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Letters: Judging the new pope

March 17, 2013

Re "Argentina's 'dirty war' wounds still raw," March 15

That Jorge Mario Bergoglio is the person I now have to address as Pope Francis is a very disturbing proposition for a person like me who survived Argentina's 'dirty war.'

I wasn't surprised when the cardinals chose someone who has the conservative views of his predecessor, but it is astonishing that they selected a man who at best remained silent when Argentina's military kidnapped, tortured and extrajudicially executed thousands of his countrymen.

Although after Vatican II and during those days of state terrorism the Roman Catholic Church was divided between those who were looking for a path to connect the church message to its people and those who preferred to remain silent or collaborated with those in power, it is obvious that Bergoglio chose the morally wrong side of history.

Nestor Fantini


Re "Francis, a pope of firsts," Editorial, March 14

You correctly say that the new pope will benefit both Catholics and non-Catholics if he devotes himself to the "causes of peace, human rights and reconciliation." You must realize, however, that the pope's first and foremost duty is to Christ.

If liberals understood that as Catholics do, they would forbear from grinding their teeth in angst as to why the pope refuses to support abortion rights and homosexual "marriages."

Rafael Villa


The first Jesuit pope, eh? Well, having spent four years at Loyola High School here in Los Angeles in the 1960s under the auspices of the Jesuits, whose devotion to teaching, mental discipline and a realistic approach to Catholicism was beyond reproach, I can say that if you let Francis have the keys to the kingdom, the Catholic Church will be squared away quickly.

Robert M. Imm



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