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January 24th, 2014
01:42 PM ET

Pope wants to visit U.S. in 2015, sources say

By Ray Sanchez and Daniel Burke, CNN

(CNN) - Pope Francis has expressed his intention to visit the United States next year for a major meeting of the Roman Catholic church, CNN Vatican analyst John Allen said Friday, citing Vatican sources.

The pope would attend the eighth World Meeting of Families, which has been held every three years since the late Pope John Paul II convened the first such gathering in 1994. The Vatican announced in February that the meeting will be held September 22-27, 2015, in Philadelphia.

A visit by Francis, the first pope from Latin America, would resonate with the nation's growing Latin American population.

Allen told CNN that the idea of the family has been a major concern for the church around the world, especially in light of the growing push for legal recognition of same-sex marriage.

The General Assembly of the United Nations generally meets in September, leading to speculation that Francis might combine the Philadelphia trip with a stop in New York to address the U.N., according to Allen, a correspondent for the National Catholic Reporter.

FULL STORY
- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Catholic Church • Pope Francis

soundoff (189 Responses)
  1. And Now For Something Completely Different

    Has anyone seen the U.S. Olympic Team uniforms yet? Ugly ugly UGLY!!!!!!!!!!! The State Department did not need to tell athletes not to wear them outside of tight security, because no one was going to be seen in those disasters.

    You may return to your bickering now.

    January 24, 2014 at 10:46 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      I hope they don't look too gay. The Russians are a bit rough.

      January 25, 2014 at 9:12 am |
      • And Now For Something Completely Different

        That would have been a good one for Putin and Russia: dress them all like the leatherboy from the Villiage People!

        Unfortunately they look like they were made by Aunt Edna's sewing circle in Bugtuckle, Kentucky, after a wee bit too much moonshine.

        January 25, 2014 at 1:50 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Hmmm...I liked them. The German ones were more annoying to me.

      January 25, 2014 at 11:32 pm |
  2. monk

    What will signal the start of the
    great tribulation?

    Jesus foretold: “When
    you catch sight of the disgusting thing
    that causes desolation, as spoken of
    through Daniel the prophet, standing
    in a holy place, (let the reader use discernment,)
    then let those in Judea begin
    fleeing to the mountains.” (Matt. 24:15,
    16) In the first fulfillment, the “standing
    in a holy place” occurred in 66 C.E.
    when the Roman army (“the disgusting
    thing”) attacked Jerusalem and its temple
    (a place holy in the eyes of the Jews).
    In the larger fulfillment, the “standing”
    will occur when the United Nations (the
    modern-day “disgusting thing”) attacksChristendom (which is holy in the eyes
    of nominal Christians) and the rest of
    Babylon the Great. The same attack is
    described at Revelation 17:16-18. That
    event will be the beginning of the great
    tribulation.
    7 Jesus also foretold: “Those days will
    be cut short.” In the initial fulfillment,
    this happened in 66 C.E. when the Roman
    army “cut short” its attack. Then,
    anointed Christians in Jerusalem and
    Judea fled, allowing for their ‘flesh, or
    life, to be saved.’ (Read Matthew 24:22;
    Mal. 3:17) So, what can we expect will
    happen during the coming great tribulation?
    Jehovah will “cut short” the attack
    of the United Nations on false religion,
    not allowing true religion to be
    destroyed with the false. This will ensure
    thatGod’s people will be saved.

    What happens after the initial part
    of the great tribulation has passed? Jesus’
    words indicate that there will be
    a period of time that will last until the
    start of Armageddon. What events will
    occur during that interval? The answer
    is recorded at Ezekiel 38:14-16 and Matthew
    24:29-31. (Read.)[2] After that, we
    will witness Armageddon, the climax
    of the great tribulation, which parallels
    Jerusalem’s destruction in 70 C.E.
    (Mal. 4:1) With the battle of Armageddon
    as its climax, that coming great tribulation
    will be unique—an event “such
    as has not occurred since the world’s
    beginning.” (Matt. 24:21) When it has
    passed, Christ’s Millennial Rule will begin.

    This prophecy about the great
    tribulation strengthens us. Why? Because
    it assures us that no matter what
    hardships we may face, Jehovah’s people,
    as a group, will come out of the
    great tribulation. (Rev. 7:9, 14) Above
    all, we rejoice because at Armageddon,
    Jehovah will vindicate his sovereignty
    and he will sanctify his holy name.—Ps.
    83:18; Ezek. 38:23.

    January 24, 2014 at 7:57 pm |
    • Wally Wally Bing Bang

      Cool how you got your post to look like a stiffy.

      January 24, 2014 at 7:59 pm |
      • hot diggity dog

        If you are turned on by a paragraph you probably need some company, stat.

        January 24, 2014 at 8:03 pm |
    • Well,

      This is a lot of supposition, thanks.

      January 24, 2014 at 8:47 pm |
  3. The Sad Floppy Pole-Vaulting Results of Cluckles the Boneless Chicken

    Remember when the History Channel started? The standard joke was that it was the "All Hitler, All The Time" channel because they played so many WWII documentaries.

    Welcome to the "All Pope, All The Time" blog.

