July 22nd, 2013
04:09 PM ET

Explosive found near site pope plans to visit

By John L. Allen Jr., CNN, and CNN Staff

Rio de Janeiro (CNN) - A small explosive device was found Sunday near a religious shrine in Brazil that Pope Francis is scheduled to visit later this week, Sao Paulo military police announced just few hours after the pope arrived on Monday.

The homemade device was found July 21, during police training in Aparecida, the site of a massive shrine to the Virgin Mary, Brazilian police said. It was constructed out of a small, plastic cylinder and duct tape.

A special tactical group detonated the explosive without causing any injuries, according to the police.

The affected area was not part of the pope's route, Brazilian police said. Rather, it was being prepared for pilgrims to World Youth Day, a weeklong Catholic event expected to draw hundreds of thousands to Brazil.

The pope is scheduled to travel to the national shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida on Wednesday. Neither Vatican nor Brazilian officials have said those plans will change.

Vatican officials say Francis requested the trip to the Marian shrine, said to be the largest in the world, because of his personal devotion to the Virgin Mary. He is scheduled to preach and celebrate Mass at the shrine.

The surprising disclosure about the explosive came just after Francis, making his first international trip since his March election, had delivered brief remarks to Brazilian dignitaries, including President Dilma Rousseff.

As the pope was driven from the airport to downtown Rio, crowds mobbed his small silver car, reaching out to touch the first Latin American pontiff. Later, they lined the streets as the "Popemobile" wound through downtown.

READ MORE: Pope Francis embarks on historic trip to Brazil 

Despite the rock-star greeting, Francis kept to his remarkably self-effacing persona upon his arrival in Rio de Janeiro. The pope said he wanted to “knock gently” on Brazil’s door during his first overseas journey, making sure it was OK to proceed.

“I ask permission to come in and spend this week with you,” the pope said to his somewhat startled hosts.

Francis arrived in Rio on Monday for the start of World Youth Day, which, despite its name, is actually a weeklong gathering of Catholic youth from around the world. It was launched by the late Pope John Paul II in the mid-1980s.

In truth, it would be tough to find anyone in Brazil inclined to refuse Francis permission to enter.

Those looking forward to the papal sojourn include hundreds of thousands of pumped-up young Catholic pilgrims; a Brazilian government eager for a good news cycle after a summer of discontent; agitated Brazilian protesters, hoping for a papal blessing for their demands; and even hordes of journalists with deadlines to meet.

After touching down, Francis also offered an echo of his identity as the “pope of the poor.”

“I have neither silver nor gold,” he said, “but I bring with me the most precious thing given to me: Jesus Christ!"

The pope challenged young people to “create a world of brothers and sisters” and older generations to ensure that today’s youth have “the material and spiritual conditions for their full development,” including “safety and education” as well as “lasting values.”


Earlier Monday, aboard the papal plane en route to Rio, Francis worried aloud about a “throwaway culture” that neglects young people and the elderly. He said elderly persons can offer “the wisdom of life, the wisdom of the past, the wisdom of our country and our family.”

Local organizers estimated that 700,000 youth from around the world have already arrived in Rio de Janeiro to greet Francis, and some projections peg the final total at about 2 million for a youth vigil with the pope on Saturday and his concluding open-air Mass on Sunday.

Though public reaction suggests that Francis made a strong debut, the weeklong trip will have its challenges.

Latin America has long been a Catholic stronghold, but in recent years, evangelical and Pentecostal Protestants have made deep inroads.

A recent study found that a quarter-century ago, Brazil was 90% Catholic, but today it is 65%. There’s also a rising cohort of secular Latin Americans with no religious affiliation, especially among youths and city-dwellers.

Moreover, of the 21 nations usually reckoned as part of Latin America, 14 of them are led by center-left governments that have sometimes crossed swords with the region’s Catholic leaders over issues such as abortion and same-sex marriage – including in the pope’s home nation of Argentina.

Brazil has also recently been gripped by an anti-establishment mood, fueled by anger over spending on mega-events such as the 2014 soccer World Cup and the 2016 Olympics, while many ordinary people believe that services such as education, health care and transportation languish.

There’s little indication that protesters want to embarrass the pope. Instead, they seem to be hoping to take advantage of his moral authority to bring attention to their cause. This week, one group that helped kindle the massive June demonstrations has plans for a rally under the banner “Pope, look how we’re treated!”

