ARRESTS MADE IN ITALY FOR 2010 SUICIDE BOMB PLOT AGAINST THE VATICAN AND POPE BENEDICT XVI …
As reported at Reuters, Italian security forces have arrested 18 radical Islamic extremists Friday who prosecutors said were behind a failed 2010 plot to attack the Vatican as well as a bombing at a Pakistan market that killed more than 100 a year earlier. Prosecutor Mauro Mura stated in Cagliari, Sardinia that wiretaps indicated the suspected terrorists, including two former bodyguards for Usama bin Laden, planned a bomb attack at the Vatican and went as far as to send a suicide bomber to Rome.
Italian police were arresting 18 people on Friday suspected of belonging to an armed group linked to al Qaeda who were plotting attacks on the Vatican as well as in Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Some of the suspects, who are all Pakistanis and Afghans, were arrested in early morning raids across Italy. Police burst into the home of the group’s suspected spiritual leader, in the northern city of Bergamo, a video released by them showed.
Though the suspects were plotting attacks mainly in their native countries, phone taps suggest the Vatican was also a target, said Mauro Mura, chief prosecutor of the Sardinian city of Cagliari, where the group based its headquarters.
In the tapped conversations, the suspects discuss “a big jihad in Italy,” added Mario Carta, head of the police unit on the case. They reference the word “baba”, which could mean the pope, Carta said.
“We don’t have proof, we have strong suspicion,” that the Holy See was a possible target, he added.
Raids were carried out simultaneously in seven different Italian provinces with arrest warrants for 18 suspected Islamic extremists following a lengthy investigation in Cagliari, capital of the Italian island Sardinia.
Authorities uncovered plans for a suicide bomber plot against the Vatican in 2010, when Pope Benedict XVI was pontiff. Evidence includes a “martyr’s vow” from a would-be suicide bomber threatening to strike against the Vatican, the spiritual focal point for the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics.
Mario Carta, an official from the counter-terror police force that carried out the raids, called it “one of the most important operations ever carried out in Italy.” Police said the operation targeted an “extremely well-structured terror network” based in Sardinia since at least 2005 that was made up of Pakistani and Afghan nationals.
Nine people have been arrested, and two are still at large in Italy. Seven of the suspects are believed to be in Pakistan, Carta said.
Pope Francis’ Easter Message: End Violence & Oppression … Pope Called for an End to “the Present Absurd Bloodshed and all Barbarous Acts of Violence” of Radical Islam
Pope Francis Easter Message: “Oh God, who on this day through your only begotten son have conquered death and unmarked for us the path to eternity. [...] We ask peace above all for beloved Syria and Iraq. That the roar of arms cease and that peaceful relations be restored”.
During Pope Francis’ message this Easter Sunday, he called for an end to the bloodshed in Libya, Yemen, Syria, Iraq, Nigeria and in Africa and called for the international community not stand by before the immense humanitarian tragedy unfolding in these countries. Francis prayed for an end to the violence and persecution of Christians, specifically mentioning the recent slaughter of students massacred by Islamist militants at Garissa University in Kenya.
Pope Francis prayed for an end to the persecution of Christians in his Easter Sunday address, commemorating the students massacred by Islamist militants at Garissa University in Kenya.
Calling for peace in Libya, where last February Islamic State militants beheaded 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians, the pope called for an end to “the present absurd bloodshed and all barbarous acts of violence”.
He prayed for peace in Syria, Iraq and Yemen, Sudan, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Nigeria, where Boko Haram Islamist militants have also targeted Christian churches.
“We ask for peace and freedom for the many men and women subject to old and new forms of enslavement on the part of criminal individuals and groups,” he said.
Pope Francis reminded the world of the Vatican’s status as a state and his role as a moral diplomat in his traditional speech given at the end of Easter Mass.
The Pontiff lamented the suffering of people in the conflicts currently making headlines and called for violence everywhere to end.
Foremost, he asked that bloodshed end in Iraq and Syria and that humanitarian aid get to those in need.
“May the international community not stand by before the immense humanitarian tragedy unfolding in these countries and the drama of the numerous refugees,” he said in his “urbi et orbi” address, Latin for “to the city (Rome) and to the world.”
Then he turned to the Holy Land, expressing the wish that the peace process between Israelis and Palestinians resume.
Francis mentioned Libya; the nuclear talks with Iran in Lausanne, Switzerland; Yemen; Nigeria; South Sudan; and the shooting at the Garissa University College in Kenya.
The Full Easter Mass can be seen below
“Jesus Christ is risen! Love has triumphed over hatred, life has conquered death, light has dispelled the darkness!
