In the aftermath of Pope Francis’ comments suggesting that a person who thinks only of building walls “is not a Christian,” celebrated evangelist Franklin Graham (pictured) has offered some Christian fraternal correction, reminding the pontiff of the importance of national security and that Donald Trump is not alone in advocating a wall.
In a Facebook post early Friday, Graham concedes that “as Christians we should try to build bridges with everyone that we possibly can” but immediately adds that this “doesn’t mean that we should compromise our national security.”
On the papal plane returning to Rome Thursday, Pope Francis was asked to comment on the position of Donald J. Trump regarding the building of a wall between the U.S. and Mexico. He said, “A person who thinks only about building walls wherever they may be and not building bridges is not Christian.”
Graham, the son of evangelist Billy Graham, followed up with a tweet, hammering home his conviction that bridges and walls are not mutually exclusive.
Christians should try to build bridges with everyone but that doesn’t mean we should compromise national security. https://t.co/wKdpCHMBfR
— Franklin Graham (@Franklin_Graham) February 19, 2016
In his post, Graham also reminded the Pope that “Donald Trump isn’t the only one who wants to build a wall.”
Other Republican candidates, he noted, including “Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Dr. Ben Carson, and John Kasich as well as millions of Americans, also want to build a wall” and they do so “in order to protect America from enemies who want to use the U.S./Mexican border as a way to enter our country and do us harm.”
“Are they not Christian either?” he asked rhetorically.
Graham closes by suggesting that Pope Francis–who lives in perhaps the most conspicuous walled country in the world–be a little more diplomatic in his remarks, especially when they target a candidate for the U.S. presidency.
“My advice to the Pontiff,” he concluded, “reach out and build a bridge to Donald Trump. Who knows where he may be this time next year!”
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