The greater danger for Francis may be that all sides in the country’s tensions may want to spin his message their way, especially with one eye on presidential elections in Brazil scheduled for next year.

If journalists aboard the papal plane today were hoping to draw Francis into a discussion of those challenges, they came away disappointed.

Francis walked back to the press compartment shortly after takeoff and spoke for only five minutes, focusing on the risks of a “throwaway society” that neglects both its youth and its elderly.

“I don’t give interviews,” the pope said by way of explanation.

“Why, I don’t know, but I can’t … It’s a little difficult for me, but I’m grateful for your company,” he said.

Yet part of Francis’ charm is that this skittishness didn’t come off as a snub, because the pope proceeded to spend the better part of the next hour standing in the front of the economy cabin of the papal plane to personally greet each of the roughly 70 journalists on board.

Monday afternoon, Francis was scheduled to meet Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff at the Presidential Palace, and then the 76-year-old pontiff will rest on Tuesday before heading north to the famed Brazilian Marian shrine of Aparecida on Wednesday.

CNN's Barbara Arvanitidis contributed to this report. 

John L. Allen Jr. is CNN’s senior Vatican analyst and a senior correspondent for the National Catholic Reporter. 

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Brazil • Catholic Church • Pope Francis

soundoff (594 Responses)
  1. lionlylamb

    Moral shenanigans vs. ethical integrities and the vino whiner is...? For the pulp-pitted papal sedentariness lingers longingly as an aromatically unpleasant odoriferous smell that many would find cross pleasures with... I for one would keep my sensitive nostrils away from smelly issues of papal erroneousness... May the riches of the RCC become a matter for the hordes ever amassing against the tyrannies of forked tongued papal eviscerations...

    July 23, 2013 at 8:29 am |
  2. William Demuth

    My guess is that Ratzinger was involved.

    Were their any swastikas or crucifixes on the bomb?

    July 23, 2013 at 8:01 am |
  3. William Demuth

    Perhaps a sign of things to come?

    Perhaps the Afghans might want to send a contingent of advisors to Brazil?

    It seems they need to upgrade their IED's?

    July 23, 2013 at 7:51 am |
  4. ronvan

    DIFFERENT DAY, SAME OLD AGRUMENTS: WHO amongst us can say, with 100% proof, that there is God or there is not? NO ONE!! Take an atheist & a religious "expert" and it boils down to which one could disprove the other or present such proof as to change another's mind! I beleive in and have faith in my God & Savior! BUT, again, that does not mean I have many unanswered questions! Religious books, stories, etc., were written by humans. I know of NO religious book that people say is the one, true, original, without any changes?

    July 23, 2013 at 7:29 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Who can say with 100% certainty that there is or isn't a Skeletor?

      July 23, 2013 at 7:37 am |
      • William Demuth

        He-Man can, but the Thunder Cats are Agnostic on the matter.

        July 23, 2013 at 7:52 am |
      • Doc Vestibule

        Tere is a Skeletor and his name is Rumsfeld

        July 23, 2013 at 8:50 am |
    • Sid Airfoil

      You miss the point. Atheists don't need to prove that god doesn't exist. The burden of proof is on the person making the positive claim. If you claim "god exists", then it is up to YOU to prove it. Until then it is rational for me NOT to believe it. Try thinking of any other claim that a person could make that you would believe unless it was proven false. I bet there are none, because it is silly to believe an assertion without evidence. And so it is with the assertion "god exists". Arbitrary claims, like "god exists" are NOT true until proven false, they are false until proven true. The big problem for theists is that faith precludes any attempt to prove that god exists. If there were real proof of his existence, then faith would be unnecessary, and religion would become science. So theists essentially argue that I have to prove god doesn't exist, but that they do NOT have to prove that he does. Convenient.


      July 23, 2013 at 9:05 am |
      • Josh

        To those arguing against Theism, I assume you must buy in to this Big Bang Theory. I pose one simple question that if you can give a perfect answer, I'll change my stance. Where did that big ball of exploding material come from? Back track all day long from lifeforms down to single cell organisms that evolved... but where did that very first piece of matter come from? Did it magically appear out of nothing? Keep going back in time, at some point, something had to be created...

        July 23, 2013 at 9:49 am |
        • Deflator

          Quantum fluctuations occur all the time...

          July 23, 2013 at 1:18 pm |
        • Tom, Tom, the Other One

          How does the first ice crystal form as water freezes? Where does the first bubble in your beer come from? Why does water begin to boil? Is God involved?

