Most recently, my favorite Jesuit landed on the cover of The Rolling Stones with the somewhat misleading title, "Pope Francis:The Times They Are A-Changin'".
And while I can try to appreciate what Mr. Binelli and the magazine editors were trying to accomplish with this piece, I hate to break it to you folks...but y'all kinda missed the mark.
Dear Mr. Binelli and friends,
I am really glad you like our baby-kissing, selfie taking Pope Francis.
But to speak SO negatively of Pope Benedict is not very kind. Or dare I say, very Christ-like.
Benedict was not a "disastrous" Pope (as you mentioned in the article). And the minute you say he was a "staunch traditionalist" to me implies that you folks seem to think Francis is a more "liberal" Pope, which is needed to move and shake things up in the Catholic Church. Because of course the Church should change herself to keep up up with modern culture.
I really don't like terms that label people by their political ideas, because deep down I think all of our identity comes from something much deeper then whether you are a Democrat or Republican. In defining each of these men by political ideals, does a great disservice to each of them in in their unique gifts to the Church. Benedict had certain gifts such as his theological insights AND not to mention the great humility it took for him to resign when he knew he was no longer able carry out his mission as pontiff. And Francis has unique, wonderful gifts to offer the world also.
But let's not go comparing the two of them.
Pope Francis and Pope Benedict are on the same team. The way you speak about Benedict as if he was the anti-Christ. back.off.
To me it seems, you are really enjoying tearing into him with great ease. And though Mr. Binelli you and the editors who put together this story for the Rolling Stones, may personally not care for Benedict, leave your bias at home.
It shows right through your writing.
And yes, I think what Pope Francis said about how who is he to judge a gay person genuinely seeking after God is a great statement. We shouldn't judge anyone.
What I see as important, is that the Catholic Church is not that the Church is obsessed with gay marriage, but the Church needs use be very intentional in language and context when discussing this topic. There needs to be a more intentional and pastoral way to talk about homosexuality, which I think where Francis is challenging folks with these open, pastoral words of his.
Pope Francis is not a conservative nor a liberal. He is a Christian who striving to set an example of Christ to the world.
Please don't compare Pope Francis to Bill Clinton...he is actually not the Barack Obama of the Vatican (per Kyle Smith ).
P.S. Ecumenicalism is not really a used word...I believe you are referring to ecumenism