Left-wing film-maker among group honoured by Pope Francis in Sistine Chapel
Pope Francis has told Ken Loach and other artists that they are like “prophets” confronting propaganda, disinformation and the schemes of the powerful, during an invitation-only gathering at the Vatican’s Sistine Chapel.
Francis told the gathered artists:
Like the biblical prophets, you confront things that at times are uncomfortable; you criticize today’s false myths and new idols, its empty talk, the ploys of consumerism, the schemes of power…
And – not unironically, given the propaganda assault of the self-important Labour and pro-Israel right on Loach for his readiness to speak out against the antisemitism smear scam against Jeremy Corbyn and the left – Francis, known for his outspokenness on the corruption of power and wealth and on the duty to care for the poor and vulnerable, added:
The Bible is rich in touches of irony, poking fun at presumptions of self-sufficiency, dishonesty, injustice and cruelty lurking under the guise of power and even at times the sacred.
And the Pontiff rounded off his address by telling Loach and his fellow artists that they are his ‘allies’ in:
the defense of human life, social justice, concern for the poor, care for our universal home, universal human fraternity [in an] age of media-driven forms of ideological colonisation and devastating conflicts.
The church, too, feels the effects of this. Conflict can act under a false pretence of unity, from which arise divisions, factions and forms of narcissism.
It seems Pope Francis has had an eye on events in this country and others. (Un)surprisingly, the meeting has been ignored by the UK ‘mainstream’ media, but given recent attempts by the right to have anyone shunned who stands with Loach, it might be wise for the Pontiff not to apply for Labour membership any time soon.