Whenever a Catholic prelate is assigned to a high office, many Catholics wonder if he will be orthodox or not. There is always a fear that a church leader will try to implement some newfangled theology or be a big fan of interpretive dance taking place during Mass.
So when Pope Francis chose Archbishop of Quebec Gérald Lacroix those questions naturally arose. At first I could not find much information on the subject. Media outlets were simply presenting objective facts and did not give any clues as to the Cardinal-elect's positions or opinions.
Then I dug a little further and found out some interesting information. It seems Lacroix is very interested in orthodoxy and presenting a historical and full Gospel. He is not interested in innovation and in fact he is very critical of this approach.
As educated Catholics know, there is no such thing as conservative or liberal when it comes to Church teaching. You are either orthodox or not. Lacroix is definitely orthodox. To prove this, here are some things the prelate has said over the years:
Here's a great interview he did with the National Post. I like how he questions the questions. So the first query asked by the Post was how the new archbishop (this was written in 2011) would get people into the pews of the churches in Quebec. He said "I think the first thing is not to try to bring people back to the pews. People in Quebec will resist that." He goes on to say the focus is not to increase numbers in some utilitarian way, but rather to change hearts and minds and people will come naturally. To read the rest of the interview, go here.
In another great interview, Archbishop Lacroix, whose name means "The Cross" is asked about softening or watering down the message of the Gospel to attract people. He flat out rejects this proposition, stating: “We’re not telling people, listen we have a new message, It’s not going to be as demanding as we were before, we’ve found a smooth version of the Gospel; it won’t be so difficult to live, it’s going to be easy, come right in, no that’s not what it’s all about”. To read the rest of this interview, click here.
Overall, from everything I've seen so far, Lacroix seems like a very solid choice, and given the fact that he was chosen by the Holy Father, it says a lot about the Pontiff as well.
Happy Feast of Christ's Baptism everyone.