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The Christian Democrats were hand in glove with the men of honour and depended on them for the votes to stay in power.The expression "vote early and vote often" was practically invented in Sicily.Pope John Paul waited about 15 years to "notice" the biggest scandal destroying the beautiful country.
In the article I wrote at the time, I said I was sorry not to have had time to visit Gubbio.
So this time I built in a couple of days in the Umbrian hill town to pay homage to the famous encounter, eventually locating this gorgeous monument in the outskirts of Gubbio. I wouldn't have mentioned this but for reading Pope Benedict's address today in Rome in preparation for tomorrow, a fine meditation on the link between Jesus' powerlessness and his peacemaking."Christians," he said, "must never fall into the temptation of becoming wolves for it is not with power, force or violence that Christ's kingdom of peace grows, but with the giving of self, with love carried to its extreme consequences, even towards our enemies".
The reason it is so difficult to go over this subject with them is because they tend towards what is properly called a hermeneutic of suspicion.
For many who call themselves "traditionalists", their weltanschauung is one of rebellion against the teachings and directives of the Church's Magisterium beyond an arbitrary point in time of their choosing.
It was a bold, imaginative act by John Paul II, the kind of symbolic gesture that perhaps only a pope is capable of organizing; and all the more powerful for taking place in the town associated with perhaps the greatest peacemaker in Christian history.
on the 2002 meeting, I was taken by the famous story of St Francis and his famous taming of the Wolf of Gubbio, seeing it as a powerful metaphor for the way in which faith can build peace.
To cut the story very short, St Francis understands why the wolf is terrorizing the people of Gubbio, and offers him a lifetime of food in exchange for his agreeing to abandon his violence.
In a touching conclusion to the story, the wolf assents to the pact by placing its paw in the friar's hand.
. for Days and Hours 7 minutes- it might be interesting to speculate about which faith leaders have what one might call ''attachments'' to state power (the Chief Rabbinate of Israel, for example, or representatives of various Middle-Eastern royal families) and to what extent these cripple their prophetic capacity for peace.
The final loss of the papal states during the era of Pius IX, a man who condemned democracy and advocated a Roman Catholic theocracy for all nations, may have been the best thing to happen to the Roman Catholic church since the time of Constantine.