Out of love for us, Jesus Christ stripped himself of his divine glory, emptied himself, took on the form of a slave and humbled himself even to death, death on a cross. For this reason God exalted him and made him Lord of the universe. Jesus is Lord! By his death and resurrection, Jesus shows everyone the way to life and happiness: this way is humility, which involves humiliation. This is the path which leads to glory. Only those who humble themselves can go towards the “things that are above”, towards God (cf. Col 3:1-4). The proud look “down from above”; the humble look “up from below”.
On Easter morning, alerted by the women, Peter and John ran to the tomb. They found it open and empty. Then they drew near and “bent down” in order to enter it. To enter into the mystery, we need to “bend down”, to abase ourselves. Only those who abase themselves understand the glorification of Jesus and are able to follow him on his way.
The world proposes that we put ourselves forward at all costs, that we compete, that we prevail. But Christians, by the grace of Christ, dead and risen, are the seeds of another humanity, in which we seek to live in service to one another, not to be arrogant, but rather respectful and ready to help.
This is not weakness, but true strength! Those who bear within them God’s power, his love and his justice, do not need to employ violence; they speak and act with the power of truth, beauty and love.
From the risen Lord we ask the grace not to succumb to the pride which fuels violence and war, but to have the humble courage of pardon and peace. We ask Jesus, the Victor over death, to lighten the sufferings of our many brothers and sisters who are persecuted for his name, and of all those who suffer injustice as a result of ongoing conflicts and violence.
We ask for peace, above all, for Syria and Iraq, that the roar of arms may cease and that peaceful relations may be restored among the various groups which make up those beloved countries. May the international community not stand by before the immense humanitarian tragedy unfolding in these countries and the drama of the numerous refugees.
We pray for peace for all the peoples of the Holy Land. May the culture of encounter grow between Israelis and Palestinians and the peace process be resumed, in order to end years of suffering and division.
We implore peace for Libya, that the present absurd bloodshed and all barbarous acts of violence may cease, and that all concerned for the future of the country may work to favor reconciliation and to build a fraternal society respectful of the dignity of the person. For Yemen too we express our hope for the growth of a common desire for peace, for the good of the entire people. (the rest of the message)
Pope Francis Claims There Are Limitations on Freedom of Speech, ‘One Cannot Make Fun of Faith’ … REALLY?
POPE FRANCIS SAYS THAT YOU CANNOT MAKE FUN OF FAITH …
Following the radical Islam terror attack at Charlie Hebdo, the satirical newspaper that had made fun of the prophet Mohammad in the past, that left numerous dead, Pope Francis stated that there were limitations of freedom of speech and said, “One cannot provoke, one cannot insult other people’s faith, one cannot make fun of faith.” Really? SORRY PONTIFF, YOU COULD NOT BE ANY MORE WRONG. So let’s understand this, the Pope thinks that people do not have the right to make fun of religion? The Pontiff made his point by comparing it to if an individual cursed at his mother, that person would be punched. So is the Pope saying that ‘Charlie Hebdo’ brought this on themselves? Would he say the same about a rape victim?
A note to the Pontiff, blasphemy is offensive, cruel and pretty much wrong, but it is not illegal and does not warrant murder.That is what is supposed to separate Christianity from radical Islam. Sorry, but the very essence of freedom of speech is to defend the very words that you would disagree with, offend you and make your blood boil. Wasn’t it Jesus who told us to bless those who persecute us (Romans 12:14), to return love for hate and good for evil (Psalm 109:5), and even to love our enemies (Matthew 5:43-48). Loving your enemies would include supporting the fundamental commitment to free speech, and defending the right of free speech, even, or especially, for those who offend you. Why am I telling a Pope this?
Pope Francis suggested there are limits to freedom of expression, saying in response to the Charlie Hebdo terror attack that “one cannot make fun of faith” and that anyone who throws insults can expect a “punch.”
The pontiff said that both freedom of faith and freedom of speech were fundamental human rights and that “every religion has its dignity.”
“One cannot provoke, one cannot insult other people’s faith, one cannot make fun of faith,” he said. “There is a limit. Every religion has its dignity … in freedom of expression there are limits.”
The right to liberty of expression comes with the “obligation” to speak for “the common good,” Pope Francis said, cautioning against provocation.
To illustrate his point, he joked about Vatican aide Alberto Gasparri who was standing nearby on the plane.
“It’s true that we can’t react violently, but, for example if Dr. Gasbarri here, a great friend of mine, says a curse word against my mother, then a punch awaits him,” the pontiff said.
Pope Francis also said that killing in the name of religion is an “aberration,” but adding that those who deride other faiths can expect to provoke a strong, even violent response. An aberration?
