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OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« on: March 26, 2014, 10:48:02 PM »
http://news.yahoo.com/obama-meets-pope-francis-looks-catholic-boost-020914918.html


Obama meets Pope Francis, looks for Catholic boost
AFP
By Tangi Quemener, Jean-Louis de la Vaissiere 35 minutes ago

Vatican City (AFP) - Barack Obama will meet Pope Francis for the first time Thursday for talks on a shared agenda to fight inequality which the US President hopes will help boost support at home.


The talks between the first Latin-American pope and first African-American US president will focus on tackling the gap between the rich and the poor, but are likely to spill over into thornier issues such as abortion, homosexuals and contraception.

The meeting at the Vatican comes as a welcome rest-stop for Obama during a six-day European tour dominated by the crisis over Crimea, and the US leader will doubtless be hoping some of the pope's overwhelming popularity will rub off on him.

Obama will also meet new Italian prime minister Matteo Renzi and the country's president Giorgio Napolitano during his visit to the eternal city, as well as going on a private guided tour of the Colosseum.

Diplomatic relations between Italy and the United States are close, though Rome still needs some convincing on the value of imposing sanctions on Russia over the Ukraine crisis, amid fears it would take a toll on a key market.

Italy's 39-year-old Renzi, who used Obama-style catchy slogans and social media campaigns to shoot up the political ladder, will be keen to strengthen ties with the US leader.

But political watchers say the meeting with the former boy scout will be overshadowed by talks and a photo opportunity with the 77-year-old pope.

Obama is "mostly going I think to bask in the glow of the new Pope," said Jeremy Shapiro, visiting fellow at Washington's Brookings institute.



His main aim will be "to highlight their sort of mutual attention to the problems of poverty and inequality. This isn't really a foreign policy stop," he said.

- 'Challenge' of income inequality -

According to the White House, Obama hopes to speak to the pope about their "shared commitment to fighting growing inequality", though the peace process in the Middle East, the environment and immigration are also expected to be on the table.

Obama, whose approval rating has been slipping, will be keen to repeat his denunciations about income inequality, which he has described as "the defining challenge of our time".

Earlier this month, he used the National Prayer Breakfast in Washington to argue that his calls for tax hikes on the rich and curbs on abuses by big banks had a strong moral and religious grounding, in an election-year swipe at Republicans.

Pious religious observance should guide political motives and lead to policies that help the sick and the needy, he said -- echoing Francis's rallying cry for more to be done for the poor and disadvantaged.

The pope's critical comments about capitalism last year saw him forced to rebuff accusations from rightwing Americans that his teaching is Marxist. But his condemnation of "the economy of exclusion and inequality" won the support of progressive Catholics.

Obama said he was "hugely impressed" by Francis's inclusive approach after the pope called for the Church to stop obsessing debating teachings on abortion, homosexuals and contraception.

However, Vatican experts say the relationship is not as cosy as it once was between pope Jean Paul II and Ronald Reagan, and Francis is unlikely to refrain from tackling Obama on his domestic and foreign policy.

The pontiff spoke out strongly against a proposed military intervention by the US in Syria last year, organising a vigil at the Vatican which drew tens of thousands of people.

The US Conference of Catholic Bishops has repeatedly challenged Obama's signature accomplishment, the Affordable Care Act, arguing that it the health care scheme violates religious freedom by requiring for-profit corporations to provide insurance for contraception.

Controversy surrounding the Affordable Care Act and Obama's drop in popularity risk resulting in a Republican victory in an upcoming Senate election, which would dramatically weaken the US leader's negotiating position for his remaining two years in power.

Religious expert John Allen told Vatican Radio Obama will be fishing for Catholic votes to help him keep a hold on the Senate.

Words of support from Francis would certainly boost his case: a survey published by the Saint-Leo University found that Francis was popular with 85 percent of Catholics and 63 percent of Americans.

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2014, 10:54:46 PM »
Quote
Obama is "mostly going I think to bask in the glow of the new Pope," said Jeremy Shapiro, visiting fellow at Washington's Brookings institute.

I hate this POS...have I mentioned this lately!!!
« Last Edit: March 26, 2014, 10:55:17 PM by mystery-ak »

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Offline Gazoo

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #2 on: March 26, 2014, 11:04:46 PM »
The article actually reports Obama is going for a photo-op. At least it doesn't say the messiah to meet the Pope.

Further reading of the article...Obama actually thinks this Holy man is a marxist like he is. Obama thinks that the Pope will say something pro-choice and praise Obama.

This is sick.

