January 27th, 2014
12:40 PM ET

Angry birds! Pope's peace doves attacked

By Daniel Burke, Belief Blog Co-editor
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(CNN) Talk about your angry birds.

A crow and a seagull attacked two white doves released by children standing next to Pope Francis on Sunday at St. Peter's Square. The birds of prey swooped down after the "peace" doves flew from the open window in the Apostolic Palace.

One dove broke free from the gull, after losing a few feathers in the fray. A crow pecked the other before both doves escaped and flew away. Their ultimate fate is unknown.

Thankfully, the Pope and children had walked away before the fly-by birding.

Doves as Judeo-Christian symbols of peace date back to biblical times. In the Book of Genesis, a dove returns to the ark-maker Noah with an olive branch, letting him know that the flood had receded.

In the New Testament, the Holy Spirit descends "like a dove" on Jesus after his baptism, according to the Gospel of Matthew. Centuries of Christian art thereafter have use doves to symbolize the third member of the Holy Trinity, along with God and Jesus.

Just before releasing the doves, the Pope had offered prayers for Ukraine, the site of pitched civil strife, and some say the dove-attack portends poorly for Eastern European nation.

Others took a more humorous approach.

- CNN Religion Editor

Filed under: Catholic Church • Pope Francis

soundoff (986 Responses)
  1. EX Catholic

    A clear sign an omen of things yet to come upon this perverse organization the RCC. God sent ravens to bring food to His prophet Elijah. In a similar manner but for a different reason/purpose God sent the raven and the gull to attack these doves.

    February 7, 2014 at 6:17 pm |
  2. chicago red 1234

    God sees all- I wrote( let the white dove sail) Hannity God is questioning you- what do you honor? Not all native American's can have identical abuse-My case was a satanic nun – from south America appeared the devil and has passed off abusive tactics she used for 25 years, Now from Ireland comes the next wave of 25 years? Does an honest man practice theft and deceit? Jesus died for my sins he said go and sin no more-what about you are you going to help destroy the rest of these abused children- because they cry in their hearts for justice? You lose- God have mercy on your confused mind.

    February 7, 2014 at 3:10 pm |
  3. His panic

    He [the pope] may have fall into a state of anxiety maybe even Panic. That can and do happen very often to people who do not Trust God and Jesus Christ God's Only Son.

    Those who really for real, Trust in God and in Jesus Christ God's Only Son WILL NOT Panic. All others will Panic and Panic can lead to anxiety, hysteria, brawls stampedes and riots.

    February 6, 2014 at 6:31 pm |
  4. Autheistics

    Just like atheists attack religion.

    February 3, 2014 at 8:42 pm |
    • Science Works

      Vatican Let Abuse Of Kids Go On For Decades, U.N. Panel Says


      February 5, 2014 at 9:23 am |
      • Ken Margo

        Now the truth attacks religion!

        February 5, 2014 at 7:15 pm |
    • EX Catholic

      That particular religion is for one Idolatrous above all, also corrupt and perverse. Therefore these are not attacks but clearly a denunciation long overdue, of their many perversions.

      February 7, 2014 at 6:13 pm |
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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.