Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘1995 encyclical’

Pope Blessing

St Peter’s Square Pope Francis Blessing

There’s a new spirit in the Vatican.

Pope Francis is the current and the 266th Pope of the Roman Catholic Church.  Full disclosure:  I’m not catholic and this is not a campaign or propaganda tool.  Nor is this for the clickbait hunters and outrage merchants rubbing hands together with glee to pounce in the comment section.

Let’s start from the beginning…

Back in June (I blogged about it previously HERE) as part of the Worldwide Harley-Davidson 110th Anniversary Celebration biker’s came to Rome and the Vatican as Pope Francis blessed thousands of Harley-Davidson motorcycles and their riders.  They were blessed in St Peter’s Square, and he graciously accepted two of the latest Harley-Davidson models, for the Vatican police force that the motor company donated.

HD 110th Celebration - Rome Recap

HD 110th Celebration – Rome Recap

The thundering motors on that nice morning nearly drowned out the Latin recitation of the “Our Father” prayer that accompanied Francis as he greeted the crowd before Sunday Mass.  Nuns and tens of thousands of faithful Catholics also took part in the multi-day event as an unrelated, two-day pro-life rally was scheduled during the same time.

Imagine for a moment the incongruity of the Harley crowd — known for the “Freedom” motto, outlaw image and adventuresome spirit — taking part in a solemn papal Mass to commemorate a 1995 encyclical on the inviolability of human life.

Yeah, it’s difficult to wrap your head around it.

At any rate, jump ahead a few months and basically the Pope sticks his finger in the eye of Harley-Davidson management and slams the the motorcycle lifestyle as an “intoxication of freedom.”

Speaking at a gathering last week, the Pope cautioned that “power and pleasure”, among other things, lead to God being “replaced by fleeting human idols which offer the intoxication of a flash of freedom, but in the end bring new forms of slavery and death.”

Catholic theologians are not the first and won’t be the last to condemn consumerism and wealth inequalities.  In fact, Pope Francis has encouraged clergy and religious to show humility in their choice of transportation.  In July, he told a group of seminarians and religious novices that he felt hurt when he sees a priest or a sister with a brand-new car.  Saying, “And, if you like that beautiful car, think about how many children are dying of hunger,” urging them to choose simpler transportation options.

The conclusion of all this is that the Bishop of Rome has now decided to auction off one of the bikes in order to raise funds for a Caritas homeless project,  the ‘Don Luigi di Lietro’ near the Termini station in Rome which offers food and shelter for up to 1,000 people every day.  I’m sure it will make for a generous gift to a worthy cause.

But, here is the question.  Was the Pope exploited by just another American company/event focused on a PR opportunity?  Or was he being opportunistic?

Photo courtesy of Stefano Rellandini / Reuters 

All Rights Reserved © Northwest Harley Blog
Advertisements

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: