A Religious Message I Endorse

This is fantastic:

Pope Francis, celebrating his first Christmas as Roman Catholic leader, on Wednesday called on atheists to unite with believers of all religions and work for “a homemade peace” that can spread across the world.

Speaking to about 70,000 people from the central balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica, the same spot where he emerged to the world as pope when he was elected on March 13, Francis also made another appeal for the environment to be saved from “human greed and rapacity”.

The leader of the 1.2 billion-member Church wove his first “Urbi et Orbi” (to the city and world) message around the theme of peace.

“Peace is a daily commitment. It is a homemade peace,” he said.

He said that people of other religions were also praying for peace, and – departing from his prepared text – he urged atheists to join forces with believers.

“I invite even non-believers to desire peace. (Join us) with your desire, a desire that widens the heart. Let us all unite, either with prayer or with desire, but everyone, for peace,” he said, drawing sustained applause from the crowd.

Again, I’m sure many of you will give strawberries and say “just words,” but I’ll tell you what, I’ll take these words over those of the Nazi.

At any rate, Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah, Happy Holidays, and all that.






173 replies
  1. 1
    Baud says:

    And then he started singing:

    I’d like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony.
    I’d like to buy the world a Coke and keep it company.

    And there was much rejoicing.

  2. 2
    April says:

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=504234469683567&set=pb.396180077155674.-2207520000.1388016701.&type=3&theater
    While you are all thinking warm Christmassy thoughts, please consider donating to Guardians of Rescue. They are right now involved in cleaning up the mess left by a so-called rescuer: 124 dogs, out in the desert of Arizona. They have been working all day to provide for the dogs and wil be at it until all of them are placed. Just google Guardians of Rescue and you will find their website. Thank you

  3. 3
    catclub says:

    “strawberries”
    Raspberries?

  4. 4
    Bargal20 says:

    “I invite even non-believers to desire peace.”

    How is that not an incredibly offensive and obnoxious thing to say?

  5. 5
    catclub says:

    “Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah, Happy Holidays, and all that.”

    Salaam alaikum ?

  6. 6
    jo6pac says:

    Words are just that, 0 words haven’t meant anything then again may be the pope on to the truth. Oh sure but I do hope he can make changes.

  7. 7
    Tractarian says:

    As a Jew, I am offended that you wished me a Happy Chanukah nearly a month after the fact.

  8. 8
    Baud says:

    @Tractarian:

    Think of it as really early for next year.

  9. 9
    The Dangerman says:

    @Tractarian:

    When Cole turned his clock back in the Fall, he turned it waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay back.

  10. 10
    catclub says:

    @Bargal20: intent matters. Do you think he was intending to offend?

    Peace is deeply written into many major religions. Is it deeply written into the non-creeds of non-believers? How would that be done?

  11. 11
    gbear says:

    @Tractarian: Happy Thanksgiving!

  12. 12
    Cermet says:

    WTF?! Nazi’s? Either I am missing something or by all current rules of “Who loses an argument”, you just did.

    Bargal20 is right on with the issue of the not so implied insult this Pope just delivered.

  13. 13
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Bargal20:

    Yes, as if the default attitude of atheists is “war on a 24/7/365 basis.”

    There’s a log in your eye, Francis.

  14. 14
    Baud says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Could be a translation issue. Doubt he was speaking in English.

  15. 15
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @catclub:

    Peace is deeply written into many major religions

    Yes, as the bloody history of Christianity itself gives stark testament to.

  16. 16
    Cermet says:

    @Cermet: OK, you are saying the previous Pope was a Nazi …not really (as a youth, he had little choice being German) but the logic follows. OK, Cole – maybe the Steelers might get that wild card slot.

  17. 17
    Pogonip says:

    Is your car still in the field?

  18. 18
    Cassidy says:

    So many man-crushes. So little time.

  19. 19
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Baud:

    Perhaps he should restate that in English, to avoid the implication that somehow atheists are natural warmongers. Last time I checked, George W. Bush and Dick Cheney were not avowed atheists.

  20. 20
    RobertDSC-Power Mac G5 Dual says:

    WTF?! Nazi’s? Either I am missing something or by all current rules of “Who loses an argument”, you just did.

    Pope Benedict XVI, Francis’s predecessor as Pope, served in the Hitler Youth as a youngster. Hence, Nazi.

  21. 21
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    @catclub: That’s all I can figure, after taking a few seconds scratching my head wondering what to “give strawberries” meant.

    Eh, they’re interchangeable, why not. A watermelon a day keeps the doctor away, when life hands you a papaya make lemonade, the prunes of wrath….

    Merry Christmas to you to John! Even if you’re fruit-challenged, you and the animals are still the kumquat of my eye.

  22. 22
    MikeJ says:

    @Bargal20:

    How is that not an incredibly offensive and obnoxious thing to say?

    I don’t understand how it possibly could be offensive. He said the same to us non believers he said to the mackerel snappers, and what he asked of us was about as unoffensive as it can get.

    I suppose that if you really, really want to be offended you can just lobotomize yourself and be offended at this. But you’d have to really want it.

  23. 23
    Citizen_X says:

    By all means, if someone extends to you an olive branch, make sure you slap it away if he might have phrased things not exactly to your liking.

  24. 24
    Baud says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    If the word “even” is instead translated as “also” — which seems plausible — it doesn’t seem as offensive.

  25. 25
    hildebrand says:

    @Citizen_X: Hey, it has worked for the Republicans when dealing with Obama.

  26. 26
    Betty Cracker says:

    I’m an atheist who didn’t find the pope’s statement offensive at all — quite the contrary. He was calling on people of all religions to pray for peace. When he called on atheists to desire peace, I don’t think he meant to imply we usually don’t; he meant it as a way to include us in the common enterprise. I like this pope.

  27. 27
    hildebrand says:

    @Baud: Don’t bother – when people want to be offended they will be offended – even if offense wasn’t intended.

