Christmas festivities will seem empty in a world which has chosen "war and hate" Pope Francis said last Thursday, November 19th.
"Christmas is approaching: there will be lights, parties, Christmas trees and nativity scenes ... it’s all a charade. The world continues to go to war. The world has not chosen a peaceful path," Francis said via sermon."There are wars today everywhere, and hate," the pontiff stated after the worst terror attack in French history, the bombing of a Russian airliner, a double suicide bombing in Lebanon, and a series of other deadly strikes.
"We should ask for the grace to weep for this world, which does not recognize the path to peace. To weep for those who live for war and have the cynicism to deny it," he said, adding: "God weeps, Jesus weeps". He continued: "Those who make war are damned, they're delinquents. War can be 'justified' for many reasons. But when the whole world is at war, as it is today ... there is no justification."
His remarks cast a pall on the start of the festive season at the Vatican, where a giant Christmas tree was unveiled.
The Pope says Christmas season will seem empty because war and hate exist in the world? Does this not actually make it even more real, instructive, rewarding, vital and compelling? Does he not know the story of Jesus? Is he unaware of mankind’s history from Biblical times until now? We are living out the Good Book’s battle of good vs. evil, the same as it ever was. Christ’s message…the same message that should be celebrated during the Christmas season… is about sacrifice, love of good deeds, redemption, faith and hope. It is not about being completely baffled, downtrodden and defeated that people commit sin and that evil somehow exists in certain human hearts. Pretty sure we’ve always known that.
When he states that war can be ‘justified’ for many reasons, but that there is no justification for the whole world being at war, ‘as it is today,’ he is obviously floundering around in a sadly pathetic attempt to make some sort of ethical point. A war can be small and very much unjust, or, like World War II perhaps, all-encompassing and absolutely necessary to defeat a specific, heinous evil and give the world a chance to move forward into a freer, less brutal and more hopeful future. It is absurd and unhelpful to state that those who make war are ‘damned’ and ‘delinquents.’ It is, in fact, akin to stating that the Old Testament’s decisive and more martial pronouncements regarding morality must have been uttered and transcribed by damned delinquents. Many who wage war and are willing to sacrifice all for the good of others are heroes and role models.
In some cases, tragically, war is the only effective answer, as well as the most just and moral for the most people, and has been proved so repeatedly across time. Thermopylae, the Battle of Poitiers, the Revolutionary War, the American Civil War, World War II and the Cold War (won by Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher and Pope John Paul II) are examples.
Yes, wars and fanatical hatred exist today, as they did before and during Christ’s time on Earth. The pontiff cited the worst terror attack in French history, the bombing of a Russian airliner, a double suicide bombing in Lebanon, and a series of other deadly strikes as reasons why the upcoming Christmas season will feel ‘empty’ to him. Are you kidding me? We have an American President who will not defend his own nation and a Pope who apparently does not understand, tout or defend Christianity.
Who is responsible for every one of the heinous attacks /acts of war cited by the Catholic leader? And 9/11, Mali, Madrid, Ottawa, etc., etc., etc.? The whole world has not chosen war and hate. War and hate has been visited on much of the non-Muslim world by radical Islamists.
If we pretend- and act- otherwise, the whole world may go dark, and death, despair and misery will reign needlessly as hope is extinguished. That would be… a cardinal sin.
So put up your Christmas tree, turn on your Christmas lights and celebrate a ‘full’ Christmas.
It is not a charade.
Like the Spartans at Thermopylae, the American Founders, the English pilots in the Battle of Britain, and the Jews enduring the Holocaust…have a little faith.
True love… is not surrendering to evil.