You can go no lower. Using the Pope to bring his approval ratings up as his wife is sucking up to commie China and Obama has not one good policy foreign or domestic, other than Obama getting OBL-AS the SOB guts our military! Obama will probably ask the Pope to do a stint for Obamacare. Obama thinks the Pope and others will think Obamacare is for the poor and Obama is a messiah.

YOU.CANNOT.GET.ANY.LOWER Obama is such a partisan hack POS
"The Tea Party has a right to feel cheated.

When does the Republican Party, put in the majority by the Tea Party, plan to honor its commitment to halt the growth of the Federal monolith and bring the budget back into balance"?

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #3 on: March 27, 2014, 12:01:17 AM »
May His Holiness Bless Obama appropriately.

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Offline Gazoo

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2014, 07:46:07 AM »
There is not enough Holy Water.
"The Tea Party has a right to feel cheated.

When does the Republican Party, put in the majority by the Tea Party, plan to honor its commitment to halt the growth of the Federal monolith and bring the budget back into balance"?

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #5 on: March 27, 2014, 08:16:57 AM »
You're correct that BHO considers the pope a fellow traveler.
Quote
Obama meets with Pope Francis
By Associated Press
March 27, 2014 | 5:59am


VATICAN CITY — President Barack Obama called himself a “great admirer” of Pope Francis as he sat down at the Vatican Thursday with the pontiff he considers a kindred spirit on issues of economic inequality. Their historic first meeting comes as Obama’s administration and the church remain deeply split on issues of abortion and contraception.

Obama arrived at the Vatican amid the pomp and tradition of the Catholic Church, making his way to greet the pope after a long, slow procession through the hallways of the Apostolic Palace led by colorful Swiss Guards and accompanied by ceremonial attendants. The president bowed as he shook hands with the pontiff in the Small Throne Room, before the two sat down at a wooden table in the Papal Library.

“It is a great honor. I’m a great admirer,” Obama said. “Thank you so much for receiving me.”

As they meet, the six-year president, with his sinking poll numbers, would not be blamed for seeking some reflected glory from a pope who, one year into his pontificate, is viewed as an agent of change in the Roman Catholic Church.

Obama is the ninth president to make an official visit to the Vatican. His audience marks a change of pace for the president, who has devoted the past three days of a weeklong, four-country trip to securing European unity against Russia’s aggressive posture toward Ukraine.

The pope whom Obama will sit with this time is a different pontiff than the last one to host him. Obama visited Pope Benedict XVI in 2009, a cordial meeting that nevertheless drew attention to the differences between the church and Obama on abortion.

To be sure, the relationship between the Obama administration and the Catholic Church is a fraught one. And Vatican officials say Obama will not leave without having heard Francis’ views on Obama’s health care law and its mandates for contraception coverage. But in Francis, the White House sees the popular pope and his emphasis on economic disparity as a form of moral validation of the president’s economic agenda.

“Given his great moral authority, when the pope speaks it carries enormous weight,” Obama said in an interview with the Italian daily Corriere della Sera published ahead of his papal visit. “He can cause people around to the world to stop and perhaps rethink old attitudes and begin treating one another with more decency and compassion.”

Several presidents have found allies if not comfort in the pope.

President Ronald Reagan and Pope John Paul II famously shared an antipathy for the former Soviet Union, Reagan the Cold War warrior and the pope a Polish priest who fought communism in his country and later in Europe.

“Sometimes in these meetings there are compatible personalities,” said Paul Begala, a former aide to President Bill Clinton and a Catholic himself. He recalled being with Clinton when the president met John Paul II in Denver.

“They were only supposed to meet alone for five minutes,” he said in an interview earlier this year. “Those two gregarious, charismatic men sat in that room for an hour without another soul in there.”

The Obama-Francis chemistry remains to be seen, but thematically both seem to be on some of the same pages.

Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput, at the Vatican this week trying to secure Francis’ attendance in Philadelphia next year, said he expected the Obama-Francis meeting to be good for both the U.S. and the Vatican.

“We have the most important religious figure in the world as part of that meeting, and one of the most important political leaders, so anytime the church and politics come together is an important moment for dialogue, discussion and the commitment to the common good,” Chaput told reporters Tuesday at the Vatican.

Still, there are difficult areas of discord between U.S. bishops and the Obama administration over abortion and the administration’s health care overhaul. U.S. bishops were among the most outspoken opponents of Obamacare, objecting to its mandatory coverage of contraception. The Supreme Court this week seemed divided when hearing arguments in a case in which companies argued that they have religious rights and can object to such coverage based on such beliefs.

