Pope Francis is defending himself against criticism he received from conservative groups for his recent comments on social issues saying, “I’m not a Marxist.”
Some conservatives slammed the Pontiff, for preaching what they called were Marxist principles.
During an interview with an Italian publication, Pope Francis denied that he is a Marxist and added that even those who are can be good people.
Pope Francis, was recently named TIME Magazine Person of the Year, for his revolutionary way of running the Catholic Church and the indelible impression he has made in the short months as leader of billions.
Last month, ultra conservative radio host, Rush Limbaugh, didn’t mince words when he criticized the Pope’s statement saying part of his documents were, “pure Marxism coming out of the mouth of the Pope.”
The controversial, but extremely popular radio personality, also suggested that someone else had written the papal document for him and accused Pope Francis of going “beyond Catholicism” and being “purely political” in his statements.
When asked about the storm of controversy his comments created, Pope Francis, who is a Jesuit, said in his usual conciliatory manner:
“Marxist ideology is wrong. But in my life I have known many Marxists who are good people, so I don’t feel offended.”
In his first written Apostolic Exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium (The Joy Of The Gospel), Pope Francis claims that the greatest threats to the message of joy in the world is “inequality” and “exclusivism.” Specifically he refers to the financial inequality and exclusivism created the culture of consumerism we live in.
Pope Francis adds, what he believes is hurting the poor is not a “war” against poverty, but an indifference towards those in need.
Pope Francis Exhortation even seems to scrutinize his own role as leader of the Church.
“Since I am called to put into practice what I ask of others, I too must think about a conversion of the papacy. It is my duty, as the Bishop of Rome, to be open to suggestions which can help make the exercise of my ministry more faithful to the meaning which Jesus Christ wished to give it and to the present needs of evangelization (…) We have made little progress in this regard.”
Rebuking his critics Pope Francis said he was not speaking “as a technician but according to the social doctrine of the Roman Catholic Church, and this does not mean being Marxist”.
Pope Francis added he was trying to present a “snapshot of what it happening” in the world today.