(FreedomBeacon.com)- In what many believe was a not-so-subtle attack against Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN), the Alabama-based US Catholic cable channel, Pope Francis had some harsh words for his conservative Catholic critics.
During his first international trip since recovering from a colon operation, Pope Francis met with Jesuit leaders in Slovakia. And according to the Jesuit magazine La Civilta Cattolica, when asked about his health post-surgery, Francis joked that he was “still alive” even though some people want him dead.
The Pope said that he was aware that there were meetings between some prelates who believed that he was in much more serious condition than was reported. “They were preparing the conclave,” the Pope remarked.
Pope Francis underwent a 3-hour surgery on July 4 to remove about thirteen inches of his large intestine. He then spent eleven days in the hospital recovering. Since then, he has resumed his full work schedule.
Throughout his three-day tour of Hungary and Slovakia, Francis repeatedly took aim at conservative traditionalists, urging Catholics not to let religion color their politics.
From his time as Pope, it seems clear that Francis lets his politics color his religion.
Francis also warned about “rigidity” among the more conservative factions of the Church. That’s when he took a jab at a “major Catholic television station” that frequently criticizes him. Sure, he didn’t come out and name EWTN, but most people knew whom he was speaking about.
Eternal Word Television Network has frequently pushed back against some of Pope Francis’ more Left-leaning initiatives.
Francis, while acknowledging that, as a sinner, he might deserve “attacks and insults,” added that criticizing the Church as a whole “is the work of the devil.”
But it isn’t the Roman Catholic Church EWTN criticizes. It is a Roman Catholic network after all. Instead, it has, since Francis elevation to pope in 2013, frequently criticized his socially liberal, highly political actions and statements that go against traditional Catholic teachings.
The Pope also complained about the criticism that he talks too much about social issues and that he is a Marxist, arguing that he once wrote “an entire apostolic exhortation on holiness.”
But that doesn’t negate the fact that Pope Francis seems far more focused on peddling social issues like Climate Change and Amnesty than he is on Catholic teaching.