying something which may be supposed to be a prayer.”

    In his commentary on the Book of Daniel, Hippolytus (AD 200) depicted the Biblical hero and his three companions as pious ascetics. Referring to the passage in Scripture which states that these four men did not wish to defile themselves with the king’s meat, Hippolytus equated the purity of their vegetarian diet with the purity of their thoughts:

    “These, though captives in a strange land, were not seduced by delicate meats, nor were they slaves to the pleasures of wine, nor were they caught by the bait of princely glory. But they kept their mouth holy and pure, that pure speech might proceed from pure mouths, and praise with such (mouths) the Heavenly Father.”

    Clement of Alexandria (AD 150-220), or Titus Flavius Clemens, founded the Alexandrian school of Christian Theology and succeeded Pantaenus in AD 190. In his writings, he referred to vegetarian philosophers Pythagoras, Plato, and even Socrates as divinely inspired. But the true teachings, he insisted, are to be found in the Hebrew prophets and in the person of Jesus Christ.

    Clement taught that a life of virtue is one of simplicity, and that the apostle Matthew was a vegetarian. According to Clement, eating flesh and drinking wine “is rather characteristic to a beast and the fumes rising from them, being dense, darken the soul… Destroy not the work of God for the sake of food. Whether ye eat or drink, do all to the glory of God, aiming after true frugality. For it is lawful for me to partake of all things, yet all things are not expedient…neither is the regimen of a Christian formed by indulgence… man is not by nature a gravy eater, but a bread eater.

    “Those who use the most frugal fare are the strongest, the healthiest and the noblest…We must guard against those sorts of food which persuade us to eat when we are not hungry,” warned Clement, “bewitching the appetite…is there not within a temperate simplicity, a wholesome variety of eatables — vegetables, roots, olives, herbs, fruits…?

    “But those who bend around inflammatory tables, nourishing their own diseases, are ruled by a most licentious disease which I shall venture to call the demon of the belly: the worst and most vile of demons. It is far better to be happy than to have a devil dwelling in us, for happiness is found only in the practice of virtue. Accordingly the apostle Matthew lived upon seeds, fruits, grains and nuts and vegetables, without the use of flesh.”

    Clement acknowledged the moral and spiritual advantages of the vegetarian way of life:

    “If any righteous man does not burden his soul by the eating of flesh, he has the advantage of a rational motive… The very ancient altar of Delos was celebrated for its purity, to which alone, as being undefiled by slaughter and death, they say that Pythagoras would permit approach.

    “And they will not believe us when we say that the righteous soul is the truly sacred altar? But I believe that sacrifices were invented by men to be a pretext for eating flesh.”

    St. Basil (AD 320-79) taught, “The steam of meat darkens the light of the spirit. One can hardly have virtue if one enjoys meat meals and feasts… In the earthly paradise, there was no wine, no one sacrificed animals, and no one ate meat. Wine was only invented after the Deluge…

    “With simple living, well being increases in the household, animals are in safety, there is no shedding of blood, nor putting animals to death. The knife of the cook is needless, for the table is spread only with the fruits that nature gives, and with them they are content.”

    St. Basil prayed for universal brotherhood, and an end to human brutality against animals:

    “The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness
    Thereof. Oh, God, enlarge within us the
    Sense of fellowship with all living
    Things, our brothers the animals to
    Whom Thou gavest the earth as
    Their home in common with us

    “We remember with shame that
    In the past we have exercised the
    High dominion of man and ruthless
    Cruelty so that the voice of the earth
    Which should have gone up to Thee in
    Song, has been a groan of travail.

    “May we realize that they live not
    For us alone but for themselves and
    For Thee and that they love the sweetness
    Of life.”

    According to St. Gregory Nazianzen (AD 330-89):

    “The great Son is the glory of the Father
    and shone out from Him like light…
    He assumed a body
    to bring help to suffering creatures…

    “He was sacrifice and celebrant
    sacrificial priest and God Himself.
    He offered blood to God to cleanse
    the entire world.”

    “Holy people are most loving and gentle in their dealings with their fellows, and even with the lower animals: for this reason it was said that ‘A righteous man is merciful to the life of his beast,’” explained St. John Chrysostom (AD 347-407). “Surely we ought to show kindness and gentleness to animals for many reasons and chiefly because they are of the same origin as ourselves.”

    Writing about the Christian saints and ascetics, Chrysostom observed: “No streams of blood are among them; no butchering and cutting of flesh… With their repast of fruits and vegetables even angels from heaven, as they behold it, are delighted and pleased.”

    Chrysostom considered flesh-eating a cruel and unnatural habit for Christians: “We imitate the ways of wolves, the ways of leopards, or rather we are worse than these. For nature has assigned that they should be thus fed, but us God hath honored with speech and a sense of equity, yet we are worse than the wild beasts.”

    In a homily on Matthew 22:1-4, Chrysostom taught: “We the Christian leaders practice abstinence from the flesh of animals to subdue our bodies… the unnatural eating of flesh-meat is of demonical origin… the eating of flesh is polluting.” He added that “flesh-meats and wine serve as materials for sensuality, and are a source of danger, sorrow, and disease.”

    In a homily on II Corinthians 9, Chrysostom distinguished between nourishment and gluttony:

    “No one debars thee from these, nor forbids thee thy daily food. I say ‘food,’ not ‘feasting’; ‘raiment’ not ‘ornament,’… For consider, who should we say more truly feasted — he whose diet is herbs, and who is in sound health and suffered no uneasiness, or he who has the table of a Sybarite and is full of a thousand disorders?

    “Certainly the former. Therefore, let us seek nothing more than these, if we would at once live luxuriously and healthfully. And let him who can be satisfied with pulse, and can keep in good health, seek for nothing more. But let him who is weaker, and needs to be dieted with other vegetable fruits, not be debarred from them.”

    In a homily on the Epistle to Timothy, Chrysostom described the ill effects of becoming a slave to one’s bodily appetites:

    “A man who lives in selfish luxury is dead while he lives, for he lives only to his stomach. In other senses he lives not. He sees not what he ought to see; he hears not what he ought to hear; he speaks not what he ought to speak. Nor does he perform the actions of living.

    “But as he who is stretched upon a bed with his eyes closed and his eyelids fast, perceives nothing that is passing; so is it with this man, or rather not so, but worse. For the one is equally insensible to things good and evil, while the other is sensible to things evil only, but as insensible as the former to things good.

    “Thus he is dead. For nothing relating to the life to come moves or affects him. For intemperance, taking him into her own bosom as into some dark and dismal cavern full of all uncleanliness, causes him to dwell altogether in darkness, like the dead. For, when all his time is spent between feasting and drunkenness, is he not dead, and buried in darkness?

    “Who can describe the storm that comes of luxury, that assails the soul and body? For, as a sky continually clouded admits not the sunbeams to shine through, so the fumes of luxury… envelop his brain…and casting over it a thick mist, suffers not reason to exert itself.

    “If it were possible to bring the soul into view and to behold it with our bodily eyes—it would seem depressed, mournful, miserable, and wasted with leanness; for the more the body grows sleek and gross, the more lean and weakly is the soul. The more one is pampered, the more the other is hampered.”

