Director Martin Scorsese sits down with Fr. James Martin to discuss his faith, his films and his new movie SILENCE
Pope Francis leads an organisation that fought against democracy, liberty, equality and feminism for nearly 200 years after the French revolution of 1789. It is a paradox that he is now heralded in some quarters as the global champion of all those causes, which everywhere seem under attack. The key to understanding this contradiction is that the pope is not himself a liberal. He is a conservative with a small c, mistrustful of all grand schemes of human betterment, whether socialist or libertarian, and he believes in sin and the devil – as do most of his 1.2 billion followers. If conservatism stands for anything more than the remorseless pursuit by the strong of their advantage over the weak, it is a profound suspicion of the human capacity to be good, a belief, as Milton put it, that we shall never cease “hammering from our flinty hearts the seeds and sparkles of new miseries for ourselves”. This isn’t the whole truth, but at a time when a world order seemingly based on rational self-interest is being consumed in greed and rage – including the “plague of terrorism” that Francis urged all to confront as it struck Turkey again – a little of Milton’s grim scepticism is salutary; even, almost, hopeful.
PRESENTATION OF THE CHRISTMAS GREETINGS TO THE ROMAN CURIA
Thursday, 22 December 2016