Vatican officials noted that during the recent visit of Secretary of State John Kerry with his Vatican counterpart Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the cardinal raised the issue of the health care mandate. The Vatican statement issued after that meeting said Parolin had “expressed the concern of the U.S. bishops for the reforms in relation to the guarantee of religious freedom and conscientious objection.”

Anticipating that the issue will be a topic of their meeting, Catholics for Choice published an ad in the International New York Times Thursday as an open letter to Obama declaring that “Francis’ interpretation of church teachings does not represent that of the majority of Catholics, especially on issues related to sexuality, reproductive health and family life.”

Francis faithfully backs church teaching on abortion — he has said he’s a “son of the church” — but his emphasis and tone are elsewhere. He has said he wants his church to be more of a missionary, welcoming place for wounded souls rather than a moralizing church.

He caused a fuss in November when he decried some conservative economic theories as unproven. “The excluded are still waiting,” he wrote.

Francis’ attention to poverty has also captured the attention of Republicans, prompting some to stake out high-profile anti-poverty positions. House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, has extended a formal and open invitation to the pope to address Congress when he visits the United States.

No doubt there is a political dimension to Obama’s visit as well. The president won the Catholic vote in both of his elections, helped by heavy support from Hispanic Catholics. Some of that support has waned since.

Meanwhile, the Pew Research Center found that the pope remains hugely popular, with more than 8 in 10 U.S. Catholics saying they have a favorable view of the pontiff.
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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #6 on: March 27, 2014, 09:45:47 AM »
 President Obama has a gift for Pope Francis
By: Tal Kopan
March 27, 2014 07:23 AM EDT

President Barack Obama didn’t show up at the Vatican for his meeting with Pope Francis on Thursday empty-handed — he brought the Roman Catholic leader a gift straight from the White House garden.

Obama presented the Pope with a custom seed chest that included seeds for fruits and vegetables used in the White House garden, :thud: according to pool reports.

When presenting the gifts, Obama mentioned he had heard the Pope was opening up Vatican gardens to the public and explained the contents.


“These I think are carrots,” the president said, holding a pouch, according to pool reports. “Each one has a different seed in it. The box is made from timber from the first cathedral to open in the United States, in Baltimore.”

The chest is made from American leather and wood reclaimed from the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin May, a Baltimore, Md., cathedral that was the first major metropolitan cathedral built in the U.S. after the signing of the Constitution.

An inscription on the chest reads: “Presented to His Holiness Pope Francis by Barack Obama, President of the United States of America, March 27, 2014.”

Along with the seeds for the Vatican gardens, Thomas Jefferson’s home Monticello in Virginia will donate produce seeds to a charity of the Pope’s choice.

“If you have a chance to come to the White House, we can show you our garden, as well,” Obama said.

The Pope reportedly smiled and laughed frequently during the gift exchange.

The Pope announced at the beginning of the month that the historic papal residence at Castel Gandolfo and the Barberini Gardens would be opened to the public. His tenure so far has been marked by a decision to eschew many of the extravagances of the papacy and to focus on the poor and less fortunate.

The Pope also presented Obama with a plaque and an encyclical, a term for a letter from the Pope to the Church’s bishops.

“I will treasure this,” Obama said of the plaque. “I actually will probably read this in the Oval Office when I’m deeply frustrated. I’m sure it will give me strength and calm me down,” he added of the encyclical, to which the Pope smiled and laughed.

As he left, Obama asked the Pope to pray for his family, to which the Pope agreed.

Obama and Pope Francis met privately for almost an hour Thursday morning at the Vatican.

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Offline andy58-in-nh

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #7 on: March 27, 2014, 10:06:45 AM »
I suppose it might have been worse.

Obama might have brought the Pope an iPod filled with his speeches.

Or else asked Francis to kiss his ring.
Liberalism isn't really about making the world a better place. It's about reassuring the elites that they are good people for wanting to rule over it.

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #8 on: March 27, 2014, 10:54:43 AM »
Obama Gives Pope Chest of 'Fruit and Vegetable Seeds Used in the White House Garden'
Asks pope to pray for his family.
6:45 AM, MAR 27, 2014 • BY DANIEL HALPER

President Obama has just concluded his meeting with the pope today in the Vatican. The White House sent details of the gift President Obama delivered to the pope.

"President Barack Obama presented His Holiness Pope Francis with a custom-made seed chest featuring a variety of fruit and vegetable seeds used in the White House Garden.  Earlier this month, Pope Francis made the historic announcement that he would open to the public the gardens of the papal summer residence, the Apostolic Palace of Castel Gandolfo," writes the White House in an email to reporters.

"The chest is made from American leather, and features reclaimed wood from the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, which is one of the oldest Catholic cathedrals built in the United States. 