“One cannot react violently, but if [someone] says something bad about my mother, he can expect a punch. It’s to be expected,” the pontiff said. “There are a lot of people who speak badly about other religions. They make fun of them. What happens is what happens with my friend [who insults my mother]. There is a limit.”
The pope made the comments during an in-flight news conference from Sri Lanka to Manila, where he took up the second leg of a weeklong tour of Asia. He was greeted at the airport by President Benigno Aquino III and a performance by hundreds of jeans-clad young people. People cheered the pope’s motorcade to the residence of the apostolic nuncio.
In recent days, the 78-year-old pontiff strongly denounced the attack by two militant Muslim gunmen on Charlie Hebdo, the French satirical publication that has long derided Islam and other religions and their institutions, including the Vatican.
As reported by CBS News, ISIS, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria is targeting Pope Francis. However, the Vatican is denying the report. Recently, the Pontiff supported the use of force to stop Islamic extremists from attacking religious minorities in Iraq. In a change from the Vatican’s opposition to military force, Pope Francis blessed the use of force to stop the vicious Islamic radicals overrunning Iraq, but he said any intervention first must be backed by the international community.
A new report claims that the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria is targeting Pope Francis — a report that the Vatican says is simply not true.
According to Il Tempo, Israeli sources reportedly told the Italian newspaper that the pope is “in the crosshairs of ISIS.” The report stated that Francis is being targeted because he is “the greatest exponent of the Christian religions” and the “bearer of false truth.”
The Vatican, though, denounced the report.
“There is nothing serious to this,” Father Federico Lombardi S.J., a Vatican spokesman, told Catholic News Agency. “There is no particular concern in the Vatican. This news has no foundation.”
The Catholic News Agency reports that Italy has issued a nationwide terror alert, despite no imminent threats or specifics about a potential attack on the country.
Just Disgusting … Pope Francis Says 1 in 50 Roman Catholic Priests Are Pedophiles … Abuse of Children was Like “Leprosy” Infecting the Church
WHEN WILL THE CATHOLIC CHURCH PURGE ITSELF OF THIS SCOURGE?
Pope Francis was quoted in an Italian newspaper, La Repubblica, that 1 in 50 or 2% of Roman Catholic priests are pedophiles. The Pope said that the abuse of children was like “leprosy” infecting the Church. However, the Vatican was quick to backtrack on the comments and say that the Pope was misquoted. What, did the Pontiff quote a higher number? At some point the Vatican is going to have to come clean and rid itself of this terrible blight. If they think its an “infection” then they best find a cure pretty damn soon.
Pope Francis on Sunday was quoted by an Italian newspaper saying that about two percent — or 1 in 50 — of Roman Catholic priests are pedophiles, but the Vatican quickly released a statement saying the pontiff had been misquoted. Church officials also said that the journalist who did the story for La Repubblica had a history of having long conversations with public figures without taking notes or taping them, and then reconstructing them from memory.
“Many of my collaborators who fight with me (against pedophilia) reassure me with reliable statistics that say that the level of pedophilia in the Church is at about two percent,” Francis was quoted as saying.
The Pope reportedly told Italian newspaper la Repubblica that abuse of children was like “leprosy” infecting the Church.
Francis said the “corruption of a child is the terrible and unclean thing imaginable” and vowed to “confront it with the seriousness it demands”.
He said that paedophilia was unfortunately common and widespread.
“The church is fighting for the eradication of the habit and for education that rehabilitates. But this leprosy is also present in our house,” he was reported to have said.
“Many of my colleagues who are working against it tell me that paedophilia inside the church is at the level of two per cent. Among the two per cent who are paedophiles are priests and even bishops and cardinals.”
- Saying that at his age, he doesn’t have much to lose, that whatever happens to him is up to God
Daily Commentary – Friday, June 20, 2014 Download
Pope Francis’ Easter Address in front of 150,000 people in St. Peter’s Square called for and end to conflicts in Syria, Ukraine and Africa and an end to violence in Iraq, Venezuela, South Sudan and the Central Africa Republic. The Pontiff also denounced the “immense wastefulness” in the world while many go hungry.
Pope Francis, in his Easter address before a huge crowd, on Sunday denounced the “immense wastefulness” in the world while many go hungry and called for an end to conflicts in Syria, Ukraine and Africa.
“We ask you, Lord Jesus, to put an end to all war and every conflict, whether great or small, ancient or recent,” he said in his “Urbi et Orbi” (to the city and the world) message.
Francis, marking the second Easter season of his pontificate, celebrated a Mass to an overflowing crowd of at least 150,000 in St. Peter’s Square and beyond.
He prayed to God to “help us to overcome the scourge of hunger, aggravated by conflicts and by the immense wastefulness for which we are often responsible”.