          July 23, 2013 at 1:28 pm |
        • fred

          Quantum fluctuations only give the illusion of mass between weak and strong force. It is simply abstract tensor calculus at the moment. The hope you have placed in a vacua is based on the same faith we put our hope in a promise. It is always interesting how atheists fail to realize their man made god is without substance and power while ours remains a present force in our lives.

          July 23, 2013 at 2:03 pm |
        • Peter

          Yeah, god would have to have been created.

          July 23, 2013 at 3:12 pm |
        • fred

          No, the weak and strong force is part of the creation or that which was created. In the event existence did begin within a quantum gravitational phase God remains creator as that construct (force amplitude) was a creation of God.

          July 23, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
    • Dark Itch

      I am 100% certain that no deities exist.

      We can now move on to more enlightening subjects.

      July 23, 2013 at 9:09 am |
      • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

        Define deity though. The universe could have been created by an advanced race in another dimension. Would that make them a kind of deity?

        July 23, 2013 at 9:15 am |
        • Dark Itch

          A supernatural, spiritual being. One such as those described in religious texts. Something completely implausable.

          July 23, 2013 at 9:25 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

          Yeah, they don't exist.

          July 23, 2013 at 9:32 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          By definition, the supernatural does not exist. All that exists , exists naturally.

          July 23, 2013 at 1:45 pm |
        • fred

          Richard Cranium
          Sorry, if you apply the same standards of evidence to God then you cannot say there is no God. Atheists are a confused bunch. You accept (for the time being) a singularity as to origin of the universe and a single cell or first protein as origin of the species yet you cannot accept that all we know is that life has one source which is outside of our known or knowable natural.
          I accept the fact everyone could be wrong in assigning their own version of deity as to source of life yet it is hard to accept the arrogance of those who reject the self evident then claim to know the unknown or that which is unknowable.

          July 23, 2013 at 1:55 pm |
        • Observer


          You said you've never met an intelligent atheist.

          Have you ever met an intelligent Christian who believes this from the Bible?

          (Joshua 10:13) “So the sun stood still, and the moon stopped, till the nation avenged itself on its enemies, as it is written in the Book of Jashar. The sun stopped in the middle of the sky and delayed going down about a full day.”

          July 23, 2013 at 2:00 pm |
        • fred

          God grants His chosen all the time they need to accomplish the will of God. I have no problem in my understanding of this verse and I am certain there is a ton of apologetics concerning its meaning in the eyes of others.

          In your case you think you have found a chink in Gods Holy Word. At best that can serve to strengthen your resolve there is no God and thus you can continue in your sin. We have both found what we were seeking from the Word of God. That is what makes it Divine !

          July 23, 2013 at 2:20 pm |
        • Observer


          So are you going to answer the question or just hide as usual?

          July 23, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          I said nothing about god. I spoke of the supernatural.

          If god exists, he is not supernatural.

          July 23, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
        • fred

          I have met some strong Christians who believe exactly the words in the Bible and YES they would say the Sun and Moon stayed still.
          Personally I have experienced days that fly by and days that drag on so time is subject to perspective when we are expressing thoughts while very objective from a scientific standpoint. This is not a scientific manual. The Book of Joshua covers the 25 years telling the story of the Promised Land given by God to Israel. Joshua was the one who went up with Moses to get the 10 Commandments. God answers the prayer of his chosen (Joshua prayed for God to give him time to beat the Amorites) . This leads me to believe the statement is a middle eastern way of presenting a powerful picture of God and Joshua. If it turns out God stopped the Sun I would not be surprised as done far greater things then that.

          July 23, 2013 at 2:44 pm |
        • fred

          Richard Cranium
          No, God cannot be of created matter and energy. God is always outside that which is natural. In the case of Jesus that was organic matter and chemical stimuli just like you and I. What was God in Christ (Jesus) was the Glory of God which was reflected in Christ. Big Difference.

          On a scientific basis causation must be outside of our known dimensions of space and time in order for general relativity to hold. That does not mean causation was a deity only of matter, time and energy we are not aware of.

          God simply is and exists without dependence on our knowledge.

          July 23, 2013 at 2:51 pm |
        • Observer


          "I have met some strong Christians who believe exactly the words in the Bible and YES they would say the Sun and Moon stayed still."

