Pope slams capitalism as ‘new tyranny’

Pope slams capitalism as ‘new tyranny’

I’m not going to lie – I really enjoy Pope Francis. So much so that it is strange to me that no-one has started calling him the anti-Christ or the beast yet cos that is what usually happens, right?

And to set the record straight, I have not traditionally been “a pope person”. So why do I like this guy?

Because in what he says and how he lives his life, he so frequently seems to resemble Jesus.

Is he perfect? Absolutely not. Is there going to be some story that surfaces at some time in his time as pope to let us know exactly how that is so?  Very possibly. But in the meantime, in the words he speaks, and the prophetic actions he takes and the tweets that get tweeted on his behalf, there continues to be a very strong Jesus flavour.

And so this article where he describes ‘not sharing wealth’ as ‘stealing’ is yet one more example of the character of Jesus that is to be found in this man.

Read the whole article – it is a gem. And sits so well alongside another article I read recently that spoke about how the pope was caught sneaking out at night to spend time with the homeless people. Imagine if our pastors started ditching church sermons occasionally to go and do that?

In the first article I reference though, Francis has called on the rich to share their wealth taking aim ‘at capitalism as “a new tyranny” and is urging world leaders to step up their efforts against poverty and inequality, saying “thou shall not kill” the economy.’

Extending the ‘do not kill’ metaphor to put focus on how desensitized most of us have become, he later had this to ask:

“How can it be that it is not a news item when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure, but it is news when the stock market loses two points?” Pope Francis asked an audience at the Vatican. 

His harsh words towards the economic systems of much of the world today did not end there: “Just as the commandment ‘Thou shalt not kill’ sets a clear limit in order to safeguard the value of human life, today we also have to say ‘thou shalt not’ to an economy of exclusion and inequality. Such an economy kills,” Francis wrote in the document issued Tuesday. 

What has been good to see is that Pope Francis is not simply about talk in these matters. He has already demonstrated a removal of many aspects of excess from traditional aspects of being pope. He has taken on the Vatican bank, accusing it of dodgy practices and he removed Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone from his role as head of the bank after stories of monetary mismanagement and links to the mafia.

Through both action and words, this pope seems to have some of the ‘Blessed are the poor’ DNA running through him.

What do you think? Is there any hope of influential change happening in the global economy with his influence? Or is he merely a figurehead that will make a lot of noise but not usher in much worthwhile change? 



Brett Anderson

Brett "Fish" Anderson from South Africa (the country) is passionate about seeing the church live out what it says it believe in all areas of life. He is married to the beautiful Val (tbV) and hates raiSINs with a different kind of passion.
  • http://gravatar.com/raintola13 Ben

    Capitalism itself is not bad, just the people who misuse it. The parable of the talents advocates capitalism. Even though the three servants were given different amounts of money, they each had the same opportunity to invest it. Even though people have different financial situations, levels of creativity and the like, provided there are no physical or mental handicaps, you can still advance in life. Even so, charity from those that have is a must to help those that have not. We must all do our part.

    • http://SkyMission.org David Lewin

      Good points Ben!

      David Lewin

      • Brett Anderson

        thanks David, appreciate your interaction on the blog…

  • http://SkyMission.org David Lewin

    Dang, I have to admit! This is really challenging! Though I do agree with Ben as well. But if anything, I want my heart to be challenged to give and continue to do so all the more!