    Then again, every story quickly devolves into the same debates, so maybe it really doesn't matter. They could absolutely no content, just a title that says "Atheism" or "Abortion" or "Pope" and get the same results.

    January 24, 2014 at 6:59 pm |
    • Mmmmmmm

      This is true, from everything I have seen so far here.
      Lol@the History Channel ref. that's true, also.

      January 24, 2014 at 7:11 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      Pawn Stars has replaced shows about Hitler on the "History" Channel.

      January 24, 2014 at 7:15 pm |
      • Mmmmmmm

        The History Channel doesn't deal with a great deal of history anymore. I guess the items to be pawned is what they justify as being history...

        January 24, 2014 at 7:18 pm |
    • doobzz

      I, for one, celebrate the return of Cluckles the Boneless Chicken!

      January 26, 2014 at 1:50 pm |
  4. Bootyfunk

    can CNN get their nose out of the pope's @ss? scroll down. every 3rd story is about the pope.

    next up: Pope shares his favorite brand of toilet paper - papal 2-ply!!!

    January 24, 2014 at 6:07 pm |
  5. Saraswati

    I'm pretty confident in my theory that they are catering to key web search terms here, because there's no way the US population is proportionately this interested in reading about the pope...not even Catholics.

    Some ideas:

    Mysticism accoss religions
    Trends among US Religious adherants and how key beliefs differ from their religion of membership
    Scientific vs spiritual pantheism
    Religion in Ja'pan
    Trends in Russian and/or China
    Demographics of Islam in Europe
    Competing quantum theories and degree and committment of belief
    Resurection of panpsychism
    Mormonism as a pantheistic religion
    Unitarian creations of individualistic belief
    Materialism and idealism (philosophical) as faiths
    Authors who argue for a new religion for the times
    Libertarian free will as a religious type belief and its impact on the legal system

    January 24, 2014 at 5:58 pm |
    • 808

      The Pope ate a sandwich? Put it on the Belief Blog!

      January 24, 2014 at 6:05 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      Monism in retirement communities of South Florida.

      January 24, 2014 at 6:43 pm |
      • Saraswati

        100 times more interesting than another pope story.

        January 24, 2014 at 10:17 pm |
  6. JW

    What will Gods Kingdom accomplish?

    God’s Kingdom will replace all human governments and rule over the entire earth. (Daniel 2:44; Revelation 16:14) Once that happens, God’s Kingdom will . . .

    Remove the wicked, whose selfishness harms us all. “As regards the wicked, they will be cut off from the very earth.”—Proverbs 2:22.

    End all wars. “[God] is making wars to cease to the extremity of the earth.”—Psalm 46:9.

    Bring prosperity and security to the earth. “Everyone will live in peace among their own vineyards and fig trees, and no one will make them afraid.”—Micah 4:4, Good News Translation.
    Make the earth into a paradise. “Thirsty deserts will be glad; barren lands will celebrate and blossom with flowers.”—Isaiah 35:1, Contemporary English Version.

    Provide everyone with meaningful, enjoyable work. “The work of their own hands [God’s] chosen ones will use to the full. They will not toil for nothing.”—Isaiah 65:21-23.

    Eliminate disease. “No resident will say: ‘I am sick.’”—Isaiah 33:24.
    Set us free from the aging process. “Let his flesh become fresher than in youth; let him return to the days of his youthful vigor.”—Job 33:25.

    Bring the dead back to life. “All those in the memorial tombs will hear [Jesus’] voice and come out.”—John 5:28, 29.

    January 24, 2014 at 5:30 pm |
    • Science Works

      And wishing upon a falling for tinker bell is about the same thing .

      January 24, 2014 at 5:37 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      god's kingdom comes after his loving son open's daddy's seven seals and releases war, famine, pestilence, death and more on the earth, killing 2/3 of the human population.

      sounds like a horror show.

      January 24, 2014 at 6:05 pm |
      • JW

        Booty- that action from God is needed... Or else the innocent will keep on being oppressed by the wicked ones!

        January 24, 2014 at 6:49 pm |
        • Bootyfunk

          you're trying to justify genocide.

          January 24, 2014 at 6:57 pm |
        • JW

          Booty- what would your government do to a person that is putting in danger it's population?? Like to a terrorist for example?

          January 24, 2014 at 7:00 pm |
        • Bootyfunk

          a better example would be someone who spoke out against the gov't being put to death.
          in which case i would say the gov't is tyrannical and evil.

          January 24, 2014 at 7:11 pm |
        • JW

          Booty- Gods kingdom is not tyrannical as shown ubove on the things that Gods kingdom will accomplish... You made up a wrong example!

          January 24, 2014 at 7:17 pm |
        • Barry Christ

          IF God was worried about someone putting the population in danger, he might consider actually doing something as it happens, or better yet, before. Letting it happen then just uber-punishing them later is pretty ineffective.

          Then again, the people being punished are only the ones who are not in his fan club, which doesn't exactly fit your example.

          January 24, 2014 at 7:18 pm |
        • Science Works

          Pakistan court sentences British man to death for claiming to be prophet of Islam JW that sounds like what you want ?

          January 24, 2014 at 7:19 pm |
        • JW

          Science- that in Pakistan has nothing to do with God...in Islamic and "Christian" countries, their interest is more political rather then related to God.

