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Why Black's faith 'will sustain him'

From Saturday's Globe and Mail

At 42, he abandoned his Anglican roots to become a devout Roman Catholic. Now his religious mentors believe the fallen media baron's strong spiritual connection will continue serving as his 'source of inspiration for dark days' ...Read the full article

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  1. D. B. from Greater Sask., Canada writes: It would be a pleasant suprise if the Church would acknowledge that suffering of Oscar Wilde was at least somewhat comparable to the suffering of Conrad Black. Mr. Black's prose will never come close to matching the eloquence of Oscar Wilde's prose.
  2. Raj Rama from Toronto, Canada writes: It will be interesting to see if he wins his appeal, maybe it will be divine intervention...
  3. Nathan Cool from Toronto, Canada writes: For a guy that takes enormous pride in his supposed enormous intelligence, this belief in religion doesn't square right.

    Religion, especially Catholicism, is for the unscientific.. the soft-brained. It shows that Mr. Black is not only a phony billionaire, but a phony intellectual.
  4. d w from Canada writes: Perhaps Conrad will be granted an indulgence. Jail time will be alot like purgatory.
  5. Paul Wallnutz from Ontario, Canada writes: With Conrad's arrogance he will probably try to become the Pope. Hell, he dresses like the Pope half the time.

    But maybe the Pope isn't high enough for him? Lord maybe?

    He is just another two-bit con who finds religion. What a farce.
  6. Popeye Dillon from North Vancouver, Canada writes: He couldn't decide what country he wanted to be a citizen of why should it be a surprise he flip flopped on religion.
  7. d w from Canada writes: Please no cheaps shots at Conrad. Its not right to kick a man when he's down.
  8. S H from Windsor, Canada writes: Don't drop the soap Conrad!
  9. GlynnMhor of Skywall from Canada writes: Compared to actual protestants, anglican catholics are hardly different from roman catholics.
  10. Gary Thomson from Surrey, BC, Canada writes: Now he's a man of God? Sure, Conrad Black is an exceptional guy in many ways but let's not gloss over the big picture. He started off with the head start in money, connections and education that so many of the Canadian 'titans' Mr. Newman fawns over had. He demonstrated a pattern of distaste for ethical norms early in his career. He made his money by bringing a 'bottom line' approach to an industry that had previously accepted its special role in our society. Canada's newspapers, and Canada, are the poorer for it. He used his influence to diminish the range of editorial opinion and to promote his particular conservative, elitist, political agenda. He and his wife lived a life of extreme conspicuous consumption and social climbing. He gave up his Canadian citizenship so he could be elevated to peerage. He stole money from his investors to pay for his extravagances. He is now a convicted criminal. I suspect Conrad's life may have turned out differently if he had not been exposed to Nietzche at too tender an age. Mr. Black spent his life in self-aggrandisement and rebuffed criticism as the envy of lesser beings (You know, that Canadian trait that people who've made their fortune in less than admiral ways blame their lack of repect on, ignoring the many rich, successful and powerful people that are granted it.) Now he's going to jail and his final legacy to the citizens of the country of his birth, that he felt did not deserve him, is a morality play that puts the lie to all that he espoused. He overcame all the advantages he earned or was born with to become a criminal. His life story doesn't even qualify as a tragedy, just a morality play.
  11. Jok Gee Tan from Edmonton, Canada writes: I find it very interesting that anyone would link Mr. Black's impending imprisonment to the suffering of Bonhoeffer or that of Oscar Wilde. While I pray that Mr. Black would use his prison time to do some soul-searching, it would certainly be beneficial for his 'own spiritual development' if he would heed Saint Peter's teaching on suffering, 'For it is commendable if a man bears up under the pain of unjust suffering because he is conscious of God. But how is it to your credit if you receive a beating for doing wrong and endure it ... If you suffer, it should not be as a murderer or thief or any other kind of criminal, or even as a meddler.' (1 Peter 2: 19-20; 4:15)

  12. S Phillips from Canada writes: So this is what he learned in his chruch?
  13. David E from Canada writes: Here's one for the con named Conrad: 'Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.' (Matthew 19:24)
  14. Michael Leblanc from Toronto, Canada writes: Nathan - FYI, many brilliant folks are Catholic (not that I think Conrad baby is brilliant). I don't am not catholic or of any religion (nor do I think I'm brilliant), but I know of numerous individuals who are/were both. Pierre Trudeau springs to mind for a start, Isaac Newton secondly - the list goes on.

