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Pope Francis On Trump: 'This Man Is Not Christian'

The Huffington Post The Huffington Post 18/02/2016 Christina Wilkie

WASHINGTON -- Pope Francis said on Thursday that Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump's plan to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border is "not Christian."

Speaking aboard his papal plane after visiting Mexico, the pope was asked specifically about Trump's proposal. "A person who only thinks about building walls, wherever they may be, and not building bridges, is not Christian," he said, according to reporters who were on the plane with the pontiff.

The pope made a point of stressing that he was not suggesting whom American voters should support in the election: "I am not going to get involved in that. I would only say that this man is not Christian if he has said things like that."

Francis, a native of Argentina, has prioritized ministering to the poor and vulnerable during his papacy. 

Trump responded to the pope's comments quickly, putting out a campaign statement that "for a religious leader to question a person’s faith is disgraceful.”

Yet even as he decried the pope's comments, the billionaire real estate mogul conveniently forgot that he has questioned the Christianity of his Republican rival, Sen. Ted Cruz (Texas). 

The GOP front-runner is not the only Republican candidate who has called for a wall to be built between the United States and Mexico. Cruz, along with Ohio Gov. John Kasich, former neurosurgeon Ben Carson and Sen. Marco Rubio (Florida), have all said they would build a barrier along the U.S. southern border.

A son of immigrants himself, the pope noted earlier that the U.S. was "largely built" by immigrant families. 

As word of the pontiff's comments about Trump spread on social media, Trump's social media director, Dan Scavino, posted this tweet:

Editor's Note: Donald Trump is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist,birther and bully who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims -- 1.6 billion members of an entire religion -- from entering the U.S.

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