          Good. So it would be completely pointless for you to ever claim that athiests aren't intelligent.

          July 23, 2013 at 2:52 pm |
        • fred

          I never said atheists were not intelligent. Their faith in their position is no different than faith that the sun stood still. We are not speaking about objective facts here. The atheist has based their belief upon an accidental existence rooted in a spontaneous creation out of vacua while a believer has based their belief in the same unknown yet assigned deity. Both assign their belief upon what is not "visible".

          July 23, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
  5. saggyroy

    I was praying that they wouldn't find any bombs.

    July 23, 2013 at 6:16 am |
    • William Demuth

      I somewhat concur

      I also was praying that there was a bomb they wouldn't find it.

      Better luck next time, and so much for the power of prayer

      July 23, 2013 at 8:09 am |
  6. Max

    Sad part to this whole fictional story is the fact the device had "Black Cat" printed on the side. what a load of garbage.

    July 23, 2013 at 6:14 am |
  7. martina

    The United Nations are going to abolish the Catholic church along with other world religions very soon! The prophecy can be found in Revelation and Daniel. It's god's thought they are going to carry out. I can't wait!!!!!

    July 23, 2013 at 6:04 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      I've read the Bible. I didn't so much like the latter part of the book which is more like all preachy talking, than fighting and the old in-out. I liked the parts where these old yahoodies tolchock each other and then drink their Hebrew vino and, then getting on to the bed with their wives' handmaidens. That kept me going.

      July 23, 2013 at 6:38 am |
      • William Demuth

        I enjoyed all the killings

        More slaughter per capita than most slasher films

        July 23, 2013 at 7:54 am |
  8. Richard


    July 23, 2013 at 5:09 am |
  9. M.A.P.

    Maybe it was a child who experienced se-xual abuse at the hands of the catholic church. It's not like there isn't enouigh people lives they've destroyed already.

    July 23, 2013 at 5:07 am |
    • Dar

      Perhaps you were one of those people?? Yes
      It seems to be on your mind a lot. After all you act like an A.H. with your crude and hateful remarks.

      July 23, 2013 at 7:13 am |
      • Dark Itch

        Dar, the fact that you would accuse someone of being a victim in such a vindictive manner only solidifies my belief that the catholic corporation needs to be shut down. It sickens me to see someone that would attempt to make a potential victim feel bad for having been in such a terrible situation in the first place. Your ilk are what led me to atheism.

        July 23, 2013 at 9:15 am |
        • Dar

          Did I ever once say I was catholic?

          July 23, 2013 at 10:15 am |
      • Thought Purification

        I am confused; since when have you become a civilized blogger Dar, unless you're not the same Pakistani Mohammad A.Dar?

        July 23, 2013 at 11:37 am |
        • Dar

          NO NO NO, not the Dar from Pakistan sir. Hell no

          July 23, 2013 at 5:21 pm |
        • Thought Purification

          Sorry my mistake Mr. Dar.

          July 23, 2013 at 6:51 pm |
    • M.A.P.

      Wow, you are a disgusting human being and if there was a god he would be ashamed of ever creating something so vicious and evil. You think its funny to make fun of child se-x abuse, probably just like your priests do. Sick.

      July 23, 2013 at 7:16 am |
      • Dar

        After all you act like an A.H. with your crude and hateful remarks

        Like I said the first time.

        July 23, 2013 at 7:52 am |
        • M.A.P.

          Well you sure know how to bring out the best in people, dont you! Such a good christian!

          July 23, 2013 at 7:57 am |
        • M.A.P.

          And YOU have proven to be the A.H. you so often mention. You have been divisive, hateful, rude and unintelligent in your postings. Perfect example of the f-ed up types that come out of chiurch full of hate for their fellow man. Pathetic!

          July 23, 2013 at 8:00 am |
        • M.A.P.

          And you calling me an A.H. is all love and peace, is it? Hypocrite.

          July 23, 2013 at 9:39 am |
      • Dar

        Keep going MAP, you are just proving me right. You are full of hate and everyone can see it now. GOD Bless.

        July 23, 2013 at 8:14 am |
        • M.A.P.

          Just because you type god bless doesn't make you any less full of hate. You are a very hate fulled person. What kind of person lies about being abused by a priest to win an argumnt on a blog? You will go to hell for that.

          July 23, 2013 at 8:21 am |
  10. judas

    Reading the headlines I thought that JLO had gone to see the pope up close.

