BUENOS AIRES, Argentina — Ultra-traditionalist Roman Catholics have openly challenged Pope Francis by disrupting one of his favorite events, an interfaith ceremony in the Metropolitan Cathedral meant to promote religious harmony on the anniversary of the beginning of the Holocaust.
The annual gathering of Catholics, Jews and Protestants marks Kristallnacht, the Nazi-led mob violence in 1938 when about 1,000 Jewish synagogues were burned and thousands of Jews were forced into concentration camps, launching the genocide that killed 6 million Jews. Before he assumed the papacy, Buenos Aires Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio and his good friend Rabbi Abraham Skorka led the ceremony every year.
Sad, Sick Jew-Hating Trads
About six weeks ago, the right-of-center Catholic writer John Zmirak penned a TAC piece saying that Catholic conservatives are not the Pope’s enemies — though he conceded that Francis, as the cardinal archbishop of Buenos Aires, may have had bitter experience with hardcore Catholic Traditionalists. Zmirak:
The pope’s most controversial statements seem to arise from a single motive: He doesn’t like “right-wing” Catholics, and wants to make it clear to all the world that he’s not one of them.
Up to a point, I see what he means. From what I have read, in Argentina, a swath of the folks who fought for the Latin Mass also supported the right-wing dictators down there—which means they winked at torture and murder, but their consciences proved too tender to countenance altar girls. I have met this kind of smug zealot up here in the U.S.—the guy you meet at the coffee hour who starts off with pro-life talk, then finds a way to assert that most abortionists are Jewish … and pretty soon he’s pressing on you poorly printed pamphlets that “prove” theHolocaust never happened. I used to argue with people like this, but it led nowhere. (Although I learned how to have some fun with them by “proving” that World War II was also a myth, and that all its “casualties” had really been abducted to serve as slaves in the Zionist tin mines on the Moon.)
I finally had to accept the cold fact that some people are not sincerely mistaken, or even deluded, but rather of evil intent, with wicked hearts and culpable motives. In fact, they’re the kind of “evil company” St. Paul tells us to flee.
A small group disrupted Tuesday night’s ceremony by shouting the rosary and the “Our Father” prayer, and spreading pamphlets saying that “followers of false gods must be kept out of the sacred temple.”
These protesters were members of SSPX. If that is the face that Roman Catholic Traditionalism presented to Cardinal Bergoglio, there’s no wonder that Pope Francis has no patience with them. Lord have mercy, what a vile display.