Francis offers Private Audience to Ultra-Leftist Activist who once Defecated behind Altar at Buenos Aires Cathedral
The family of Asia Bibi, a Christian who is on death row in Pakistan for having “blasphemed” after drinking water from the same cup as Muslim women, could not get a private audience with Francis in the Vatican. For them he only had a few seconds before he rushed to greet more of his fans. On May 8, which was Mother’s Day this year, the March for Life took place in Rome, and many of its participants attended the Regina Caeli audience in St. Peter’s. Not only did the ever-talkative “Pope”, who has something to say about every mudslide in Bolivia, not have a message of encouragement for the anti-abortion fighters, he did not even give them his “blessing” or endorsement. A mere half-sentence “salute” is all they got, which was entirely consistent with his defeaning silence on abortion and homosexuality whenever speaking out could actually make a difference. For example:
- Francis Silent on Ireland’s Vote on Same-Sex “Marriage”
- Francis Fails to Admonish Brazilian President Not to Legalize Abortion
Against this background, we are disgusted to report that “Pope” Francis has invited the left-wing extremist Hebe de Bonafini, 87, to a private audience at the Vatican on May 27. Bonafini, who once confessed to having relieved herself behind the altar of the metropolitan cathedral of Buenos Aires, is the head of the Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo. She has agreed to the meeting as long as her doctors clear her for travel.
The Argentinian La Nacion reported on this development, of which we are offering a translation below:
Six moments in the relationship between Hebe de Bonafini and Pope Francis
The head of Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo once linked Jorge Bergoglio to “fascism” and the last military dictatorship; they will meet in Rome on May 27.
Pope Francis and Hebe de Bonafini will meet face-to-face in the Vatican on May 27. After years of disagreements, criticisms and denunciations, the head of Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo, in a surprising turnaround, has accepted an invitation from the Supreme Pontiff to a private audience in Rome.
Below is a summary of moments in the relationship between the director, who is close to Kirchnerism, and Jorge Bergoglio.
1) “Macri, Bendini and Bergoglio are fascism; they are the return of the dictatorship.”
In June of 2007, the director harshly criticized Bergoglio and linked him with the last military dictatorship. In an open letter, the head of Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo demanded that the government of Néstor Kirchner dismiss the Chief of the Army, Lt. General Roberto Bendidni, who had called for a “healing of wounds”. Days earlier, the then-Archbishop of Buenos Aires criticized those who “spend their time cursing the past” in order to “benefit in the present and in the future.”
In her text, Bonafini targeted everyone: “Macri, Bendini and Bergoglio — all garbage goes together. They are of the same breed and of the same ilk. They are fascism; they are the return of the dictatorship.”
She added: “Neither the church nor the justice system condemned any of the bishops for what they did. Not those who gave blessings while our sons were thrown into rivers alive, nor those who beat them while they were being tortured. Now they say, ‘Enough, let it end’ because they need this to be forgotten. But this cannot be erased. The bishops received salaries from the judges. Priests were in charge of the police and some of them even carried weapons.”
2) The protest in the cathedral and the bathroom “behind the altar”
In January of 2008, the president of Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo led a protest inside the Metropolitan Cathedral [of Buenos Aires], demanding that the then-Chief of Government of Buenos Aires, Mauricio Macri, release funds destined for the construction of housing in Villa 20 of Lugano [a shantytown].
During the protest, Bonafini made a statement that caused outrage and unrest in the Church: “We will stay here until Macri returns the money that does not belong to him.They closed the cathedral bathrooms to us and so we had to make an improvised one behind the altar,” she said.
3) “About this Pope all we have to say is: Amen.”
In March of 2013, Bonafini had misgivings about Begoglio’s election as the new head of the Church. When asked about Francis, the president of Mothers did not hesitate to say: “The official church is oppressive, but the Third World one is liberating. We continue having relations only with Third World priests. About this Pope whom they elected yesterday all we have to say is: Amen.”
4) A letter full of praises and apologies
On March 21, 2013, the director sent a letter to the Supreme Pontiff in which she apologized and showed herself hopeful by his arrival at the Vatican. She also said that she had not known about his “pastoral work” in the slums of Buenos Aires.
“Don Francisco, I did not know about your pastoral work. I only knew that the leader of the Church in Argentina lived in the cathedral; that same cathedral we marched past chanting, ‘You remained silent when they took them away’”, she wrote.
“Today, to my surprise, I hear many colleagues explain your work and dedication in the slums. I am extremely glad to find out about your work and I am hopeful for change inside the Vatican. We have suffered a lot in Latin America; this same Latin America that today stands upright thanks to its leaders.”
Days later, the Pope expressed his “gratitude”, by letter, to the head of Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo.
5) Demands and conditions for a visit
In May of last year, Bonafini established the conditions necessary in order to accept the Pope’s invitations to the Vatican. “Bergoglio is always inviting me to go. I asked him for several things which, if he does them, I will go”, she said. The head of Mothers said that she had asked Francis to recognize that the Church “had much involvement in the repression” during the last military dictatorship and that it celebrate “a Mass for all the priests and nuns of the Third World who ‘disappeared’”.
Months later, she sent him another letter in which she transmitted to the Pope her desire for the Argentinian Church to ask for pardon and reconciliation. “I am in despair and I keep asking myself: Where was God when our sons were tossed into the sea from laden airplanes? I will remind you that those who armed and flew those planes, upon their return to the ground were absolved by priests who justified everything by telling themselves that it was to save the nation.”
6) Confirming the meeting at the Vatican
Bonafini confirmed today that she will meet with Pope Francis on May 27 if her doctors let her travel to Rome. “I am going for a checkup to determine whether I am able to go or not. Most people think the trip is certain but I have to wait and see what the doctors tell me”, she told Télam radio in an interview.
While not giving details about what she will ask the Pope during their meeting at the Vatican, the head of Mothers gave a sneak peek: “It will be a private matter and all I can say is that I will not ask for anything personal. As always, it will be like the work we do as Mothers: that which benefits each and everyone.”
(“Seis momentos en la relación de Hebe de Bonafini con el papa Francisco”, La Nacion, May 10, 2016; our translation.)
Further commentary should not be necessary. No doubt Francis will be happy to have another anti-Catholic admirer to give him marching orders.
For more on the defecation desecration, go here (Spanish).
Image source: Wikimedia Commons (Ministerio de Cultura de la Nación Argentina; cropped)
License: CC BY-SA 2.0