Celebrating Easter Sunday, Christianity’s most joyous and hopeful day, Pope Francis prayed for peace in Ukraine and Syria and for an end to the terrorist attacks in Nigeria that have targeted so many Christians.
He also recalled those suffering in Africa from an epidemic of deadly Ebola and urged a halt to “brutal terrorist attacks” in parts of Nigeria.
But Francis’ Easter message also stressed that people pay attention to the needy close to home. Reflecting the priorities of his papacy, he said the “good news” of Easter’s joy and hope means “leaving ourselves behind and encountering others, being close to those crushed by life’s troubles, sharing with the needy, standing at the side of the sick, elderly and the outcast.”
SNL’s Mocks Obama’s Shilling of Obamacare … Obama Takes Selfies with the Pope and Kisses Justin Bieber on the Lips to Push Healthcare.gov
SNL mocks Barack Obama for his over the top, excessive selling of Obamacare. But then again, hasn’t Obama made a complete mockery of the presidency?
In the final 48 hours before the deadline to sign up for healthcare, Obama’s aides forced him to be photographed in Pharrell’s hat and alongside Kim Kardashian and Harry Styles. And “a cat dressed as Elsa from Frozen.” And BatKid. And the Pope.
Pope Francis Christmas Address Calls for Peace in Syria and Middle East & Urges the Faithful to Have an Open Heart, to Avoid ‘Pride, Deceit & Self-Seeking’
During his first Christmas address to the throngs of faithful outside of St. Peter’s Basilica and across the world , Pope Francis called for Peace in the Middle East and for all to have an open heart, to avoid pride, deceit and self-seeking. The Pope hoped for a better world, including successful Middle East negotiations in the land of Jesus’ birth, peace for Syria, South Sudan, the Central African Republic, Nigeria and Iraq, and dignity for refugees fleeing misery and conflict.
Pope Francis on Christmas Day is wishing for a better world, with peace for the land of Jesus’ birth, for Syria and Africa, as well as for the dignity of migrants and refugees fleeing misery and conflict.
Francis spoke from the central balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica Wednesday to tens of thousands of tourists, pilgrims and Romans in the square below. He said he was joining in the song of Christmas angels with all those hoping “for a better world,” and with those who “care for others, humbly.”
Among places ravaged by conflict, Francis singled out Syria, South Sudan, the Central African Republic, Nigeria and Iraq. He also prayed for fruitful peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians
The Pope calls for Lord of Life to protect all that are persecuted in your name. Pope Francis went on to say, “Child of Bethlehem, touch the hearts of all those engaged in human trafficking that they realize the gravity of this crime against humanity. Look upon the many children who are kidnapped, wounded and killed in armed conflicts and all those who are robbed of their childhood and forced to become soldiers.”
“Dear brothers and sisters today in this World in this humanity is born this Savior, who is Christ the Lord. Let us pause before the child of Bethlehem.”
During his first Christmas Eve Mass as head of the Catholic Church, Pope Francis encouraged the faithful to emulate Jesus to avoid the darkness of the world.
Poll Says Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) is 3rd “Most Influential” World Leader, Behind Pope Francis, Barack Obama
Well looky here, Ted Cruz is listed at #3 “most influential” world leaders …
As reported at the Washington Examiner, it would appear that Conservative Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) has been chosen the third most influential world leader behind only Pope Francis and President Barack Obama. Imagine that Dems. According to a Rasmussen poll, the Tea Party Conservative ranked far above GOP establishment leaders like Speaker John Boehner, the lefts favorite Republican and Obama pal NJ Gov. Chris Christie and even Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Senator Ted Cruz, Part 1 – The Tonight Show with Jay Leno
Ted Cruz truth to power in discussing current day Tea Party politics and Ronald Reagan … must watch VIDEO
“The trouble in Washington is a bipartisan problem
The biggest problem we have is not between Republicans and Democrats
it is between entrenched establishment] politicians in both parties in Washington and the American people.”
Texas Sen. Ted Cruz has had the best year of any Republican and virtually anyone in the world, ranking third in Rasmussen Report’s new poll of the of the “most influential” people in the world, behind Pope Francis and President Obama.
In the new poll, Cruz, who made headlines for trying to dismantle Obamacare, was the pick for the most influential of 11 percent. The pope was tops at 23 percent, Obama second at 21 percent.
Rasmussen poll: 1* Whom do you consider the most influential person in 2013?
23% Pope Francis
21% Barack Obama
11% Ted Cruz
8% Edward Snowden
4% Vladimir Putin
3% John Boehner
3% Chris Christie
How fitting that Barack Obama is #2.