Pope Francis Is the Anti-Trump

This article originally appeared on this site.

For readers consumed with the Trumpian chaos of the past ten days, images of a white-robed Pope Francis standing beside a man dressed like a nutcracker—the Grand Master of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, epauletted and festooned in red and gold—likely seemed absurd and irrelevant. The Pope, one might have read, had forced the resignation of the head of an ancient vestige of Catholic Europe’s cult of aristocracy. Headlines conveyed the impression of a bizarre Vatican dustup sparked by yet more conservative resistance to the liberalizing impulses of the Pope from Argentina. But the contest between Francis and the Order is more than an irrelevant mummers’ play. It is an emblem of the Church’s wider effort to embrace modernity. More than that—and here is the news—it is a front in the now urgent global struggle against all that Donald Trump has come so quickly to represent. Pope Francis is the anti-Trump.

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