    The orthodox, 4th century Christian Hieronymus connected vegetarianism with both the original diet given by God and the teachings of Jesus:

    “The eating of animal meat was unknown up to the big Flood, but since the Flood they have pushed the strings and stinking juices of animal meat into our mouths, just as they threw quails in front of the grumbling sensual people in the desert. Jesus Christ, who appeared when the time had been fulfilled, has again joined the end with the beginning, so that it is no longer allowed for us to eat animal meat.”

    St. Jerome (AD 340-420) wrote to a monk in Milan who had abandoned vegetarianism:

    “As to the argument that in God’s second blessing (Genesis 9:3) permission was given to eat flesh—a permission not given in the first blessing (Genesis 1:29)—let him know that just as permission to put away a wife (divorce) was, according to the words of the Saviour, not given from the beginning, but was granted to the human race by Moses because of the hardness of our hearts (Matthew 19:1-12), so also in like manner the eating of flesh was unknown until the Flood, but after the Flood, just as quails were given to the people when they murmured in the desert, so have sinews and the offensiveness been given to our teeth.

    “The Apostle, writing to the Ephesians, teaches us that God had purposed that in the fullness of time he would restore all things, and would draw to their beginning, even to Christ Jesus, all things that are in heaven or that are on earth. Whence also, the Saviour Himself in the Apocalypse of John says, ‘I am the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end.’ From the beginning of human nature, we neither fed upon flesh nor did we put away our wives, nor were our foreskins taken away from us for a sign. We kept on this course until we arrived at the Flood.

    “But after the Flood, together with the giving of the Law, which no man could fulfill, the eating of flesh was brought in, and the putting away of wives was conceded to hardness of heart… But now that Christ has come in the end of time, and has turned back Omega to Alpha… neither is it permitted to us to put away our wives, nor are we circumcised, nor do we eat flesh.”

    St. Jerome was responsible for the Vulgate, or Latin version of the Bible, still in use today. He felt a vegetarian diet was best for those devoted to the pursuit of wisdom. He once wrote that he was not a follower of Pythagoras or Empodocles “who do not eat any living creature,” but concluded, “And so I too say to you: if you wish to be perfect, it is good not to drink wine and eat flesh.”

    From history, too, we learn that the earliest Christians were vegetarians as well as pacifists. For example, Clemens Prudentius, the first Christian hymn writer, in one of his hymns exhorts his fellow Christians not to pollute their hands and hearts by the slaughter of innocent cows and sheep, and points to the variety of nourishing and pleasant foods obtainable without blood-shedding.

    It’s possible historically that Christianity, like Buddhism, began as a pacifist and vegetarian religion, but was corrupted over the centuries, beginning, perhaps, with the apostle Paul. Secular scholar Keith Akers writes in his as of yet unpublished manuscript, Broken Thread, The Fate of the Jewish Followers of Jesus in Early Christianity:

    “The ‘orthodox’ response to vegetarianism has been somewhat contradictory… The objection to meat consumption has been taken as evidence of heresy when Christians have been faced with outsiders; however, vegetarianism met with a kinder reception among the monastic communities… Vegetarianism does attain a certain status even in orthodox circles.

    “Indeed, a list of known vegetarians among the church leaders reads very much like a Who’s Who in the early church. Peter is described as a vegetarian in the Recognitions and Homilies. Hegesippus, quoted by Eusebius, said that James (the brother of Jesus) was a vegetarian and was raised as a vegetarian. Clement of Alexandria thought that Matthew was a vegetarian…

    “According to Eusebius, the apostles — all the apostles, and not just James — abstained from both meat and wine, thus making them vegetarians and teetotalers, just like James. Clement of Alexandria, Origen, Basil, Gregory of Nanziance, John Chrysostom, and Tertullian were all probably vegetarians, based on their writings… they themselves are evidently vegetarian and can be counted on to say a few kind words about vegetarianism. On the other hand, there are practically no references to any Christians eating fish or meat before the council of Nicaea.

    “The rule of Benedict forbade eating any four-legged animals, unless one was sick. Columbanus allowed vegetables, lentil porridge, flour, and bread only, at all times, even for the sick. A fifth-century Irish rule forbids meat, fish, cheese, and butter at all times, though the sick, elderly, travel-weary, or even monks on holidays may eat cheese or butter, but no one may ever eat meat.

    “The Carthusians were especially strict about vegetarianism. The origin of their order is related by the story of St. Bruno and his companions, who on the Sunday before Lent are sitting before some meat and are debating whether they should eat meat at all.

    “During the debate, numerous examples of vegetarians among their monastic predecessors are mentioned–the Desert Fathers, Paul (the Hermit), Antony, Hilarion, Macharius, and Arsenius, are all cited as vegetarian examples. After much discussion, they fall asleep — and remain asleep for 45 days, waking up when Archbishop Hugh shows up on Wednesday of Holy Week! When they wake up, the meat miraculously turns to ashes, and they fall on their knees and determine never to eat meat again.

    “It is true that the church rejected the requirement for vegetarianism, following the dicta of Paul. However, it is interesting under these circumstances that there are so many vegetarians. In fact, outside of the references to Jesus eating fish in the New Testament, there are hardly any references to any early Christians eating meat.

    “Thus vegetarianism was practiced by the apostles, by James the brother of Jesus, Clement of Alexandria, Origen, Basil, Gregory of Nanziance, John Chrysostom, Tertullian, Bonaventure, Arnobius, Cassian, Jerome, the Desert Fathers, Paul (the Hermit), Antony, Hilarion, Machrius, Columbanus, and Aresenius — but not by Jesus himself!

    “It is as if everyone in the early church understood the message except the messenger. This is extremely implausible. The much more likely explanation is that the original tradition was vegetarian, but that under the pressure of expediency and the popularity of Paul’s writings in the second century, the tradition was first dropped as a requirement and finally dropped even as a desideratum.”

    In her 2004 book, Vegetarian Christian Saints: Mystics, Ascetics & Monks, Jewish scholar Dr. Holly Roberts (she has a Master’s degree in Christian theology) documents the lives and teachings of over 150 canonized vegetarian saints:

