Glad tidings of great joy look different…
The Frankie Horror Picture Show:
A Look at the Vatican’s harrowing Nativity Scene
(click image to enlarge)
Repulsive, bizarre, frightening. These are adjectives one should not associate with the most beautiful event in history (together with Christ’s Passion and Resurrection), but the Vatican under “Pope” Francis entices people to do exactly that.
On December 7, Vatican City solemnly inaugurated its Christmas tree and Nativity scene at St. Peter’s Square. The video of the entire ceremony can be watched here:
The Nativity display does not, as one would expect, immediately draw one to contemplating the beautiful mystery of the Incarnation of God the Son. Rather, the first reaction it elicits from viewers is one of confusion, bewilderment, and disgust.
Let’s first look at some images of the set and then describe what we see there (click each picture for a larger view):
The first thing that immediately catches one’s attention is that the scene is awfully and unnecessarily crowded. One’s eyes are distracted by as many as sixteen different figures, all of which compete for the viewer’s attention, with two more off to the side. Strangely enough, despite all the people, there is only a single shepherd who came to adore Christ, all the while the Three Magi (Wise Men) are already present, whereas their arrival is typically not celebrated until the Epiphany (Jan. 6).
Second, the statues do not look pleasant. All of the facial expressions are serious, grim, unhappy, or otherwise negative, at least indifferent. Even the little angels beside the crib have a look of suffering or despair on their countenances, and the large angel hovering above doesn’t look like he just announced good tidings of great joy, either (cf. Lk 2:10). The only shepherd included in the scene is playing the flute with a look of annoyance on his face. St. Joseph is depicted as absent-minded, and Our Lady looks rather masculine, staring at her Divine Son as though she was about to unleash fury on Him. Not a single statue appears to be joyful about the Birth of Christ, which is clearly not the main focus of this scene anyway. There is nothing edifying in this display, nothing that would inspire joy, love, adoration, or gratitude in souls.
Third, the background to the set is unusual as well. Our Lord was born in a stable, but what’s displayed there looks more like the ruins of a church. The star that hangs above it all has the appearance of a comet that is about to strike the earth, and the angel right below it might as well be one of the angels of the judgment (see Apoc 14). Come to think of it, perhaps this display is meant to portray a scenario from the Apocalypse rather than one from the Gospel of St. Luke.
Fourth, we notice the absence of the animals into whose manger the Christ Child was laid, and whom they warmed with their breath: “The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master’s crib: but Israel hath not known me, and my people hath not understood” (Is 1:3). There are no oxen and no donkeys in the Vatican display; neither are there any lambs the shepherds would have brought as gifts for the newborn Messiah. We recall that it was Benedict XVI who, in 2012, sowed the seeds of doubt regarding the presence of animals by the manger.
Fifth, by far the greatest distraction in this travesty of a Nativity scene is the depictions of the seven corporal works of mercy. While the corporal works of mercy are important, laudable, and necessary for salvation in a sense (cf. Mt 25:31-46), they have no place in a Christmas Nativity set. Their inclusion in the Vatican display is meant to distract from the Birth of the Savior, who came primarily to save us from our sins and from hell, not to improve our temporal condition (cf. Mt 1:21; Mk 14:7; Jn 6:59,64). In fact, the seven spiritual works of mercy are of even greater importance than the corporal works, yet curiously these are not displayed at all, which fits perfectly, however, with Francis’ excessive focus on the bodily and temporal over the spiritual and eternal. As a reminder, the spiritual works of mercy are:
- To instruct the ignorant;
- To counsel the doubtful;
- To admonish sinners;
- To bear wrongs patiently;
- To forgive offences willingly;
- To comfort the afflicted;
- To pray for the living and the dead.
(Source: Catholic Encyclopedia, s.v. “Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy”)
Thus, once again God is being eclipsed by man. As far back as 1978, “Saint” John Paul II blasphemously referred to Christmas as “the feast of man”, and Francis is simply developing that idea further. In 1903, Pope St. Pius X warned that this “is the distinguishing mark of Antichrist, [that] man has with infinite temerity put himself in the place of God” (Encyclical E Supremi, n. 5).
The corporal works of mercy that are being depicted as part of the Vatican’s sacrilegious Nativity scene are: visiting the sick, feeding the hungry, giving drink to the thirsty, visiting the imprisoned, burying the dead, welcoming the stranger (traditionally: sheltering the homeless), and clothing the naked.
