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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, February 10, 2017 - Volume 45 Issue 06
Pope: Donald Trump is not a Christian

Steve Bannon: Pope isn't either
Section One
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Pope: Donald Trump is not a Christian

Steve Bannon: Pope isn't either

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

Pope Francis strongly implied that Donald Trump is un-Christian in a February 8 sermon, while Trump advisor Steve Bannon has been working with traditionalist Catholic clergy to undermine the pontiff.

'In the social and civil context as well, I appeal not to create walls but to build bridges,' the pope said in his weekly catechism lesson. 'To not respond to evil with evil. To defeat evil with good, the offense with forgiveness. A Christian would never say 'you will pay for that.' Never.

'That is not a Christian gesture. An offense you overcome with forgiveness. To live in peace with everyone.'

Francis has used the 'bridge not walls' theme before. Last year, after visiting the US-Mexican border, the pope replied to a question about Trump by saying that anyone who wants to build a wall instead of a bridge is 'not Christian.'

Meanwhile former Breitbart boss and current Trump advisor Steve Bannon has been cozying up to traditionalist Catholic officials who are opposed to the pope.

According to the New York Times, Bannon has allied himself with Cardinal Raymond Burke, a longtime opponent of Pope Francis.



Burke was appointed cardinal by the ultraconservative Pope Benedict XVI in 2010 and occupied a series of powerful positions in the Vatican bureaucracy. He then ran afoul of Benedict's successor, Pope Francis, at one point even threatening to 'formally correct' the new pope's teaching on families.

Francis fired Burke from his most important posts and sent him to be papal delegate to the Knights of Malta, the modern remnant of an old crusading order. Even in that innocuous post, Burke annoyed the pope, who replaced him with a mere archbishop on February 2.

According to the Times, Bannon's relationship with Burke goes back to the cardinal's glory days in 2014, shortly before he lost his Vatican posts.

Bannon visited the Vatican in April 2014 to recruit Edward Pentin, a leading Catholic traditionalist reporter, to write for Breitbart. Pentin is the author of The Rigging of a Vatican Synod? - a book charging that Pope Francis and his liberal associates steamrolled the Vatican's Synod on the Family.

While in Rome, Bannon also met Benjamin Harnwell, a confidant of Cardinal Burke and 'the smartest guy in Rome,' according to Bannon. Harnwell arranged for Bannon to meet Burke.

The two hit it off right away, the Times says, because both felt a need to counter what they saw as a 'cultural Marxism' that had seeped into the church and resulted in Francis's election. Bannon found the meeting 'incredibly powerful.'

'When you recognize someone who has sacrificed in order to remain true to his principles and who is fighting the same kind of battles in the cultural arena, in a different section of the battlefield, I'm not surprised there is a meeting of hearts,' Harnwell told the Times.

'There are huge areas where we and the pope do overlap, and as a loyal Catholic, I don't want to spend my life fighting against the pope on issues where I won't change his mind,' Harnwell added.

'Far more valuable for me would be spend time working constructively with Steve Bannon.'

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