“Take heed to yourselves,…for grievous wolves shall enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.”– ST. PAUL’S EXHORTATION TO ELDERS, ACTS 20:29,30.

Since his inception last March, Pope Francis has inspired millions with deeds of service and humility like washing the feet of youth inmates and, apparently, slipping out by night and undercover to minister to Rome’s homeless citizens.

He’s also inspired many of the “grievous wolves” of the right-wing media… to lose their minds in attacking and denouncing him.

Numerous pundits including Limbaugh and several on Fox “News” have jumped on the bombastic, anti-Francis bandwagon.

Why? To hear them tell it’s all about FREEDOM. And of course, SOCIALISM. You know, the usual smear job unleashed on anyone who has the audacity to notice and address with real concern the all too obvious economic and social realities of our time.

The Pope has challenged the idea that trickle-down economics works to create a shared economic prosperity and called into serious question societal values when we are consumed by markets and, well, consumption.

Not everyone thinks there’s a problem. Check out this billionaire literally celebrating the immense world wealth imbalance which leaves millions in crushing poverty. He describes the situation as: “Fantastic.” No, really. Watch.

I think the intensity of the vitriol directed against the Pope is a result of his having touched a nerve or two of special sensitivity to the propaganda profiteers. After all, they have spent decades using religion as a crude tool to divide people by whipping-up fear and hatred.

You can just hear them fuming behind the scenes: “And then along comes this popular Pope, who’s actually bringing people together for crying out loud, saying that Ideological Christianity is a “serious illness.

Illness, schmillness! Injecting ideology into religion is our bread and butter, jack! Why don’t you just stick to your Pope-mobile and what ever happened to the big hat anyway?

Then he says the church is “Obsessed with gays, abortion and birth control.” — He’s trying to take away all our best wedge issues!

This will not do.”

Last week in his Message for World Communications Day, Pope Francis hit even more directly on that nerve, saying that media communications should help us, “grow closer, to know one another better, and ultimately, to grow in unity.” 

He warned that the pace of modern media can be too fast and “enables people to barricade themselves behind sources of information which only confirm their own wishes and ideas, or political and economic interests.” Fox in Henhouse

It’s difficult given the Pope’s previous statements, and the increasing empirical evidence, not to see parts of this message as mostly directed at willfully divisive, myopic and misinformational right-wing media sources.

If you rely on Fox and most talk radio, you will catch all the latest smear and misrepresentation of Pope Francis and his words. But you wouldn’t hear his message and warning on media at all.