    July 23, 2013 at 5:01 am |
  11. n2it

    Boy oh boy, glad he's safe.

    July 23, 2013 at 1:59 am |
    • Oso

      He's a crime boss. He will never be safe.

      July 23, 2013 at 2:01 am |
    • Korby

      Probs someone from a family his priests molested. Does anyone actually admit to being Catholic anymore?

      July 23, 2013 at 2:16 am |
      • ProCatholic

        I'm Catholic

        July 23, 2013 at 6:25 am |
        • William Demuth

          I have no doubt at some point moving forward, saying one is Pro Catholic will be viewed as saying on is Pro Nazi is now.

          At one time, a third of the world was, but now it is pretty much limited to inbred rednecks with bad teeth.

          Christianity is basically turning into the Jerry Springer Show.

          July 23, 2013 at 7:59 am |
    • M.A.P.

      I thought you wrote "boy on boy" and I was liek – well there's an open Catholic for ya!! hahaha! Catholics are repressed pedo's.

      July 23, 2013 at 6:27 am |
      • Dar

        You sure you are not a Pedo in hiding, you sure do like talking about it a lot. Bring back fond memory's to you does it?

        July 23, 2013 at 7:16 am |
        • M.A.P.

          Nice to see good evil catholics such as yourself supporting and praising the abuse of children in your own chirches. Hope you feel proud.

          July 23, 2013 at 7:19 am |
        • Thought Purification

          M.A.P, I don't know you, but I think I know Dar, he is the same person, previously, posted hateful comments under ISLAM FOUNDATION OF.... handler. Dar is a muslim last name, and he is a muslim from Pakistan, not Catholic or anything; he is just playing with you. Don't answer him.

          July 23, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
      • Dar

        @ MAP

        Nice to see good evil catholics such as yourself supporting and praising the abuse of children in your own chirches. Hope you feel proud.

        First off, learn how to use word check or simply spell correctly.
        Secondly, I was one of those abused children, so I can talk about it and know what is and isn't. Just remember that one bad apple doesn't spoil the whole bunch MAP. I know you and your hatful friends would like to think that but it just isn't true.
        Now go back to you closet and finish what you were doing. (we wont tell)

        July 23, 2013 at 8:04 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

          For somebody who's criticizing somebody else's spelling, you sure have a number of spelling and punctuation mistakes.

          July 23, 2013 at 8:17 am |
        • Dar

          I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

          For somebody who's criticizing somebody else's spelling, you sure have a number of spelling and punctuation mistakes.

          Thanks for noticing Dave, Have a good day and GOD bless

          July 23, 2013 at 8:21 am |
        • M.A.P.

          You're clearly lying about the abuse. Shame on you.

          July 23, 2013 at 8:23 am |
        • Dar


          You're clearly lying about the abuse. Shame on you.

          How I wish I was lying about that. Go to male survivor.org and look up Dar. You will then know that I was telling the truth. If anyone should be hateful, it should be me. Not you. Shame on you. A person like your self are the reason people that have been abused hide from the world. WHY, because people like you think and call them liars.
          I for one no longer hide! I am a survivor!

          July 23, 2013 at 8:42 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that


          Well, I don't believe in a god but I'll gladly reciprocate the well wishings.

          July 23, 2013 at 8:43 am |
        • M.A.P.

          Dar, I still think you're lying and I dont care what you say. If you were really abused you wouldnt have made those remarks that you did earlier. How could you make fun of someone being abused if you really were? Wanna know something? I am a REAL victim of that abuse so I find your lies even more offensive. I pray that you will one day stop your hurtful comments and be supporting of your fellow citizens of the world. God Bless.

          July 23, 2013 at 8:51 am |
        • M.A.P.

          @Dar Example 1: "Bring back fond memory's to you does it."
          Example 2: "Perhaps you were one of those people?? Yes
          It seems to be on your mind a lot. "

          Not exactly the kind of comment you would expect from an abuse survivor are they? LIAR.

          July 23, 2013 at 8:53 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that


          Why are you saying 'God bless'?

          July 23, 2013 at 8:54 am |
        • M.A.P.

          @Dave I'm trying to neutralize the advantage this Dar believe he has by typing at the end of every post.

          July 23, 2013 at 9:04 am |
        • M.A.P.