    St. Anthony of Egypt; St. Hilarion; St. Macarius the Elder; St. Palaemon; St. Pachomius; St. Paul the Hermit; St. Marcian; St. Macarius the Younger; St. Aphraates; St. James of Nisibis; St. Ammon; St. Julian Sabas; St. Apollo; St. John of Egypt; St. Porphyry of Gaza; St. Dorotheus the Theban; St. Theodosius the Cenobiarch; St. Sabas; St. Fugentius of Ruspe; St. Gerasimus; St. Mary of Egypt; St. Dositheus; St. Abraham Kidunaja; St. John the Silent; St. Theodore of Sykeon; St. Lups of Troyes; St. Lupicinus; St. Romanus; St. Gudelinis; St. Liphardus; St. Maurus of Glanfeuil; St. Urbicius; St. Senoch; St. Hospitius; St. Winwaloe; St. Kertigan; St. Fintan; St. Molua; St. Amatus; St. Guthlac; St. Joannicus; St. Theodore the Studite; St. Lioba; St. Euthymius the Younger; St. Luke the Younger; St. Paul of Latros; St. Antony of the Caves of Kiev; St. Theodosius Pechersky; St. Fantinus; St. Wulfstan; St. Gregory of Makar; St. Elphege; St. Theobald of Provins; St. Stephen of Grandmont; St. Henry of Coquet; St. William of Malavalle; St. Godric; St. Stephen of Obazine; St. William of Bourges; St. Humility of Florence; St. Simon Stock; St. Agnes of Montepulciano; St. Laurence Justinian; St. Herculanus of Piegaro; St. Francis of Assisi; St. Clare of Assisi; St. Aventine of Troyes; st. Felix of Cantalice; St. Joseph of Cupertino; St. Benedict; St. Bruno; St. Alberic; St. Robert of Molesme; St. Stephen Harding; St. Gilbert of Sempringham; St. Dominic; St. John of Matha; St. Albert of Jerusalem; St. Angela Merici; St. Paula; St. Genevieve; St. David; St. Leonard of Noblac; St. Kevin; St. Anskar; St. Ulrich; St. Yvo; St. Laurence O’Toole; St. Hedwig; St. Mary of Onigines; St. Elizabeth of Hungary; St. Ivo Helory; St. Philip Benizi; St. Albert of Trapani; St. Nicholas of Tolentino; St. Rita of Cascia; St. Francis of Paola; St. John Capistrano; St. John of Kanti; St. Peter of Alcantara; St. Francis Xavier; St. Philip Neri; St. Mary Magdalen of Pazzi; St. Jean-Marie Vianney; St. Basil the Great; St. Jerome; St. Ephraem; St. Peter Damian; St. Bernard; St. Catherine of Siena; St. Robert Bellarmine; St. Peter Celestine; St. Olympias; St. Publius; St. Malchus; St. Asella; St. Sulpicius Severus; St. Maxentius; St. Monegundis; St. Paul Aurelian; St. Coleman of Kilmacduagh; St. Bavo; St. Amandus; St. Giles; St. Silvin; St. Benedict of Aniane; St. Aybert; St. Dominic Loricatus; St. Richard of Wyche; St. Margaret of Cortona; St. Clare of Rimini; St. Frances of Rome; St. James de la Marca; St. Michael of Giedroyc; St. Mariana of Quito; St. John de Britto; St. Callistratus; St. Marianus; St. Brendon of Clonfert; St. Kieran (Carian); St. Stephen of Mar Saba; St. Anselm; St. Martin de Porres; St. Procpius; St. Boniface of Tarsus; St. Serenus.

    In the (updated) 1986 edition of A Vegetarian Sourcebook, Keith Akers similarly observes:

    “But many others, both orthodox and heterodox, testified to the vegetarian origins of Christianity. Both Athanasius and his opponent Arius were strict vegetarians. Many early church fathers were vegetarian, including Clement of Alexandria, Tertullian, Heironymus, Boniface, and John Chrysostom.

    “Many of the monasteries both in ancient times and at the present day practiced vegetarianism… The requirement to be vegetarian has been diluted considerably since the earliest days, but the practice of vegetarianism was continued by many saints, monks, and laymen. Vegetarianism is at the heart of Christianity.”

    According to Father Ambrose Agius:

    “Many of the saints understood God’s creatures, and together they shared the pattern of obedience to law and praise of God that still leaves us wondering. The quickest way to understand is surely to bring our own lives as closely as possible into line with the intention of the Giver of all life, animate and inanimate.”

    The Reverend Alvin Hart, an Episcopal priest in New York, says:

    “Many Georgian saints were distinguished by their love for animals. St. John Zedazneli made friends with bears near his hermitage; St. Shio befriended a wolf; St. David of Garesja protected deer and birds from hunters, proclaiming, ‘He whom I believe in and worship looks after and feds all these creatures, to whom He has given birth.’ Early Celtic saints, too, favored compassion for animals. Saints Wales, Cornwall and Brittany of Ireland in the 5th and 6th centuries AD went to great pains for their animal friends, healing them and praying for them as well.”

    St. Benedict, who founded the Benedictine Order in AD 529, permitted meat only in times of sickness, and made vegetarian foods the staple for his monks, teaching, “Nothing is more contrary to the Christian spirit than gluttony.” The Rule of St. Benedict itself is a composite of ascetic teachings from previous traditions, such as St. Anthony’s monasticism in Egypt, which called for abstinence from meat and wine.

    According to E. Eyre-Smith, in an article from The Ark, “Montalembert’s Monks of the West records in Vita Columbani, the Chronicler Jonas, writing within 25 years of the death of St. Columba, relates that this saint spent long periods in solitary contemplation and communion with the wild creatures of the forest, and insisted on his monks living, like himself, on the fruits of the earth, herbs and pulses. This indicates that in making rules for his followers in regard to non-meat eating, he was moved by his love and regard for the rest of God’s creation.”

    (The Ark is a bulletin published by the Catholic Study Circle for Animal Welfare.)

    Aegidius (c. 700) was a vegetarian who lived on herbs, water and the milk of a deer God sent to him. Boniface (672-754) wrote to Pope Zacharias that he had begun a monastery which followed the rules of strict abstinence, whose monks do not eat meat nor enjoy wine or other intoxicating drinks. St. Andrew lived on herbs, olives, oil and bread. He lived to be 105.

    St. Anselm of Canterbury (1033-1109) “was moved to feelings of compassion for animals, and he wept for them when he saw them caught in the hunter’s net.” St. Richard of Wyche, a vegetarian, was moved by the sight of animals taken to slaughter. “Poor innocent little creatures,” he observed. “If you were reasoning beings and could speak, you would curse us. For we are the cause of your death, and what have you done to deserve it?”

    Vegetarian writer Steven Rosen (Satyaraja dasa) explains:

    “…over the centuries, there has arisen two distinct schools of Christian thought. The Aristotelian-Thomistic school and the Augustinian-Franciscan school. The Aristotelian-Thomistic school has, as its fundamental basis, the premise that animals are here for our pleasure—they have no purpose of their own. We can eat them, torture them in laboratories—anything… Unfortunately, modern Christianity embraces this form of their religion.

    “The Augustinian-Franciscan school, however, teaches that we are all brothers and sisters under God’s Fatherhood. Based largely on the world view of St. Francis and being platonic in nature, this school fits in very neatly with the vegetarian perspective.”

    It is said that St. Francis of Assisi (1182-1226) bought two lambs from a butcher and gave them the coat on his back to keep them warm; and that he bought two fish from a fishwoman and threw them back into the water. He even paid to ransom lambs that were being taken to their death, recalling the gentle Lamb who willingly went to slaughter (Isaiah 53:7; John 1:29) to pay the ransom of sinners.

    “Be conscious, O man, of the wondrous state in which the Lord God has placed you,” instructed Francis in his Admonitions (4), “for He created and formed you to the image of His beloved Son — and (yet) all the creatures under heaven, each according to its nature, serve know, and obey their Creator better than you.” St. Francis felt a deep kinship with all creatures. He called them “brother,” and “sister,” knowing they came from the same Source as himself.

    Francis revealed his fraternal love for the animal world during Christmas time 1223: “If I ever have the opportunity to talk with the emperor,” he explained, “I’ll beg him, for the love of God and me, to enact a special law: no one is to capture or kill our sisters the larks or do them any harm. Furthermore, all mayors and lords of castles and towns are required to scatter wheat and other grain on the roads outside the walls so that our sisters the larks and other birds might have something to eat on so festive a day.

