Catholics have been brawling for about a week now over the pope’s comments, released in the new documentary Francesco, in support of homosexual civil unions. Some stragglers, apparently immune to reality and all its pomps, are still in denial over the unprecedented support shown by Francis for these “gravely immoral” (the Church’s words, not mine) unions. Meanwhile, no less of a figure than Archbishop Viganò says he believes Francis is trying to lure orthodox bishops into condemning his remarks in such a way that he can force a schism, with faithful Catholics falsely portrayed as enemies of the pope.
I’ve offered my own in-depth breakdown of the issues here.
Setting the controversy around this single topic aside, however, a trailer for the recently released documentary — one that likely would have faded quickly into obscurity if not for the headline-grabbing quote about civil unions — shows a film that is taking very targeted political shots at hot button issues for the progressive Left, all with the help of the Bergoglian papacy. (Remember that the pope not only knows about this film, he had a birthday party for the director and gave him an award for his work.)
Take a look at the trailer for yourself:
In comments made originally at the Italy Daily Libero, Catholic author and journalist Antonio Socci breaks down some of the political messages that come through in the trailer.
But first, Socci added a brief prologue to this column at his own blog on October 25th, and these bear repeating here:
Just this morning, Bergoglio has announced the creation of 13 new cardinals (of whom 9 are electors). They are all ultra-Bergoglians. The hasty announcement at this moment, right on the eve of the US election, is significant: Trump has strong momentum and now the Bergoglian Vatican is very afraid that he may be re-elected. Bergoglio, along with the entire globalist establishment, has declared war on Trump. If Trump really wins, then this pontificate, which is already in sharp decline, would be finished indeed, since it has crushed itself on China and been totally discredited. In the pro-Biden propaganda film that I talk about in this article, right at the end Cardinal Tagle is blatantly promoted as the one Bergoglio wants as his successor. Everything is explicit. By naming the nine new cardinal-electors today, Bergoglio wants to ensure the result of the next conclave.
It may seem odd for an Italian journalist to place so much emphasis on the American presidential election. It has struck a number of Americans as odd that Archbishop Viganò, too, has focused so much on this election, even as he warns about the deep spiritual corruption in the Church.
But there is a real international import to what happens in the United States a week from now. As the saying goes, “As America goes, so goes the world.” Ours is a far from perfect nation that appears to be quite rapidly collapsing from within, but it retains a core of freedom-loving people desirous of a moral society and the flourishing of natural virtue.
That alone sets it apart from most of the West. That, and its overwhelming influence in international finance and affairs.
As Viganò boldly proclaimed last month, President Trump holds a primary “role in the national and international context,” and his mission is “decisive … in the epochal confrontation that has been unfolding in recent months.”
The former nuncio to the US makes the reasons for the rabid opposition to Trump’s re-election clear:
It is well understood that the hatred against Trump – which is not dissimilar to what happens in Italy in the face of much softer members of the opposition – finds its real motivation in the awareness of his fundamental role in the battle against the Deep State and all of its internal and external ramifications. His courageous denunciation of Communism – of which Antifa and BLM are the global versions while the Chinese dictatorship is the incubator – serves in some measure to remedy the silence of the Church, which despite the heartfelt appeals of the Blessed Virgin Mary at Fatima and La Salette has preferred not to renew its condemnation of this infernal ideology. And if Bishop Sanchez Sorondo can declare with impunity, against all the evidence, that China is the best implementer of the social doctrine of the Church, we can rejoice over the words of the President of the United States and the no less courageous words of his Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
Cardinal Gerhard Müller, former prefect of the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith, offered his own assessment of the US election shortly thereafter, and it is one that echoes the bold words of Archbishop Viganò:
“The outcome of the U.S. election,” Müller says, “will determine whether the U.S. remains the leading power in the world — for freedom and democracy — or whether a communist dictatorship will assume that role for the global community.”
Whatever one thinks of Donald Trump, it seems increasingly clear, as new riots threaten to overwhelm the police in Philadelphia, and vengeful Leftists are working on a scheme to pack the US Supreme Court in retaliation for the confirmation of Justice Amy Coney Barrett, that the stakes really are that high. The pretense of respect for the rule of law has been discarded; we exist now in a state of perpetual rebellion against order and reason. As we stand at this denouement of a decades-long cultural revolution, the phrase “epochal change” appears less hyperbolic by the hour.