  28. 28
    srv says:

    Francis as Pope, Christie as a Republican President, GG as a Civil Libertarian, these are the things JC can get behind.

  29. 29
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Baud:

    Regardless, the implication is that somehow the non-believers don’t desire peace…they must be invited into the peace-lovers group. This from an institution that threw a conniption that killed millions in the 15th, 16th, and 17th centuries.

  30. 30
    The Very Revered Crimson Fire of Compassion says:

    Meanwhile, the responses of some on this thread to what was obviously intended to be exactly the kind of gesture of acknowledgment and inclusion that they’re always bitching about not getting in the dominant cultural exchanges illustrates perfectly the point made in the earlier thread about atheistic proselytizing: there are as many dicks (proportionately speaking) among unbelievers as there are among the Christofascists.

  31. 31
    Time Travelin says:

    Who thinks Joey Ratz is regretting his decision to be the papal Palin and quit? This new guy is tearing down all the hate he built up.

  32. 32
    Linnaeus says:

    I’m also an atheist who thinks that Francis was trying to be inclusive.

  33. 33
    Mackenna says:

    “I invite even non-believers to desire peace.”

    How arrogant of him to suggest people who don’t believe in unicorns have no desire for peace.

    I appreciate his criticisms of trickle down wingnuts, but he can stuff this one up his craw.

  34. 34
    Baud says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Hard to say without seeing the text of his remarks that preceded that quote. If he used the same words in talking about religious folks, I think it would be hard to say he singled atheists out.

  35. 35
    Calming influence says:

    @Baud: Excellent point. Also, being off the cuff, he might have just said it without realizing how it sounded. He must know that before we discovered oil in the ground, the chief reasons for wanting to kill other folks was either their god was different than your god, or you had the same god but worshiped him slightly differently.

    I’m an atheist, but so far I got no beef this guy. I could have a beer with him. Or wine, if he insisted.

  36. 36
    Patrick says:

    @hildebrand:

    Don’t bother – when people want to be offended they will be offended – even if offense wasn’t intended.

    Plus 1. I have no idea how that could be offensive. Unless of course you want to be offended. Based on what the Pope has done has far, do people really think he intended to offend? Really?

  37. 37
    KBS says:

    I don’t think he meant that atheists don’t desire peace when he invited “even” unbelievers to work for it. He probably meant that he is inviting everyone, even those who are not traditionally considered part of his “flock”. That’s how I read it, anyway. Given the things that he’s said previously, he doesn’t seem to believe that atheists are bad people.

  38. 38
    Calming influence says:

    @Bill E Pilgrim: I’ve partaken of the prunes of wrath, and now have a real good understanding of why they’re called that.

  39. 39
    Ivan X says:

    @KBS: Thank you for saying exactly the thought I was having so I didn’t have to figure out how to say it.

  40. 40
    elftx says:

    Ditto to all… HA
    And thanks for this blog!!!

  41. 41
    Napoleon says:

    @Calming influence:

    being off the cuff, he might have just said it without realizing how it sounded.

    More likely that he didn’t say it in English and that is a translation and even if he did say it in English he is not a native speaker.

    I am an atheist and you have to be a real jackass to take offence at what he said.

  42. 42
    ira-NY says:

    Offended? You have to be kidding.

  43. 43
    Xboxershorts says:

    @Cermet:

    Bargal20 is right on with the issue of the not so implied insult this Pope just delivered.

    Insult to whom?

    Non believers? Why should they concern themselves with the leader of an imaginary sky god cult?

    The Pope is most certainly insulting a select demographic, but I don’t think it’s the non-believers here, I think the Pope continues to troll the evangelicals here, the kind of folks who continually equate atheists with satanists.

  44. 44
    John Cole says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    I’m an atheist who didn’t find the pope’s statement offensive at all — quite the contrary. He was calling on people of all religions to pray for peace. When he called on atheists to desire peace, I don’t think he meant to imply we usually don’t; he meant it as a way to include us in the common enterprise. I like this pope.

    Reading comprehension for the win. Also too, what Mrs. Cracker said.

  45. 45
    Crusty Dem says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:
    @Bargal20:

    You, sirs, are simpletons, barely capable of reading, let alone reading intention. May I suggest you spend the rest of this year praying to your beloved lady of perpetual offense, panties be they bunched.

  46. 46
    John Cole says:

    Motherfucker is reaching out to me and you, and y’all are looking through the text for an insult. Y’all are the photo negative of Palin and Erick son of Erick.

  47. 47
    Mike with a Mic says:

    @Mackenna:

    I didn’t read that as the pope claiming that non believers don’t desire peace. Plenty of people desire peace and plenty of people desire conflict. Religion or lack of it doesn’t determine what people desire. He was inviting people outside of his tribe to join with him and work with him for peace without having to follow his religion to do it. Which is a much better message than bashing people over the head to join the church and then move towards a peace through the church.

    @Calming influence:

    I’m no fan of religion but you can’t just blame “religion” for a lot of those ancient conflicts. The church used to be more than just a religious institution, it was also the government, military, finance sector, and land management back in those days. So while it’s easy to blame many past conflicts on differing opinions over which imaginary sky lord they worshiped in reality it had more to do with capturing farm land, cities, gold, and the other rather mundane and practical reasons modern secular governments wage war. Though instead of claiming we have to slaughter population X because they “hate our freedoms” they said we had to slaughter population X because “they wear funny hates and hate our sky lord”.

    Blaming religion for that puts you square inline with the right-wingers who claim the Iraq war went to shit because Muslims can’t stop killing each other because of stupid religious arguments inherent in their religion. Rather than accepting that decades of mistreatment of a majority of the country by an elite minority might just be the real reason for that powder keg. Or that Iran and Saudi Arabia’s beef is all about religion, it couldn’t possibly be the fact that two regional powers are engaging in the sort of dickery that regional powers have always engaged in and always will.

    Man is naturally an aggressive and territorial creature. It’s not that specific religions or ideologies cause us to wage war against each other… it’s in our DNA to kill each other and wage wars, we just invent religions and ideologies to justify what we were always about in the first place.