    “And on Christmas Eve, out of reverence for the Son of God, whom on that night the Virgin Mary placed in a manger between the ox and the ass, anyone having an ox or an ass is to feed it a generous portion of choice fodder. And, on Christmas Day, the rich are to give the poor the finest food in abundance.”

    Francis removed worms from a busy road and placed them on the roadside so they would not be crushed under human traffic. Once when he was sick and almost blind, mice ran over his table as he took his meals and over him while he slept. He regarded their disturbance as a “diabolical temptation,” which he met with patience and restraint, indicating his compassion towards other living creatures.

    St. Francis was once given a wild pheasant to eat, but he chose instead to keep it as a companion. On another occasion, he was given a fish, and on yet another, a waterfowl to eat, but he was moved by the natural beauty of these creatures and chose to set them free.

    “Dearly beloved!” said Francis beginning a sermon after a severe illness, “I have to confess to God and you that… I have eaten cakes made with lard.”

    The Catholic Encyclopedia comments on this incident as follows: “St. Francis’ gift of sympathy seems to have been wider even than St. Paul’s, for we find to evidence in the great Apostle of a love for nature or for animals…

    “Francis’ love of creatures was not simply the offspring of a soft sentimental disposition. It arose from that deep and abiding sense of the presence of God. To him all are from one Father and all are real kin…hence, his deep sense of personal responsibility towards fellow creatures: the loving friend of all God’s creatures.”

    Francis taught: “All things of creation are children of the Father and thus brothers of man… God wants us to help animals, if they need help. Every creature in distress has the same right to be protected.”

    According to Francis, a lack of mercy towards animals leads to a lack of mercy towards men: “If you have men who will exclude any of God’s creatures from the shelter of compassion and pity, you will have men who will deal likewise with their fellow men.”

    One Franciscan monk, St. Anthony of Padua (1195-1231), who preached throughout France and Italy, is said to have attracted a group of fish that came to hear him preach. St. James of Venice, who lived during the 13th century, bought and released the birds sold in Italy as toys for children. It is said he “pitied the little birds of the Lord… his tender charity recoiled from all cruelty, even to the most diminutive of animals.”

    St. Bonaventure was a scholar and theologian who joined the Franciscan Order in 1243. He wrote The Soul’s Journey into God and The Life of St. Francis, the latter documenting St. Francis’ miracles with animals and love for all creation. Bonaventure taught that all creatures come from God and return to Him, and that the light of God shines through His different creatures in different ways:

    “…For every creature is by its nature a kind of effigy and likeness of the eternal Wisdom. Therefore, open your eyes, alert the ears of your spirit, open your lips and apply your heart so that in all creatures you may see, hear, praise, love and worship, glorify and honor your God.”

    St. Bridget (1303?-1373) of Sweden, founder of the Brigittine Order, wrote in her Revelations:

    “Let a man fear, above all, Me his God, and so much the gentler will he become towards My creatures and animals, on whom, on account of Me, their Creator, he ought to have compassion.”

    She raised pigs, and a wild boar is even said to have left its home in the forest to become her pet.

    “The reason why God’s servants love His creatures so deeply is that they realize how deeply Christ loves them,” explained St. Catherine of Siena (1347-1380). “And this is the very character of love to love what is loved by those we love.”

    “Here I saw a great unity between Christ and us…” wrote Julian of Norwich (1360-?), “for when he was in pain we were in pain, and all creatures able to suffer pain suffered with him.”

    Christian mystic, Thomas A’ Kempis (1380-1471) wrote in his devotional classic, The Imitation of Christ, that the soul desiring communion with God must be open to seeing, respecting and learning from all of God’s creatures, including the nonhumans:

    “…and if thy heart be straight with God,” he wrote, “then every creature shall be to thee a mirror of life and a book of holy doctrine, for there is no creature so little or vile, but that showeth and representeth the goodness of God.”

    St. Filippo Neri spent his entire life protecting and rescuing other living creatures. Born in Florence in 1515, he went to Rome as a young man, and tried to live as an ascetic. He sold his books, giving away the money to the poor. He worked without pay in the city hospital, tending to the sick and the poor. He gave whatever he possessed to others.

    St. Filippo loved the animals and could not bear to see them suffer. He took the mice caught in traps away from people’s homes and set them free in the fields and stables. A vegetarian, he could not endure walking past a butcher shop. “Ah,” he exclaimed. “If everyone were like me, no one would kill animals!”

    St. Martin de Porres was born in 1579 in Lima, Peru, as the child of a Spaniard and Ana Velasquez, a black washerwoman. He joined the Dominican Order at the age of 24, and later established orphanages, hospitals and other charitable institutions. On one occasion, he told his superior, “charity knows no rules!” St. Martin’s compassion extended to the lower animals, including even rats and mice. St. Martin healed and cared for stray dogs, cats, a mule, and even a vulture. He sometimes allowed the mosquitos to bite him, so that they might be fed, saying, “They, too, are God’s creatures.”

    The Trappist monks of the Catholic Church practiced vegetarianism from the founding of their Order until the Second Vatican Council in the late 1960s. According to the Trappist rules, as formulated by Armand Jean de Rance (1626-1700), “in the dining hall nothing is layed out except: pulse, roots, cabbages, or milk, but never any fish… I hope I will move you more and more rigorously, when you discover that the use of simple and rough food has its origin with the holy apostles (James, Peter, Matthew).

    “We can assure you that we have written nothing about this subject which was not believed, observed, proved good through antiquity, proved by historians and tradition, preserved and kept up to us by the holy monks.”

    Roman Catholic Cardinal John Henry Newman (1801-90), wrote in 1870 that “cruelty to animals is as if a man did not love God.” On another occasion, he asked:

    “Now what is it that moves our very heart and sickens us so much at cruelty shown to poor brutes? I suppose this: first, that they have done us no harm; next, that they have no power whatever of resistance; it is the cowardice and tyranny of which they are the victims which make their sufferings so especially touching… there is something so very dreadful, so satanic, in tormenting those who have never harmed us and who cannot defend themselves; who are utterly in our power.”

    Cardinal Newman compared injustices against animals to the sacrifice, agony and death of Christ upon the cross:

    “Think of your feelings at cruelty practiced upon brute animals and you will gain the sort of feeling which the history of Christ’s cross and passion ought to excite within you. And let me add, this is in all cases one good use to which you may turn any… wanton and unfeeling acts shown towards the…animals; let them remind you, as a picture of Christ’s sufferings. He who is higher than the angels, deigned to humble Himself even to the state of the brute creation…”

    Another cardinal, Henry Edward Manning (1808-92), spoke out against cruelty to animals, especially experimentation upon animals. In a letter dated July 13, 1891, he wrote: “We owe ourselves the duty not to be brutal or cruel; and we owe to God the duty of treating all His creatures according to His own perfections of love and mercy.”

    Bishop Westcott wrote, “Animals are in our power in a peculiar sense; they are committed by God to our sovereignty and we owe them a considerate regard for their rights. No animal life can be treated as a THING. Willful disrespect of the sanctities of physical life in one sphere bears its fruit in other and higher spheres.”