          January 24, 2014 at 7:26 pm |
        • JW

          Barry- the bible says that God "is love"... So if God is allowing bad things to happen it has to be for a reason... The bible explains why..

          January 24, 2014 at 7:28 pm |
        • Bootyfunk

          here's the math, JW:

          i try very hard to be a good person.
          i'm also a non-believer.
          according to jesus, non-believers go to hell.
          which means i'm going to hell.
          a god that punishes humanity with eternal torment for not believing in him is evil.
          a god that sends good people that don't follow his brand of religion is evil.

          you can call it glorious when your god extinguishes so many innocent human lives when he brings his 'kingdom' to earth, but to any sane person that's called genocide.

          January 24, 2014 at 7:28 pm |
        • Bootyfunk

          "So if God is allowing bad things to happen it has to be for a reason..." = stop thinking about stuff in the bible that seems silly or cruel

          January 24, 2014 at 7:29 pm |
        • JW

          Booty- "hell" is not a biblical teaching! Death is the end for the wicked!

          January 24, 2014 at 7:31 pm |
        • Barry Christ

          Death is the end for everyone, JW. Living on forever is just snake oil that you bought.

          January 24, 2014 at 7:36 pm |
        • JW

          Booty- Satan implied that Gods why of dealing with humans was the wrong way to do it... So God told Satan:" ok, go ahead and show everyone, angels and humans what you can do..." The results show Satans "great job"...

          January 24, 2014 at 7:39 pm |
        • JW

          Barry- yes death is the end for everyone... Though God can bring back to life his friends... Just like he did with Lazarus!

          January 24, 2014 at 7:43 pm |
        • Barry Christ

          If denial makes you happy, JW, they go for it.

          January 24, 2014 at 7:54 pm |
        • sam stone

          "Barry- yes death is the end for everyone (except those of us the special club)"

          There, JW...fixed it for you

          January 25, 2014 at 9:19 am |
      • Your post

        here's the math, JW:

        i try very hard to be a good person.
        i'm also a non-believer.
        according to jesus, non-believers go to hell.
        which means i'm going to hell."

        Here's the thing Booty. If you truly don't believe you won't worry about hell. I know from personal experience though it's not so easy because you can't prove it ISN"T there, and neither can I. The bottom line is you want answers, so do I, so do we all. All we can do is press forward. I try investigating claims of NDE or researching nuero theology. You might find bits and pieces of information there, nothing concrete of course but you can keep looking. If for some strange reason there is a being somewhere I'm sure it understands doubt because skepticism is only natural and what can you do about it, it is what it is. You and I can't force belief even if we wanted too.

        "you can call it glorious when your god extinguishes so many innocent human lives when he brings his 'kingdom' to earth, but to any sane person that's called genocide."

        The way I handle that one is to replace "act of god" with "sh happens". People can give any storyline to a tsunami or earthquake. If they put a story line to it then that is their story line. If there truly is no god there truly is nobody to blame and no one to point a finger at no point at all. Maybe that's the hardest part of non belief.

        January 24, 2014 at 7:39 pm |
        • Your post

          Also if a random Christian, Islamist, Budhist thinks I am on my way to paradise or heaven or Nirvana or whatever. Their opinion may or may not be the opinion of something, if there is something. I don't see a point in pleading my case or arguing the point with another person because quite frankly they don't know, they aren't in charge of it. You know?
          Food for thought.

          January 24, 2014 at 7:46 pm |
        • monk

          How long do think Jehovah Gods gonna put up with this nonsense on earth..destroying it each other the cruelty..arrogance..there are those that follow his rules and don t do these things these are the meek..they will survive and deserve to he is warning the entire Globe out of love ..he doesnt want any to be destroyed,,but he cant the ones heeding his standards be in the midst of the ones who don't..it doesn't make sense..its like like having puppies a few obey want to learn are good then you have otheres with rabies vicious un predictlble and threatning the other dogs..you dont want to put them down but you have to
          2 pet 3:9
          9 Jehovah is not slow respecting his promise, as some people consider slowness, but he is patient with YOU because he does not desire any to be destroyed but desires all to attain to repentance

          math 24:14 the entire globe is being warned and given hope of a new earth with this pain and disgust will be no more
          why does that not appeal to you/

          14 And this good news of the kingdom will be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness to all the nations; and then the end will come.
          rev 21

          21 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the former heaven and the former earth had passed away, and the sea is no more. 2 I saw also the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God and prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 With that I heard a loud voice from the throne say: “Look! The tent of God is with mankind, and he will reside with them, and they will be his peoples. And God himself will be with them. 4 And he will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore. The former things have passed away.”

          January 26, 2014 at 6:20 am |
    • bostontola

      JW,
      Still waiting for those accomplishments.

      In the mean time, there ahve been vast accomplishments since the Renaissance due to art, literature, mathematics, science, and engineering. All created by humans. Thanks humans.

      January 24, 2014 at 6:45 pm |
      • JW

        Boston- yes human done great progress in all areas... Though, wars still exist, illness still keeps on taking the life of thousands, greedy men keep on doing their thing without carrying for our planet...

        January 24, 2014 at 6:57 pm |
        • Mmmmmmm

          I do not see belief in God lessening the wars, greedy men, illness...