The Basilica’s cornerstone was laid by John Carroll, a Jesuit and the first Catholic bishop and archbishop in the United States.  The Cathedral was designed by Benjamin Latrobe, who was selected by President Thomas Jefferson to serve as an Architect of the Capitol, and played a pivotal role in its design and construction.

The inscription on the chest reads:
 
Presented to His Holiness Pope Francis
by Barack Obama
President of the United States of America
March 27, 2014
 
In keeping with the spirit of the gift, Thomas Jefferson's Monticello will donate seeds that will yield several tons of produce to a charity of Pope Francis’ choosing.

UPDATE: Here are details of the gift exchange, via the pool report:

Following the meeting, the press was ushered into the Papal Library for the gift exchange and the greeting of the US delegation.

The mood overall during the gift exchange was light. The president smiled quite a bit, saying things to the pope that could not always be heard by the pool but often made Francis smile or laugh.

The pope and the president stood at the far end of the room from the desk, which was where they sat for their meeting. The two talked softly while the delegation filed in the room. One by one, the delegation - which included Rice, Pfeiffer andRhodes - stepped by one by one to shake hands with the pope. The delegation lined up next to the pope and the president, split up in two rows on either side.

The president and the pope then stepped forward to the gift table. See previous pool report for the details.

The president was up first for the exchange. He gave the Pope a custom-made box of seeds. The president mentioned that he heard the pope has decided to open gardens at the summer residence to the public.

"These I think are carrots," he said, holding a pouch. "Each one has a different seed in it. The box is made from timber from the first cathedral to open in the United States in Baltimore."

"If you have a chance to come to the White House, we can show you our garden as well," the president said.

Then the pope spoke through an interpreter, showing the gifts to Obama.

The pope gave the president a plaque of some kind.

"I will treasure this," Obama said.

He also received an encyclical (waiting for more detail the pope's gifts).

"I actually will probably read this in the Oval Office when I'm deeply frustrated. I'm sure it will give me strength and calm me down," the president said smiling.

Once the remark was interpreted for him, the pope smiled as well and chuckled.

The two made their way towards the door.

"His Holiness is probably the only person in the world who has to put up with more protocol," the president joked.

Before they departed, they shook each other's hands in an extended embrace.

"My family has to be with me on this journey. They've been very strong. Pray for them. I would appreciate it," the president said.

The pope assented.

Obama then headed for his next meeting.

http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/obama-gives-pope-chest-fruit-and-vegetable-seeds-used-white-house-garden_786099.html?utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=twitterfeed

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Offline EC

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #9 on: March 27, 2014, 11:13:37 AM »
Nice gift. Multiple levels of symbolism. Very appropriate.
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Offline flowers

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #10 on: March 27, 2014, 12:41:32 PM »
Getting popularity tips Mr President? Barack Obama hopes for 'Francis bounce' as he meets Pope for first time and asks him to pray for his family because they have to 'put up' with him

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2590566/Getting-popularity-tips-Barack-Obama-meets-Pope-Francis-time-says-great-honour.html

Quote
Obama arrived this morning at the Vatican's ornate grounds
After a slow procession he was introduced to Pope Francis
Obama said that it was wonderful and a great honour to meet the Pontiff
Their private discussion went over by nearly half hour
Obama presented the Pope with a chest of fruit and vegetable seeds
It is hoped the seeds will be planted in gardens of the papal residence
Pope Francis has a 76 per cent approval rating in the U.S. according to poll


Obama then presented the pope with a seed chest with fruit and vegetable seeds used in the White House Garden


Offline Gazoo

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #11 on: March 27, 2014, 01:11:21 PM »
Quote
Obama, Pope Francis meet for the 1st time

Although their meeting on Thursday was cordial, the White House and Vatican gave differing accounts of how it went.

VATICAN CITY (AP) -- President Barack Obama and the Vatican gave distinctly different accounts of the president's audience with Pope Francis, with Obama stressing their common ground over issues of poverty and inequality and Vatican officials emphasizing sharp differences over abortion and birth control.

http://www.aol.com/article/2014/03/27/obama-tells-pope-francis-he-is-a-great-admirer/20857819/#!slide=2507699
"The Tea Party has a right to feel cheated.

When does the Republican Party, put in the majority by the Tea Party, plan to honor its commitment to halt the growth of the Federal monolith and bring the budget back into balance"?

Offline Gazoo

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #12 on: March 27, 2014, 01:15:52 PM »
President Obama has a gift for Pope Francis
By: Tal Kopan
March 27, 2014 07:23 AM EDT

President Barack Obama didn’t show up at the Vatican for his meeting with Pope Francis on Thursday empty-handed — he brought the Roman Catholic leader a gift straight from the White House garden.