And in the midst of it all, the current Vatican is providing aid and comfort to the enemies of the very Western Civilization that the Catholic Church so painstakingly built.
To return to the Francesco documentary and Socci’s commentary, we will see more clearly in his analysis the pope’s role in this existential battle to snuff out the final embers of Christendom. It is necessary here to excerpt at some length:
And so what is the primary political objective of this operation? It is the biggest target of all, the one against which the entire media system and all of the globalist elites have been unleashed: Donald Trump.
It is he who undermines the Obamian and Clintonian project that, amidst the frenzied financialization of the Western economy, imposes China as the factory of the world at the expense of middle class and Western workers (and, curiously, the most deadly attack on Trump’s re-election – which was all but certain last January – came upon him precisely from China: Covid-19).
The pontificate of Bergoglio is the child of the Obama/Clinton era and shares their globalist ideology, containing both immigrationism and ecologist fanaticism. Trump’s re-election would be a very harsh blow for this ideology and this power block.
So they are doing everything they can to stop him, and even Bergoglio is on board the anti-Trump campaign, because the Catholic vote is decisive in the US election. Thus, just a few days before the vote, this film has been premiered which is an incredible pro-Biden super-advertisement.
It’s enough simply to watch the film’s trailer. It begins with Covid in an ecologist key, because according to Bergoglian ideology the virus was not produced by the Chinese regime but by our offenses against the environment (there are even images of an earthquake – who knows what that has to do with ecology).
Then there is the glorification of Bergoglio as a world star, the “purifier” of the Church and the “savior” of humanity. And look at the images that are thrown together: first the film shows footage related to George Floyd (whose tragic case was used without reason against Trump), then it “casually” shows Joe Biden next to Bergoglio as he speaks to the US Congress in 2015, and finally it shows the face of the “prophetess” of the ecologist religion, Greta Thunberg, framed in Saint Peter’s Square as she greets Bergoglio.
At this point the film launches into a long immigrationist rally that culminates at the wall between the USA and Mexico. And then the image of Trump appears, and Bergoglio’s words of fire are heard thundering: “A person who thinks only about building walls and not building bridges is not a Christian.”
It is the famous attack against Trump that Bergoglio made during the 2016 electoral campaign. It is re-proposed today in this “electoral” trailer despite the fact that it is known that the wall with Mexico was also wanted by the Democrats, and above all despite the fact that after four years Trump – distinct from his predecessors – has not started even one war and has made many peace agreements around the world. At the end, Cardinal Tagle appears (a Filipino of Chinese origin), Bergoglio’s favored candidate to succeed him.
This is Bergoglio’s sensational intrusion into the US Presidential campaign, just ten days before the election. As you may recall, just a few days ago Bergoglio refused to receive the US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who went to Rome to discourage the renewal of the China-Vatican agreement, because – Bergoglio said – meeting with Pompeo would have been interfering in the election campaign.
But actually Bergoglio – who in the meantime renewed the nefarious agreement with China – had a sensational campaign rally in store: the pro-Biden propaganda film, Francesco.
If there is one line in Socci’s exposition that gave me chills, it is this: “Then there is the glorification of Bergoglio as a world star, the ‘purifier’ of the Church and the ‘savior’ of humanity.”
Now, Socci has a reputation for being something of a sensationalist, but it’s hard to disagree with his depiction here, especially after viewing the emotionally charged trailer for yet another propaganda piece about Bergoglian greatness. Socci’s description reminded me immediately and uncomfortably of things I recall having read about the Antichrist – namely, that he will be a great peacemaker and diplomat, who will rise to prominence by solving seemingly intractable problems in the world. This all seems innocuous enough, but he will eventually use his fame and prominence to promote his own godless “miracles” by means of preternatural powers while blaspheming horribly and persecuting anyone who will not succumb to his wickedness.
I’ve written about Bergoglio as a “type” of the Antichrist before — worth reading again for the citations alone, which seem eerily prescient — and to be honest, I cannot say I believe him to be more than that. But this typology is disturbing, to say the least, especially for a pope.