  48. 48
    wasabi gasp says:

    I invite even non-believers to desire pray for peace.

    Francis be a trickster.

  49. 49

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Regardless, the implication is that somehow the non-believers don’t desire peace…they must be invited into the peace-lovers group.

    I’m an atheist and there have been times when I’ve had difficulty desiring peace.

    I’ve also read some of the things Sam Harris says about Muslims.

    There’s nothing special about atheism that makes people un-peaceful, but they have the same problems with it as anybody.

  50. 50
  51. 51
    jl says:

    Well, I dunno, you know you else said nice things about outsiders, huh? Sounds pretty suspicious to me.
    This verse seems to fit. Not sure whether Cole is a publican or a harlot, but probably something close.

    Matthew 21:28-31 (KJV)
    But what think ye? A certain man had two sons; and he came to the first, and said, Son, go work to day in my vineyard. He answered and said, I will not: but afterward he repented, and went. And he came to the second, and said likewise. And he answered and said, I go, sir: and went not. Whether of them twain did the will of his father? They say unto him, The first. Jesus saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you

  52. 52

    @KBS:

    I don’t think he meant that atheists don’t desire peace when he invited “even” unbelievers to work for it. He probably meant that he is inviting everyone, even those who are not traditionally considered part of his “flock”.

    This right here. The Pope is inviting atheists to work together with theists for peace. How someone turns that into an insult, I’m not really sure.

  53. 53
    The Pale Scot says:

    @The Pale Scot: Pick up the Shelagh tomorrow. Bloody hell.

  54. 54
    Baud says:

    @John Cole:

    y’all are looking through the text for an insult

    To be fair, if Rick Santorum had said these words:

    I invite even non-believers to desire peace.

    we would find it offensive because he is a native English speaker and, well, he’s Rick Santorum.

    Here, however, we don’t have the full text of the Pope’s remarks, the Pope is not a native English speaker and was probably not speaking in English in this speech, and nothing about the Pope that we’ve seen to date suggests that his intent here would be to put down atheists.

    Being offended in this circumstance I think is an error in sound judgment.

  55. 55
    Mackenna says:

    @Mike with a Mic: “I invite even non-believers to desire peace.” is a strange way to phrase what he allegedly means. His statement implies non-believers do not as yet desire peace and that believers do (many of them don’t).

    History amply demonstrates that peace and religion have little in common.

    Despite his Catholicism (which stinks to high heaven), this Pope is a saint compared to his predecessors, but I do take issue with what he implies.

    He could simply have said, I invite those of all faiths and those who aren’t religious to join together to achieve peace. That’s a clear all-inclusive, non-divisive approach. Which seems to be the point.

    But then he’s also political…he has a flock to support and make feel special.

    Overall, the Pope’s on a roll and I champion his condemnation of trickle down economics and pompous Christians who shit on the poor. I hope he continues.

  56. 56
    Fair Economist says:

    I read the “even” as “it’s not normally my business to suggest things to nonbelievers but I’m going to to out on a limb and do it for this”. In any case, it’s obviously intended as an olive branch and I’ll take it as such. It’s a real pleasure to have a Pope who takes things like stewardship of the earth seriously, too.

  57. 57
    Chyron HR says:

    @John Cole:

    Y’all are the photo negative of Palin and Erick son of Erick.

    What, did the cognitive dissonance of your “Everyone who disagrees with me is just like an Iraq war supporter” schtick finally catch up with you?

  58. 58
    Mike with a Mic says:

    @Mnemosyne (iPhone):

    Because a ton of people are either looking for a reason to be insulted or a reason to throw rocks at the Church. They don’t actually want the pope to make a better, nicer, more inclusive church. They want the pope to spend all his time screaming at Christians about how horrible Christians are until the church self destructs.

    Sure there are Christians that hate atheists and love bashing them, but there are also a lot of atheists who just love bashing the religious. There’s a cottage industry and a lot of fun to be had in perpetuating this pie fight.

  59. 59
    Bargal20 says:

    @John Cole: Forgive me if I balk at the thought of a Catholic priest reaching out to me with any part of himself.

  60. 60
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Crusty Dem:

    No, I’m reading the words offered, which sound like somehow, atheists need a special invite, since they’re so predisposed by their lack of believing in an invisible sky buddy to go off and start killing people at the drop of the hat since they don’t have any supernatural constrictions on their tendency to aggression and violence.

    A better way to say this would be “I invite all, believers and non-believers alike, to work together to create a peace for all.” THAT is inclusive.

  61. 61
    cathyx says:

    @John Cole: Y’all? You sound like you’re from the south. Eastern WVA isn’t the south. It’s Y’ins where you come from.

  62. 62
    Cassidy says:

    @Chyron HR: Well, don’t forget this is the same jackass who ran around crying that Obama was gonna start a land war in Syria just to get his swingin’ dick on.

  63. 63
    Mike with a Mic says:

    @Mackenna:

    Peace and humanity have nothing in common. We’ve been merrily killing each other since the start. We are an aggressive and territorial creature. When religion is gone we will still be slaughtering each other just with fancier tools and a new justification. It’s what we are.

    Also things don’t always translate between languages 100%. This is why depending on the translator things don’t always come out the same. It wasn’t insulting, he was inviting people from outside of his tribe to work with his tribe for peace… something that often doesn’t happen as humanities basic nature is tribal conflict. That it wasn’t worded perfectly by American ADD small-sound-bites-for-TV standards isn’t the popes problem. It just shows that Americans of all political stripes are capable of deliberately taking something out of context and assuming sinister intentions from the other tribe and then burning down their own houses in an orgy of ego boosting self righteousness.

  64. 64
    Bargal20 says:

    @Mike with a Mic: I’m not an American, you pompous twatwaffle. Happy Life Day.

  65. 65
    ruemara says:

    Holy moly. I’m glad we have a Pope that gives a sense of a positive human element, to counter people ignoring the message to debate semantics. Is this a law and grammar blog now? Jeez, people. Forest/Trees.

