The Catholic Church has always been criticized: during the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, there were accusations of selling indulgences and turning priests into worldly feudal lords, what led to the Reformation and Wars of Religion. At the turn of the 20th-21st centuries, scandals with pedophile priests raged, which formed a public prejudice that sexual attraction to children is a feature of almost every priest. However despite these scandals, the Vatican was persistent in its own truth, which gave him the right to a special path. The path was expressed in a way that the Catholics church organization was independent from the changing outside world.
In the other hand, the Orthodox Church Birn in Byzantium from the moment of its foundation was dependent on the Emperor and his political will. Its Russian counterpart inherited this subordination, where the Tsar and his “church ministry” – the Synod – played a similar role. Many Protestant churches in the era of the formation of nation-states followed the same principle. After all, the demands for independence from the Pope and the state character of the church organization, as well as preaching in the native language, and not in Latin, were integral parts of the Reformation process itself.
Consequently, already in the 20th century, this led to the fact that the Russian Orthodox Church was led for 70 years by communist atheists. Furthermore, Pakistani Muslim deputies from the House of Commons of the United Kingdom decide the affairs of the Church of England (the Anglican Church) to this day. Indeed, it seemed that such a fate could not really comprehend the Catholic Church.
However, the centurial struggle for their freedom with national states, which began back in the 10th-11th centuries with a confrontation with the King of France and the Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire played a foul trick on the Vatican. When the nation-states in the Christian world were in crisis and transnational organizations began to put pressure on them, the Catholic Church stopped resisting them and began to turn into their “separate” service unit, a so-called religious PR service. The ideas promoted and confessed by this service are no longer Christian-like. These postmodern progressive liberal ideas were promoted for everyone. The task of the Pope in this system to wrap godless and satanic ideas in a pleasant compassionate way and whitewash people in the bright names of Jesus Christ and Saint Peter.
The first “PR-pope” was the Pope John Paul II. When the Argentine Jorge Mario Bergoglio was elected pontiff in 2013, it seemed that there could be a conservative revenge. However, Francis I, who was a monk, a Jesuit and a fighter against communists in South America turned out to be a true admirer of all degenerate liberal ideas, as if he was not a religious old man, but a mentally unstable Greta Thunberg.
He did not miss a single occasion to show how “advanced”, “modern” and “anti-patriarchal” he was. In 2016, at the peak of the migration crisis in Europe, he washed the feet of refugees from Muslim countries, and in 2020 he approved the legalization of same-sex marriages.
It is a rhetorical question whether these events were in the interests of Catholic Christians around the world. At the same time, the Pope Francis had little interest in the death of Christians in Northern Nigeria at the hands of Islamists or missionaries in distant lands – the rules of business and marketing said that these events would not bring fame, influence and money.
Francis could not ignore the conflict in Ukraine, which was considered by the liberal elites of Europe and the United States as a threat to the established world order. Back in early May, he hosted a delegation of the militants wives of the neo-Nazi Azov Regiment, who with the help of Francis wanted to achieve their release from the encirclement. After the Second World War, the Vatican already helped the soldiers of the Ukrainian SS division “Galicia”, but then they were not Catholics, but at least Christians who fought against the communist USSR. Currently help for religious purposes to the Scandinavian pagans from Azov is unlikely. However, the interests of Francis’ customers, who stand behind him are clearly visible. In addition, Francis came back to the Ukrainian topic many times. On June 1st, Ukraine announced the arrest of blocked export goods, and on June 4th, Francis announced with exaggerated masculinity that he was ready to go to Ukraine, but was waiting for the right moment (and as it is often the case, he did not keep his promise).
A new increase in PR activity occurred in mid-June, when the position of the Ukrainian army at the front became very difficult with changed attitudes and guidelines. If earlier Francis’ sympathies were on the side of Ukraine, on June 14th he called on the countries to move away from the logic of “good and evil” in assessing the Ukrainian conflict.
He emphasized that the cause of the conflict in Ukraine could be the actions of NATO near the borders of Russia. According to him, two months before the start of the Russian special operation in Ukraine, a “very wise” head of state came to him and shared his concern about NATO’s actions. Obviously, the allusion was to Russian President Vladimir Putin. In the same interview he said that a few years ago it occurred to him to say that we are partly living the third world war and today he believed that the third world war has been declared.
Francis, who is constantly shifting positions for his own benefit is very similar to the Jesuit in his methods. But there is a serious difference with his predecessors, as they could commit heinous deeds for the sake of high ideas and true Christianity. Francis sees only the striving for power and the survival of the Church not as a community of all Christians, rather than as an organization.
It is almost like the “Democratic Party” in Italy, which forgot about communism in 1991, when it was no longer profitable. Why is Ukraine interesting for Francis? The possibility of political pressure on the Russian Orthodox Church in the struggle for a new “union“ on the territory of Ukraine, which simply means to have more money and influence. He will change his position several times in the nearest future. Only his loyalty to the political situation and the masterful ability to conduct any PR that is needed here and now will remain unchanged.