          January 24, 2014 at 7:20 pm |
        • JW

          Mmm- if God eliminates the elements that cause wars.. Why not?!..

          January 24, 2014 at 7:33 pm |
        • Science Works

          The element (gold for example) was not created by god JW a simple Google search will tell you.

          January 24, 2014 at 7:40 pm |
        • JW

          Science- lol... You know the "elements" I'm talking about...

          January 24, 2014 at 7:48 pm |
        • Science Works

          The heavy elements of life ?

          January 24, 2014 at 8:14 pm |
    • sam stone

      gee, JW, you seem to put an awful lot of faith in an iron age comic book

      January 25, 2014 at 9:10 am |
      • monk

        Ridiculers in “the Last Days.” One of the signs marking “the last days” would be “ridiculers [literally, players in sport (of mocking)] with their ridicule, proceeding according to their own desires [“own desires for ungodly things”; Jude 17, 18] and saying: ‘Where is this promised presence of his? Why, from the day our forefathers fell asleep in death, all things are continuing exactly as from creation’s beginning.’” (2Pe 3:3, 4) Obviously, such ones do not heed the advice of Isaiah 28:21, 22,

        2Pe 3:3, 4
        5 For, according to their wish, this fact escapes their notice, that there were heavens from of old and an earth standing compactly out of water and in the midst of water by the word of God; 6 and by those [means] the world of that time suffered destruction when it was deluged with water. 7 But by the same word the heavens and the earth that are now are stored up for fire and are being reserved to the day of judgment and of destruction of the ungodly men.

        (Matthew 24:39) 36 “Concerning that day and hour nobody knows, neither the angels of the heavens nor the Son, but only the Father. 37 For just as the days of Noah were, so the presence of the Son of man will be. 38 For as they were in those days before the flood, eating and drinking, men marrying and women being given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark; 39 and they took no note until the flood came and swept them all away, so the presence of the Son of man will be.

        2 Tim 3:1-5
        3 But know this, that in the last days critical times hard to deal with will be here. 2 For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, self-assuming, haughty, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, disloyal, 3 having no natural affection, not open to any agreement, slanderers, without self-control, fierce, without love of goodness, 4 betrayers, headstrong, puffed up [with pride], lovers of pleasures rather than lovers of God, 5 having a form of godly devotion but proving false to its power; and from these turn away

        Mth 11:25
        25 At that time Jesus said in response: “I publicly praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and intellectual ones and have revealed them to babes.

        January 26, 2014 at 6:04 am |
        • monk

          math 24:14

          14 And this good news of the kingdom will be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness to all the nations; and then the end will come.

          January 26, 2014 at 6:06 am |
        • JB

          "One of the signs marking “the last days” would be “ridiculers "

          Um, the "ridiculers", as you call them, have been around since your religion began, so that's not really going to be a reliable indicator of your "last days", is it?

          January 26, 2014 at 1:29 pm |
        • OTOH

          monk,
          "And this good news of the kingdom will be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness to all the nations; and then the end will come."

          Well, we're safe for a while then - you will not be getting to the inhabitants of North Sentinel Island in the Andamans:

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_Sentinel_Island

          January 26, 2014 at 1:36 pm |
    • doobzz

      "What will Gods Kingdom accomplish?"

      How about healing an amputee? Aren't there ANY deserving amputees?

      January 26, 2014 at 1:52 pm |
    • G to the T

      "Remove the wicked, whose selfishness harms us all. “As regards the wicked, they will be cut off from the very earth.”—Proverbs 2:22."

      So all these people (like 2/3rd's of the planet) are irredeemably wicked? Doesn't god actively killing them kind of take away their chance at redemption?

      January 27, 2014 at 12:11 pm |
  7. Tom, Tom, the Other One

    I'll go see him if he can take Freddie Mercury's place in front of Queen. On second thought, I'd like to see him jam with Robert Fripp.

    January 24, 2014 at 5:27 pm |
    • Mmmmmmm

      Loved Freddie Mercury. Love King Crimson, also.

      January 24, 2014 at 5:52 pm |
  8. Alias

    He should be arrested as soon as he steps off the plane.
    Or has the statute of limitations for rape run out?

    January 24, 2014 at 5:15 pm |
    • Mmmmmmm

      Has he raped somebody? This is news, undoubtedly.

      January 24, 2014 at 5:55 pm |
  9. Veritas

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HaYR4G7oRiw&feature=player_detailpage

    January 24, 2014 at 5:13 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      If music be the food of love
      then laughter is its queen
      and likewise if behind is in front
      then dirt in truth is clean

      Procol Harem

      January 24, 2014 at 5:18 pm |
    • doobzz

      Will there be a sequel? "Seeking Odin, Finding Itzamna", perhaps?

      January 25, 2014 at 11:46 am |
  10. Reality # 2

    And what is this going to cost the people in the pews? Or will the T-shirts, baseball hats, rosaries and indulgences pay for it? Or Francis could sell one of the many works of art the Vatican has stored in their archives? Or better yet, don't come and sell all of the Vatican treasures to pay for the scholarships for needy students especially those wanting to study the myths of religion.