  66. 66
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Mackenna:

    “I invite even non-believers to desire peace.” is a strange way to phrase what he allegedly means.

    The implication is that non-believers don’t desire peace now.

  67. 67
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Mike with a Mic:

    Sure there are Christians that hate atheists and love bashing them, but there are also a lot of atheists who just love bashing the religious.

    Atheists just want to be left alone. A lot of “Christians” can’t abide that.

  68. 68
    Talentless Hack says:

    @RobertDSC-Power Mac G5 Dual: So? My FIL was drafted in the German army during WW II. I guess that made him a Nazi as well.

  69. 69
    Cassidy says:

    @Bargal20: But you are looking for a reason to be insulted. Fauxtrage doesn’t recognize borders.

  70. 70
    p.a. says:

    Slacktivist talks about outrage addiction often. IF the quote is an accurate translation and IF the context supports the outrage response, then the quote is unfortunate and fairly insulting. But given this Pope’s public stances so far, I think this is unlikely. Time will tell.

  71. 71

    @Mackenna:

    “I invite even non-believers to desire peace.” is a strange way to phrase what he allegedly means.

    If he was speaking in English, you might have a point … but he wasn’t. He was speaking either Spanish or Latin (possibly, but not likely, Italian). Do you really want to take great offense at a translation?

  72. 72
    Mackenna says:

    @ruemara: Wingnuts say the same thing.

  73. 73
    Mackenna says:

    @Chyron HR: @Mnemosyne (iPhone):

    Point taken. You could be right and likely are.

    This Pope is not clumsy, usually.

  74. 74
    David Koch says:

    Just words.

    He didn’t really mean it.

    He only said it because we forced him.

    Plus, he didn’t mention the Public Option once, which proves he’s a corporatist.

    Pope Hillary 2016

    Bah Humbug!

  75. 75
    Mackenna says:

    @Cassidy: Dismissive comments are insulting. How do you know what he’s looking for?

    Perhaps you’re looking for a reason to feel insulted by him feeling insulted.

  76. 76
    Mike with a Mic says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Atheists, like Christians, are not monolithic and often want different things and behave differently. There are combative atheists that feel the need to shit all over the religious just as their are Christians that feel the need to crap all over atheists. Acting as if one side has a monopoly on assholery and the other is completely blameless is utter bullshit.

    Shit half the fun of being an atheist while your young is being able to shit all over people and insult them for being stupid enough to believe in an imaginary sky god. People don’t remember the nice atheists who didn’t talk about it, they remember the jackass who came off like Chris Hitchens on a month long bender. Just how people remember the Christians ranting and raving about buttseks rather than the little old lady who never brings up that she plays organ at the church.

  77. 77
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Mackenna:

    Normally, he’s not this clumsy at all. Which is why this is so disconcerting to me. “Even you baby-killing atheists should join us in desiring peace.”

    There are better ways to express the sentiment than I saw in the Reuters dispatch on this.

  78. 78

    @Bargal20:

    How is that not an incredibly offensive and obnoxious thing to say?

    Be careful; this is almost certainly a translation and may not have captured his intent perfectly. The charitable interpretation is that he sees reaching out to non-believers to be an unusual step for a religious leader and is emphasizing the universality of the desire for peace. And, very importantly, I think he’s expressing a view of peace as something more than just the antithesis to war; he sees peace as the opposite to conflict of all kinds. When you respond to his call for peace by looking for an excuse to be offended, you’re showing that you don’t desire peace the same way he does. You’re assuming that you are inherently in conflict with him and looking for hidden insults and offenses, rather than responding in the spirit of peace.

  79. 79
    Mackenna says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: That’s what it says alright, but I’m giving him the benefit of the doubt based on the likelihood the translation was literal (as someone pointed out).

  80. 80
    Cassidy says:

    @Mackenna: Suck it up.

  81. 81
    Baud says:

    This wouldn’t even be an issue if we all just converted to Catholicism.

  82. 82
    Schlemizel says:

    @Cermet:
    My cousin was never a Hitler youth. When he was 17 the SS showed up with trucks at his High School and he was ‘drafted’ but he never joined the party or its parts voluntarily. History is complex, perhaps Benny didn’t have a choice but it is not to be assumed. It is something he will have to take up with his make if he is correct about that.

  83. 83
    Mackenna says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: You got a link for that or are you trolling?

  84. 84
    KBS says:

    I haven’t found the complete text, and it seems that he departed from prepared remarks when he mentioned atheists. But this quote:

    He said that people of other religions were also praying for peace, and – departing from his prepared text – he urged atheists to join forces with believers.

    I invite even non-believers to desire peace.

    seems to indicate that he is inviting people of all religions to pray for peace, and then is inspired to say that even atheists, who presumably don’t pray, can still join religious people in a desire for peace. Again, recall that this was all in Italian, so a close reading of the translation is probably pointless.

  85. 85
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Napoleon:
    More than one language uses the same word for the English “also” and “even”. So I too tend to think that Francis never actually implied that atheists don’t already desire peace. To pick over his words in search of insults or humbug is to give in to the same meanness of spirit we see in our foes. Why not, at least for Christmas day, grant that Francis isn’t among them?

  86. 86
    Mackenna says:

    @Schlemizel: History is complex and innocent well-meaning people get swept up.

    But I take issue with anyone who remains loyal to an institution (a Church, a football club, you name it) after learning pedophilia was systemic, supported, excused, and deliberately unreported. I don’t understand that. Never will.

  87. 87
    lockewasright says:

    Jewish born atheist here. I never thought that I would be fond of any pope, but I like this one.

  88. 88
    Mackenna says:

    @Cassidy: You’re weak, Cassidy. But then most trolls are.

