This article was previously published by The Lepanto Institute
On February 13, I learned about a recent private encounter between Pope Francis and former President of Brazil Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. It is quite difficult for me to write this, mainly because I am profoundly ashamed by the words, actions, and attitudes of the present occupier of the Chair of St. Peter. I was born in Argentina, I live in Buenos Aires and I know my feelings are shared by many Catholic and non-Catholic Argentines. We owe the world an apology but lately we owe a special apology to the faithful Catholics of China, to the many children abused by priests, and now to the people of the sister Republic of Brazil, a dear country where I have many friends and brothers in the faith.
For those not aware of the present spiritual landscape of Brazil. The country still holds the largest Catholic population in the world but the situation is changing rapidly. The aggressive proselytism of Protestant denominations, pseudo-Christian sects, and various esoteric cults have taken a huge bite off the Brazilian Catholic flock. That would have been impossible without the collaboration of the Liberation Theology movement which many Brazilian Catholics abhor while others simply endure.
Since Brazilians are for the most part decent, conservative people, many have found more palatable to abandon the Catholic Church to join some Evangelical group where Christian morals are still embraced and practiced, where sermons do not seem to be written by some Soviet propaganda agent. In the last few years, the duty to preserve the traditional Christian conduct has rested on the shoulders of Evangelicals. In the Catholic camp, some brave priests hold on to the Traditional teachings of the Catholic Church in spite of the growing difficulties to explain the barrage of confusion coming from Rome. All trends remaining the same, Brazil will cease to have a Catholic majority by 2030 or so, according to Bernardo Küster, a Catholic convert and a shrewd analyst of the religious and political Brazilian reality.
During the years when the leftist PT (Partido Trabalhista, Labor Party) governed Brazil, from 2002 to 2016, a small flock of Brazilian Catholics and the vast majority of Evangelicals preserved the conservative, traditional spirit of the Brazilian people while the party led by Lula da Silva aggressively promoted the usual Progressive abominations: wealth redistribution, high taxation, gender ideology, abortion, violent street crime, divorce, state corruption, etc. aided by the leaders of the Theology of Liberation. The vast governmental resources of Brazil were redirected to help countries like Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua, Angola, etc. well known for oppressing their people. While doing all that, the party of Mr. da Silva promoted corrupt corporate practices that resulted in many criminal lawsuits being filed against various members of government, including Mr. da Silva himself who was convicted of money laundering and of having received undue favors and kickbacks.
Mr. da Silva was recently liberated from prison by the Supreme Court of the land. The Court may have been lenient with Mr. da Silva due to his being diagnosed with cancer. I am told that a great number of Brazilians are indignant at the political class Mr. da Silva so clearly represents. While unbelievers and Evangelicals execrated the policies of Mr. da Silva, a great number of Catholic priests, Bishops, and even Cardinals extolled Lula da Silva as a sort of messiah. Some of those have even talked about him as a “spiritual leader” of the Brazilian people, proposing a “spirituality” based on his thoughts and actions. Many of those “thoughts and ideas” had a clear blasphemous tone. We won’t detail the many alleged sinister connections of the Brazilian political left to illegal traffic of arms and narcotics, and many other criminal activities.
Mr. da Silva is widely execrated by his own people in Brazil regardless of any appreciation he may get in world Socialist circles. He was received by Pope Benedict as a head of state in the past when he was the President of Brazil. That is not the character of this more amicable visit that speaks clearly of the bonds of camaraderie between this convicted felon and Pope Francis.
I cannot reproduce here the words that came to my mind when I learned that Pope Francis had placed a statue of Martin Luther in the Vatican Gardens. Those sad feelings were dwarfed by my reaction to the Pachamama ceremonies. I thought to myself, “the abomination is certainly standing on holy ground.”
The so-called German Reformation of Luther thorn the Catholic Church ripping it to pieces. It was that rebellion that opened the gates to Illuminism, the French Revolution, the Masonic cult, and later, to Socialism, Communism, and Marxism in its various iterations and venomous branches. When the Church in China was abandoned, we the ones who want to be faithful to Christ, knew that this was not a mere gaffe. The blessing of this convict is just another sign that something is very wrong in Rome. I will keep from expressing further conclusions but this one: what we are seeing is a clear sign that Our Lord is speeding to the aid of the faithful Church, the pusillus grex, the little flock that know the voice of Christ and follow Him everywhere. If Our Lord is approaching, we also know that the punishment of all evildoers is approaching along with Him.
“His winnowing fork is in His hand to clear His threshing floor and to gather the wheat into His barn, but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.” (Luke 3:17)
Not a happy expectation for those failing to do His will.