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Doubting Francis (1)

08/04/2013

‘Those who love are able to understand, to hope, to inspire confidence. They do not give up, they do not burn bridges, they are able to forgive’.

I quote the new pope as he met his Roman ‘parishioners’ last night. Once again I find myself incredulously checking what he said in the original language, in this case Italian. And once again, sure enough: Chi ama comprende, spera, dà fiducia, non abbandona, non taglia i ponti, sa perdonare.

A rousing statement. But how dare this man speak as if this is what his church stands for? All the things he mentions are the very things it has routinely and uncaringly cast aside in its dealings with ordinary people over the centuries. Love? Understanding? Hope? Inspiration? Bridge-building? Forgiveness? The Catholic Church has consistently gone out of its way to suppress these human qualities, in adults and children alike, in country after country. What particularly revolts me is the implication that only those who espouse his religion can begin to understand what all these things mean.

In the same breath he mentioned the biblical figure of Doubting Thomas. But should he be surprised that people are inclined to doubt when they hear such cant from a figure of authority?

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From → Politics, Religion

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