Friday 2 October 2015
UP-DATED: Protestants Warn Catholics About Francis; Catholics warn Catholics about Synod. Vatican back-tracks on Kim Davis meeting
Strange header for this post, no? Not as strange as the reality it conveys, for high-ranking evangelical Protestants have warned Catholics that Pope Francis is left-leaning; taking the Church with him, and appears to have sided with the political left (seeLifesite News here). That makes for sad reading; protestant leaders are alarmed that in Francis’ speech to the joint session of the US Congress he never mentioned Jesus Christ (whose Vicar he is and whose name and teaching he is meant to proclaim). What might this imply to them and to the outside world (and to solid Catholics) about who Francis sees as the supreme teacher?
In my previous post I ventured to say Francis is too provincial, but I may have misconstrued his problem. Certainly he has won hearts by his embracing of the sick etc, but he is losing solid Catholics on a daily basis; only those with politically left leanings are likely to be faithful to him. Further, in promoting his image as the caring Francis yet failing to mention Jesus Christ, he has allowed people to make the claim that he has his own agenda at the centre of his vision, rather than the Gospel.
As if this were not problem enough for Francis, he has also left himself open to a charge of ‘speaking with a forked tongue’, for while he addressed victims of child sexual abuse and told them that clergy and bishops will be held accountable, he has personally invited Cardinal Danneels to the Synod on the family, yet Danneels has a history of telling an abuse victim to stay quiet about the abusing Bishop until the said Bishop had retired.
Few devout Catholics will be uplifted by Francis on his US trip; those who are happy with him are likely those who have no desire to uphold the Traditional Faith of the Church on marriage and the family, since these are the very issues Francis strikingly failed to defend before Congress. That this failure (as well as the failure to speak of Christ and the failure to denounce the evil of abortion) has concerned even non-Catholics, is disturbing.
In a country where the Church is being battered by secular forces which demand funding by Church groups for the anti-life Culture of Death (contraception and abortion); the same country which has legislated for homosexual pairings to be equivalent to God-given marriage, Francis ought to have spoken clearly and unequivocally of the teaching on the Church on these issues. Talk about the environment and social justice is all well and good, but failure to mention the right to life (upon which access to very other right depends); the failure to defend of the natural process of transmitting life, and even the failure to mention Jesus Christ, is a loss beyond words. Many are likely to view Francis as politically (or image) motivated rather than gospel motivated.
It has also been revealed (see Rorate Caeli here) that a shadow group of Jesuits are already drafting the post-synodal document by Pope Francis, apparently with his knowledge. If true this is a massive indictment against the current Roman Authorities, and explains why the reflections of the “small groups” (circuli minores) are not going to be shared, and why there will be no mid-term report: they will likely not be of the kind the shadow (shady?) people want.
UPDATE: So, the Vatican is claiming Kim Davis had no 'real audience' with the pope and that it should not be taken as support...well, coming so soon after a rebuke of the Pope by the Left, this looks very much like the Pope even regrets supporting solid Christian teaching and witness. Dear oh dear, what have we here? Will Fr Lombardi now have to say it was an audience and the pope does support Ms. Davis' position or what? The answer is 'what': what a mess we are in.