Sunday, July 19, 2009

So Harper Thinks the Communion Fiasco was Part of a Religious War

After the Communion fiasco a few weeks ago, Harper
has suggested that it was the work of a group of people trying to create a rift between Catholics and Protestants. Kind of a modern day Holy War.

Is he insane?

If he got that from the story, he's clearly spending too much time looking for hidden agendas. First it was the homosexual agenda, then the feminist agenda, now the battle between Christians agenda.

This story was about the leader of a country whose staff did not bother to inform him of the proper protocol when attending a Catholic mass, and instead lied after the fact.

Whether he actually consumed it or not, is not the issue. He never should have taken it in the first place. He should have known that and if he didn't then he can't blame it on anyone other than the person handling his PR.

The extended video clearly shows that he did not put the Communion wafer in his mouth because for the brief moment that the camera was off him, his hands never left his side. This occasion was supposed to be about the death of man who held a special place in the hearts of many, and Harper's gaffe was inexcusable.

Next time do a bit of research, don't lie, and don't try to blame it on some conspiracy theory. It just makes you appear unfit to hold public office.
Peter O’Neil,
Europe Correspondent,
Canwest News Service
July 14, 2009

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has blamed the uproar over his handling of the Holy Communion host at former governor general Romeo LeBlanc's funeral mass on people trying to cause embarrassment and create division between Catholics and Protestants.

"People who want to cause embarrassment in religion and drive a wedge between Protestants and Catholics" are driving the controversy, Mr. Harper told a Catholic news agency in an exclusive interview after his meeting Saturday with Pope Benedict.

"That's whose agenda this is and that's not the Pope's agenda."

Mr. Harper said the Holy Father didn't bring up the incident during their meeting. (and why would he? Does Harper really think he's that important that the Pope lost any sleep over his screw up?)

Mr. Harper, whose comments were published on The Catholic Register's website Tuesday, said the pontiff "was very interested in the G8 and in the outcomes of the G8."

Mr. Harper, meeting reporters after the three-day G8 summit of major industrialized countries in central Italy Friday, angrily attacked a New Brunswick newspaper that reported that he "pocketed" the host at the funeral.

Mr. Harper called the coverage a "low point" in Canadian journalism and said he consumed the host, even though a YouTube video indicated that this didn't happen in the first few seconds after it was given to him. (He wasn't supposed to consume it. If his staff had researched that at all they would know that)

The Catholic Register's report gave no indication of who Mr. Harper thought was behind the controversy and the prime minister's office did not shed any further light on the comments.

"We don't have any further comment on this matter as the Prime Minister and his office have commented quite extensively," said PMO Press Secretary Dimitri Soudas.

Mr. Soudas also reiterated there was no controversy because "the Prime Minister consumed the communion that was offered to him."

Mr. Harper, who spoke with the Holy Father for 20 minutes in French, described him as "very warm, very genial."

An evangelical Protestant, the prime minister said they shared a "more personal discussion about faith and politics and the challenges that can [be] present from time to time."

Some media reports suggested on the weekend that the visit had a political undertone, since analysts have argued that the Conservative breakthrough in 2006 was owed partly to church-going Catholics who switched from the Liberals over gay marriage.

But Mr. Harper didn't address the possible political benefit of being photographed with the Pope, and instead stressed Benedict's status as both a Christian leader and a statesman.

"While I'm not theologically a Catholic, in my judgment the Catholic Church is a critical bulwark of worldwide Christianity. The Pope is an important moral and spiritual leader generally and for Christians generally, even though I'm not a Catholic."

Mr. Harper called Vatican City a small but important state. "It is an influential, well-connected state that is very influential in world affairs."

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