    Cardinal Francis Bourne (1861-1934) told children in Westminster Cathedral in April 1931: “There is even in kindness to animals a special merit in remembering that this kindness is obligatory upon us because God made the animals, and is therefore their creator, and, in a measure, His Fatherhood extends to them.”

    Cardinal Arthur Hinsley (1865-1943), the former archbishop of Westminster, wrote that “the spirit of St. Francis is the Catholic spirit.” According to Cardinal Hinsley, “Cruelty to animals is the degrading attitude of paganism.”

    Reverend Jean Gautier, a doctor in canon law, a director of the Grand Seminary in Paris (St. Sulpice), and a noted French authority on Roman Catholic philosophy, wrote in his book A Priest and his Dog: “For cruelty to defenseless beings we shall one day have to answer before Him who trieth the heart and the reins. Not with impunity is the weakness of animals abused.”

    In his 1957 book, The Status of Animals in the Christian Religion, author C.W. Hume wrote that the catechism children use for their first Communion and for their confirmation in France contains the answer, “it is not permissible for me to cause suffering to animals without good reason, to hurt them unnecessarily is an act of cruelty.” British Jesuit Father John Bligh observed, “A man is not likely to be much of a Christian if he is not kind to animals.”

    A Roman Catholic priest, Msgr. LeRoy McWilliams of North Arlington, New Jersey, testified in October 1962 in favor of legislation to reduce the sufferings of laboratory animals. He told congressional representatives:

    “The first book of the Bible tell us that God created the animals and the birds, so they have the same Father as we do. God’s Fatherhood extends to our ‘lesser brethren.’ All animals belong to God; He alone is their absolute owner. In our relations with them, we must emulate the divine attributes, the highest of which is mercy. God, their Father and Creator, loves them tenderly. He lends them to us and adjures us to use them as He Himself would do.””

    Msgr. McWilliams also issued a letter to all seventeen thousand Catholic pastors in the United States, calling upon them to understand “what Christianity imposes on humans as their clear obligation to animals.”

    Reverend Basil Wrighton, the chairman of the Catholic Study Circle for Animal Welfare in London, wrote in a 1965 article entitled, “The Golden Age Must Return: A Catholic’s Views on Vegetarianism,” that a vegetarian diet is not only consistent with, but actually required by the tenets of Christianity. He concluded that the killing of animals for food not only violates religious tenets, but brutalizes humans to the point where violence and warfare against other humans becomes inevitable.

    In 1969, Reverend Kevin Daley, as chairman of the CSCAW in London, wrote that “the work of animal welfare” is an “essential part of the work of a Christian.”

    A strong condemnation of cruelty towards animals appeared in the March 10, 1966 issue of L’Osserevatore della Domenica, the official Vatican weekly newspaper. Written by the respected theologian, Msgr. Ferdinando Lambruschini, it read in part:

    “Man’s conduct with regard to animals should be regulated by right reason, which prohibits the infliction of purposeless pain and suffering on them. To ill treat them, and make them suffer without reason, is an act of deplorable cruelty to be condemned from a Christian point of view. To make them suffer for one’s own pleasure is an exhibition of sadism which every moralist must denounce.”

    In his 1970 book God’s Animals Reverend Don Ambrose Agius wrote: “It is a moral obligation for every Christian to fight cruelty to animals because the consequences of cruelty are destructive to the Christian order… The Bible… tells us that cruelty to animals is wicked and that it is opposed to God’s will and intention…The duty of all Christians (is) to emulate God’s attributes, especially that of mercy, in regard to animals. To be kind to animals is to emulate the loving kindness of God.”

    In his foreword to Reverend Agius’ book, Cardinal John Heenan wrote: “Animals… have very positive rights because they are God’s creatures. If we have to speak with absolute accuracy, we must say that God has the right to have all His creatures treated with respect… Only the perverted are guilty of deliberate cruelty to animals or, indeed, to children.”

    Vladimir Lossky wrote about “Cosmic Awareness” and the teachings of St. Maximus in a 1973 religious text: The Mystical Theology of the Eastern Church. According to Lossky, the limitations of the creation are part of its intrinsic nature:

    “they are problems to be resolved, obstacles to be surmounted on the way towards union with God. Man is not a being isolated from the rest of creation; by his very nature, he is bound up with the whole of the universe, and St. Paul bears witness that the whole creation await the future glory which will be revealed in the sons of God (Rom. viii, 18-22). This cosmic awareness has never been absent from Eastern spirituality, and is given expression in theology as well as in liturgical poetry, in iconography and, perhaps above all, in the ascetical writings of the masters of the spiritual life of the Eastern Church…

    “In his way to union with God, man in no way leaves creatures aside, but gathers together in his love the whole cosmos disordered by sin, that it may at last be transfigured by grace.”

    Father Thomas Berry, a Catholic priest, author, and founder of the Riverdale Center of Religious Research in New York, wrote in 1987 that “vegetarianism is a way of life that we should all move toward for economic survival, physical well-being, and spiritual integrity.”

    In an editorial that appeared on Christmas Day, 1988, Washington Post columnist Colman McCarthy, a prominent Catholic vegan, observed:

    “A long raised but rarely answered question is this: If it was God’s plan for Christ to be born among animals, why have most Christian theologians denied the value and rights of animals? Why no theology of the peaceable kingdom?… Animals in the stable at Bethlehem were a vision of the peaceable kingdom. Among theology’s mysteries, this ought to be the easiest to fathom.”

    Mother Teresa, honored for her work amongst the poor with the 1979 Nobel Peace Prize, wrote in 1992 to Marlene Ryan, a former member of the National Alliance for Animals. Her letter reads:

    “I am praying for you that God’s blessing may be with you in all that you are doing to create concern for the animals which are often subjected to much cruelty. They, too, are created by the same loving Hand of God which created us. As we humans are gifted with intelligence which the animals lack, it is our duty to protect them and to promote their well being.

    “We also owe it to them as they serve us with such wonderful docility and loyalty. A person who shows cruelty to these creatures cannot be kind to other humans also. Let us do all we can to become instruments of peace—where we are—the true peace that comes from loving and caring and respecting each person as a child of God—my brother—my sister.”

    In an article entitled “The Primacy of Nonviolence as a Virtue,” appearing in Embracing Earth: Catholic Approaches to Ecology (1994), Brother Wayne Teasdale wrote: “One key answer to a culture’s preoccupation with violence is to teach, insist on, and *live* the value of nonviolence. It can be done successfully, and it has been done for more than 2,500 years by Jains and Buddhists.

    “Neither Jainism nor Buddhism has ever supported war or personal violence; this nonviolence extends to all sentient beings. Christianity can learn something valuable from these traditions. This teaching on nonviolence has been incarnated in the lives of Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr., and the Fourteenth Dalai Lama with significant results…”

    According to Teasdale: “…it is necessary to elevate nonviolence to a noble place in our civilization of loving-compassion because nonviolence as ahimsa in the Hindu tradition, a tradition that seems to possess the most advanced understanding of nonviolence, IS love! Love is the goal and ultimate nature of nonviolence as an inner disposition and commitment of the heart. It is the fulfillment of love and compassion in the social sphere, that is, in the normal course of relations among people in the matrix of society.”

