Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Pope Francis is in America now: My Concerns

So Pope Francis has arrived in the United States, He landed in Andrews Air Force Base in Washington DC to be precise. He'll also be visiting New York and Philadelphia during his 6 day trip. He will also be speaking at the United Nations in New York City.

It's really great that the pope has finally come to America. I'm in Canada, but this is as close as he's ever been to my country.

I am somewhat concerned about this pope. Every time he speaks, his apologists come out in droves saying "oh no, he didn't really mean what he said. he in fact meant the opposite." No one seemed to have to do this much with Pope Benedict.

Some people attribute this to the liberal media trying to put words in the pope's mouth which advance their cause, but why didn't this happen before? Again, no one put words in Pope Benedict's mouth except bad ones. So why, all of a sudden, are they using the new pope to push their agenda?

Often, papal apologists will say you have to put the pope's words into context. But even after reading the context, I still find the words troubling in some ways. There are many examples. From telling people they don't need to "breed like rabbits" at a time when Catholics are not even reproducing enough to keep the population going.

Or doing things like accepting a hammer and sickle shaped into a cross with Jesus on it. Vatican spokespeople will clarify these gaffs by essentially removing the pope's agency and saying he will pretty much accept anything. Are we to believe the Prince of the Apostles and the Vicar of Christ is incapable of standing up for himself? As a cardinal, he wore red to signify his willingness to die for his faith, but now that he's wearing white we are meant to believe he is not even willing to refuse a distasteful gift?

I believe the pope is the Vicar of Christ. I do not believe the See of Peter is empty or any other such thing. The Church will continue and the Holy Spirit will protect it from error. But should the pope even be speaking to the public as often as he does? I understand that he wants to cultivate a very approachable and loving image, but I think it can go too far. It's like the more you say, the less serious people take each word. In my opinion, the pope should mainly issue papal decree and be very careful about every utterance. We can already see the damage that he is happening from misinterpretations.

But it's not all bad. The pope has forcefully spoken against abortion, and even transgenderism. He has spoken rightfully about our duty to protect our fellow man and our need to care for the poor. Try as they might, the pope will never fit neatly into a Liberal soundbite.

But even the good things the pope has spoken against seem to lack something in my opinion. They lack the concept of individual holiness. He seems to focus instead of societal ills as he sees them. He appears to think of people in groups rather than as individuals. He even seems to oppose inanimate objects or concepts like air conditioning or economies of scale. In another post I will address the pope's economic theories and ideas. But I will briefly say with this topic too, instead of advocating personal responsibility, the pope seems to criticize an entire system of economics.

I hope this trip of the pope proves fruitful, but I am somewhat fearful that it will simply be exploited by the liberal media and institutions for their own purposes.

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