  89. 89

    The story at NBC News leaves out the “atheist” part but points out the main emphasis of the speech, which was the various war zones throughout the world:

    http://tinyurl.com/llr76zg

  90. 90
    Schlemizel says:

    I can give Franky the benefit of the doubt because his background is not likely to think in any way except “even you people” and not intend to be offensive. My uncle used to say ‘coloreds’ when I know he was not meaning to be offensive, I explained it to him but I don’t think you overcome 70 years of training in a day.

    I certainly like the way this Pope speaks, its at least approaching the second half of the 20th century as opposed to the early 13th. But it is all just words unless he can actually turn his church from its Medieval path. If he can’t the evil his minions do will continue and any good he can do can be easily undone by the next guy.

  91. 91
    Origuy says:

    Actually, he was speaking in Italian, which is not his native language. I agree that the English translation sounds offensive, but it was an ad-lib. I don’t want to believe he meant it the way it sounds.

    However, some Christians don’t want the help of atheists

    The trustees of the Morton Grove Library rejected a $3,000 donation from the “Friendly Atheist,” Hemant Mehta, because they believe he’s “a hate group.”

    .

  92. 92
    MikeJ says:

    Matt Smith thread?

  93. 93
    Cassidy says:

    @Mackenna: Not trolling. Telling you to get over yourself. Seriously, you people are getting the vapors because the leader of a god you don’t believe in didn’t suck your dick on the balcony at the Vatican? How fucking delicate are you?

  94. 94
    Mike with a Mic says:

    @Mackenna:

    Some people believe when an institution (like say the government) has serious problems the errors should be corrected and it should be fixed to prevent those errors from being repeated and better serve it’s constituents. Other people believe when an institution (like say the government) has serious problems it should be burned to the fucking ground, we call this the “Tea Party Mindset”.

    The pope is trying to fix the Church, it’s not an instant process. Just like the trashed economy it will take years and several leaders to fix the damage and set on the correct course.

  95. 95
    Uncle Ebeneezer says:

    Meh. This militant atheist assumes he meant it in a nice-ish way.

    That said, I invite even the Catholic Church to cooperate fully with the authorities in their investigations of child-abuse. If this Pope wants to really change the image of the Church, that would be a pretty great place to start.

  96. 96
    Uncle Ebeneezer says:

    @KBS: Well said. That’s exactly how I interpreted it too. Although it would be nice if he asked people to do more than pray (haven’t read the whole transcript so maybe he did) to help the cause.

  97. 97
    Baud says:

    According to Google Translate, both “also” and “even” translate into the Italian word “anche.”

  98. 98
    Fluke bucket says:

    @Betty Cracker: Thank you for saying that. In no way did I interpret that as an insult.

  99. 99
    JaneE says:

    I think the Pope knows that atheists don’t pray. Xians and other religions pray for peace and atheists “desire” it. I thought desire was used as an atheist alternative for prayer.

  100. 100
    Corner Stone says:

    @Mackenna: Careful now. He has some really weird sexual tensions he hasn’t been able to work out in real life. Next you’ll find him insulting you in some kind of violent sexual act, or just flat out volunteering to come and physically assault you since he can’t figure out a way to verbally debate your stated positions.
    He’s not too bright.

  101. 101
    raven says:

    Ya’ll been bitching and whining all motherfucking day.

  102. 102
    Baud says:

    @raven:

    Did you find Cole in West Virginia?

    ETA: Or his car?

  103. 103
    Cassidy says:

    Oh boy. ChickenShit is drunk again.

  104. 104
    El Caganer says:

    Well, I for one am deeply offended. Yes, offended. Deeply. Very, very offended. I am.

  105. 105
    raven says:

    @Baud: I think we were about 281 miles apart! We’re in Asheville now.

  106. 106

    Christmas in Kentucky: today an inlaw asked if I shop at Target. I said yes. He said a friend of his refuses to shop there because she says the company is French and doesn’t support the military. I told him both were not true and told him to check Snopes.com.

    I’ve heard the military thing before but I’ve never heard that Target was French. Where the hell does this stuff come from? Walmart operatives?

  107. 107
    Mike with a Mic says:

    @Uncle Ebeneezer:

    Many Christians think prayer means more than just getting on your knees, putting your hands together and closing your eyes. There are lines of thinking that not only should you pray to god about it but you should go out into the world and actively practice it because they will know you by your deeds. If you really had it in your heart and really believed something should be done because god wants it than you should be willing to actively practice it in your life.

    This pope is a walking/talking example of practicing the shit you preach. It’s ludicrous to assert that his call for prayer around a specific issue does not imply taking worldly action.

  108. 108
    Cassidy says:

    I, for one, have had a great day. The family came up here and we did our usual Christmas dinner of lunch meat and stuff to snack on. My wife baked and the kids watched Christmas movies. Only one smoke investigation in the whole county. Some of you people need to get a little perspective and/ or sober up/ detox.

  109. 109
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Mackenna:

    No, but you can bet your last dollar that Mike Huckabee or Rih Santorum would be thinking that if they said it.

    I don’t think Francis would be thinking it. But more than a few of his followers would be.

    I’m with you, the original form (without the baby-kllers thing) is probably just a poor translation. Reuters isn’t as asshatty as API or, heaven forefend, UPI, which is now a Moonie front.

  110. 110
    Baud says:

    @Southern Beale:

    I’ve heard a joke where Target is pronounced with a French accent (like Tarzhey) to make it sound fancier (for wedding registrations, etc.). Other than than, I got nothing.

  111. 111
    El Caganer says:

    @Southern Beale: Maybe it has to do with people jokingly referring to it as “Tar-jay?”

  112. 112
    raven says:

    Raif Badawi, a blogger in Saudi Arabia who has been imprisoned for violating the nation’s anti-cybercrime law, has been given the death penalty for apostasy by a higher court, his wife told CNN on Wednesday.

    Careful you fuckers.

  113. 113
    Baud says:

    @raven:

    That’s quite a bit of driving you’ve been doing. My back would be sore.

  114. 114

    @Mike with a Mic:

    Because a ton of people are either looking for a reason to be insulted or a reason to throw rocks at the Church.