    Brother Aelred (Chaitanya dasa), a Catholic monk and Krishna disciple living in Australia during the 1990s, discusses the moral issue of killing animals for food in his book Encounter: Christ and Krishna. He points out that Jesus Christ greatly expanded the interpretation of the commandment “Thou shalt not kill” to include not getting angry without cause.

    “My position is that Jesus’ teachings on mercy in the Beatitudes require an open-ended ethical inquiry” writes Brother Aelred. “I ask, for example, how a Christian may speak of ‘mercy’ in the terms of Jesus Christ, and deny mercy to creatures of God who, as we do, experience fear and suffering. Isn’t it the case that Jesus constantly went beyond the ‘letter of the law’ to its spirit?”

    Brother Aelred quotes the prophecies of Isaiah (11:6-9, 65:25) concerning the coming Kingdom of Peace. “The passage sees a time when pain and bloodshed will be no more; when prey and devourer will be reconciled. What a vision! Even if the passage is seen as just poetic exaggeration, it is clear that there is hope for a future which will be very different to the world we know. And surely we, as Christians, must be part of this ‘peace process.’ Perhaps our main burden, as Christians, is to be part of this message of hope and reconciliation.”

    Brother Aelred ends with the following:

    “An Anglican Franciscan superior, in Australia, tells his novices that if they wish to eat flesh they must go out and themselves kill the animal. The moral responsibility must be theirs alone. I consider this a thoroughly sound position, and any Christian reading this article might well reflect on the brother’s teaching. In conclusion, I must report a sad truth. My own Christian formation taught me many things of great value, but ‘respect for all things living’ was not part of that formation. It was other religious traditions and ‘secular’ insights which gave me teaching in this area.”

    Any Christians looking for the spiritual dimension to vegetarianism and animal rights, should read Every Creature a Word of God by Annika Spalde and Pelle Strindlund. (Vegetarian Advocates Press, Cleveland, OH, 2008)

    “This book is beautifully written and carefully argued. It would be the perfect book for a Bible study or church study group,” writes Stephen Webb, professor of Religion and Philosophy at Wabash College, and author of Good Eating and On God and Dogs: A Christian Theology of Compassion for Animals.

    The authors, Annika Spalde and Pelle Strindlund, are married antinuclear and animal activists involved in the Lutheran Church in Sweden. They write:

    “This is a book about being Christian in a world shared with other beings. We do not live here alone. We have brothers and sisters. ‘The animals,’ wrote the American monk Thomas Merton (1915-68), ‘are the children of God.’ What does a spirituality that affirms God’s love for all creatures look like? That is the central question of this book.

    “The animal rights movement is a recent development, but Christian concern for animals is not. We see it in the stories of medieval monks who helped hares and deer escape from hunters, and of desert hermits who offered water to thirsty donkeys. In these pages you will discover the rich history of animal-friendly living and theology within the Christian tradition…

    “This book is a result of years of reflection on our relationship to other species… over coffee in church halls, fellow worshippers have challenged us: Haven’t we been given animals for our use? Didn’t Jesus eat meat? Such questions have forced us to ask if and how compassion for animals can be an embodiment of the Christian faith. The book is also an answer to the question we have received from many of our friends in the peace movement: How can you focus on animals when so many humans are suffering?”

    Annika Spalde is an ordained deacon of the Church of Sweden (Lutheran) and a founding member of the Swedish Christian Vegetarian Movement. Her work for nonviolence and justice has included participation in the Trident Ploughshares campaign to abolish the British nuclear arsenal; organizing against the Swedish arms industry; serving as an Edumenical Accompanier in Israel/Palestine; working as an assistant nurse in Paraguay; and living with homeless at a Catholic Worker house in Duluth Minnesota. Pelle Strindlund holds an MA in Religious Studies and is a founding member of The Rescue Service, a Swedish animal rights organization.

    And in School of Compassion, Deborah M. Jones engages with the Catholic Church’s contemporary attitude towards animals. This is the fullest sustained study of the subject in that faith tradition. It begins by exploring the history of the Church’s ideas about animals. These were drawn largely from significant readings of Old and New Testament passages and inherited elements of classical philosophies.

    Themes emerge, such as the renewal of creation in the apocryphal legends, in the Desert Fathers, and in Celtic monasticism. The spirituality of St Francis of Assisi, the legal status of animals, and liturgies of the Eastern Catholic Churches also shed light on the Church’s thinking.

    The British Catholic tradition – which is relatively favorable to animals – is considered in some detail. The second part of the book provides a forensic examination of the four paragraphs in the Catechism of the Catholic Church which relate particularly to animals. Finally, major contemporary issues are raised – stewardship, anthropocentrism, and gender – as well as key ethical theories. The book revisits some teachings of Aquinas, and explores doctrinal teachings such as that of human beings created in the ‘image of God’, and, with a nod to the Orthodox Tradition, as the ‘priests of creation’. These help form a consistent and authentically Catholic theology which can be viewed as a school of compassion towards animals.

    Deborah M Jones is general secretary of the international organization Catholic Concern for Animals and a Fellow of the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics, with a doctorate in animal theology. She has also worked as editor of the Catholic Herald, deputy editor of Priests & People, as a writer and lecturer, and diocesan adviser for adult religious education.

    For Love of Animals: Christian Ethics, Consistent Action offers the reader an introduction to animal rights ethics within a Christian framework alongside directly related sanctity-of-life issues, like the rights of unborn children. The book’s foreword is written by Mary Eberstadt, senior fellow with the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, DC, a devout Catholic who identifies herself as “Pro-Animal, Pro-Life.”

    Author Charles Camosy responds to criticisms from academicians Peter Singer and Lynn White, Jr., that the Christian misinterpretation of “human dominion” (versus compassionate stewardship) is responsible for the current ecological crisis. Camosy indicates that Christianity cannot be blamed if humans with their imperfections distort their own religious teachings, that Christianity did not give rise to the industrial revolution, and that real Christianity — as it was meant to be practiced — is at odds with market-driven ethics and mass consumerism (a point made decades ago by liberal Protestant theologian Dr. Harvey Cox).

    Camosy discusses the the moral status of animals in the Bible from Genesis to the Peaceable Kingdom in Isaiah 11:6-9, reconciling animal sacrifices and Jesus’ miracles like the multiplication of loaves and fishes with the vegetarian view, and downplaying the apostle Paul’s dim view of animals by contrasting Paul’s words on animals with those of Jesus. Camosy discusses early Christian saints and other great figures in the Christian tradition. Camosy discusses current Christian teachings on animals, including animal-friendly statements by recent Popes. Subsequent chapters discuss factory farming, eating meat, research, hunting, and pets.

    In 1992, my pro-life friends in Life Chain couldn’t understand my bringing up the issue of animal rights among pro-lifers, and trying to show that the Bible and the Christian tradition support the vegetarian way of life. They compared it to the Pharisees trying to trap Jesus in his own words, whereas I, having researched the long history of animal advocacy and vegetarianism within Christianity, saw it as reasonable and mainstream as someone from a pro-life Christian denomination discussing sanctity-of-life issues with someone from a pro-choice Christian denomination.

    Charles Camosy writes in his 2013 book: “About ten years ago I became convinced that, if I wanted to be authentically and consistently pro-life, I should give up eating meat.”