    January 24, 2014 at 4:18 pm |

    • I would like to know how you would sell the ceiling of the Sistine. Or why you think the Pieta should fall into the hands on a private collector. Or why you think Catholics should give up anything because you hate religion.

      January 24, 2014 at 5:08 pm |
      • Tom, Tom, the Other One

        God's love is such that no Catholic would ever hold onto fucking bling while there is anyone going hungry – one would think. But I'm not Catholic and God's imaginary...

        January 24, 2014 at 5:14 pm |
      • Reality #2

        The easy solution: make St. Peter's a museum with all proceeds going to the needy. Currently, it is nothing more than a " house of worthless worship".

        January 24, 2014 at 6:59 pm |

        • The RCC already gives more to the needy than any other enti.ty on earth. Why do you feel they should give even more? Because you hate religion? Yes. Your opinion is just as worthless as what you term a "house of worthless worship."

          January 24, 2014 at 7:25 pm |
        • More precisely

          Actually, the source of a lot of what the Catholic church give is taxpayer money. The primary source of money the Catholic Church uses in those purposes is grants from the U.S. government. Oh, and the RCC takes a sizable proportion for "administration."

          Catholic Charities USA alone gets $2,000,000,000 from the U.S. government. Two Billion.

          January 24, 2014 at 10:26 pm |
        • Reality #2

          Actually, the total is more like $2.9 billion. It appears Catholic Charities, however, is one of the more transparent charities and gets high ratings from Guidestar. And it is divided by diocese. For example to see the finances of the Baltimore diocese's Catholic Charities see http://www.guidestar.org/FinDoc-uments/2012/520/591/2012-520591538-090b04b0-9.pdf . Remove the hyphen in FinDoc-uments if you want to view it.

          To see the bigger picture of financing the support and control of religion see below:

          In order to pay down our $16 trillion debt, we need to redirect money used to support religions especially the christian and islamic cons and put it towards paying off our obligations..

          To wit:

          Redirecting our funds and saving a lot of "souls":

          Saving 1.5 billion lost Muslims:

          There never were and never will be any angels i.e. no Gabriel, no Islam and therefore no more koranic-driven acts of horror and terror LIKE 9/11.

          – One trillion dollars over the next several years as the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan will end.

          – Eighteen billion dollars/yr to Pakistan will stop.

          – Four billion dollars/yr to Egypt will end.

          Saving 2 billion lost Christians including the Mormons:

          There were never any bodily resurrections and there will never be any bodily resurrections i.e. No Easter, no Christianity!!!

          – The Mormon ti-the empire will now become taxable as will all Christian "religions" and evangelical non-profits since there is no longer any claim to being a tax-exempt religion.

          – the faith-based federal projects supported by both Bush and Obama will be eliminated saving $385 million/yr and another $2 billion/yr in grants.

          Giving to religious groups in 2010, totaled $95.8 billion,

          – Saving 15.5 million Orthodox followers of Judaism:

          Abraham and Moses never existed.

          – Four billion dollars/yr to Israel saved.

          – All Jewish sects and non-profits will no longer be tax exempt.

          Now all we need to do is convince these 3.5+ billion global and local citizens that they have been conned all these centuries Time for a YouTube,Twitter and FaceBook campaign!!!!

          January 25, 2014 at 12:27 am |
        • Saraswati

          "The RCC already gives more to the needy than any other enti.ty on earth."

          LOl...the Catholic church is larger than any other enti.ty on earth. It's like pointing out the US donates more money than San Marino so they shouldn't give any more.

          January 25, 2014 at 12:31 am |
  11. Valley Girl from the East

    anyone wondering how much tax power money will be shelled out by our "secular" government to accommodate the leader of the world's wealthiest religion?

    January 24, 2014 at 3:55 pm |
    • Avid1

      Secularism is a myth.

      January 24, 2014 at 4:01 pm |
      • Alias

        I think it is more of an ideal we should all strive for.

        January 24, 2014 at 5:19 pm |
        • Avid1

          McDonald's.

          January 24, 2014 at 5:42 pm |

    • As much as any other visiting dignitaries, I would imagine.

      January 24, 2014 at 4:06 pm |
      • G to the T

        I very much doubt that.

        January 27, 2014 at 12:13 pm |
  12. doobzz

    This pope is just the jolly old guy with a smiling mug who hugs babies. He puts a better face on the papacy after Ratzinger. Kind of like having Joe Biden as a VP after Dick Cheney.

    January 24, 2014 at 3:23 pm |
    • Valley Girl from the East

      Yay, a human being with empathy replaced another human being that clearly lacked empathy...what an accomplishment by the RCC! Those guys have all the answers!

      January 24, 2014 at 4:00 pm |
  13. Three things the Pope won't talk about on his visit to the US

    #1. If you don't want an abortion, don't have one.

    #2. Go to hell.

    #3. Twerk

    January 24, 2014 at 2:50 pm |
    • Three things the Pope won't talk about on his visit to the US

      Those are 3 things the pope won't say!

