France's Front National Lashes Out At The Catholic Church Over Refugees


**France’s Front National Lashes Out At The Catholic Church Over Refugees

Three leaders of the French nationalist party Front National have hit out at French bishops for supporting refugees.

They demanded that Catholic leaders stay out of politics and concentrate instead on “filling their churches”.

In one of several post-Christmas radio interviews given by the party figures, the party’s vice-president Louis Aliot complained about the attitude of the bishops towards the Front.

“I’ve never seen a large majority of Catholics voting for us,” he said. “I’ve seen a large majority of bishops spit in our face, one has to say, and systemically denigrate the Front National, its leaders and its policies.”

Aliot went on: “Catholics should concern themselves with filling their churches — which is not certain they can do, let me tell you— and should let the political parties manage public affairs.”

Gilbert Collard, one of FN’s two MPs in the National Assembly, said the church was “disconnected from reality”. He added: “In the name of welcoming others, they reject us.”…

And while party secretary-general Nicolas Bay denied that the interviews were a “declaration of war”, he added that the Front National “didn’t need to hear any lessons from the clergy about migration”.

The attacks came as France prepares for presidential and parliamentary elections in the spring. The race for president appears to be between the Front leader Marine Le Pen and conservative François Fillon.

Fillon enjoys strong support among Catholics, but The Tablet reported that there is division within the FN over whether to seek to woo members of the church.

On the one hand, Le Pen and Aliot reportedly reject the church while others, including Le Pen’s niece Marion Maréchal-Le Pen, have been trying to appeal to traditional Catholics.**


France’s Front National Lashes Out At The Catholic Church Over Refugees

This tells me the Church is doing something right (or perhaps left).


Attacking the Church hardly seems a sensible move for the French ultra-right, I’d have thought just pretending the bishops weren’t there would have been a better move.


I don’t know enough about how it all is in France to really comment. But I will say, as a general statement, that sometimes churchmen defeat their own ostensible purposes and proper mission by becoming too involved in partisan political positions that don’t have a clear application of moral teaching behind them.

Doing so can easily put them (and seemingly the Church itself) in apparent support of something that turns out to be extremely detrimental to the people and beneficial to no one.

The National Front might not be so stupid in saying what they’re saying. One wonders just how many French voters actually are on all fours with the bishops in this, versus how many are irritated by their positions.


I tend to agree. Speaking as a convert to the Catholic church, I admit I am often irritated by the Bishops and immigration and refugees in our own country. I understand the humanitarian side, but I think the welfare and safety of host countries is of utmost importance.


I tend to think the Church is making a mistake putting so much of its prestige on the line to advocate for Muslim refugees, who, by and large are hostile to the Christian Church.


Good point.


It tells me the walled in Vatican City should not be telling other countries what to do with the immigrant situation. I have Muslim friends and they are disgusted with the way Muslims have treated Europeans in general. They realize what is happening and they themselves live in Pakistan. They should know. Too many incidents of Muslim violence. Certain areas of England and other European countries cities Muslims have created “no go zones” for non-Muslims.

They are not coming to become a part of western society…but to dominate it.


I could see how maybe 5 years ago where statements like this would be considered to be too extreme, but after Nice, Paris-Nov 2015, Charlie Hebdo, etc things have changed for alot of people.


exactly! it seems since the onset of the Arab Spring, events have escalated. but we should have been paying more attention to immugration way back. I don’t know when the heavy immigration from Somalia began. I think most Americans were focusing on the immigrants from Mexico and Central America these past 8-10 years unaware there were so many coming in from Somalia and Middle Eastern countries and settling in Detroit, Flint and Minneapolis. I know the number of mosques had grown in the large city I lived in in the Southwest, but I saw them as places of worship not possible locations where young men could be radicalized. I did wonder why more mosques were being built though not realizing it was because of more immigrants.


That was my thought as well.


I don’t know if that’s true but even if it is, why should that change our response? Should we only help those that like us?


