Pope Francis has earned himself a reputation for saying surprising and often progressive things. This week, the Pope dropped another shocker on the Christians of the world by saying that weapons manufacturers can not truly call themselves Christians.
According to Reuters, Pope Francis said on Sunday that people who work to manufacture armaments and call themselves Christians are hypocrites. The Pope took the claim a step further by also claiming that those who invest in weapons manufacturing are also not true Christians.
The Pope stated, “duplicity is the currency of today … they say one thing and do another.”
Pope Francis made the declaration at a rally in Turin, Italy. Instead of reading the speech that was prepared for the event, the Pope seemed to speak off the cuff and give his honest opinion about politics and war, and took several minutes to criticize arms manufacturers who claim to follow the Christian God.
“It makes me think of… people, managers, businessmen who call themselves Christian and they manufacture weapons. That leads to a bit a distrust, doesn’t it?”
According to New York Magazine, the Pope’s words against weapons manufacturers was a popular opinion among the crowd gathered at the rally. Applause erupted after he suggested Christians in the weapons industry were hypocrites. But others who follow Pope Francis, or at least respect his opinion, may not be so quick to agree.
Pope Francis also revealed his frustration with past world wars, questioning why those in power did little to protect the Jewish people, who suffered in the Holocaust.
“The great powers had the pictures of the railway lines that brought the trains to the concentration camps like Auschwitz to kill Jews, Christians, homosexuals, everybody,” Pope Francis said. “Why didn’t they bomb [the railway lines]?”
The Pope’s new controversial opinion has come right on the heels of another political position that has sparked a lot of discussion. Pope Francis supports the claims of climate scientists who suggest that global warming is a real threat and is undoubtedly caused by humans. In fact, the Pope released a 192-page encyclical on the issue, which you can read here.
This opinion has caused a backlash among Republicans and conservatives who tend to otherwise side with Pope Francis on larger issues. Rick Santorum notoriously told Pope Francis to leave science to the scientists.
What do you think about the Pope’s public opinions on arms manufacturers and climate change? Do you think people who create weapons have the right to call themselves Christians?
[Image credit: Getty]