It is the rendition of the latter that has caused the biggest stir, and for good reason: As is clearly visible in the images posted above, the scene actually includes a life-size quasi-nude male. There are many ways that one could depict the work of clothing the naked in a modest fashion, but showing a virtually nude man with a muscular body is not one of them. More could be said about this obviously homoerotic element of the display, but for the sake of modesty, we won’t go there.
The portrayal of an imprisoned man being visited is also not exactly edifying, but it’s nothing compared to the horror scene of burying the dead. While they could have shown a man shoveling a grave or someone praying before a tombstone, instead they chose to present a dead body on a bier, covered with a cloth but with one arm, entirely white, hanging down for maximum shock value. The corpse is being shoved into what is probably supposed to be a tomb but might as well be a cremation furnace. Nothing says Christmas joy quite like such a sight!
But enough already of this unpleasant, harrowing spectacle!
All in all, we may say that this “Nativity” display looks more like a scene from hell, and that is no accident. Always keep that in mind: This is all deliberate. Things like this do not just happen; they require official approval and are planned long in advance, and every detail is thought through and prepared carefully. The Vatican authorities could have made this Nativity scene as beautiful as the world knows how, and yet this is what they chose to present. Think about that.
The conclusion is inescapable: The ugliness, the repulsiveness, the twistedness of it all, is by design. These wicked Vatican Modernists are simply seeking as much as possible to distract from the Birth of Christ and render it repulsive to people, especially to children. Would you let your sweet little ones look at, much less approach, this travesty of a Nativity scene? What child would not be frightened and disturbed? As their impressionable little minds and vulnerable, tender souls draw near to the Christ Child to love, thank, and adore Him, they’re being repelled by all these grim-looking, frightening characters, not excluding nudity — and the poor children will associate this with Christmas going forward. One shudders to imagine what the Baby Jesus will look like once He is unveiled.
Our Blessed Lord had a clear message for those who turn the little ones away from Him, or who scandalize them:
But Jesus, calling them together, said: Suffer children to come to me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. (Lk 18:16)
And whosoever shall scandalize one of these little ones that believe in me; it were better for him that a millstone were hanged around his neck, and he were cast into the sea. (Mk 9:41)
As we have said many times on this web site, Francis preaches the “gospel of man”, a gospel that reduces the purpose of the Incarnation of Jesus Christ to nothing more than God wanting to share our misery for the sake of solidarity. But God did not become man so that we would visit the sick and feed the hungry. If that’s what it’s ultimately all about — and that’s exactly what Francis continually insinuates — then there is no need for religion, dogma, penance, sacraments, making converts, or martyrdom. Nor would the world need a Pope.
That is the ultimate conclusion that they will all eventually draw, and it is fully intended, for the anti-Christian powers of the world (first and foremost among which is the Vatican II Sect) have sought the destruction of Jesus Christ and the Catholic Church from the very beginning (cf. Mt 2:16; Lk 22:2; Acts 9:1; 2 Thess 2:7). That the Mystery of Iniquity will ultimately fail in this attempt, is guaranteed by God Himself (cf. Mt 16:18; 2 Thess 2:8), but until our Lord’s final victory over the powers of darkness, we must patiently endure this Mystical Passion of the Church, during which, just as with our Lord’s own Passion, all will seem hopeless for a short while, only to be turned into God’s decisive and glorious victory at the appointed time (cf. Lk 24:25-26).
The Vatican’s blasphemous Nativity set is but the latest example of ugly and sinister “art” that has been floating around the Vatican since at least the days of “Pope” Paul VI (1963-78). Whether it be the “Cosmic Embrace” in the Apostolic Palace or the satanic “Resurrection” sculpture in the Audience Hall dedicated to Paul VI, the Novus Ordo Sect loves everything that is ugly. The recent Vatican Christmas concert was no exception. If art is the mirror of the soul, then we know what’s going on in these souls, and it’s not pretty.
“Let the dead bury their dead” (Lk 9:60); but you, dear reader, you celebrate the true and traditional Roman Catholic Christmas! Let your children approach the manger without fear and without scandal, so they too may celebrate the Birth of Jesus Christ, the Savior — truly “good tidings of great joy” (Lk 2:10)!