I’m wondering if conservative Catholics will paste an IMPEACH THE POPE sticker on their bumper right beside their IMPEACH OBAMA sticker? I understand that Catholic conservative radio is abuzz this AM with callers who don’t get Pope Francis’s newest message on Gays, Abortion and Birth Control. A friend emailed me this earlier today: ” On Annunciation radio, the local affiliate of EWTN, people there are going bat-shit trying to explain what he REALLY means.”
What he REALLY means, eh? To most of those who read this blog, it isn’t too complex. It isn’t a new revelation. Just read the words of Jesus. Simple. To the point.
Sadly, conservative Catholics never spent much time with that stuff. Rather, they have been all about hierarchical dogma. And the right-wing political agenda: gays, birth control and abortion. And ‘proper’ church service, proper prayers, Heaven and Hell. Not too much about the poor, homeless, sick and oppressed- stuff that Jesus stressed. Just personal sanctity and getting to Heaven.
This morning that set of Catholics are devastated. Truly amok. I’m betting that they have lit millions of votive candles and with rosary beads between their fingers, are praying like hell that what they heard from Pope Francis was just a dream- a bad nightmare. It can’t’ be true! Cannot be!
Pope Francis’s reference to house of cards comes easily to mind:
We have to find a new balance; otherwise even the moral edifice of the Church is likely to fall like a house of cards. The people of God want pastors, not clergy acting like bureaucrats or government officials.
Yet, conservative Catholics are not used to this kind of clergy or hierarchy. For all of their lives, these Catholics have depended on these same men to direct every aspect of their life. Rules, boundaries, sheep. I fear that many will not survive without these strictures. They are being called out of the cave, out of the tunnel and into the light. They may be blinded by this command just as one is blinded by the sun’s rays after leaving a dark place. One adjusts to that, but without structure, without boundaries, without a common enemies list, many may retreat back into their tunnels for protection.
Just think what the Pope is calling Catholics to do: to get out of their comfort zone and actually do something for the poor in spirit, for those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for the meek, the peacemakers, the persecuted. It requires one to get out of the easy chair and do something. It calls the Catholic to get out of the house and into the neighborhood and into the neighborhoods of the inner city. Lock the car doors.
The ‘solution’ to this newly enunciated message might be impeaching the Pope- calling for his removal. After all, if he is removed, then Catholics can return to their houses, lock the doors, and get out their rosaries.