POPE FRANCIS: Have communists stolen the flag of Christianity?
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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
6/30/2014 (5 years ago)
Catholic Online (https://www.catholic.org)
Pope Francis from Day One has been highly critical of the abuses of capitalism and the exploitation of the poor and disenfranchised. This stance have led many to call the Pope as "Marxist." In a new interview, Pope Francis has gone on to say that communists have stolen the flag of Christianity.
"Communists say that all this is communism. Sure, twenty centuries later. So when they speak, one can say to them: 'but then you are Christian,'" the Pope said, laughing.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - In an interview to Il Messaggero, the Pope was asked about a blog post in the Economist magazine, which described him as a "Leninist" for his criticism on capitalism, calling for radical economic reform.
"I can only say that the communists have stolen our flag. The flag of the poor is Christian. Poverty is at the center of the Gospel," he said. The Pope then cited Biblical passages about the need to help the poor, the sick and the needy.
"Communists say that all this is communism. Sure, twenty centuries later. So when they speak, one can say to them: 'but then you are Christian,'" he said, laughing.
Since his appointment in March of last year, Pope Francis has often attacked the global economic system as turning away from the poor and not doing enough to share wealth with those who need it most.
Pope Francis has criticized the wealth made from financial speculation as intolerable. He also said speculation on commodities was a scandal that compromised the poor's access to food.
The Pope appeared at a religious ceremony at the Vatican this past weekend. It was the pontiff's first public appearance since concerns for his health were raised after he abruptly canceled a visit to a Rome hospital two days ago.
The 77-year-old Francis appeared to be in good health as he presided at a two-hour-long Mass in St. Peter's Basilica on the day the Catholic Church celebrates the feast of Saints Peter and Paul.
The pope had canceled a visit to patients at Rome's Gemelli hospital minutes before it was to have started because of what the Vatican called a "sudden indisposition."
Francis said bishops should not seek gratification by cultivating "those who wield worldly power" but to find their personal security in their vocation to help the poor.
He also gave 24 recently appointed archbishops a vestment known as a pallium, a small circular band worn around the neck which symbolizes their unity with the pope.
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