Obama presented the Pope with a custom seed chest that included seeds for fruits and vegetables used in the White House garden, :thud: according to pool reports.

When presenting the gifts, Obama mentioned he had heard the Pope was opening up Vatican gardens to the public and explained the contents.


“These I think are carrots,” the president said, holding a pouch, according to pool reports. “Each one has a different seed in it. The box is made from timber from the first cathedral to open in the United States, in Baltimore.”

The chest is made from American leather and wood reclaimed from the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin May, a Baltimore, Md., cathedral that was the first major metropolitan cathedral built in the U.S. after the signing of the Constitution.

An inscription on the chest reads: “Presented to His Holiness Pope Francis by Barack Obama, President of the United States of America, March 27, 2014.”

Along with the seeds for the Vatican gardens, Thomas Jefferson’s home Monticello in Virginia will donate produce seeds to a charity of the Pope’s choice.

“If you have a chance to come to the White House, we can show you our garden, as well,” Obama said.

The Pope reportedly smiled and laughed frequently during the gift exchange.

The Pope announced at the beginning of the month that the historic papal residence at Castel Gandolfo and the Barberini Gardens would be opened to the public. His tenure so far has been marked by a decision to eschew many of the extravagances of the papacy and to focus on the poor and less fortunate.

The Pope also presented Obama with a plaque and an encyclical, a term for a letter from the Pope to the Church’s bishops.

“I will treasure this,” Obama said of the plaque. “I actually will probably read this in the Oval Office when I’m deeply frustrated. I’m sure it will give me strength and calm me down,” he added of the encyclical, to which the Pope smiled and laughed.

As he left, Obama asked the Pope to pray for his family, to which the Pope agreed.

Obama and Pope Francis met privately for almost an hour Thursday morning at the Vatican.


Quote
He also received an encyclical (waiting for more detail the pope's gifts)


I am going to guess something like this

http://priestsforlife.org/magisterium/EVText.htm
"The Tea Party has a right to feel cheated.

When does the Republican Party, put in the majority by the Tea Party, plan to honor its commitment to halt the growth of the Federal monolith and bring the budget back into balance"?

Offline Howie66

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #13 on: March 27, 2014, 01:23:52 PM »
I hate this POS...have I mentioned this lately!!!

Total agreement!  :beer:
I come in peace, I didn't bring artillery.  But I am pleading with you with tears in my eyes:  If you bleep with me, I'll kill you all.

Marine General James Mattis, to Iraqi tribal leaders (Note: Mattis did NOT say "BLEEP". He threw the F Bomb)

I didn't enlist in the Corps just to watch my country become a Third World Communist Shit-hole. Don't know anyone who did.

Offline Gazoo

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #14 on: March 27, 2014, 01:26:02 PM »
Quote
Pope tells Obama of concern for 'religious freedom' in U.S
 
1 hour ago
 
VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - Pope Francis and Vatican officials on Thursday told U.S. President Barack Obama they were concerned about "religious freedom" in the United States, an apparent reference to the contraception mandate in Obama's health care plan.

Obama held nearly an hour of private talks with the pope and then the president and Secretary of State John Kerry held separate talks with Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin and other diplomats.

The talks included "discussion on questions of particular relevance for the Church" in the United States, including "the exercise of the rights to religious freedom, life and conscientious objection," a Vatican statement said.

Obama's 2010 healthcare law, widely opposed by Republicans, includes a provision that requires employers to cover the cost of contraception in their health insurance plans.

Catholic and other religious groups say the mandate forces them to support contraception and sterilization in violation of their religious beliefs or face steep fines.

The so-called contraception mandate has been the subject of more than 100 lawsuits across the United States.

Just this week the U.S. Supreme Court signaled it may allow corporations to mount religious objections to government action, possibly paving the way for companies to avoid covering employees' birth control as required under Obamacare.

During a 90-minute oral argument on Tuesday, the nine Supreme Court justices appeared ready to rule that certain for-profit entities have the same religious rights to object as individuals do.

There is an exception for religious institutions such as houses of worship that mainly serve and employ members of their own faith, but not schools, hospitals and charitable organizations employing people of all faiths.

The reference to "life" was reference to the Roman Catholic Church's opposition to abortion. Obama supports abortion rights.

