Thomas D. Williams — Briebart August 31, 2016
A noted opponent to all things Christian, liberal “philanthropist” George Soros has been investing heavily in Catholic “useful idiots” to change the tone of Catholic moral discourse in the United States, according to a new essay in the Washington Times.
The essay, written by Father Robert Sirico, a Catholic priest and founder of the Michigan-based Acton Institute, explores how leaked documents from Soros’ Open Society Policy Center reveal enormous donations to two faith-based organizations, calculated to advance Soros’ political agenda by deemphasizing abortion and religious freedom while championing liberal “social justice” causes in the lead-up to the 2016 election year.
The leaked documents, Sirico contends, reveal Soros’ “crass political intention to manipulate church leaders,” suggesting that Soros views Catholic Church leadership “as mere useful idiots to be manipulated to further [his] own political and, frankly, secularist agenda.”
According to Father Sirico, “Mr. Soros was contributing to the effort to recruit 10,000 volunteers while training 3,500 others for mobilization in order to influence the Catholic Church during Pope Francis’ 2015 U.S. visit.”
The donations, summing some $650,000, were made to People Improving Communities through Organizing (PICO) and Faith in Public Life (FPL), two social justice warrior groups that run “faith-based” activist networks.
The two groups accepted the Soros’ monies despite his self-proclaimed atheism, vigorous support of abortion on demand, and overt statism. The leaked documents explicitly declare that the donations form part of Soros’ “long-term project of shifting the priorities of the U.S. Catholic church.”
According to the New American, Soros is also “a leading financier of Obama, Hillary Clinton, the orchestrated ‘refugee crisis,’ revolutions around the world, the war on police, Black Lives Matter, Occupy Wall Street, globalism, and more.” This has led to Soros becoming known as “the Catholic Church’s public enemy number one.”
A portion of the Soros gift was spent promoting John Gehring, a former assistant media director at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, as a commentator to national media outlets, the leaked documents show. Mr. Gehring had earlier attacked the Catholic bishops’ Fortnight of Freedom religious liberty initiative.
Earlier this year, Pope Francis preached a fiery sermon in which he admonished Christian groups not to accept the “dirty money” of so-called philanthropists who try to calm their conscience by giving a piece of their ill-gotten gains to the Church.
Speaking off the cuff in his General Audience, and raising his voice in evident irritation, the Pope said that “some benefactors of the Church come forward with their donation — ‘take this for the Church’ — but this offering is the fruit of the blood of so many exploited, mistreated, enslaved, underpaid people!”
“I will say to these people, ‘Please, take back your check, burn it!’” he said.
Though almsgiving is proposed by the Bible as an important “good work” for Christians, Francis said that it must be done with a pure heart.
“The People of God, that is, the Church, does not need dirty money,” he said.