    Methinks thou judgeth too much.
  15. A Big Black Dog With Two Tails from Leduc County ex. St. John's, Canada writes: Innocent my auntie. There's a reason why a good legal system uses the term 'not guilty' to describe the condition of being acquited. It is because though we are born innocent, by the time we are adults we have travelled a long way from that state of grace. If the sundry birds and silly cuffs quoted in this article were serious about their faith they would cease to describe each other as innocent. And it is shear nonsense to suggest that Conrad Black is innocent, even if he is truely not guilty of any of the criminal charges against him.
  16. Paul Wallnutz from Ontario, Canada writes: Next I suppose that Brian Mulroney will find religion too. I can see a big cash donation to the Hare Krishna's coming, say about $300k.

    I wonder if Conrad would mind a cellmate who plays 'When Irish Eye's Are Smiling' on the tamborine? I'm sure the pair of them could also compare notes on how to loudly declare yourself completely innocent by developing a very selective memory.
  17. S Phillips from Canada writes: Connie was at least able with his new religion to go to the confessional and make it all better and so allow himself the right to cheat others the next week, and so on and so on. The micks have it good with their faith at least as it allows for sins to be absolved.
  18. Richard Roskell from Naramata, Canada writes: Gary Thomson, that was a magnificent, laser-like summing up.
  19. John B from Vancouver, Canada writes: This seems to be a storyline so common that news organizations must have it stored as a template:

    (Insert convicted felon's name here) faces his sentence with the help of God and his newly found deep faith.

    What a crock. This is Black's handlers spinning and the media, including the G&M, are happy to be spun without even a shred of dignity.
  20. Leebosh Derek from Toronto, Canada writes: Will someone please tell me how it is that Conrad Black converted to Catholicism and is supposedly such a devout, traditionalist, conservative Catholic who never misses a mass etc... YET no sooner did he become a Catholic than he divorced his first wife and married Barbara Amiel - who is Jewish. I was under the impression that this makes him a bigamist and a fornicator in the eyes of the church and I was told that anyone divorced and anyone who married outside of the Catholic church is not allowed to receive communion and risks ex-communication - or maybe the Catholic Church has one set of rules for billionaires like Conrad Black or for members of the Kennedy family and another set of rules for the masses.
  21. John Williams from Ajax, Canada writes: Hiding behind Religion is often the last refuge of a scoundrel.

    We don't need a priest, we need some psychiatrists to analyze how a boy who got himself into serious trouble by selling tests at school and breaking the rules-laws, goes and get himself into a similar type of trouble so many years later.

    Does this not point to a Character-flaw of Entitlement, looking for the fast-money, and believing one-self to be above the law?

    That is what happens when children are raised to think they are 'better and above' commoners.

    More irony that a room of US commoners were the ones to bring The Lord back down to earth.

    Often the very last fig-leaf to hide behind is 'religion'.
  22. John Williams from Ajax, Canada writes: Also, anyone who read even his own Egobiographical books knows that he joined the Catholics, as that is where the POWER is. It was all about getting closer to a certain type of social power. Its just social politics, same as all the parties, and the fancy robes to be a fake 'Lord'. Trying to achieve social powers and status.
  23. Bert Russell Paradox, BC from Canada writes:
    Don't worry about Black!! He has both sides covered and a third option. That is until he serves his Earth time.
  24. Jerry Cutler from Delta, BC, Canada writes:

    Black and Radler are typical religious believers.

    Good boys on Holy Day - crooked as us heathens the rest of the week.