The subject was raised when Obama met then-pope Benedict in 2009, when the president promised to do everything he could to reduce the number of abortions.

http://news.yahoo.com/pope-tells-obama-concern-religious-freedom-u-155928809--sector.html;_ylt=AwrTWVWPUTRTdDQAGIfQtDMD


My guess is Obama was kindly schooled on religious freedom and abortion.
"The Tea Party has a right to feel cheated.

When does the Republican Party, put in the majority by the Tea Party, plan to honor its commitment to halt the growth of the Federal monolith and bring the budget back into balance"?

Offline Howie66

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #15 on: March 27, 2014, 01:27:39 PM »
Obama Gives Pope Chest of 'Fruit and Vegetable Seeds Used in the White House Garden'
Asks pope to pray for his family.
6:45 AM, MAR 27, 2014 • BY DANIEL HALPER

President Obama has just concluded his meeting with the pope today in the Vatican. The White House sent details of the gift President Obama delivered to the pope.

"President Barack Obama presented His Holiness Pope Francis with a custom-made seed chest featuring a variety of fruit and vegetable seeds used in the White House Garden.  Earlier this month, Pope Francis made the historic announcement that he would open to the public the gardens of the papal summer residence, the Apostolic Palace of Castel Gandolfo," writes the White House in an email to reporters.

"The chest is made from American leather, and features reclaimed wood from the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, which is one of the oldest Catholic cathedrals built in the United States. 


The Basilica’s cornerstone was laid by John Carroll, a Jesuit and the first Catholic bishop and archbishop in the United States.  The Cathedral was designed by Benjamin Latrobe, who was selected by President Thomas Jefferson to serve as an Architect of the Capitol, and played a pivotal role in its design and construction.

The inscription on the chest reads:
 
Presented to His Holiness Pope Francis
by Barack Obama
President of the United States of America
March 27, 2014
 
In keeping with the spirit of the gift, Thomas Jefferson's Monticello will donate seeds that will yield several tons of produce to a charity of Pope Francis’ choosing.

UPDATE: Here are details of the gift exchange, via the pool report:

Following the meeting, the press was ushered into the Papal Library for the gift exchange and the greeting of the US delegation.

The mood overall during the gift exchange was light. The president smiled quite a bit, saying things to the pope that could not always be heard by the pool but often made Francis smile or laugh.

The pope and the president stood at the far end of the room from the desk, which was where they sat for their meeting. The two talked softly while the delegation filed in the room. One by one, the delegation - which included Rice, Pfeiffer andRhodes - stepped by one by one to shake hands with the pope. The delegation lined up next to the pope and the president, split up in two rows on either side.

The president and the pope then stepped forward to the gift table. See previous pool report for the details.

The president was up first for the exchange. He gave the Pope a custom-made box of seeds. The president mentioned that he heard the pope has decided to open gardens at the summer residence to the public.

"These I think are carrots," he said, holding a pouch. "Each one has a different seed in it. The box is made from timber from the first cathedral to open in the United States in Baltimore."

"If you have a chance to come to the White House, we can show you our garden as well," the president said.

Then the pope spoke through an interpreter, showing the gifts to Obama.

The pope gave the president a plaque of some kind.

"I will treasure this," Obama said.

He also received an encyclical (waiting for more detail the pope's gifts).

"I actually will probably read this in the Oval Office when I'm deeply frustrated. I'm sure it will give me strength and calm me down," the president said smiling.

Once the remark was interpreted for him, the pope smiled as well and chuckled.

The two made their way towards the door.

"His Holiness is probably the only person in the world who has to put up with more protocol," the president joked.

Before they departed, they shook each other's hands in an extended embrace.

"My family has to be with me on this journey. They've been very strong. Pray for them. I would appreciate it," the president said.

The pope assented.

Obama then headed for his next meeting.

http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/obama-gives-pope-chest-fruit-and-vegetable-seeds-used-white-house-garden_786099.html?utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=twitterfeed


Wonder how long it took for the smell of sulfur to dissipate from the interior of the Vatican?
I come in peace, I didn't bring artillery.  But I am pleading with you with tears in my eyes:  If you bleep with me, I'll kill you all.

Marine General James Mattis, to Iraqi tribal leaders (Note: Mattis did NOT say "BLEEP". He threw the F Bomb)

I didn't enlist in the Corps just to watch my country become a Third World Communist Shit-hole. Don't know anyone who did.

Offline alicewonders

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #16 on: March 27, 2014, 01:41:43 PM »
Wonder how long it took for the smell of sulfur to dissipate from the interior of the Vatican?

 They have specialists who can deal with that.   :whistle:
Don't tread on me.   8888madkitty

We told you Trump would win - bigly!

