An American Catholic congressman has announced he is boycotting Pope Francis’s address to the US Congress over his views on the environment.
Paul Gosar, a Republican congressman for the State of Arizona, wrote on the Town Hall website that he could not attend Francis’s address next Thursday because it would mostly be about climate change.
Writing that he was excited when he first learned of the visit, he went on: “Many believed, like I did, that this was an opportunity for the Pope to be one of the world’s great religious advocates and address the current intolerance of religious freedom. An opportunity to urgently challenge governments to properly address the persecution and execution of Christians and religious minorities; to address the heinous and senseless murders committed by ISIS and other terrorist organisations. An opportunity to address the enslavement, belittlement, rape and desecration of Christian women and children; to address the condoned, subsidised, intentionally planned genocide of unborn children by Planned Parenthood and society; and finally, an opportunity for His Holiness to refocus our priorities on right from wrong.”
However, he wrote, according to the media it would mostly be about global warming, and “that this climate change talk has adopted all of the socialist talking points, wrapped false science and ideology into ‘climate justice’ and is being presented to guilt people into leftist policies. If the Pope stuck to standard Christian theology, I would be the first in line. If the Pope spoke out with moral authority against violent Islam, I would be there cheering him on. If the Pope urged the Western nations to rescue persecuted Christians in the Middle East, I would back him wholeheartedly. But when the Pope chooses to act and talk like a leftist politician, then he can expect to be treated like one.”
Congressman Gosar described himself as a “proud Catholic” and pointed out that he attended a Jesuit College, where he “was taught to think critically, to welcome debate and discussion and to be held accountable for my actions – a trademark of a Jesuit education”.
He concluded: “If the Pope plans to spend the majority of his time advocating for flawed climate change policies, then I will not attend. It is my hope that Pope Francis realises his time is better spent focusing on matters like religious tolerance and the sanctity of all life. As the leader of the Catholic Church, and as a powerful voice for peace throughout the world, His Holiness has a real opportunity to change the climate of slaughter in the Middle East… not the fool’s errand of climate change.”
Last week Pope Francis told environment ministers from European Union countries that rich countries owed an “ecological debt” to poor countries.
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