Thursday, June 07, 2007

Pope attacked at the Vatican

Some crazy nut tried to attack the Pope today during the General Audience as His Holiness was making his way round the square in an open jeep blessing the crowds. Here is the footage:

Other video clips:
Corriere della Sera
La Reppublica

The official version seems to be that the fellow was mad and that there was no deliberate attempt on the life of His Holiness, the Pope. Looking at the video footage and reading the comments making he rounds of the blogs, I'm not so sure. It sure looked like he was violent and it took quite a number Vatican security guards to tackle the chap to the ground and keep him there. He had also attracted the attention of the guards before jumping, so he must have said something threatening or out of the ordinary. I'm sure it certainly wasn't 'Viva il Papa!'.

I shudder to think what might have happened if the man managed to reach the Pope. The Pope frequently puts himself in danger and compromises his security to let the faithful approach him. Do pray for him, that the Lord who had called him may give him all the necessary graces to sustain him in his ministry as he shepherds Christ's Church on Earth.

Oremus pro Pontifice nostro,
Dominus conservet eum, et vivificet eum, et beatum faciat eum in terra, et non tradat eum in animam inimicorum ejus.

Let us pray for our Pope, Benedict. May the Lord preserve him and give him life, and make him blessed upon the earth, and deliver him not up to the will of his enemies.

H/T to Fr. Tim.


humboldt said...

Indeed the attack was very violent. The german guy did not want to kiss the pope. The pope's bodymen had a lot of trouble subduing the guy, he was very violent and fought his way to the papamovil.

If something happens to this pope it would be tragic for the Catholic Church.

I do believe that Benedict XVI can learn a lot on prudence from his predecessors. He has spent these two years picking up fight with everyone. That is not the attitude of a pope.

The pope's bodymen had a lot of trouble pulling the German away from the popemovil, which he had grabbed. And he stepped over people to breach the protecting bard. Very scary.

Andrew said...

Hi Humboldt, thanks for you comments. The attack was rather alarming. Popes have been attacked before, most notable John Paul II who was shot in that very square and Pope Paul VI who was nearly stabbed in Manila.

I think it's part of the job, to reach out to the crowds like that and to be seen as approachable. Prudence must be balanced with pastoral necessity and the Pope must balance his security with the wishes of the many thousands who had travelled great distances to see him in person. I'm sure I would be very disappointed if I had made the trip to Rome all the way from Malaysia but could not get a glimpse of the Pope because of security concerns.

That's why we should pray for him that the Lord may continue to guide and guard him.

humboldt said...

Andrew, actually I was referring to the governing style of Benedict XVI. He picked fight with Muslim, Chinese and many others even among the Catholic faith. I was calling for prudence in governance, not in crowd management.

The Hymn Selector said...

I don't think the Pope want to pick any fight. He's just doing what a Pope ought to do. That's much better than kissing the Koran, invoking St John the Baptist to protect Islam, or approving some kind of secret pact to the detriment of our Eastern Catholic brethren just so the Russian Orthodox may attend a Council, don't you think?

Anonymous said...

It seemed to me, watching that, that the Pope didn't even turn to see what the commotion was. Commendable, that, to have such faith in one's protectors.

humboldt said...

The Hymn Selector, it is seems you have not grasped the gist of the matter. I was referring to the disputatious manner in which Benedict XVI has addressed these issues. I do hope that he does what he is supposed to be doing, as Pope: that is to speak clear about what is right and what is wrong. However, there are ways and ways of doing this. And it seems to me that Benedict XVI has choosen the bickering way of doing this, and this is not good.

The Hymn Selector said...

Give me a straight-talking Pope anyday over one who prefers to beat round the bush. :)

Andrew said...

Humboldt, I guess I have to disagree with you on this one. The Hymn Selector is right that the Pope as Pastor and Teacher of the Universal Church, should in fact teach and shepherd the flock entrusted to him by Christ.

The Pope has done just that. If you are referring to the Regensburg address when you bring up the Muslim question, then the Pope was right the first time. He had merely quoted a text by the Emperor Paleologos (whose Kingdom had been conquered and whose and capital city, Constantinople would be sacked and pillaged by those very peace loving Muslims) who challenged the Muslims to show what they have brought except violence and the sword. And their very reaction to that quote proved the point that the Emperor and the Pope were trying to make. It was certainly the Emperor's experience that Islam was nothing but violent. It was certainly the experience of the priest and nun who were murdered in revenge. It was certainly the experience of the Christian communities whose Churches were burned in retaliation. Have they changed? Is the Pope right? Is the Emperor right? What say you?

The Muslims insult other religions, including Christianity, every day, in their madrassahs. They inculcate a culture of violence and murder into their young. Look at the photos of the protests and the effigy burning? There were children there! Taught to hate the West which to them is synonymous with Christianity, what will they turn out to be when they grow up?

Where Christianity seeks to spread the Gospel by example and preaching, the Muslims do so by conquest, blood, fire and the sword. Besides South East Asia where actual dakwah or Muslim missionary activity had occurred via contact with Muslim traders, I challenge you to name some other substantial Muslim population where Islam was spread not by the sword and by conquest and subjugation of the non-Muslim peoples.

If you are talking about making enemies in Italy, then the Pope and the Church were merely reiterating the constant teaching of Mother Church in defending the sanctity of marriage, a Sacrament in the Church and the closest earthly image of the Union of Christ with His Bride, the Church. The Pope, Cardinal Ruini and Archbishop Bagnasco have also performed their duty, not as clergy, but as Christians, in defending the life of the unborn.

But look at the threats against the Pope by these so called liberals who are actually totalitarians in disguise who want to stamp out all opinion contrary to their own and who want to silence the voice of the Church and deny Her the right to speak in the public square. They are the actual dictators, imposing their beliefs, which are very much in the minority, on the whole population. They want a silent and compliant Church while the wreak the agenda on the masses.

This will never be, Deo volente. The Church speaks with the voice of the voiceless and the least. May God grant Her many good pastors and shepherds who will not cower or run when the wolves come a-knocking.

God bless the Pope!

catholicandgop said...

I read last night that they also detained a guy for screaming in the crowd after the Pope left during the Corpus Christi procession.

Andrew said...

Yikes! What has the world come to, that the Pope can't preside over liturgical celebrations in Rome(!) in peace.