    There are plenty of theists who refuse to acknowledge that atheists can be good people. They will say in so many words that the only way to be a moral person is to believe in a higher power. If some atheists are going around looking for reasons to be offended, only part of it is because they want an excuse; part is that they have good reason to expect insults about their ability and willingness to desire peace.

  115. 115
    raven says:

    @Baud: The princess is pretty shot. I would have pushed home but she needed the beak. The brunch at the Hotel Roanoke was awesome.

  116. 116
    The Bobs says:

    @Mnemosyne (iPhone):

    It was reported that the Pope’s speech was in Italian.

    And as me to the atheists who were not the least bit offended by the statement.

    No wonder a lot of people think atheists are assholes.

  117. 117
    Baud says:

    @raven:

    Well, it’s beautiful country (although not sure about this time of year). Have a safe drive home.

  118. 118
    Keith G says:

    Bunch o freekin idiocy up thread – rapacious foolishness.

    The Pope was not dissing me (intentionally or not), he was just inviting me and other non beliebers to join in with his flock to become active in the cause of peace.

    Christ on a boogie board, I know some of you live to find fault and outrage, but you are not covering yourselves with glory over this.

  119. 119
    Heliopause says:

    I’ll take these words over those of the Nazi.

    Benedict said all these same things in slightly different words. You don’t have to believe me, look it up.

    Benedict urged that peoples all over the world of different faiths work together for peace. He endorsed the idea that non-believers of good conscience could be “saved”. He said most of the same commie stuff about capitalism as Francis does. He visited the homeless. You don’t have to believe me, look it up.

    This isn’t about Benedict vs. Francis anymore. This is about how a complete bullshit PR narrative can be invented and even otherwise intelligent liberal bloggers just swallow it whole. Francis has a friendly face and wears humble shoes, Benedict had beady eyes and wore Pradas. That’s the only measurable difference between the two. But by all means, keep believing the narrative that’s being spoon-fed to you.

    Sweet fucking jumpin’ Jesus.

  120. 120
    Amir Khalid says:

    @El Caganer:
    Then you need un accent aigu on the e, like so: Targét

  121. 121
    Baud says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    Do you need the accent with the -et ending in French?

  122. 122
    ruemara says:

    @Mackenna: I will not interrupt in your desire to make this both about you and your capacity to be an idiot. Please proceed.

  123. 123
    raven says:

    @Baud: The sunset lasted forever coming over the mountains in Va-North Carolina. There are no leaves but they are incredible nonetheless. Check out the menu from brunch.

  124. 124
    Baud says:

    @raven:

    Shit, you know it’s good cuz the menu doesn’t have prices.

  125. 125

    @The Bobs:

    May not be a good idea for a Spanish speaker to try and ad-lib in Italian. I’m willing to take it in a spirit of generosity since it probably sounded better in his head before he had to try and translate it on the fly.

    But, then, I’m an agnostic, not an atheist.

  126. 126
    MikeJ says:

    @Heliopause: You’re the one making the assertion. You look it up. Why should we do your homework?

    Francis didn’t say anything about who needed to be saved. Benedict was openly, publicly hostile to atheists. Francis is saying everyone should work together to make the world better.

  127. 127
    Mike with a Mic says:

    @Heliopause:

    Of course you leave out his actual deeds that prove the difference. Such as sacking the Bishop of Bling in Germany, and screwing around with the Curia, and the issue with the Latin mass. You also leave out that Benedicts background was pretty much an inquisitor, where as Francis is a Jesuit.

    So yeah, totally the same… provided you leave out all the messy stuff that blows that statement out of the water.

  128. 128
    MikeJ says:

    @Mnemosyne (iPhone):

    May not be a good idea for a Spanish speaker to try and ad-lib in Italian. I’m willing to take it in a spirit of generosity since it probably sounded better in his head before he had to try and translate it on the fly.

    And it probably sounded fine in Italian too. It’s silly to complain about the way a Spanish speaker ad libs in Italian based on an English translation of unknown origin.

  129. 129
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Baud:
    Not really, but we’re just faking the French thing anyway.

  130. 130
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @raven:

    This is a good example of why if we were going to invade some country in the Middle East in 2003, Iraq was the wrong one.

  131. 131
  132. 132
    raven says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: Not sure invading the home of Mecca would have gone over very well but you are right.

  133. 133
    MikeJ says:

    Here’s the official translation from the Vatican:

    Let us never lose the courage of prayer! The courage to say: Lord, grant your peace to Syria and to the whole world. And I also invite non-believers to desire peace with that yearning that makes the heart grow: all united, either by prayer or by desire. But all of us, for peace.

    http://www.news.va/en/news/pop.....bi-message

  134. 134
    raven says:

    @MikeJ: Sounds like the UU priestess last night, she was doing some serious invtiing.

  135. 135
    Cassidy says:

    This seems appropriate.

  136. 136

    @Heliopause:

    I looked it up, and the Daily Mail says you’re full of shit:

    http://tinyurl.com/3y9r4f3

    Now, apparently Pope Francis and Pope Benedict have been making a point of presenting a united front so Pope Benedict has been echoing recently what Francis has been saying. But when Benedict was the sole Pope, he was not saying what Francis is now saying.

  137. 137
    Gen says:

    @Mackenna: you take offense where none is meant. Watching a lot of FOX lately?

  138. 138
    catclub says:

    @raven: In the church of Aphrodite,
    Priestess wears a see through nightie,
    She’s an awfully righteous sightie,
    and its good enough for me.

  139. 139
    Churchlady320 says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: It is also a constant among the part of Christianity that is linked to the teaching tradition rather than the salvation tradition. Rev. King, Rev. Coffin, those who march and stood for peace are part of the former while many of the latter made war to ‘save souls’ worrying first of course for their own. It is NOT a universal because Christianity is many different things. The power of the religious right in this nation has shredded our long history of faith people leading the work on peace, justice, equality. This MUST be restored which is why the Pope’s call is to people of faith first – those are the ones in his Catholic social justice tradition that need to move well ahead of the ones who follow obsolete rules. His call to non believers is not to atheists in America or the West – but to dictators and military thugs around the world who truly believe in nothing but their own power.