I am no prophet, and my observations of such parallels do not make them true. I also don’t believe things have advanced far enough to conclude that we are in the end of days. But it is hard not to look at the chaos in the world, the growing restlessness of the people of every nation, the seemingly intractable strife, the rising din of discordant, relativistic, and irrational modes of thinking that are, as Hilary White wrote yesterday, Lovecraftian in their mind-bending surreality — and not see a moment of history ripe for exploitation by anyone who can appear to offer a solution to the madness.
At times, to pull back and look at everything that is happening simultaneously at this moment is staggering.
But if I’m not a prophet, and my pattern recognition not guaranteed, these limitations cut both ways. It’s possible that I could be underestimating just how far things have gone. Others seem to see it differently. A couple of years back, when speaking about certain aspects of the crisis in the Church, Cardinal Willem Jacobus Eijk, Archbishop of Utrecht, Netherlands, made reference to the the Church’s ultimate trial, leading up to the coming of the Antichrist. Cardinal Burke has made explicit reference to the warnings from apparition of Our Blessed Mother at Akita. The late Cardinal Caffarra made it known that Our Lady told Sister Lucia of Fatima that the final battle between Our Lord and Satan would be over marriage and the family – something to consider seriously when evaluating papal comments on homosexual unions.
And Archbishop Viganò, of course, has been urgently explicit, stating in his address to the Catholic Identity Conference this month:
In this struggle, Providence has placed the Church of Christ, and in particular the Supreme Pontiff, as kathèkon – that is, the one who opposes the manifestation of the mystery of iniquity (2 Thess 2:6-7). And Sacred Scripture warns us that at the manifestation of the Antichrist, this obstacle – the kathèkon – will have ceased to exist. It seems quite evident to me that the end times are now approaching before our eyes, since the mystery of iniquity has spread throughout the world with the disappearance of the courageous opposition of the kathèkon.
Our pope not only isn’t leading the faithful towards heaven, he has become a champion for the enemy. Things have reached such a state that Bishop Athanasius Schneider has had not only to publicly speculate about how we might handle a heretical pope, but to publicly admonish the pope for fear that he will lose his soul:
All these little ones in the Church (children, young men, young women, fathers and mothers of family, cloistered nuns, priests, bishops) would surely say to Pope Francis: Most Holy Father, for the sake of the salvation of your own immortal soul, for the sake of the souls of all those persons who through your approval of same-sex unions are by their sexual acts grievously offending God and exposing their souls to the danger to be eternally lost, convert, retract your approval and proclaim with all your predecessors the following unchangeable teaching of the Church…
The true children of the Church of our days might use these words of Psalm 137, saying: We feel as if in exile, by the rivers of Babylon, weeping when remembering Zion, when remembering the luminous and crystal-clear teaching of the popes, of our Holy Mother Church. Yet we unshakably believe in the words of Our Lord, that the gates of hell will not prevail against His Church. The Lord will come, even if He will come late, only in the fourth watch of the night, to calm the storm within the Church, to calm the storm within the papacy of our days, and He will say: “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid. O you of little faith, why did you doubt? And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased.” (Mt. 14:27;32-33) Our Lord will say also to Pope Francis: “For what does it profit a man, if he gains the whole world, and suffers the loss of his own soul? Or what exchange shall a man give for his soul? For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels: and then will he render to every man according to his works.” (Mt. 16:26-27); and Our Lord will say in addition to Pope Francis: “I have prayed that your own faith may not fail; and that once you have converted, you must strengthen your brothers” (Luke 22:32) [emphasis added]
These are truly unprecedented times, and they are incredibly trying for souls trying to discern the truth and make their way through the suffocating darkness of a world gone mad.
Please pray for each other, that we may be consoled, given clarity and wisdom, and be saved from our enemies by The Lord.
Steve Skojec is the Founding Publisher of OnePeterFive.com. He received his BA in Communications and Theology from Franciscan University of Steubenville in 2001. His commentary has appeared in The New York Times, USA Today, The Washington Post, The Washington Times, Crisis Magazine, EWTN, Huffington Post Live, The Fox News Channel, Foreign Policy, and the BBC. Steve and his wife Jamie have eight children. You can find more of his writing at his Substack, The Skojec File.