      January 24, 2014 at 2:55 pm |
  14. Religion is Stupid

    From the great Carlin.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gPOfurmrjxo

    January 24, 2014 at 2:45 pm |
  15. Eagle

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0HJYZj8PqEY&feature=player_detailpage

    January 24, 2014 at 2:40 pm |
    • Religion is Stupid

      This is a much better video, by George Carlin.
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gPOfurmrjxo

      January 24, 2014 at 2:44 pm |
  16. Colin

    Dear Catholics:

    God here.

    First, I do not exist. The concept of a 13,700,00,000 year old being, capable of creating the entire Universe and its billions of galaxies, monitoring simultaneously the thoughts and actions of the 7 billion human beings on this planet is ludicrous.

    Second, if I did, I would have left you a book a little more consistent, timeless and independently verifiable than the collection of Iron Age Middle Eastern mythology you call the Bible. Hell, I bet you cannot tell me one thing about any of its authors or how and why it was compiled or edited over the Centuries, yet you cite them for the most extraordinary of claims.

    Thirdly, when I sent my “son” (whatever that means, given that I am god and do not mate) to Earth, he would have visited the Chinese, Ja.panese, Europeans, Russians, sub-Saharan Africans, Australian Aboriginals, Mongolians, Polynesians, Micronesians, Indonesians and native Americans, not just a few Jews. He would also have exhibited a knowledge of something outside of the Iron Age Middle East.

    Fourthly, I would not spend my time hiding, refusing to give any tangible evidence of my existence, and then punish those who are smart enough to draw the natural conclusion that I do not exist by burning them forever. That would make no sense to me, given that I am the one who elected to withhold all evidence of my existence in the first place.

    Fifthly, in the same vein, I would not make about 5% of the human population gay, then punish them for being that way. In fact, I wouldn’t care about how humans have $ex at all, given that I created all of the millions of millions of species on the planet, all of whom are furiously reproducing all the time. Human $ex would be of no interest to me, given that I can create Universes. Has it ever occurred to you that your obsession with making rules around human $ex is an entirely human affair?

    Sixth, I would have smited all traditional Catholics, (and evangelicals and fundamentalists) long before this. You people drive me nuts. You are so small minded and you speak with such false authority. Many of you still believe in the talking snake nonsense from Genesis. I would kill all of you for that alone and burn you for an afternoon (burning forever is way too barbaric even for a sick, sadistic bast.ard like me to contemplate).

    Seventh, the whole idea of members of one species on one planet surviving their own physical deaths to “be with me” is utter, mind-numbing nonsense. Grow up. You will die. Get over it. I did. Hell, at least you had a life. I never even existed in the first place.

    Eighth, I do not read your minds, or “hear your prayers” as you euphemistically call it. There are 7 billion of you. Even if only 10% prayed once a day, that is 700,000,000 prayers. This works out at 8,000 prayers a second – every second of every day. Meanwhile I have to process the 100,000 of you who die every day between heaven and hell. Dwell on the sheer absurdity of that for a moment.

    Ninthly, had I existed, do you really think my representation on Earth would have such a history of corruption, retardation of science, financial misdeeds, political intrigue, outright criminal behavior and $exual misconduct, including pedophilia, as the Vatican does. I mean, come on! As a CEO, I would be fired for allowing my organization to run amok century after century.

    Finally, the only reason you even consider believing in me is because of where you were born. Had you been born in India, you would likely believe in the Hindu gods, if born in Tibet, you would be a Buddhist. Every culture that has ever existed has had its own god(s) and they always seem to favor that particular culture, its hopes, dreams and prejudices. What, do you think we all exist? If not, why only yours?

    Look, let’s be honest with ourselves. There is no god. Believing in me was fine when you thought the World was young, flat and simple. Now we know how enormous, old and complex the Universe is.

    Move on – get over me. I did.

    God

    January 24, 2014 at 2:36 pm |
    • Wow

      You sound like an egotistical d-bag.

      January 24, 2014 at 3:04 pm |
      • doobzz

        The god of the bible IS an egotistical d-bag who drowned every baby, child, man, woman, elderly, and handicapped person, along with all the animals and other living things because it got pissed off.

        January 24, 2014 at 3:20 pm |
        • Wow

          A flood killed them. The ones that listened to the good God were saved. The ones that trusted in evil men and women died.

          January 24, 2014 at 3:53 pm |
        • doobzz

          You're a liar and a coward. Your bible specifically states that your god sent the flood to kill all living things because it "regretted that it had made humans".

          What "sin" or "trust in evil" did the babies, toddlers, young children, fetuses, mentally handicapped and completely innocent animals commit?

          January 24, 2014 at 3:59 pm |
        • Wow

          God was saddened because His creation was going to destroy itself. The flood prevented that from happening. Had God not stepped in you would not be here today.

          Not sure what line of reasoning you are using to determine that I am a liar and a coward. Relax, buddy. Not everyone is going to agree with you.

          January 24, 2014 at 4:06 pm |
        • doobzz

          You still haven't answered my question. What "sin" or "evil" did the children, babies, fetuses, handicapped, animals and plants commit to deserve death by drowning?

          By a liar and a coward, I mean that you don't want to admit that your god torturously drowned every living thing, including innocent people and animals, in a fit of godly rage. You'd much prefer ignoring the children, babies, fetuses, helpless adults (for physical or mental handicaps) who were collateral damage.