  140. 140
    El Caganer says:

    @Amir Khalid: Don’t forget we’re talking ’bout Murkins: we’re the compassionate-yet-tough-as-nails citizens of the White People’s Melting Pot. We don’t do that diacritical-mark thingie – that’s are for French cheese-eating surrender monkeys or over-melaninated immigrants.

  141. 141
    MomSense says:

    I think he said “also” and it was a gracious and good message. I can’t think of another Pope who has invited non-believers to be full participants in a community dedicated to pursuing peace.

  142. 142
    raven says:

    @catclub: I had a yoga teacher that was a drop dead knockout. She was deep into it and wore these gauzy thangs. I mentioned to a fellow yogurt how tantalizing she looked and he said she would just perish if she knew anyone thought of her like that. And I am Father Flannigan of Boys Town.

  143. 143
    gelfling545 says:

    @John Cole: The point being he certainly knows that as an atheist one does not pray. He would hardly invite atheists to pray for peace with him but emphasizes that the desire for peace matters and can be a common bond. It is hard to construe anything offensive from this but I suppose there are people who feel that good morning is offensive (Don’t tell me what kind of morning to have). Sigh.

  144. 144
    pat says:

    “I invite even non-believers to desire peace.”

    Just change the wording to
    “I even invite non-believers…..”

    Gives it a different slant, I think.

  145. 145
    Cervantes says:

    @Baud: Yes.

  146. 146
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @MikeJ:

    Well, the Vatican’s official translation certainly doesn’t grate on my nerves the way the Reuters one does. Definitely a non-judgmental call for inclusion.

  147. 147
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Churchlady320:

    Christianity is about as monolithic as Islam is. That is, not at all.

    Still, who gets the press?

  148. 148
    scuffletuffle says:

    Dear Pope Francis,

    Fuck you.

    ETA: and the horse you rode in on…

    Signed,

    An ex-Catholic atheist

  149. 149
    TriassicSands says:

    Many of the things Francis has said since his election have been welcome when contrasted with what his predecessors said. But the simple fact is there is almost no chance he or any other foreseeable Pope is going to give up trying to get Catholic religious beliefs enacted as laws everywhere possible. As long as that is the case, I will consider the Catholic Church, and by extension the Pope, to be at war with not only women, but free and open societies. We’ve been fighting this battle with homegrown religious fanatics who want their religious beliefs to govern everyone — including atheists, agnostics, and people of other religions.

    In truth, when you have someone whose beliefs are utterly opposed to your own and that person is trying to get those beliefs enacted into law, it may be better to have that person be as big an ass as possible. In the case of a Pope, his ass-Holiness may work against him and in your own favor. So, in a political sense, as opposed to simple humanity and humanism, the Pope’s nice words may not be good news. My neighbor rejects the entire Democratic Party and its platform, despite it being much more consistent with her own beliefs, because she “hates” Nancy Pelosi and Barbara Boxer. How many people bought into Reagan, because they saw him as a nice guy, and voted for him while disagreeing with his policies.

    When it comes to Pope Francis, let’s say I’m at best ambivalent.

  150. 150
    TriassicSands says:

    @The Bobs:

    No wonder a lot of people think atheists are assholes.

    What a ridiculous statement.

  151. 151
    TriassicSands says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    I like this pope.

    Relative to other popes? Or because you think he will lead a movement to end trying to have Catholic religious beliefs enacted into law?

    As long as the Catholic Church and its representatives continue to try to force all people to adhere to Catholic religious principles, I’m not going to “like” any pope in any significant, not-relativistic way. Yes, his words sound much better than those of his predecessors, but as leaders of the war on women, Catholic popes and other clergy are not what I’d consider harmless.

  152. 152
    Smiling Mortician says:

    @scuffletuffle: Aw, man. Just when the other kids settled down.

  153. 153
    Bargal20 says:

    I don’t get this developing love affair between otherwise rational secularists and a pope who says a few commonsense things, but has in practice done nothing except hug a homeless person and washed a Muslim’s feet.

    Really, what has Francis done?

  154. 154
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @gelfling545: that’s what it sounds like to me too — it’s more like “I invite religious people to pray, and non-believing people to… do whatever happy-thoughtful-wishing thing it is they do.” Like how when you appear in court you can either “swear,” or, if you don’t like to swear per se, you can “affirm.” And I bow to no one in depth or extent of atheistic ardor.

  155. 155
    Jane2 says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: FFS, then ignore him.

    @MikeJ: One would really have to dig deep to find anything offensive in that statement.

  156. 156
    tc says:

    If and when he expels all the pedophiles the Church has been protecting, I will embrace him as a better pope than his predecessor. Until then, all I’m willing to allow is that he’s got a better advertising campaign.

  157. 157
    mainmata says:

    Pope Frankie inviting atheists to discuss peace implies atheists/agnostics were not about that, which is absurd. As a former Catholic, I Like Frankie, but that invitation is weird. We are not Soviet ideologists but are genuinely, scientifically, and originally grounded people.

  158. 158
    MobiusKlein says:

    about the ‘atheist desires for piece’, the pope knows quite well that atheist’s don’t pray – desire is OK. Perhaps aspire, yearn, strive for peace would be better words. In English.

  159. 159
    pluege says:

    don’t get me wrong that it is incredibly important what Pope Francis has been saying going straight at the greed-obsessed ruling elites across the globe who have so terribly effed everything and everyone for way too long. He is doing so with plain, direct, unambiguous language. But I do have a little bone to pick with the implication of: “I invite even non-believers to desire peace.” The implication in the wording is that they don’t already desire peace, which they [non-believers] quite often already do, often in response to the atrocities visited on humanity by religious organizations such as the Catholic Church.