    The International Network for Religion and Animals (INRA) was founded in 1985, and since then dozens of books have been written on Christianity and animal rights. There is enough of a long history of concern for animals and vegetarianism in Christianity to provide the basis for Christians to be “Pro-Animal, Pro-Life,” but Camosy merely provides an overview of animal rights and animal ethics within Christianity.

    • vasu, here you are, spewing your extreme ignorance again. You have no clue at all. sad. You know absolutely NOTHING about God or Christianity. And since you have so much knowledge of the Bible (NOT!!!), PLEASE state where it says that God says animals have rights. GOD DID NOT GIVE ANIMALS RIGHTS AND HE DOES NOT CARE WHAT WE EAT!!!! You can try all you want to prove otherwise, but the Bible DOES NOT say anything at all about your sick agenda. You just use the Bible for your own purpose. Try actually reading it sometime and find what it really says

    • According to this video, vegetarians and vegans are not good enough. One must be a fruitarian in order to be moral. There is no justification for killing an innocent plant for a meal.

    • Geez if you wanted to write the great American novel couldn’t you have located a publisher or e publisher and published it yourself elsewhere m. I don’t have time to read War and Peace. It took me five minutes (without reading anything you posted mind you) to reach the bottom of your post.

    • Jesus was not a vegetarian. He ate fish and fed the masses with loaves and fish according to the Gospels. Additionally, according to thermodynamics, a gas which does not produce energy cannot raise the temperature of the surrounding gasses. It takes an increase in energy to raise temperatures. You will be a lot worse off if the temperatures drop and we have another ice age.

    • Vasu, very intelligent review of compassion on animals. The article at hand however, is about a Pope trying to be God and tell people what sin is and what is not. Not acceptable. Your other very very long explanation could just simply been pointed out by the example of the ark. He gathered the animals 2×2 before he ended the rest of life on Earth.

    • Hey Vasu; I have a grandson who only eats meat to fight Crones disease. He is far more healthy then has has ever been. if it wasn’t for a meat diet with lots of butter, a special milk and a little fruit he would have had to have all his intestines removed, like his younger sister had to have done. Tertullian was only giving his biased opinion like Pope Franny and his Gay clergy associates with whom he has surrounded himself. After the flood of Noe man was allowed to eat meat. JMJ

  5. Now we have a ‘new’ sin!

    and a new Saint! St. Greta!

    and the Pope is doing ‘fear-mongoring!

    add the category of “ecological sin” to the Catholic Church’s official compendium of teachings.

    Pope Francis has stressed the importance of environmental protection,,,,,,

    ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh: and there’s Vasu Murti! he should be canonized!

  6. Frankie is a Communist. Always has been. He’s just another False Prophet and wolf in sheep’s clothing. And truly, I cannot understand how the Catholic Church can still claim they follow the teachings of Christ and the Laws of God then elect this clown Pope.

    Francis represents Communism and Satan. Period. Want some credibility, Catholics? DUMP THIS SATANIST POPE BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE.

    He’s about as representative of God’s will as Vasu is.

    • I really think Soro’s money got him put in place There diffidently was corruption in his election. There never was another Pope that stepped down so another person could be elected. Frasis may very well be the anti Christ !!! And I happen to be a life long church going Catholic. But since his election I haven’t given the church one dime and will not as long as he is in there !!

    • How much is baloney a pound now days? Too much Marxism in our culture. When I was in school several decades ago, we were taught that the North polar icecap started expanding southward into what is now the Great Plains of the US. Then, after many years, the icecap retreated to it’s present location.

      Now here are some questions:
      1. How many steam engines were there thousands of years ago to cause this?
      2. How many millions of people were causing fires thousands of years ago?
      3. How many automobiles were polluting the atmosphere thousands of years ago since they didn’t start running until the late 19th Century?
      4. How many trains were polluting the atmosphere thousands of years ago, since they didn’t start running until the late 18th Century?
      5. How many factories were spewing stuff into the atmosphere thousands of years ago, since they didn’t develop until around the 17th Century?
      6. How many airplanes were flying in the atmosphere thousands of years ago, since they didn’t start flying until the early 20th Century?

      If the answer to these questions are none, none, none, none, none, and none, then I suspect man-caused global warming is a hoax.

      Having said that, I do believe we can do better in the stewardship of the Earth by finding ways to reduce pollution that will still allow for planes, trains, automobiles, factories, etc. to exist.

  7. Interesting times we live in. Those looking for evidence of intelligent life in the universe have an “equation” that is a guideline of predicting how many planets may have intelligent life. The last factor is how long such
    civilizations last after they enter an Age of Technology ? That is the one unknown remaining. Sadly we are
    in just an “Age” going through the “experience”. The fact that the searches have never turned up any evidence for such civilizations may provide us the answer if we were smart enough to see the handwriting on the wall.
    Technology is addictive and we may just “tech” ourselves out of existence. Like anything that is not used wisely it may destroy us. Perhaps it’s too late as we watch those on their cell phones and attached to the newest and latest “toys” to amuse and dumb us down. Perhaps the search for ET has yielded results we
    refuse to accept as we lose our humanity and failing to see what we have that is special – LIFE !

    • If you can believe that the whole universe just popped into existence billions of years ago on its own, and life just sprung up by accident millions of years ago and evolved then I guess you can believe there is life other places. I don’t understand how people could believe such a thing but I know a lot of people do.

  8. The Numbers quote is totally wrong. God was sending manna from heaven to feed them on their trek out of Egypt. The people started complaining because they could not get meat to eat, a normal part of their diet. God was angry at their complaining so he sent quail for them to eat but allowed it to make them sick. God had been providing food, but they showed no appreciation. God also fed the multitudes with loaves of bread and fish. Meat was not a problem!

  9. It is past time to vote in a new Pope. The Pope has illusions that he is God. If the church does not make him step down, and replace him with a Pope who believes in Christ and honors his position by truly believiing in God. The Bishops and Priest must stand up on behalf of God and the Catholic faith.

  10. And this is partially why I quit the Catholic faith and religion pretty much. Well that and these religious turds can’t keep their hands off of our kids.
    Without repeating what many of you have already expressed, I would like to reiterate that this man is insane!!
    I really have nothing else to say!!
    Except, Hey Frankie, I’m going to go take a fart outside now just so I can upset your “ecological “ system… enjoy

  11. The Papacy is very important to me but no one is perfect. It is there to guide us in matters of faith and morals. So saying God gave us a free will. We all must make choices. Think before you act. Is what I am doing harming anyone or anything? Use our God given common sense. Most importantly PRAY, PRAY, PRAY! The more you talk with God the closer you become. Always remember He is your Father and your Best Friend. God bless us all!

  12. The 2 churches that Were spoken of in Revelations. Christ was pleased. The Anti Christ comes first. Jesus comes at the 7th Trump. Do not be deceived by “DEATH” aka Satan comes proclaiming to be Jesus. Watch Jerusalem. Dont be deceived.

  13. How can this Site and some others allow Vasu to post his book length comments?? It is an abuse of all of us who read the articles and want to comment! This Pope has opinions like everybody else but we must remember where he came from and that he is a Social Justice Warrior! Pope, you are not God and why don’t you stop the Pedophilia in the Priesthood? We are taking care of the Environment as best as we can but we will not go back 200 years and we will not give everything we worked hard for to Third World Countries. They want to come to this Country and take advantage of the goodness of America. The problem is too many people and they seem incapable of practicing birth control! Where does Pope stand on that??

