Pope Francis has repeatedly clashed with Donald Trump.
The Pope has picked fights over immigration, so-called “fake news”, and populism.
But while he may have the media on his side, he has a major problem in his fight with Donald Trump.
Trump’s chief strategist Steve Bannon is a devout Catholic.
He has helped guide Trump’s vision of nationalism populism to the highest office in the land.
Now that Trump is in power, Bannon is working with traditional Catholics who are alarmed with Pope Francis’ radical left-wing agenda.
Pope Francis has angered many people of faith from all over the world with his global views.
He’s focused on issues such as immigration, so-called “man-made global warming”, and has attacked capitalism.
Rush Limbaugh famously said the Pope was a Marxist, and many agree he holds far-left views.
Pope Francis has also undertaken the highly controversial decision to allow priests to forgive women who abort their children.
Prior to Pope Francis, the Catholic Church had an unimpeachable position on the sanctity of human life.
But now abortion is being treated the same as all other venal sins.
The Pope’s far-left agenda has attracted conservative critics within the Vatican who see Trump and Bannon as a means to counteract the attack on their faith from within.
The New York Times reports:
“For many of the pope’s ideological opponents in and around the Vatican, who are fearful of a pontiff they consider outwardly avuncular but internally a ruthless wielder of absolute political power, this angry moment in history is an opportunity to derail what they see as a disastrous papal agenda. And in Mr. Trump, and more directly in Mr. Bannon, some self-described “Rad Trads” — or radical traditionalists — see an alternate leader who will stand up for traditional Christian values and against Muslim interlopers.
“There are huge areas where we and the pope do overlap, and as a loyal Catholic, I don’t want to spend my life fighting against the pope on issues where I won’t change his mind,” Mr. Harnwell said over a lunch of cannelloni. “Far more valuable for me would be spend time working constructively with Steve Bannon.”
He made it clear he was speaking for himself, not for the Institute for Human Dignity, a conservative Catholic group that he founded, and insisted that he shared the pope’s goals of ensuring peace and ending poverty, just not his ideas on how to achieve it.”
While the Pope is in no danger of losing power since he will remain in his position for life unless he resigns, traditionalists in the Church are pleased to have an ally.
They say Bannon understands where the Church needs to train its focus.
The Times also reports:
“Mr. Bannon publicly articulated his worldview in remarks a few months after his meeting with Cardinal Burke, at a Vatican conference organized by Mr. Harnwell’s institute.
Speaking via video feed from Los Angeles, Mr. Bannon, a Catholic, held forth against rampant secularization, the existential threat of Islam, and a capitalism that had drifted from the moral foundations of Christianity.
That talk has garnered much attention, and approval by conservatives, for its explicit expression of Mr. Bannon’s vision. Less widely known are his efforts to cultivate strategic alliances with those in Rome who share his interpretation of a right-wing “church militant” theology.
Mr. Bannon’s visage, speeches and endorsement of Mr. Harnwell as “the smartest guy in Rome” are featured heavily on the website of Mr. Harnwell’s foundation. Mr. Trump’s senior adviser has maintained email contact with Cardinal Burke, according to Mr. Harnwell, who dropped by the cardinal’s residence after lunch. And another person with knowledge of Mr. Bannon’s current outreach said the White House official is personally calling his contacts in Rome for thoughts on who should be the Trump administration’s ambassador to the Holy See.”
But if Pope Francis continues to attack Trump, the President now has powerful allies in Rome to back him up against the smears from a radical, left-wing Pope.