  160. 160

    […] at 2:00 on December 26, 2013 by CathiefromCanada Pope Francis would have agreed with John Lennon (and Francis is likely the first pope since John XXIII who would […]

  161. 161
    Coldie says:

    It is sad to see how many atheists are drawn to this pope. He hasn’t done a damn thing, and he ain’t gonna. Whenever an atheist says something nice about this guy, they start with the “just words” write off. They do that for a reason. He’s all hat no cattle by design. Just a friendly new billboard for the same idiot anti human catholic doctrine. Wake me up when he disavows original sin and transubstantition. Until then he will do infinitely more harm than good. Fuck this man and the full shit religion he represents. They are the worst of humanity. He is equal to Cindy McCain on the no hate campaign with her daughter. Worse than worthless. For the love of god atheists, grow,a spine and know your enemy. It is old Frankie. Fuck em

  162. 162
    David Koch says:

    Primary the Pope!

    Hey, Hey,
    Ho, Ho,
    Da Pope,
    Gotta Go

  163. 163
    Mackenna says:

    @Cassidy: Cassidy (and others like him) goes to great lengths describing what a great person he is, what a great family he has, then contradicts all that warmth and goodwill by jabbing insults at others who don’t share his point of view. Not my idea of a role model.

    We’re not drunk.
    We don’t need detox.
    We’re not Fox News watchers.
    We just don’t share your opinion.
    Get over it.

    (And Grade 5 wants its insults back.)

  164. 164
    Mackenna says:

    @Cassidy:

    Cassidy says:
    December 25, 2013 at 9:01 pm

    @Mackenna: Not trolling. Telling you to get over yourself. Seriously, you people are getting the vapors because the leader of a god you don’t believe in didn’t suck your dick on the balcony at the Vatican? How fucking delicate are you?

    Yep, that’s trolling.

  165. 165
    Mackenna says:

    @Mike with a Mic: The Catholic Church has been corrupt for centuries. It is a cult, nothing more.

  166. 166
    otmar says:

    I can sympathize with Francis. I also have to give talks in a foreign language every now and then and have to find the right words on the fly. This is not at all easy, and one of the compromises you learn to take is that you have to accept mistakes in order to get a halfway decent flow of the talk.

    You do not have time to think at length on whether a certain word is the optimal choice. If you can spend a full second to find the right word, you’re lucky. This will produce sub-optimal choices. This will lead to awkward phrasing. So what, this is ad-libbed spoken word and should be treated differently than a word-choice from an encyclica.

    In that case, I guess it worked like this: “I want to include non-believers; can’t use the word ‘pray’; what the fsck do I take instead?”

  167. 167
    magurakurin says:

    I know this is a dead thread, but seriously, read what he said in Italian, you haters. It isn’t that hard to garner the jist and with a little effort you can feel some of the beauty of the language. He wasn’t fumbling for words, he wasn’t offensive to anyone. As the old joke goes, and seems to apply in a backwards way to this thread, “it sounds better in the original Italian.”

    E anche i non credenti invito a desiderare la pace, con il loro desiderio, quel desiderio che allarga il cuore: tutti uniti, o con la preghiera o con il desiderio. Ma tutti, per la pace”

    .

  168. 168
    Bargal20 says:

    I invite even Roman Catholics to bring an end to child rape.

  169. 169
    Cassidy says:

    @Mackenna: I don’t want to be your role model. I don’t give a shit whether you agree with me or not. You’re the one who got the vapors because people didn’t trip over themselves to tell you how insightful your generic comments were. I just want you to quit whining.

  170. 170
    Luci says:

    @Calming influence
    @Bill E Pilgrim: I’ve partaken of the prunes of wrath, and now have a real good understanding of why they’re called that.

    Ok… first of all… Had I been taking a slug coffee when I read both of your posts, it would have been all over everything. “The prunes of wrath” are now a permanent part of my vocabulary. ;)

    Also… I really think the Pope meant to be inclusive, which is great, but I also think that there is a lot of underlying resentment in those of us who are not among the churched, and who get a lot of comments about our inevitable trip to hell or whatever. I have also had people react in amazement that I actually try and follow a moral code that involves helping people if they want it or being decent to them, since I am not religious and thus, I guess, cannot be a decent human being. :-s So, while I am glad this Pope is doing his best to be inclusive, I can see the point of view of those who are a bit miffed by it all. I am mad about some of those things, and I guess I’d best start speaking up more so as to try and defuse some of those feelings, but they are there to be triggered, and I’d guess that at least for some posters here, that is the case. It is, I think, the belief that the only way to morality and behaving well is through religion that rankles so much, and more so when we see how so many of the religious behave. In fact, we are neither more nor less moral than they, and if they could remember that they have chosen to find a path one way and some of us another way, and all are useful, things would be a good deal better. In other words… tolerance!

  171. 171
    carbon dated says:

    @RobertDSC-Power Mac G5 Dual:

    “Served” ? The mo-fer was conscripted. It was the law of the land that all 14 year old boys had to join. Supposedly he didn’t attend meetings. Then was drafted into the anti-aircraft corps and infantry. Then he deserted. If Joey Ratz was a Nazi, he really sucked at it.

  172. 172
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    @Bargal20:

    How is that not an incredibly offensive and obnoxious thing to say?

    Accepting us godmockers have a right to live is a huge concession on the Pope’s part. His religion calls for our deaths after all so at lest he is trying to move in the right direction.

  173. 173
    Matt says:

    I’ll be convinced the Pope is serious about all this Jeebusy stuff when the announcement is “I’m handing over to national authorities worldwide the full documentation of my church’s decades-long conspiracy to abuse children and keep it quiet, and then I’m dissolving the church and ordering the proceeds to be paid out to the billions of victims of its policies – everything from those suffering from overpopulation directly caused by our Middle Ages approach to contraception, Holocaust survivors who suffered while we ignored their plight, and most of all the indigenous peoples worldwide who experienced cultural genocide ‘for the sake of their souls’. Amen.”

    Until then, just words.

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