          @Dar Exapmple 3:I was one of those abused children, so I can talk about it and know what is and isn't. Just remember that one bad apple doesn't spoil the whole bunch MAP

          You are either the most forgiving abuse survivor that has ever lived, or you are lying.

          July 23, 2013 at 9:06 am |
        • Dar


          @Dar Example 1: "Bring back fond memory's to you does it."
          Example 2: "Perhaps you were one of those people?? Yes
          It seems to be on your mind a lot. "

          Not exactly the kind of comment you would expect from an abuse survivor are they? LIAR.

          Example 1. I was being as smarty because of the way you were spewing your hate towards the whole Church.

          Example 2. Typed words are cold. What I typed were of real thoughts. Not even being a smarty pants on that one. I have heard far to many cry's for help because of abuse. One of the most profound cry's is the hateful cry. It is the cry for help before a person actually starts healing and realizes that it wasn't their fault that it happened to them.
          I am sorry for your pain. But I do stand and will be beside you on this one.
          God Bless

          July 23, 2013 at 9:07 am |
        • M.A.P.

          That's funny, I could've sworn you were trying to make me feel disgusting for mentioning child abuse in the church. I cant understand how you can continue with it or believe oanything they say after what they've done, but it's your life and you're free to live it however you want. Just dont assume everyone has to be the same as you.

          July 23, 2013 at 9:10 am |
        • Dar

          Like I said, one bad apple doesn't spoil the whole bunch. There is good and bad every where we look. We just have to see the good and enjoy it. We also have to know when we see the bad.
          As far as forgiving. That was a very hard thing for me to do. But I am much older now and after years of therapy have come to realize that hate only festers inside of us unless we can finally let it go of it. It took me over 35 years to let go of it.
          I hope you can do the same some day. not everyone is bad.

          July 23, 2013 at 9:29 am |
        • M.A.P.

          I know not everyone is bad. But most people in the church are. And people who like to make fun of abuse victims and pretend to be victims themselves are the lowest of the low.

          July 23, 2013 at 9:38 am |
        • Dar


          I know not everyone is bad. But most people in the church are. And people who like to make fun of abuse victims and pretend to be victims themselves are the lowest of the low.

          I hope you are not talking about me, but if you are then so be it. Believe what you will. It makes no difference to me.
          Take care & God Bles

          July 23, 2013 at 9:50 am |
  12. the AnViL™

    those who believe in the existence of gods are delusional and should immediately be prohibited from voting, serving on juries, holding any public office, purchasing or owning firearms, teaching public school, or having any contact with children under the age of 18.

    tolerance of religious idiocy has to be crushed into oblivion – for the good of humanity.

    those who persist in professing beliefs in these idiotic, iron-age, tribal-minded, ignorant ideologies are the true force of darkness in this world.

    July 23, 2013 at 1:56 am |
    • Mark from Middle River

      Dude, do you need a hug?

      July 23, 2013 at 2:23 am |
      • Oso

        You're wearing an explosive vest, aren't you?

        July 23, 2013 at 2:28 am |
    • Oso

      There are actually some more active elements but I am not sure of their religious beliefs. They are worse by a factor of a million.
      But I agree things need to change in a more rational direction.
      The only problem there is that the more powerful elements destroying the world are clearly seeking, among other things, a great lessening of intelligence and rationality amongst the poor of every country they have influence.
      They gut education or take it over, they poison the air, water, and food to give everyone brain damage, I could go on but I am running out of time. Longstoryshort, the destruction of the lives of the 99 percent is ramping up every day.
      Their goals are the sort that can be used by almost any monstrous tyrant who seeks total control using religion or any ideology. The destruction is a weapon in itself that can be wielded by many different hands quite easily for future power, wealth, lust, whatever. Going now. It looks very bad. bye.

      July 23, 2013 at 2:23 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      What an absolutely ridiculous statement.

      July 23, 2013 at 2:41 am |
    • Frank

      "Freedom of religion" ring a bell?

      July 23, 2013 at 2:45 am |
    • RG

      thanks for showing how different people would be without religion.

      July 23, 2013 at 2:53 am |
    • jeff

      So the vast majority of the world is delusional, and you are not? you're a pretty smart guy

      July 23, 2013 at 4:03 am |
      • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

        Argumentum ad populem.

        July 23, 2013 at 4:57 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that


          July 23, 2013 at 4:58 am |
    • M.A.P.

      I stand with you! It's time we stopped allowig this delusion from manfesting any further! Obviously god is not a physical reality, anyone who really believes in him has got serious mental problems and needs help, not encouragement to continue the delusion!