  14. I guess this Pope does not read the bible. The LORD controls the weather. He causes the rain , the storms, the droughts, all of it. Read the old and new testament.

  15. Great pope frances just turned the catholic church into a pagan religion. Now it is ok to screw the alter boys! But then those nuns that beat us with rulesxwere pretty evil too.

    Now catholics can honor the souls of the trees and owls and lizzards and snakes.

    I am glad I quit that cult religion. They dont stand for anything anymore.

  16. It’s no wonder that many Catholics are leaving the church. He needs to only talk of papal doctrines. As a Catholic I disagree with him on many of his views. If it wasn’t for my faith I would think twice about supporting the church.

  17. There is only one sin; hot air from preacher’s mouth while trying to make all other humans believe that they are criminals, and that the only way out is to throw money by the ton into church coffers.

  18. I was raised in the Catholic church, went to Catholic schools, etc. I don’t understand how the
    Catholic church can go from a John Paul II to a Francis. Some of his pronouncements leave
    me wondering what Church he is representing.

  19. I was so thrilled that a pope from the America’s had been chosen. It took me a couple of months to become disillusioned with the current pope. He’s no John Paul. I’ve stopped attending mass, and haven’t entered a church in quite awhile. I can’t agree to this plan of his, I certainly won’t be confessing any sin against the environment, and I really wish we had a new pope; one who puts the needs of his parishioners and believers above his political beliefs.

      • BWAAHAAAHAAA!!! Only the weak minded people buy that crap! Hell, yeah ok, like you’ve been there and you know, right! Get real! Yeah, I know, ‘My bible tells me so’.

          • LMAO, Typical response that was fully expected. You claim to be a good christian I’m sure, right. But when confronted with opposition do you make an offer of salvation and compassion, no, you condemn that opposition to your presumed hell. Yeah, you’re a real good example of religion.

  20. Some of what the Pope says is right. We have not done as good a job as we should, taking care of our planet.
    It’s an interesting, our planet… most of the mass of which is a fiery caldron of molten rock, covered only by a shell which is cooled by daily loss of heat energy into space. And the surface of which is warmed daily by a ball of incredible heat 93 million miles away, which sends us enough heat daily to keep our surface temperature remarkably stable… give or take an ice age now and again… There, on the surface between two incredibly powerful energy sources is where we live. It seems laughable that in this context men think they have anything like the juice necessary to affect that balance in any substantial way, even if they set about to do it.
    But the health issues from dirty air, from acid rain, from polluted rivers and oceans…that’s something else. We have proved that we are good at poisoning the environment we and many other species, need to live. To me, that should be our focus. The Pope looks on himself and the Church as God’s representatives on Earth. More of us should look on and try to conduct ourselves that way. But even the best of us make mistakes and so does he (the Pope, not God). I credit him for trying in his own imperfect way, to find a path forward for humanity.
    Speaking of mistakes, maybe God’s mistake, if he is allowed one, was creating the human being with free will and hoping the consciences of good men will prevail. But God also created evolution and if creating us was a mistake in that process, it will soon be corrected. Meantime, I hope we will all do the best we can at proving that assessment wrong.

    • If your are speaking of evolution from a common ancestor over millions of years after a mysterious Big Bang 14 B years ago you are talking about a mythology similar to the ancient Greeks and Romans and Pacamames of the Amazon. 21st century science from the fields of microbiology to sedimentology tells us there never has been any evolution of life from inorganic matter. Even bones of many dinosaurs have been radiocarbon dated at 22,000 to 40,000 years maximum [search Internet] and are not 65 to 225 Ma old years old with dinosaur depictions on every continent The best explanation that I have seen is in Genesis 1-11 taken literally or as a church council put it in 2015 AD: God…creator of all visible and invisible things, of the spiritual and of the corporal; who by His own omnipotent power at once from the beginning of time created each creature from nothing, spiritual and corporal, namely, angelic and mundane, and finally the human, constituted as it were, alike of the spirit and the body (D.428). And Christ said in Matthew: “If you would not believe what Moses wrote, how will you believe my words”

  21. I think this is a major mistake. Most credible scientists have already agreed that the climate is not being controlled by individuals; that in fact the carbon dioxide has been improved by man. Think Pinatubo volcano. That was MAJOR POLLUTION. Yet God cleared the air in just a few years. It seems to be great blasphemy to think that in any way MAN can destroy what GOD has made. Bless his heart, Pope Francis needs to PRAY about this. He is destroying the credibility of the Catholic Church and the papacy by making this mistaken order. It would be better, and more valuable if the pope had challenged every human to plant a tree. Or if he had challenged every person to plant a tree for every mile they travel (in a plane or car). THAT would make an ecological difference. God will take care of the rest.

    With all due respect, Pope Francis, get out of politics.

  22. Pope Francis seems to have mixed orthodoxy–correct teaching–with orthopraxy–correct practice. The first one cannot argue with; the second is up for discussion and dissenting views.

    Perhaps he has not heard about the latest science that says that our climate changes are the result of sun spots and sun activity. There is even a scientist who has predicted that with 2020 we are entering a 50-year period of lower than usual cold temperatures that will bring about harvest shortages and famine. I sincerely hope this is not the case, but she makes a good case based on observable facts.

    • Absolutely factually correct. But it falls on deaf ears since the “Alarmists” only believe themselves. And they claim that global warming science is already “settled”, and new ideas about it are not welcomed.

  23. RFOLMAO…….ecological sin???? Where did he find THAT in the Bible??? The whoeel game for control has been proven false by many. Dementia must be setting in. I have to feel sorry for him.

  24. Pope needs to spend more time doing something about all the child molester priests in the church and quit listening to the leftist “climate change” morons

  25. i don’t give a flip about what any one says; they are an individual as I am; pope tho, is another story;he has NO right to say crap; any man of god that associates with a little boys pecker sucker is not a man at all and surely not one of fith in god; the catholic church is full of faggots, child molesters and worse; now the heathen says an ignorant thing; you sin if you harm the earth in some way, ha, what an infidel line of attack on innocents; the catholic church can dig a hole and crawl in and shut the hell up; they have no right to comdemn ayone for no fn reason; the pope is a weak individual, I would not put a lot of trust in him to get my ass across the golden gates

  26. Don’t know where these people live….
    But I live in the lone star state and
    Our climate changes every day.
    Even our meteorologist can’t give
    Us a good daily report.
    Climate changes every day ever minute
    And every second. Go out enjoy the
    Good weather ..stay in and enjoy the
    Not so good weather. I love climate
    Change. It’s something you can depend upon.

  27. This sinner is a total idiot and should never have been considered to be Pope. He is single-handedly destroying what the church is all about. He is carrying out the work of satan.

  28. 31,487 American scientists have signed this petition, including 9,029 with PhDs

    We urge the United States government to reject the global warming agreement that was written in Kyoto, Japan in December 1997, and any other similar proposals. The proposed limits on greenhouse gases would harm the environment, hinder the advance of science and technology, and damage the health and welfare of mankind.

    There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gases is causing, or will in the foreseeable future cause, catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate.

    Moreover, there is substantial evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the Earth.

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