    At least we're not hypocrits.
  25. Scott Anderson from Windsor, Canada writes: Wow I did not notice any people in here mention about the time way back when he bought I think it was Domion stores and bankrupt it on purpose just to get the over funding of the pension plan. Alot of people lost thier jobs and pension after he took the over funding out then shortly after would jump ship and bankrupt the the company which left no pension funds for people with 25 year plus. I don't think Black gave a s h i t about anybody then.
  26. Roop Misir from Toronto, Canada writes: May the light of The Lord illumine the Lord in times of darkness.
  27. GlynnMhor of Skywall from Canada writes: Roop Misir from Toronto, Canada writes: 'May the light of The Lord illumine the Lord in times of darkness.'

    Euh... does he then have a flashlight up his nether orifice?
  28. Roop Misir from Toronto, Canada writes: Hi, GlynnMhor of Skywall from Canada :

    It's all a matter of faith! Protesting or prolific, does it really matter whence comes faith in the Lord?

    Things stranger are known to happen!
  29. wilson ruiz from Germany writes: (CONRAD BLACK) 'He has been a devout parishioner ever since, attending Sunday mass regularly, seeking out the company of Catholic priests and going so far as to build a small prayer chapel in a courtyard of his 15,000-square-foot, nine-acre Toronto mansion at Park Lane Circle.'

    I wonder if God accepted the offering of a man who built a prayer chapel with money stolen from his business partners in a nine-acre mansion erected as a symbol of greed.
  30. Robin Hannah from Canada writes: Brian Mulroney? A devout Parliamentarian? Can we get his confession?? Nah, of course not. He's indignant at the very thought of wrong-doing attached to his name, good grief! Brian Mulroney has never done anything wrong in his entire life of any sort. He among all human beings is faultless. It's that nasty Schrieber's fault. It's The Globe and Mail's fault. It's The CBC's fault. It's Stevie Cameron's fault. Poor Brian Mulroney.
  31. Bert Russell Paradox, BC from Canada writes: Scott Anderson: Jimmy Pattison has taken a leaf out of Blacks book here in BC. re your comment on pensions. Jimmy has done a lot of charity work on the side - just in case money isn't the bottom line at the end of the road.
  32. fragglerock westcoast from Canada writes: When it's his time, Black's stairway is going in one direction, and it's not to heaven.
  33. janfromthe bruce from Canada writes: Please father, absolve me of my sins, as I knew what I was doing, but I am weak, and the bible says that all is forgiven if I just say I believe.

    The bible tells me so.

    Black lacked compassion and care for his fellow human travelers and completely spun 'the meek shall inherent the earth.' Black is neither meek nor innocent.
  34. Mr. Justice from Canada writes: He violated the law and took money that didn't belong to him, and he refuses to admit that he did anything wrong . . . and he declares (through representatives, who do what they're told) how religious he is . . . h m m m . . . no, nothing usual about THAT. He can rationalize pretty much anything he wants. And remember, folks, anyone who criticizes him at this point is guilty of 'anti-Christian bigotry'.
  35. ian hall from vancouver, Canada writes: to scott anderson. right on. You have to wonder why it takes the american justice system to shine the light on the likes of al eagleson and black .
  36. John Ridout from Canada writes: We are all complex human beings with both a light and shadow side. We are all capable of rationalizing our behaviour. And since as humans, Black and I are alike in that regard, I have no need or desire to make judgmental statements about him or his faith.
    Are we human beings on a spiritual journey, human beings on a human journey or spiritual beings on a human journey? If he truly believes the last mentioned, has a personal relationship with the God of his understanding, then that faith will sustain, guide and continue to transform him in the dark days ahead. That will be his shalom
  37. Open Mike from Vancouver, Canada writes: Used to be that patriotism was the last refuge of scoundrels; now, it's religion. If his faith was so strong, why didn't it stop him from ripping people off? Actually, Black was born over a century too late: he would have made a wonderful Gilded Age robber baron alongside the likes of Boss Tweed and Jay Gould.
  38. Basser Basser from Canada writes: Ah yes, Religion. Self Promotion. Perhaps an book in the offing?. I am reminded of the Mafia Movies were the really Bad Guy attends Church, maybe even has a brother or a son who is a priest.. Allway's a cross to be seen... You know the type.. But getting pretty old, don't ya think
  39. james macdonald from Edmonton, Canada writes: Black needs 25 years in a maximum security prison. That will teach him to be honest. But, then again he may bully the other prisoners.
  40. Graeme Irvine from London, United Kingdom writes: Good luck to the old rogue, if he has to go to jail I hope his faith is a comfort to him. Personally I don't think the prosecution case was ever proven beyond reasonable doubt. His may have been sharp practise but he covered it well by getting the cash takers on the boards to ratify it. Only the dubious raid on his office for his possessions stands up, but in the USA where presidents destroy evidence of torture, and steal elections, and lie to create false wars, Lord Black's offense is vary small beer indeed. Give him a fine, tell him to sweep up the streets for a week and let his lordship go back to enteratining the rest of us. In the great scheme of things, his wrongs never got anyone killed or maimed.
  41. Frank Lee My Dears I Don't Give A Damn from Toronto, Canada writes:
    Praise the lord and pass the champagne
    Ol' Conrad's on a religious campaign
    With bible in hand this ain't no bluff.