      July 23, 2013 at 5:04 am |
      • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

        Look at the countries which have employed the use of state atheism. Would you really like the US or any Western democracy to end up like one of these countries?

        July 23, 2013 at 5:08 am |
        • M.A.P.

          Well just because there are a few bad examples of what "can" happen is no reason to give up hope on the entire concept. And one could say that the religious had a hand in the history of events in those lands anyway.

          July 23, 2013 at 6:21 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

          Can you not imagine how oppressive any regime would have to be to enforce state atheism? Apart from a totalitarian, who would want that?

          July 23, 2013 at 6:35 am |
      • M.A.P.

        I agree. I don'T want there to be a state authority banning all religion. I just think we need to do SOMETHING (aka ANYTHING) to combat this blind "faith" being forced on everyone now. Don't you think the things you are saying you fear from an atheist society already exist in a christian/muslim/jewish/buddhist society?

        July 23, 2013 at 6:54 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

          Well, you said you agreed with the oppressive ideals stated by Anvil, so you clearly don't support secularism.

          There is no faith being forced on me.

          Of course there is oppression in religious societies but I'm glad I live in a country with a secular const,itution. And the way to combat a theocracy isn't with an oppressive state atheist regime, it's with secularism.

          July 23, 2013 at 7:06 am |
        • M.A.P.

          I was thinking more like, government organised help groups for people to leave cults and religions as well as a ban on propoganda on television etc etc. People are naiive and need protection from preacher types who feed off vulnerablility.

          July 23, 2013 at 7:25 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

          People need to be personally responsible. I hate televangelism also but that doesn't mean it should be banned. This ban mentality is becoming increasingly infuriating. And why should my taxes pay to deprogram people? Let's face it, everybody is indoctrinated in some way.

          July 23, 2013 at 7:36 am |
      • Dar

        The same can be said about your kind too. LOL
        You people are so silly, you all remind me of a horse running with blinders on. Very narrow sighted if you didn't know what that metaphor was.

        July 23, 2013 at 7:08 am |
        • M.A.P.

          @Dave, I don't agree with Anvill in that respect, I just wish secularism didn't just mean watered down christianity like it does in most cases.

          July 23, 2013 at 7:21 am |
    • sjtaylorphoto

      I'mma quote that jewel, next time somebody tells me atheists aren't arrogant and don't want to kill anybody.

      July 23, 2013 at 8:54 am |
      • M.A.P.

        You're really gonna quote "some guy from a blog on CNN" to someone? That's pretty funny.

        July 23, 2013 at 9:07 am |
  13. BO

    I didn't know Michelle O was out that way.

    July 23, 2013 at 1:53 am |
  14. Mathew

    I am not a devout christian nor am I a catholic! So the nasty trolls stay away.
    I am surprised who would want to harm an individual who has been so down to earth and is a human before he is a pontiff! For all the evils that we hear about the church, he really sounded and acted like a true savior for the church and for the human kind before that.

    July 23, 2013 at 1:35 am |
    • Oso

      You watch a lot of cartoons, too, don't you? You are such a gullible sucker I may have you send me money.

      July 23, 2013 at 2:00 am |
    • William Demuth

      Well perhaps he might be a savior of the church, and thus hated by many

      You seem to not grasp MANY of us want the church to die the same death Christ supposedly did.

      It is a Mafiosi and needs to be smashed.

      July 23, 2013 at 8:14 am |
  15. Bippy the new lesser to medium level judging squirrel god

    Why is it Catholicism is most popular in the least educated countries ?

    July 23, 2013 at 1:19 am |
    • sean

      Shockingly, this is true!

      July 23, 2013 at 1:39 am |
    • joedog

      Read history and remember the poor are with us always. Just like in Chicago, Philadelphia, Detroit, Los Angeles, Houston, Cleveland.

      July 23, 2013 at 1:48 am |
    • Oso

      It's not popular in North Korea, so there are exceptions, but a lack of education is key when you want slaves.

      July 23, 2013 at 2:02 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Probably to do with Catholic missionary work in the developing world.

      July 23, 2013 at 2:42 am |
      • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

        What is it with puns and articles about Catholicism?

        July 23, 2013 at 8:41 am |
        • William Demuth

          Low hangings fruits?

          I'm sorry, I can't seem to stop, it's just so darn easy.

