Friday, September 20, 2013

7 Reasons Why Pope Francis Worries Some Catholics & Why They Shouldn't Worry

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Aggie Catholics
It seems our new Holy Father, Pope Francis, rubs a number of Catholics the wrong way. He certainly isn't the first Pope to do so, but the difference is he troubles a much different group of Catholics than our previous Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI did.

Some said Benedict was a "conservative" and that he wasn't open-minded, caring, loving, or other accusations. These are not accurate descriptions and he doesn't deserve to be accused of such things. Rather, he (like Francis) is CATHOLIC. That means he doesn't fit into the neat political framework of being either liberal, conservative, progressive, traditionalist, moderate, etc.

Take these quotes from BXVI for example - most would call them "liberal":
**"It is deplorable that homosexual persons have been and are the object of violent malice in speech or in action. Such treatment deserves condemnation from the church's pastors wherever it occurs."
**“It is theologically and anthropologically important for woman to be at the center of Christianity. Through Mary, and the other holy women, the feminine element stands at the heart of the Christian religion.”
**"the prevalence of a selfish and individualistic mindset which also finds expression in an unregulated capitalism"
**"If we refuse to share what we have with the hungry and the poor, we make of our possessions a false god. How many voices in our materialist society tell us that happiness is to be found by acquiring as many possessions and luxuries as we can! But this is to make possessions into a false god."
So, what label should we put on Benedict? How about Catholic. Just as Benedict shouldn't be reduced to political labels, neither should Francis. It isn't fair to either of them.

Why is it that Francis gets some people upset? I think there could be several reasons and here are 7 of them.
  1. Many Catholics are stuck in a model of catechetical formation. This means they see the work of the Catholic Church is to hand over doctrines and teachings. While this is one important role, this isn't the mission of the Church. The mission of the Church is to make followers of Jesus. This is done by evangelization. Evangelization must be centered on relationships. Our relationship with another (through word and witness) helps someone form a relationship with Jesus. If some get the mission of the Church wrong, then they won't understand the focus Francis has on making disciples as one that is in the heart of the Church. Doctrinal formation necessarily must follow the proclamation of the Gospel. NOT the other way around.
  2. Francis is frequently speaking to those on the fringes of the Church and outside the Church - not those who are already faithfully Catholic. If he doesn't focus on what many Catholics find are the most important issues (culture war topics (e.g. abortion, sex, etc.) then he must not care about them. This is false. He has said he is a child of the Church and accepts all the Church teaches. If he doesn't focus on them, it is because he knows that he will drive more away than he will attract if he starts with those topics.



  1. It's interesting how the media is quoting his most recent interview. If you read the whole thing in context, it is beautiful and thoughtful. If you look at the isolated quotes in the mainstream media, it is troubling.

    That's why it's always better to go to the source.

  2. Things are not going proper with the church anymore, the church should call a spade a spade for us to keep our faith and our believe as taught in the Bible. The bible explains better that man left his family and unite with woman not his fellow man. Thank you all my fellow believers.

  3. The purpose of the Church is to save souls, your vague statement of "making disciples of Jesus" doesn't equate.

    One cardinal rule of politics Pope Francis seems to ignore - "don't alienate your base"

    His comments on the Vetus Ordo being an ideology doesn't sit well with some of the most serious and devout Catholics in the Church.

  4. No one seems to care about alienating the base. No is shepherding us.

  5. The Pope's position of the strong anti-abortion position of the Church should be toned down is a major blow to those who have devoted their time and resources to stop the killing of millions of the unborn. I, for one, have never heard a homily stressing the evils of abortion. However, God bless EWTN for stressing the holocast of abortion that is taking place daily.


  6. I don't like this pope. Sorry.
    He sows confusion. One day he opens his mouth and the next day a host of apologists has to do damage control.
    I don't like this pope but I pray for him every night.