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Vatican: Pope Francis’ Ukraine War comments not a ‘political stance’

Hannah Brockhaus   By Hannah Brockhaus for CNA

Pope Francis speaks with Andrii Yurash, Ukraine's ambassador to the Holy See, during a meeting for the ambassador to present his credentials to the pope at the Vatican in this April 7, 2022, file photo. (CNS photo/Vatican Media)

Rome Newsroom, Aug 30, 2022 / 05:51 am (CNA).

The Holy See said Pope Francis’ recent comments on a car bombing that killed the daughter of an ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin should not be interpreted as a “political stance.”

In a statement released Aug. 30, the Vatican also called the Russia-Ukraine conflict a “large-scale war in Ukraine, initiated by the Russian Federation.”

Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, some of Pope Francis’ comments have come under criticism, including a statement he made in an interview in June that Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine was “perhaps somehow provoked.”

He was also rebuked by Ukraine’s Vatican Ambassador last week for his characterization of the Aug. 20 death of Darya Dugina, a 29-year-old journalist and political commentator known for her support of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Dugina was the daughter of Aleksandr Dugin, a Russian political thinker believed to be close to Putin.

The Holy See’s unsigned communication said Pope Francis has made “numerous speeches” on the Ukraine War “mostly aimed at inviting pastors and the faithful to prayer, and all people of goodwill to solidarity and efforts to rebuild peace.”

“It is reiterated that the Holy Father’s words on this tragic issue should be read as a voice raised in defense of human life and the values attached to it, and not as taking a political stance,” the Holy See said.

The Vatican’s statement appeared to refer in part to criticism over Pope Francis’ Aug. 24 appeal for an end to the war in Ukraine, in which he referenced Dugina’s death.

“I think of that poor girl blown up by a bomb under her car seat in Moscow. The innocent pay for war, the innocent! Let us think about this reality and say to each other: war is madness,” Francis said at the end of his general audience.

Ukraine’s Ambassador to the Holy See, Andrii Yurash, criticized Francis’ remarks on Twitter, writing that the speech “was disappointing” and conflated the categories of “aggressor and victim.”

The Holy See’s statement said, “on more than one occasion, as well as in recent days, public discussions have arisen on the political significance to be attached to [Pope Francis’] speeches” on the war in Ukraine.

“As for the large-scale war in Ukraine, initiated by the Russian Federation, Holy Father Francis’ speeches are clear and unambiguous in condemning it as morally unjust, unacceptable, barbaric, senseless, repugnant, and sacrilegious,” the statement continued.

Pope Francis’ most recent mention of Ukraine was during his Aug. 28 trip to the central Italian town of L’Aquila.

After leading the Angelus, he said: “Let us pray for the people of Ukraine and for all those who suffer because of war. May the God of peace revive a human and Christian sense of pity and mercy in the hearts of the leaders of nations. Mary, Mother of Mercy and Queen of Peace, pray for us.”

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  1. It is the Catholic Church who chose WWII and the rise of the Russian menace to the world today. In the Second Secret of Fatima, God tells us that it is God, not man, who grants peace to the world.

    In the Second Secret of Fatima (1917), God offers the world peace instead of WWII. In God’s offer of peace to the world, God asks that Catholic leaders consecrate Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and that mankind repent of their massive sinfulness. Pope John Paul II consecrated Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary in 1984, forty years after God’s punishment of WWII had come and gone. Then, and even now, I see no Catholic leaders, especially Pope Francis, preaching to 2 billion Christians, aka The Church, and the world, to repent from their sinfulness to avoid war and have God bless us with peace.

    In 1982, Str. Lucia, the Fatima seer, indicated that God’s offer of world peace, for consecrating Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, is not on the table anymore, and that now we face the dreaded punishment from God, of the Third Secret of Fatima.

    Thus the Second Secret of Fatima was a conditional choice for the Catholic Church to make. God made the Catholic Church an offer to avoid God’s Punishment of WWII. It is we, the Catholic Church, who chose WWII through non-compliance to God’s Offer of peace, and thus chose the deaths of 73 million people.

    The Second Secret of Fatima
    “You have seen hell where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart. If what I say to you is done, many souls will be saved and there will be peace. The war is going to end: but if people do not cease offending God, a worse one will break out during the Pontificate of Pius XI. When you see a night illumined by an unknown light, know that this is the great sign given you by God that he is about to punish the world for its crimes, by means of war, famine, and persecutions of the Church and of the Holy Father. To prevent this, I shall come to ask for the consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart, and the Communion of reparation on the First Saturdays. If my requests are heeded, Russia will be converted, and there will be peace; if not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the Church. The good will be martyred; the Holy Father will have much to suffer; various nations will be annihilated. In the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me, and she shall be converted, and a period of peace will be granted to the world.”
    Quoted From:

    Str. Lucia in 1982
    “Sister Lucia had already given an indication for interpreting the third part of the “secret” in a letter to the Holy Father, dated 12 May 1982:

    “The third part of the secret refers to Our Lady’s words: ‘If not [Russia] will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the Church. The good will be martyred; the Holy Father will have much to suffer; various nations will be annihilated’ (13-VII-1917).

    The third part of the secret is a symbolic revelation, referring to this part of the Message, conditioned by whether we accept or not what the Message itself asks of us: ‘If my requests are heeded, Russia will be converted, and there will be peace; if not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, etc.’.

    Since we did not heed this appeal of the Message, we see that it has been fulfilled, Russia has invaded the world with her errors. And if we have not yet seen the complete fulfilment of the final part of this prophecy, we are going towards it little by little with great strides. If we do not reject the path of sin, hatred, revenge, injustice, violations of the rights of the human person, immorality and violence, etc.

    And let us not say that it is God who is punishing us in this way; on the contrary it is people themselves who are preparing their own punishment. In his kindness God warns us and calls us to the right path, while respecting the freedom he has given us; hence people are responsible.”
    Quoted from the Vatican: The Message of Fatima

    A Portion of the Third Secret of Fatima
    After the two parts which I have already explained, at the left of Our Lady and a little above, we saw an Angel with a flaming sword in his left hand; flashing, it gave out flames that looked as though they would set the world on fire; but they died out in contact with the splendour that Our Lady radiated towards him from her right hand: pointing to the earth with his right hand, the Angel cried out in a loud voice: ‘Penance, Penance, Penance!’
    Quoted from:

    Divine Mercy in my Soul, 635, The Blessed Virgin Mary :
    you have to speak to the world about His great mercy and prepare the world for the Second Coming of Him who will come, not as a merciful Savior, but as a just Judge. Oh, how terrible is that day! Determined is the day of justice, the day of divine wrath. The angels tremble before it. Speak to souls about this great mercy while it is still the time for [granting] mercy. If you keep silent now, you will be answering for a great number of souls on that terrible day…

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