Representative Paul Gosar was wise to boycott the pope's address to the joint session of Congress today for it was a bit of an embarrassment. This LifeSiteNews article has the full text of the thing. I'll be focusing on some highlights - or lowlights. Consider, for a little perspective, that the Senate just failed to defund Planned Parenthood: this in the wake of the evidence of their selling of the bodies of babies whom they routinely murder in the dungeons the laughingly refer to as clinics.
Early in his talk he mentions four Americans, holding them up for honor. They are: Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King, Dorothy Day and Thomas Merton. It's probably a good thing that today's Congress is GOP-controlled, for he did mention the nation's first Republican president. Guess who else was Republican? Martin Luther King! Yes, he was a Republican. He was also pro-life. For that matter, his protege Jesse Jackson was also pro-life early in his career. Read his defense of life written in 1977 - before he hankered after the Democratic presidential nomination and turned his back on his principles and the babies. But I digress.
The inclusion of Thomas Merton is most questionable. Of Merton, the pope says "he remains a source of spiritual inspiration and a guide for many people" and "a thinker who challenged the certitudes of his time and opened new horizons for souls" REALLY???
Take a moment to examine Merton's life and his dalliance with Zen Buddhism. Catholic Answers has a fairly comprehensive biography of him, detailing how he became seduced by Buddhism. Merton told a friend shortly before his death that "Zen and Christianity are the future". In that article, you'll notice that Pope Benedict XVI took a dim view of Merton and Buddhism, going so far as to opine that Buddhism would replace Marxism as Catholicism's chief antagonist. So why did the pope hold up as a model a de facto heretic? In light of what was just said, it's worth noting that not once did the pope mention the name "Jesus Christ". Why not? He's the Vicar of Christ, is he not? Unlike what Father Rosica said a few days ago, he himself is not a "prince of peace". Some believe that Rosica just made a slip of the tongue when he plopped that blasphemy; I think it quite possible that Rosica knew very well what he was saying.
As for Dorothy Day, while undergoing a real conversion to Catholicism, she remained confused about a great many things. To her credit she did make a request: "Don't call me a saint". (ht: St Corbinian's Bear).
The pope addresses many issues: death penalty, climate change, immigration, arms trade, redistribution of wealth. What's missing from that list? The legalized murder of babies known as abortion. To put things in context, let's think about the conduct of this papal address at Congress today. It took me a good 20-25 minutes to read through it silently. It would probably take longer to speak it. It would probably have taken the pope a bit longer than that since he's not fluent in English. An then there's the breaks for applause, etc. I would guess from start to finish the entire address took about 45 minutes or so. If anyone has more precise data please advise via comments. Now consider some statistics that indicate that a baby is aborted in this country every 20 seconds. That means 3 babies are murdered every minute. Therefore while the pope spoke, over 200 babies were slaughtered. What of the death penalty? Less than 100 have been executed in the past several years. So why did the death penalty garner so much attention, while whole-scale baby-murder didn't rate one mention by the pope?
Some additional thoughts can be found at One Peter Five and Les Femmes. Soon the pope will head to Philadelphia and the World Meeting of Families. If these past few speeches of the pope are any indication of what may be on the horizon, dark days are ahead.