          January 24, 2014 at 4:16 pm |
        • Wow

          You have quite an imagination. That is great you think I ignore all that.

          Those children, babies, fetuses, handicapped, animals and plants committed no sin. They did not deserve to die. It was a consequence of their parent's evil and wicked ways.

          January 24, 2014 at 4:19 pm |
        • doobzz

          It wasn't my imagination – it your the lack of answer to a simple question that made it clear you didn't want to address the collateral damage of the flood myth.

          So your god torturously kills innocent humans and animals because of what some adult humans did. That makes your god an egotistical d-bag, just like I originally said.

          Thank you for finally admitting the truth.

          January 24, 2014 at 4:27 pm |
        • AtheistSteve

          If the flood as described in the Bible had actually occurred then you wouldn't be here period. None of us would. The entire human species would have died out from inbreeding and an insufficient gene pool. Actually the same situation would apply to the Adam and Eve story meaning we wouldn't even have made as far as the Flood.

          January 24, 2014 at 4:23 pm |
        • Wow

          Yes, that appears to be true, Steve.

          January 24, 2014 at 4:24 pm |
        • Cpt. Obvious

          Steve must be forgetting that god uses magic spells to trick people-he's that big of an azzhole. What would you expect from a guy that enjoys having a place of eternal fiery torture? Love your enemies, huh? Yeah, god's frying his for all eternity. What a hypocrite.

          January 24, 2014 at 4:29 pm |
        • truthprevails1

          "Not sure what line of reasoning you are using to determine that I am a liar and a coward."

          You passsed the blame when it states that it was your imaginary friend that caused the flood. In doing so and knowing you have done so, you look like a liar. If the shoe fits....
          Your imaginary friend is nothing good. It gives rules for ho rape victims should be handled (they don't seem to work for the victim); it condones child abuse; it condones murder; it condones oppression of women and LGBT. If you think this is a good loving god, you need some serious help.

          January 24, 2014 at 4:30 pm |
        • Wow

          In that story God allows the flood and offers a way out to those who listen to Him.

          I'm not passing the blame. I'm telling you how the story goes.

          January 24, 2014 at 4:34 pm |
        • doobzz

          I know how it goes. The god of the OT gets mad at how he made his creation and kills all living things, guilty or innocent.

          January 24, 2014 at 4:50 pm |
        • Cpt. Obvious

          God drowned every baby, fetus, and kitten in a global flood for what somebody else did. Stupid and evil. Biblegod is disgustingly stupid.

          January 24, 2014 at 4:39 pm |
        • Wow

          The US has killed babies, fetuses and kittens, too, when battling evil forces like Nazis and terrorists. Evil has consequences, and often the result is not pretty.

          January 24, 2014 at 4:50 pm |
        • doobzz

          False equivalency.

          Your god could have created a more perfect human, or picked out the actual offenders and told them what he expected, or had angels stop people from whatever "evil" they were doing, or any number of solutions, but it chose genocide. Your god had unlimited power to save mankind from "evil" in a loving and kind way, and instead chose death by drowning of every living thing, innocent or guilty.

          January 24, 2014 at 6:29 pm |
        • Mmmmmmm

          What sins would the parents of animals committed? Can animals sin?

          January 24, 2014 at 6:03 pm |
        • doobzz

          They never seem to have an answer for that one. Well, other than, Oh, well, it's god, so he can do whatever he wants and it's just part of his wonderful plan, which we don't get to see until after we're dead! He just loves me so much! I can't wait to see heaven, I hope my cloud is pink!!

          January 24, 2014 at 6:33 pm |
        • Wow

          Animals don't sin. But they do all die.

          January 24, 2014 at 6:06 pm |
        • doobzz

          Especially when the bible god gets mad about something.

          A lot of the people on this blog hide their cats when Austin is posting, too.

          January 24, 2014 at 6:35 pm |
    • lngtrmthnkr

      Colin, I can't speak for God as you can but I see some inconsistancies in your dissertation. First of all He is much older than the existing universe-13.7 billion years . And yes he has no trouble listening to 6 billion prayers as he is in all things and all people, even though some don't know it or seem to even care. Your view is so distorted as to be totally out of phase with what is real. . In order to contemplate God you need to broaden your view and enlarge you concepts of him. You can't get your little brain around him , he is too complex and too vast for our limited imaginations.

      January 24, 2014 at 7:53 pm |
      • Barry Christ

        God already knew what you would be praying for when he started it all, so why would he bother listening. He already knows everything that will ever happen, so it's not like he can change anything.

        January 24, 2014 at 7:57 pm |
        • lngtrmthnkr

          Barry, God already knew everthing. Yes but he allowed for variables according to the choices we will make. What we do affects the future in either good or bad or indifferent ways . He knows the consequences of our actions before we act. It's like a computer ,if this then that or if that then this is the consequence. We have a big hand in our destiny , allowing for accidents and disasters , we shape our own futures.

          January 26, 2014 at 1:04 pm |
        • midwest rail

          " Yes but he allowed for variables..."
          Can you cite Biblical support for that idea ?

          January 26, 2014 at 1:08 pm |
        • OTOH

          How about some support for The Bible being the "words" of any god!