Maybe we could limit it to people who don’t actively want to destroy us…


Thankfully, the chief resident of that “walled Vatican City” you decry for exercising its role as the Holy See, His Holiness Pope Francis, is wildly popular in France amongst people of all persuasions:

**A Popular Pope

Majorities or pluralities of the general public in 28 of the 43 countries surveyed say they have a positive view of Pope Francis. Europe and Latin America give the pope particularly high ratings – majorities in almost every country in these two regions view the pope favorably**…

Eight-in-ten or more also express support for the pope in Poland (92%), Italy (91%), France (88%), Spain (84%) and Germany (82%). A smaller portion, yet still a majority, in the United Kingdom (65%) view Francis favorably. Roughly half the Greeks (49%) agree, though nearly a quarter (24%) have an unfavorable view and about three-in-ten (28%) do not rate him.

Indeed, back in November 2016 the two main candidates for leader of the centre-right Republican Party, Fillon and Juppe, were engaged in a public game of one-upmanship to try and prove to voters which of them was more in league with the Pope and thus the “bigger Catholic”:

**How Catholic hardliners shaped France’s race for the presidency

In a bizarre twist, both candidates invoked some form of papal anointment, claiming their views were consistent with the pope’s – a highly unusual step for presidential candidates in France’s staunchly secular Republic.

“I am closer to the word of Pope Francis than to Sens Commun or the Manif pour tous,” Juppé told supporters. His opponent promptly replied: “I am not sure he has really listened to Pope Francis, because on most of the issues Alain Juppé uses to attack me, the pope says much the same as me.”**


The walled in Vatican has about 44 refugees per 1000, the U.S. has .84 per thousand. I think the Vatican can teach us a thing or two.

I’m not a nationalist so I see no need to “defend” western society from some perceived threat. Just like everything else in this world, culture changes. I’m not afraid of any of these people or these scenarios that are used to scare us but somehow people like me are called snowflakes while the tough guy non-snowflakes are losing their minds because brown people that believe different things exist and want to live somewhere where they can live in peace without a risk of getting killed.

There are no “no go zones”. Don’t think this will convince but here it is anyway:

This world wide nationalist movement is not a good thing. It will lead to war.


Ah yes the imaginary no-go zones make an appearance again at CAF. I live in the middle of one of these so called zones. How surprised I was to learn via media and Mr Trump that I am not allowed to venture forth in this area to do my shopping etc. lest a horde of Saracens descend upon me with scimitars flashing.

The walled Vatican City argument is tedious also and has been disposed of numerous times here. There are in fact a) Muslims living in the area the Vatican encompasse and b) the Vatican hosts around 1,000 people maximum. Trying to extrapolate from it that the Church should not comment on these issues is fallacious.


:sad_yes: :sad_yes:

Just look at what has happened in Germany.


It would appear so. Some bloke or other said the following, " For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet only your brothers,* what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same"*


Right, I agree. I honestly cannot understand it. I do believe in welcoming the stranger and I see why the Christian should be open to immigration, helping refugees. But I think this responsibility should be part of a larger picture, include other considerations, such as the capacity of the host nation to provide for how many people, a nation’s right, responsibility even, to provide for its own people’s welfare and security. Do certain refugees pose a security threat, etc. Considering these things does not make one a bigot. I think they make you a Christian who has brains, for better or worse. And I agree that some in the Church do go too far here; they seem sometimes to play favorites, some of the downtrodden are more ‘lovable’ than others. I personally think it reflects political influence from the left. I have never understood the left/Muslim bond on any level. Christians are being wiped out in the Middle East, but we routinely hear more about Muslim refugees. I don’t see all Muslims as the enemy and I know there are moderate Muslims, but so many in the West actually lie about basic elements of the Muslim faith because of political correctness. (Muslims do go to heaven for killing Christians - fact) I claim Christianity as a superior, peaceful religion (and ‘truth’), and condemn violent Muslim extremism and its threat to my culture and religion. And I make decisions about immigration law and policy in the face of this threat that are reasonable. And, at some point, we need to help refugees of war and violence in their homeland, not move half the war-torn country to Europe or the US and then wonder why there is such chaos and conflict everywhere. This is just the sort of thing that pushes people to the National Front. The good news is that there are probably so many of them there now that they outnumber the far right extremists.


These kind of indicators should not be read into. Clearly, many folks in France are frustrated with so many migrants and refugees living in the streets although reports would seem to indicate the situation is not as dire as it is in Germany.

All sides to work for a solution instead of lashing out or virtue signaling. The best solution is to create safe zones in Syria and Iraq for the refugees that involves a multi-national force.

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