          July 23, 2013 at 8:49 am |
    • Dar

      Bippy the new lesser to medium level judging squirrel god

      Why is it Catholicism is most popular in the least educated countries ?

      Or perhaps you and others are the ignorant ones that have yet to learn. A person with a very narrow mind comes to my thoughts when I read comments like yours. How can you be so sure that there isn't a God? What is wrong with people of a church helping the under privileged people of the world?
      I am also thinking that you might have been one of those people who were used as a rag doll when you were young so you now have a bad out look on all people. Not just Christians.
      There is nothing wrong with seeing both sides of the picture my small minded little devil worshiper.

      July 23, 2013 at 6:02 am |
      • M.A.P.

        Resorting to personal insults is the #1 indicator that you lost that argument. You sound full of hate. Glad I don't have to worship your old book and can live my life happily and freely.

        July 23, 2013 at 6:09 am |
        • Dar

          I believe the personal insults came from the devil worshiper first, did it not? It is just Bippy called a few million people dumb for their beliefs. Apparently you too are protecting your same kind it appears. If you can protect your kind, so can I.
          Have a wonderful day in your dream world.

          July 23, 2013 at 7:04 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

          How does somebody worship something they don't believe in?

          July 23, 2013 at 7:08 am |
        • M.A.P.

          @Dar, I don't see the word DUMB anywhere in his post. Another make believe image that you "believe" exists?

          July 23, 2013 at 7:27 am |
        • Dar

          @ MAP
          @Dar, I don't see the word DUMB anywhere in his post. Another make believe image that you "believe" exists?

          I don't have to write the word DUMB, you are doing that for us all,

          July 23, 2013 at 7:57 am |
        • M.A.P.

          Well now your making no sense at all which is great! That's usually what I expect from DUMB christians like yourself.

          July 23, 2013 at 8:18 am |
        • Dar


          Well now your making no sense at all which is great! That's usually what I expect from DUMB Christians like yourself.

          ROFLMO, You made my morning more enjoyable, Thanks for the laugh's. Hope you have a good day

          July 23, 2013 at 8:33 am |
        • M.A.P.

          Glad I could brighten your day :-). God Bless!

          July 23, 2013 at 8:37 am |
  16. Oso

    The depths of evil within the RCC are not forgotten with a mister roger's neighborhood pope whose main job is to fix the horrible reputation of his criminal organization so they can stay out of prison.
    That is his Job #1 and he's working pretty hard at it, but it is the shallowest of play-acting, fooling only those who are always fooled by such.
    He is holding no one accountable because his job is to PREVENT that from happening.

    What simpletons the masses of believers are, to always ignore the criminal behavior of religious people, to always believe the liars, the frauds, the murderers and rapists and give them access to their children. What an insane nightmare of stupidity.

    July 23, 2013 at 1:17 am |
  17. Tweety Bird

    I blame evangelical christians,

    July 23, 2013 at 12:04 am |
    • PaulD

      Nope, it was either Sinead O'Connor, or Dan Brown. Both are used to dropping bombs in their career. 😆

      July 23, 2013 at 12:19 am |
      • William Demuth

        Pauly Short had a few as well, but Encino Man made up for them.

        July 23, 2013 at 8:04 am |
    • *

      For what?

      July 23, 2013 at 12:19 am |
    • Aha!

      It was Col. Mustard in the Library with the candlestick up his bum wearing a long red dress and sipping a nice cognac who obviously set the bomb, intending to pick it up later and take it to dinner and a movie. It seemed so obvious a second ago....

      July 23, 2013 at 12:56 am |
    • Oso

      Blame the victimized people for wanting to strike back. Millions of children have been abused, enslaved, tortured, murdered and brainwashed for centuries by the criminal organization known as the RCC. It is what they enjoy the most, it seems.
      They should arrest and execute him for crimes against humanity.
      The bomb sounds so pathetic that I doubt it is a real bomb, too. The cops probably planted it to justify another crackdown.

      July 23, 2013 at 2:12 am |
      • ced

        Wow ! Need a psy, Oso ?

        July 23, 2013 at 7:09 am |
  18. kid

    muslims most likely.

    July 22, 2013 at 11:44 pm |
    • Akira


      July 22, 2013 at 11:47 pm |
    • PaulD

      Ex-altar boys, maybe?

      July 23, 2013 at 12:20 am |
1 2 3 4 5
About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.