Online mystery-ak

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #17 on: March 27, 2014, 01:47:09 PM »
http://dyn.politico.com/printstory.cfm?uuid=6D5890BC-57ED-4A7A-8767-BB7C6B07AA78

 Obama downplays Vatican Obamacare talk
By: Carrie Budoff Brown and Jennifer Epstein
March 27, 2014 12:50 PM EDT

ROME — President Barack Obama was confronted during his Thursday visit to the Vatican by concerns over the Affordable Care Act’s contraception mandate, but Pope Francis did “not touch in detail” on the issue, he said, instead focusing their conversation on economic opportunity and global conflicts.

“We actually didn’t talk a lot about social schisms in my conversation with His Holiness. In fact, that was not really a topic of conversation,” the president said during a press conference at Villa Madama, a High Renaissance building just outside the center of the city.

But Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican’s secretary of state, did press Obama on “making sure that conscious and religious freedom was observed” in applying the ACA.



Obama said he told Parolin that his administration has worked to make it possible for Americans — particularly women — to be “able to enjoy the kind of coverage that the ACA offers, but that religious freedom is still observed.”

The Catholic Church has made clear its views on contraceptives and other hot-button social issues, Obama said, but that was not something on which his conversations at the Holy See dwelled. “Some of them I differ with. Most I heartily agree with,” he said.

Obama described two main topics of conversation during his meeting with the pope — “the poor, the marginalized, those without opportunity and growing inequality” and conflicts around the world, especially in the Middle East and Latin America. The common theme throughout their discussion was “a belief that that in politics and in life the quality of empathy — the ability to stand in somebody else’s shoes and to care for them even if they don’t look like you, talk like you… — that’s critical,” he said.

Opportunity and inequality is “an area that’s going to be of increasing concern” in the United States and around the world, Obama said, and he sees the pope as “hopefully creating an environment in which those of us who care about this are able to talk about it more effectively.” The pope has the “capacity to open peoples’ eyes and make sure that they’re seeing that this is an issue,” while it’s Obama’s responsibility as a politician to try to “come up up with policies to address” issues related to poverty and opportunity, he said.


Though the president stressed the conversation of economic inequality — which fits well with his domestic agenda — there was no mention of it in the Vatican’s readout of the meetings, which said there “was a discussion on questions of particular relevance for the church in that country, such as the exercise of the rights to religious freedom, life and conscientious objection.”

There was also talk of immigration reform, with Obama conveying to Francis that he “felt that there was still an opportunity to make this right and get a law passed.”

“As someone who came from Latin America, I think he was very mindful of the plight of many immigrants, who are wonderful people” who work hard but who “still live in the shadows,” Obama said of the pope’s views.



Joined by Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi in an ornately decorated marble-walled hall here for the press conference, Obama also weighed in on the International Monetary Fund’s pledge of as much $18 billion in loans for Ukraine. It’s a “major step forward,” the president said, as he repeated his call for Congress to take action to provide additional economic aid to Ukraine.

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Offline Howie66

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #18 on: March 27, 2014, 01:49:28 PM »
May His Holiness Bless Obama appropriately.




 :amen: :amen: :amen:

Short, sweet and to the point!   :beer:
I come in peace, I didn't bring artillery.  But I am pleading with you with tears in my eyes:  If you bleep with me, I'll kill you all.

Marine General James Mattis, to Iraqi tribal leaders (Note: Mattis did NOT say "BLEEP". He threw the F Bomb)

I didn't enlist in the Corps just to watch my country become a Third World Communist Shit-hole. Don't know anyone who did.

Offline Howie66

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #19 on: March 27, 2014, 01:50:38 PM »
They have specialists who can deal with that.   :whistle:
goopo
I come in peace, I didn't bring artillery.  But I am pleading with you with tears in my eyes:  If you bleep with me, I'll kill you all.

Marine General James Mattis, to Iraqi tribal leaders (Note: Mattis did NOT say "BLEEP". He threw the F Bomb)

I didn't enlist in the Corps just to watch my country become a Third World Communist Shit-hole. Don't know anyone who did.

Online mystery-ak

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #20 on: March 27, 2014, 03:44:33 PM »
http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/03/27/their-cordial-meeting-proves-the-common-bonds-of-obama-and-pope-francis.html

Their Cordial Meeting Proves the Common Bonds of Obama and Pope Francis
The relationship between the Obama administration and the Catholic Church has often been derailed by conservative factions, but face to face Obama and Pope Francis blew right past that.
At 10:30 a.m. Thursday, two of the most powerful leaders in the world—the head of the global Roman Catholic Church and the president of the United States—shared whispers and laughter on their way into the papal library, where they sat across a simple table to meet. The two men spoke for 52 minutes—much longer than many observers expected—and at the end grasped hands in a warm embrace.

