Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Leading the Flock

I have read two stories in the past few days about how Pope Benedict XVI is taking a harder line in his papacy as he enters his third year. Both articles make mention of the fact that the Pope is taking a tough stance on issues such as not allowing divorced Catholics to fully participate in the Church, preventing negotiations on abortion, euthanasia and homosexuality, and for closing the door on married clergy.

From the Telegraph..."it has become clear that Benedict's agenda remains essentially the same as it was when he was Cardinal Ratzinger. When he was elected, he described himself as "a humble worker in the Lord's vineyard". Where John Paul II roamed far outside the vineyard, Benedict is staying close to the soil, pulling out weeds.

Those weeds are not so much people as bad habits - rambling sermons; smug, self-centred celebrations of the Mass; ugly music and architecture that, in his opinion, insults God."

And from"As he approaches the third year of his reign, Pope Benedict XVI is hardening into the kind of pontiff who fulfills liberal fears and conservative hopes.

... as his 80th birthday approached, the former Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger has drawn a tougher line.

He has rebuffed calls, including by bishops in his native Germany, to let divorced Catholics who remarry participate fully in the church.

He has warned Catholic politicians who must decide on such issues as abortion, euthanasia and marriage that the faith's values are "not negotiable." And he has closed the door on any relaxation of the celibacy requirement for priests.

Benedict's persistent defense of the "traditional family" based on marriage between a man and a woman has emboldened Italy's bishops, who are waging a fierce battle against the government's proposal to extend some rights to unmarried couples, including same-sex unions.

Yes, Pope Benedict is steadfast in the faith. How can Catholics expect any less of their Pope?


Theocoid said...

As they say, "NEWS FLASH! Pope is Catholic!"

paramedicgirl said...

"As they say, "NEWS FLASH! Pope is Catholic!"

Actually, that would have made a very good title! I like it!

Simon-Peter Vickers-Buckley said...

Yep, that's it all over:

There was a sort of running gag where I am from growing up, though I suspect it has variations everywhere: when anyone asked a really dumb question the answer would be -

"Is the Pope Catholic?"

e.g. at school late 1970s...
Q. "So did Mr Hubbard *really* say wimps don't play rugby?"
A. "Come on, is the Pope Catholic?"

This also speaks to the belief many have that the Catholic Church is a political organization, a large tent (yes, on non-essentials that are not proximate to heresy!) or a large buffet...