          January 26, 2014 at 1:17 pm |
        • lngtrmthnkr

          Barry , common sense tells us that in order for him to know the end from the beginning he has to know what will happen and with all the possible actions of individuals he has to know the outcome of all variable actions we may take. Thats' just simple logic.

          January 26, 2014 at 5:06 pm |
      • EvolvedDNA

        What proof have you that your god is older than the universe? You also talk about being "out of phase with what is real".. we are listening as to what you can tell us about your god that is real. "he is to complex and vast for our imaginations.. how can you know that?

        January 25, 2014 at 12:16 am |
        • Philosophizin'

          Why do you think every idea has to have proof? Isn't philosophy there so you can have proof and solution free ideas in the comfort of your own home?

          January 26, 2014 at 1:08 pm |
        • lngtrmthnkr

          Evolved, because he is eternal and by definition eternal means forever or infinite .Thats' a lot older than 13.7 billion years. He was there to start the big bang and set up the laws of the universe. The whole purpose of which is to allow for the development of life. The reason for life is for spiritual growth . The growth is for souls to mature and experience life and hardships and to overcome them and become stronger and to learn to love and to find our way back to the Father who created us . We look for him because when we left him to come here, it left a hole in us that needed to be filled. A longing for the love we had with him before we came here.

          January 26, 2014 at 1:15 pm |
        • igaftr

          lngtrm
          All you have said is just speculation, with nothing to back it up. You said the universe existing is a sign of intelligence. It may or may not be. There is an infinite number of possibilities. Your god is far less than the age of the universe, your god was created by men. If there is a "god" it most likely would not resemble any definition any man has of a "god".
          Men make gods..we know this...yours is no different.

          January 26, 2014 at 1:41 pm |
        • EvolvedDNA

          Philo. Of course your ideas need proof. God is just an hypothesis yet there are those who make up stories as if it is real..

          January 26, 2014 at 5:20 pm |
      • EvolvedDNA

        lngtrmthnkr. Again..how have you any proof of what you say. i could say the universe was eternal and needed no creator., or was sneezed into existence by a giant goat....there are many creation myths and yours is just one amongst the others. Where did your god come from? how would he have come into any form or existence.

        January 26, 2014 at 5:28 pm |
        • lngtrmthnkr

          Evolved, don't know how he came into existence. We do know that the universe is finite from observation and study of astronomy. If we have afew pieces of evidence about anything we are usually able to make intelligent assertions . It's calleda. logical leap . If we only look for hard proof for everything, we will not advance very quickly. Thats' why we have abstract thought so we can create.

          January 27, 2014 at 11:27 am |
        • G to the T

          "If we only look for hard proof for everything, we will not advance very quickly."

          True, but if we don't at least look for hard proof, we will never advance at all. "Goddidit" Isn't a an answer to a question, it's the end of questioning. Any reasonable person should always ask the follow-up question, "How?".

          January 27, 2014 at 12:19 pm |
        • lngtrmthnkr

          G, I believe in God,not the end of questioning for me. I'm allways looking for answers to the often unanswerable. Such as how does a soul think without a brain? At what point does the soul leave the body at death? How can there be action at a distance in quantum particles? What is the true essence of gravity? What is magnetism .? How are black holes structured? Does a black hole tear the structure of space time? Does it punch through into another dimention? And more.

          January 27, 2014 at 5:35 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          lngtrmthnkr, There is no evidence that a soul exists especially as a separate entity from the body.

          January 27, 2014 at 5:40 pm |
      • In Santa we trust

        lngtrmthnkr
        "... he is too complex and too vast for our limited imaginations."

        And yet somehow you claim to comprehend and interpret for the rest of us!

        January 27, 2014 at 5:51 pm |
        • lngtrmthnkr

          Santa,you are welcome to accept or reject as you wish. But if something makes sense to you or is intriguing , it might be worth a thought.

          January 27, 2014 at 8:06 pm |
        • lngtrmthnkr

          also I don't claim to know all there is to know about God. But I have learned a few things over the years. And I know that I am just scratching the surface. Also Iv'e learned that asking the right question gets you the best answers.

          January 27, 2014 at 8:39 pm |
  17. Dyslexic doG

    The Belief Blog is keeping with its 75% Catholic content and 25% every other religion and atheism content.

    The Vatican PR machine is obviously investing heavily here.

    January 24, 2014 at 2:00 pm |
    • Barry Christ

      Yeah, not hard to guess that Catholicism is heavily over-represented in the editorial office of the Belief Blog.

      January 24, 2014 at 2:10 pm |
      • Saraswati

        Im pretty sure it's a mix of profit driven marketing and laziness. The goal is to get people here, usually from internet searches, and pop related terms make for easy hits on which Google will place CNN items high. They're also easy to write, requiring little actual research.'

        January 24, 2014 at 6:07 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      On the Belief Blog, every day is a Popapalooza.

      January 24, 2014 at 9:24 pm |
  18. DeepNorth

    The RCC is in decline. They have a burst of media for this new salesman of a pope, but that will fade and he will not continue as gang leader forever. Over time, the Catholic cult will fade into a sorry history. It will take time, as they have the ill-gotten assets of the Vatican to sell to keep themselves going, but it will happen.

    January 24, 2014 at 2:00 pm |
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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.