By all accounts, the meeting was very positive. I’ve communicated with administration officials traveling with the president, and Obama himself said after the meeting that, “We actually didn’t talk a lot about social schisms… that was not really a topic of conversation.”

The men exchanged gifts. For Pope Francis, President Obama offered seeds planted in the White House garden, presented in a handcrafted chest made of reclaimed wood from the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, one of our country’s oldest Catholic churches. The cornerstone of this Basilica was laid by John Carroll, the first Catholic bishop in the United States.

For President Obama, Pope Francis presented a copy of his historic 2013 apostolic exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium, which made bold declarations about income inequality around the world, along with a medal of St. Peter’s Square, and a cast in bronze bearing the words: “Solidarity and Peace.”

The words of the cast—solidarity and peace—could hardly have more meaning. For the last several years, dating to the 2004 election and the Catholic opposition to then-presidential candidate and current Secretary of State John Kerry, conservative Catholics and some Democrats have been in a perpetual state of conflict.  Partisans on the left sought to marginalize the role of religion in general, and the Catholic Church in particular, in American public life and policymaking, while some on the right, including a handful of vocal, conservative Catholic bishops, forsook the search for common ground in favor of all-out war. And war we’ve seen, with accusations, lawsuits, and partian campaigns proliferating on both sides.

This was a mutation of a relationship that should, in theory, be unbreakably strong. In the Catholic Church, we have an institution that feeds millions of hungry in our country, cares for thousands of refugees, and, ever since Elizabeth Ann Seton’s Sisters of Charity started staffing the Baltimore Infirmary in 1828, has healed countless sick across the nation. In the United States government you have an institution that has provided critical support for these social service efforts, and a president, in Obama, who knows the Catholic Church through and through, and counts a former Catholic archbishop of Chicago as one of his prime inspirations for public service.

For years now, political campaigns, interlocutors, and outside interest groups have gotten in the way, and reshaped this critical relationship around their partisan aims.
For years now, political campaigns, interlocutors, and outside interest groups have gotten in the way, and reshaped this critical relationship around their partisan aims. But today, Francis and Obama appear to have said, enough is enough.

“His Holiness and the Vatican have been clear about a range of issues,” Obama said after the meeting. “Some of them I differ with; most I ardently agree with.” The headline of L'Osservatore Romano put it even more plainly: “Common Commitment.” Based on the readouts of the meeting, this appears to mean a common commitment to ending human trafficking, to compassionate immigration reform, to addressing the inequities in our global financial system that leave the rich ever richer, and the middle class and poor struggling to get by.

Certainly there will be differences, and the Vatican will have to be sensitive to not overstate its collaboration with the president for fear of offending those few bishops still locked in war. The administration, likewise, will have to ignore strident voices on its left and make good on promises to continue unpacking the thorny issue of religious liberty in coalition with the Catholic Church and others. But Pope Francis and President Obama showed today that this type of dialogue can be accomplished—not through press releases and blog posts, but across simple tables, with quiet laughter, and good will.

I do not know for sure, but imagine it is no coincidence that President Obama’s gift referred to the cornerstone of the National Shrine. The Catholic Church in our country has been a cornerstone of healing, reconciliation, and human dignity throughout much of its history. Perhaps the President desires to return to the place where that precious legacy is what people think of first when they hear the words “U.S. Catholic Church,” while Pope Francis desires to return to an era, in the words of his own gift, of “Solidarity and Peace.”

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Offline Gazoo

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #21 on: March 27, 2014, 08:21:11 PM »
"The Tea Party has a right to feel cheated.

When does the Republican Party, put in the majority by the Tea Party, plan to honor its commitment to halt the growth of the Federal monolith and bring the budget back into balance"?

Offline Gazoo

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #22 on: March 27, 2014, 08:27:35 PM »
"The Tea Party has a right to feel cheated.

When does the Republican Party, put in the majority by the Tea Party, plan to honor its commitment to halt the growth of the Federal monolith and bring the budget back into balance"?

Offline Gazoo

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #23 on: March 27, 2014, 08:30:59 PM »
"The Tea Party has a right to feel cheated.

When does the Republican Party, put in the majority by the Tea Party, plan to honor its commitment to halt the growth of the Federal monolith and bring the budget back into balance"?

Offline Oceander

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Re: OBAMA TO VATICAN FOR POPE BLESSING
« Reply #24 on: March 27, 2014, 08:53:44 PM »
It must have taken the will of a saint to abide by Obama without giving him a dope slap.


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