    Cause Amiel is wanting to buy more stuff.
  42. D E from Canada writes: Some of Conrad Black’s influential pre-sentence references remarked at his sense of charity. It's easy to look good and be charitable with someone else’s money or ill-gotten gains as they say. It took the American justice system to see through 'Lord Black'. What do you think would have happened if Black's case had been tried in Canada. No way would he lose - just too much influence. He has probably written some glowing editorials over the years about almost every influential person in Canada. No wonder he felt a need to control the newspapers. He had the power to make or break anyone and protect himself. Do you think he would have been found guilty and sentenced here ?
  43. Anuradha Bose from ottawa, writes: Why are we being treated to this kind of drivel?
  44. The Skipper from Canada writes: C'mon folks - get a reality check ! This guy is a crook and he is getting what he deserves 'JAIL.'
  45. Ek Balam from Mississauga, Canada writes: Scott Anderson from Windsor, Canada writes: RE: Dominion

    Don't forget what he did to Massey Ferguson. He leaves a path of corporate destruction in his wake.

    Regardless, I'll miss the rapscallion. At least he made life interesting -- as long as you didn't own shares in his companies.

    Actually, never buy shares in any company with a dual class share structure but that's another story.
  46. Jim IIII from Canada writes: I always had an uneasy feeling about Blacks phonyness. The Catholics better hide their money. On the other side , he should be stripped of his Order Of Canada metal and given no special treatment. The precedent is very clear with the stripping of the metal of the following criminals .....

    David Ahenakew, the former head of the Assembly of First Nations convicted of promoting hatred.

    Eagleson was removed from the order after being jailed for fraud in 1998

    Sher Singh, lawyer, after being disbarred for professional misconduct. Mishandled trust funds and misappropriated $2,000 from a client and continued to practise after being suspended in November 2005.

    Bobby Orr was made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1979,,,, and Eagleson was the one that screwed him over.

    With Blacks appeals it could take years to yank the metal from his neck, but it HAS to be done.....
  47. J Law from Canada writes: Look at the G & M's poll for Saturday. It gives you absolutely nothing to vote for and says vote for one. Globe, if you are going to put down dispised people and nobodies then also put another category called 'None of the Above'.
  48. Jacob Kasperowicz from Kirkland, Canada writes: Lock him up; throw away the key. And,please,do Canada a favour....lock-up his pompous,annoying wife,as well.
  49. al woodward from Canada writes:
    The lesson to be learned here is that 'only politicians can avoid jail'.

    On behalf of the shareholders you cheated, Au revoir Conrad.
  50. J Law from Canada writes: conrad black. Oh, how the press protects its own.
    It appears the guy turned his back on Canada for a title; he turned his back on his friends and colleques for greed. He was found guilty and now the press try to make him out a saint. I think this says more about the press than the man himself.
  51. john chuckman from Canada writes: Catholicism is perfect. It was and is the faith of the mafia.

    You do whatever you like, then confess, and you're okay the Good Lord.
  52. Nom dePlume from St. John, Canada writes: How quaint, his own prayer chapel on his nine acres.

    So now he will be able to turn a small section of his cell in Florida into the same.

    And his high and mighty friends in the Church can come and listen for penance and remorse.

    Or just absolve him anyway, because they are buddies.

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